Dead Balls And What They Can Do For Your Training

Dead balls, also called d-balls or slam balls, are weighted rubber no-bounce balls filled with sand.  These balls add a certain element of extra work for training. Those who work out with slam balls need to squat and hinge as well as thrust the slam ball to get it off the floor, which helps maintain a strong core as well as form.

Slam balls are becoming a popular addition to high-intensity training programs in many multi-functional gyms. There are different ways slam balls can help in an intense and core development workout program.

Front slam exercise

The front slam exercise is done by grasping a slam ball in front of you and slamming it to the ground.  You should engage your whole body in this movement, with explosive force.  Keep a tight core and a neutral spine position as you squat to pick up the ball.  Then thrust yourself back up, using your hips and legs.

Slamball jump exercise

The same front slam exercise is performed here with some added strength. Stand with your legs about shoulder-width apart; keeping a neutral spine, squat down and pick up the ball; squat jump up vertically and press the ball high overhead; when you come down slam the ball down and finish in a squat or hinged position. Keep the core tight as you repeat these movements.

Lunge with slam ball

This is another effective way to use a slam ball and strengthen your lungs. Stand in an athletic position and hold the slam ball at chest level. Step forward and lower your back knee into a lunge. When you step forward, extend out your arms with the ball in your hands. When you come back to your original stance, keep your frame tall and repeat the lunge with opposite legs.

Other slam ball exercises

There are other stances that you can try with the slam ball. You could do partner work by rotating your hips and shoulders and pushing the ball out towards your partner. The partner repeats the movement similarly to give the ball back to you.

There are variations of exercises that can be performed with the slam ball. When you sign up for a high-intensity training program, a certified and experienced trainer can teach you a variety of exercises using the slam ball.  

Why The Four Forms Of Workout Are Important

Most of us have a favorite form of workout that we like to do. If you are an outdoor enthusiast, you may love to cycle or run; those who are into yoga feel that the postures and stretches are enough for overall health; while powerlifters find lifting weights in different ways adequate to maintain their form and strength. Even though it is easier to commit to a single type of exercise routine, it is better to include different kinds of workouts and challenges for a more comprehensive form of fitness.

According to experts at the National Institutes of Health, Physical activity and exercise can be divided into four main categories:  flexibility, balance, strength, and endurance. Many people who have positive results with one form of physical activity may feel like that is enough and that there is no need to venture into other forms of fitness. However, just like different food groups have diverse nutritional benefits, you will get better fitness and less risk of injury by indulging in different forms of exercise.

Cardio exercises like rowing, cycling, running or dance is activities that elevate the heart rate and help to build endurance. For maintenance and weight loss, low-impact aerobic exercises for about 45 minutes is recommended.

Strength training, on the other hand, helps to maintain and build muscles. Long term benefits of strength training include decreasing the risk of diseases like diabetes, obesity, heart disease, arthritis, and osteoporosis. Immediate benefits also include increased metabolism, which in turn helps your body to burn more calories.

While endurance and cardio are popular forms of exercise, you need to work on flexibility as well. Yoga is a great way to incorporate flexibility into your workout routine. Besides the Namaste and downward dog stretches you can also include different TRX drills to increase and work on your flexibility.

At the end of it all, balance is vital for any successful and well-rounded workout routine. When you are younger it might not seem important, but as you age, you become more prone to injuries and ailments.  That is when it is easier to see the importance of a well-rounded exercise regime. There are different ways you can include different forms of exercises in your workouts. Even if you like to hit the gym, you could enroll in dance classes once in awhile. Attending a HIT session or going for a run in the park can be fun variations in your workout regime as well. If you give yourself a variety of physical challenges in addition to your favorite workout routine, you will see yourself become fitter and healthier for it.

The Journey Of TRX Education

The Journey Of TRX Education

TRX education is all about providing training with an organized set of exercises, as well as teaching skills that can help different fitness professionals. With TRX there is a certain methodology or modality that includes a set of principles that fitness professionals need to work with. These training modules center on the Suspension and the Rip trainer. There are certain concepts and applications as well as terminologies that are involved here.

