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Work out anywhere

Tuesday, September 11, 2018

You can exercise in hotel rooms, parks, or in your home using only your body weight, with these tips from Sagar Pednekar

Life can get busy, and quite often we find ourselves travelling or otherwise unable to get to our preferred health and fitness facility for a workout. These body weight moves will help you stay on track, no matter where you find yourself. Using only your own body weight, these versatile moves can help you create a total-body workout that fits your needs and abilities.

Squat Jumps (Legs, Hips and Core)

Step 1

Starting Position Stand with your feet  hip-width apart, arms by your sides, depressing and retracting your scapulae (pull shoulders down and back) without arching your low back, and ‘brace’ (engage your abdominal / core muscles) to stiffen your spine.

Step 2

Downward Phase Begin your downward phase by first shifting your hips backwards, then slowly moving downwards to create a hinge-like movement at your knees. Continue to lower yourself until you feel your heels about to lift off the floor. Try to maintain a flat back by bending forward at the hips, keep your head facing forward and position to your arms where comfortable or where they offer the greatest degree of balance support.

Step 3

Jumping Movement With a pause at the bottom of your downward phase, explode upwards through your lower extremity, achieving triple extension (pushing and extending your ankles, knees and hips simultaneously). As you jump into the air, keep your feet level with each other and parallel with the floor.

Step 4

Landing The most important components of the landing phase are correct foot position and avoiding excessive forward movement in your lower extremity which places additional stresses upon your knees.

Step 5

Attempt to land softly and quietly on the mid-foot, rolling backwards quickly towards the heels. Always push your hips backwards and drop them downwards to absorb the impacting forces associated with jumping. Avoid locking out your knees or quads on your landing as this may lead to potential knee injuries.

Step 6

Land with your trunk inclined slightly forward, head aligned with your spine and back rigid or flat. Keep your abdominal / core muscles engaged, stiffening your torso to protect your spine.

Step 7

It is suggested that you first learn how to squat and land before attempting to jump. Once you have mastered the hip-hinge mechanism, begin with small jumps, but emphasise your landing mechanics. Only progress to more explosive jumps once you have mastered your landing mechanics.

Bent Knee Push Ups (Chest / Shoulders / Triceps / Core)

Step 1

Starting Position Kneel on an exercise mat or floor and bring your feet together behind you.

Step 2

Slowly bend forward to place your palms flat on the mat, positioning your hands shoulder-width apart with your fingers facing forward. Slowly shift your weight forward until your shoulders are positioned directly over your hands.

Step 3

Downward Phase Slowly lower your body towards the floor while maintaining a rigid torso and head aligned with your spine. Do not allow your low back to sag or your hips to hike upwards during this downward phase. Continue to lower yourself until your chest or chin touch the mat or floor. Your elbows should remain close to the sides of your body or flare outwards slightly.

Step 4

Upward Phase Press upwards through your arms while maintaining a rigid torso and head aligned with your spine. Do not allow your low back to sag or your hips to hike upwards. Continue pressing until the arms are fully extended at the elbows.

Super Mans (Back, Butt/Hips, Shoulders)

Step 1

Starting Position Lie prone (on your stomach) on a mat with your legs extended, ankles slightly plantar flexed (toes pointing away from your shins), arms extended overhead with palms facing each other. Relax your head to align it with your spine.

Step 2

Upward Phase Exhale, contract your abdominal and core muscles to stabilise your spine and slowly extend both hips (raise both legs) a few inches off the floor while simultaneously raising both arms a few inches off the floor. Keep both legs and arms extended and avoiding any rotation in each. Maintain your head and torso position, avoiding any arching in your back or raising of your head. Hold this position briefly.

Step 3

Downward Phase Gently inhale and lower your legs and arms back towards your starting position without any movement in your low back or hips.

Sagar Pednekar is a GGFI Certified Professional and Technical Training Head, Gold’s Gym India


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