Foundational Movements in TRX include courses that are essential for connecting movements and measuring the effectiveness of the same for different clients. The gear of TRX provides the right environment to establish standards of movement, clarifying what should be stable and what needs to be mobile. The courses in TRX help athletes and clients to meet the standards or checkpoints of position and transition. The other components of the movements can be modified by trained professionals as required. The Rip Trainer and Suspension trainer can be integrated into effective fitness programs already being used in other modalities. For such reasons the Functional Training course is important to supplement the foundational movements course in TRX.

The Functional training course can help to supplement the coaching training that is included in the TRX Foundational Movements. This course can help one to understand the progression from suspension training to other training modalities. The changes are achieved when different gear are used with different kinds of movement, either stable or mobile. The TRX Rip training course is the next level to pursue when movement standards of rotation are taught. Education in suspension training includes developing foundational strength while Rip Training focuses on rotational power. Trainers can use Rip Trainer as part of circuit training or as a standalone tool. However, the basics of movement coaching need to be known before that.

The other category of TRX training is TRX gear. The right coaching and learning tools make all the difference, and principles, as well as cues, are based on these tools. TRX education includes a powerful teaching method that helps incorporate the right fitness and training techniques for fitness professionals. They can then use the education they receive to devise programs of their own, which include the same standards, but can be incorporated in different training conditions. This allows flexibility to be built into diverse TRX training regimes.

Nutrition For Fitness Regimes

When you are following a fitness regime, the right kind of nutrition is important as well. What you eat as well as when you eat are crucial for any athletic or endurance training. Experts often agree that what you consume after doing a workout is of great importance. Chocolate milk has become a post-workout drink of choice while many swear by refried beans and their beneficial effects.

Importance of nutrition in the post workout phase

In the post-workout phase, you need to consume nutrients that will help you replenish your energy, increase muscle size and quality, as well as repair damage that you sustained during your workout.

Accordingly, you need to incorporate protein into your diet which will help to repair muscle tissues as well as carbohydrates that will replace the energy you expend during workouts. If you eat a balanced meal after a workout, the post workout nutrition requirements are usually met. However whole meals take the time to digest, and most people are not hungry as soon as they finish the vigorous exercise. A liquid form is easier to digest, helps to speed recovery time, and is absorbed more rapidly into the system.

How to balance nutrition with workouts?

When you undergo an intense hour of training, you need to ingest 15 grams of protein and 30 grams of carbohydrates. This can be consumed during the workout or as soon as you finish. A workout drink that includes carbs that rapidly digest as well as proteins like protein hydrolysate or isolate is sufficient. It is best to time a meal of whole foods within an hour or so after you complete a workout.

When to use nutrition drinks?

If you are doing endurance, interval, or weight training that lasts about 45 minutes or more, you need to have a workout drink ready. If you are indulging in a casual exercise like riding a bike or walking, you need not opt for a recovery drink.

Seven Moves Of TRX

If you are new to TRX there are simple moves that can help you get started. Do not feel overwhelmed with what you see around you; advanced fitness enthusiasts might be doing more complex movements, but that should not keep you from doing the simple moves that are effective as well.

With TRX you will be involved in a fast, effective and fun form of bodyweight training. You will build muscles as well as burn fat, and improve flexibility and endurance. There are seven simple moves that will help you get started. These are the pull, push, lunge, squat, hinge rotate, and plank movements. The best part of TRX is that you use your body as a machine, and this training method helps to unleash the full potential of fitness that lies within you.

Pull:  In the pull move, lean back as you hold the handles. Form a strong plank position with shoulders pulled back and held down. Maintain the plank position and pull your chest up. Then lower yourself in a controlled and slow manner, back to your original position.

Push:  The chest press is the push move that you do with the TRX handles in front. When doing this move, tighten your core and lean your weight on the handles with your knees, ankles, shoulders, and hips well aligned.  

Lunge:  The lunge move is done while both feet are in the cradles of the TRX.

Squat:  When you do the squat move, stack your elbows under your shoulders and keep your feet hip width apart.  Keep your weight on your heels as you lower your hips and come back.

Hinge:  To do the hinge move, extend your arms with your knees bent as you press down on the handles. Ensure that you bend forward from the hips.

Rotate:  Place your arms in a T position, shift your hips forward and rotate your torso.

 

Plank:  The plank move requires you to be in a plank push-up position with your hands under your shoulders. Tighten your core muscles as you lower your knees to ground level.

Workouts for Flexibility

We all know that being flexible is very important when we are going to hit the slopes. Not only do you need to flex around the curves as you glide down the slopes, but it is also important on those times when wiping out is a must. Here are some exercises that will help you to be more flexible when you go skiing this winter. Each of these exercises should be done for sixty seconds. As with all other exercises, you should take a small rest period before moving on to the next one. Do these exercises two or three times to get your flexibility workout up to fifteen minutes.

The first one we will discuss is the wall slides. Place your hand into the foot cradles while you are standing and facing opposite of the anchor point. Put your arms up over your head and then bend them at a ninety-degree angle. You will want to then push your hands into the cradles to remove any slack that is in the straps and then stretch your arms up right over your shoulders. Once you are in that position, bend your elbows slowly back to ninety degrees and go back to the position you started in.

standing-leg-stretch-2Second is the hip hinge. This is done in a wide stance. Extend your arms in front of you while you are facing the anchor point standing up, then press the handles down with your feet spread more than your shoulder width apart. Now you will bend forward with your back straight from the hips and push your hips back while you extend your arms forward. Return to the starting position by pushing your hips forward.

The last exercise is the Cossack Stretch. For this one, you will want your feet to be spread wider that the width of your hips while you stand up and face the anchor point. Bend your first leg while lowering your hips closer to the floor while the other leg is kept straight. Now move the toe of the back leg slowly up, stretching the inner thigh of that leg. You will want to keep your hips low throughout the process and then repeat the exercise on the other leg.

These exercises should help you be flexible enough to handle any ski slope you face.

Strength Training Exercises for the Slopes

The exercises in this post will help you have the strength you need to hit the slopes this year. Each exercise should be done for sixty seconds. Allow thirty seconds to rest after each one. After you have done them all, you will want to go through them again so you can get a good fifteen-minute workout. When you do the exercises for a single leg, do one round on one leg then, on the next round, do the other leg.

trx__resizedStart off with the hamstring curls. Put your heels inside the foot cradles while you are laying on your back. Push down on your heels and lift your hips while bracing your core. Bend your knees using your hamstrings and them pull your heels close to your butt using your core throughout. Go back to the start position by moving your heels back in a slow motion.

Now work on some hip presses. Put your heels in the cradles while laying on your back. Your knees need to be bent at a ninety-degree angle. Push down on your heels and push up your hips, while engaging your core, until your hips are perfectly aligned with your shoulders and knees. Move your hips back down slowly.

Next are the mountain climbers. Place your toes in the cradles for your feet and get in a push up position. Bring one knee towards your chest while you brace your core and keep the other leg in a straight position. As you get to the top of the position, let your hips move up only slightly. Now, move your leg straight and bring your hips down to the initial position and then do the other leg. I always felt like I had done these exercises all day while climbing on roofs with my job at Surrey Roofers, but I still added these to my workout routine.

Moving on to lunges. Face the anchor point while standing. With your palms towards each other, hold the handles. Lift the first leg to the point where your thigh is in line with the floor and then bend your kneed to ninety degrees. Now push back your leg and do a downward lunge until your thigh is level with the floor then squeeze your glutes and drive through your heel to stand.

There are several other strength exercises to do to prepare you for the slopes, but these few will get you started on your way!

Cardio Workouts You Should be Doing for Ski Season

Cardio workouts are imperative to keep your body from harm on the ski slopes. Below are some of the best cardio workouts for you to do in preparation. Each one should be done for sixty seconds then rest for thirty seconds as you start to transition to the next one. Do all the exercises mentioned then go through them again to make it a fifteen-minute workout. In the first round, all the single leg exercises should be done on the right, then do the second round on the left.

trx-cardio-january-31-2016-455x256Start with the Atomic Pushups. Using the Suspension Trainer, put your feet in the foot cradles and get into the pushup position. You should be right under the anchor point. Make sure your hands are positioned directly under your shoulders. Do a pushup while bracing your core. At the top of the pushup, stop momentarily and do a crunch by moving your hips up slightly and bringing your knees to your chest. At the top, pause for a second then go back to the original position.

Burpees come next. Put one foot into the two cradles while the suspension trainer is at the mid-calf position. Take your suspended leg and move it back while lowering your hips far enough down until your back knee is around 2 inches from the floor. From there, get your grounded leg into a plank position by hopping while your hands are firm on the ground. From there, do a pushup and then, with your leg that is grounded, hop forward and then finish with a jump.

Now use the Skaters. Stand in front of the Suspension Trainer. Use both hands to hold the handles and place your feet side by side. From that position, jump left and land on your left foot. Bend your knees when you land to help with controlling your momentum. Do this over and over, going back and forth rapidly.

The last of the Cardio Workouts is the jump squats. You will want the Suspension Trainer to be set at the mid length. You will want your feet to be apart at hip width while you stand in front of the suspension trainer. Lower your hips back and down while your elbows are below your shoulders. It is important to keep your weight on your heels. Push your glutes together while you move your hips up and then finish with a jump as you end your squat. To help you land softly and decelerate, you can use the straps provided. Throughout the entire process, you will need to keep your chest lifted.

 

Getting Ready for the Slopes

It’s hard to believe that the winter ski season is almost here! It seems like just last week we had on our bathing suits and were enjoying temperatures in the nineties. Looking ahead, though, it’s time to start getting our bodies in shape for the slopes.

At a lot of resorts in the West, it has already begun to snow. This year, La Nina will be effecting the weather conditions quite strongly, per the National Weather Service. Because of this, we will likely be seeing more favorable conditions in the mountains within the United States’ northern half. These places should be perfect for large amounts of snowfall and wonderful ski conditions.

trx-workout-1-700x700What does that mean that we should do? Well, it’s time for us to buckle in and get ready to ski by preparing our ski legs! What’s the best way to prepare, you may ask?

First is cardio. Nothing is much worse that going to the resort on the first day of the season and ending up out of breath as we walk from the vehicle to the line for the lift. Sure, you could blame it on the altitude if you want to, but odds are, you are not in as good a shape as you should be. It’s up to you to do cardio workouts to get your stamina up to par and your blood flowing.

Second, do your strength training. Power is greatly needed up on the slopes. You will need to increase the power of your legs and your core, but do not forget to also strengthen your upper body to help keep your shoulders from getting injured on the slopes.

Third, don’t forget mobility training. Most us are not near as limber as we were in earlier years. You are setting yourself up for the possibility of injuries while on the slopes if your body does not bend and bounce well. You don’t want to be taken off the slopes from those injuries. Participating in snow sports is well known to put the body in demanding positions physically so it is very important to have flexibility in your trunk, quads, and hamstrings to help prevent those injuries.

By preparing yourself for the slopes, you will be more likely to avoid the injuries that can come from the slopes.

Exercises for Endurance

trx_endurance_athletes_workout_5What do you think of when you hear the word “endurance”?  The actual meaning of the work is being able to remain active for an extended period or the ability to exert yourself. It can also refer to your ability to withstand pain, stress, or fatigue. By doing endurance training, you can help improve your muscular, respiratory, and cardiovascular endurance while you do anaerobic or aerobic exercises. The most common sports people see as endurance sports are biking, running, and swimming, but there are many other sports that can help you increase your endurance.

When we talk about muscular endurance, we are referring to the ability of your muscles to resist fatigue over an extended time when they contract repeatedly. Taking a long run, for example, is one form of muscular endurance as you keep your legs moving. You can also work on your cardiovascular endurance when running because you are making your heart beat hard while your lungs and blood vessels are made to work hard pumping oxygen for a long time. Cardiovascular endurance is also seen through the ability to breathe steadily while continuing to run a long distance.

Endurance training is very important for anyone in sports, not just those who love to run or want to compete in a triathlon. Your performance in working out is enhanced through endurance training but, on top of that, your health is benefited as you are increasing your metabolism, improving your heart function, and increasing your level of energy.

Using the TRX method for endurance training is a great way to help you in developing a body that is strong. You will find that you will get a lot out of training for endurance with the TRX method as you also improve your muscular endurance. You will also face less injuries by training through TRX in place of running, biking, or swimming.

Endurance is important for anyone training for a sport or just as a normal workout routine. Using the TRX makes endurance training simpler and safer for everyone.