Step training has been a staple in the fitness industry for a quarter of a century. Although participation started to wane a few years ago, it has resurged thanks in part to the fusion of traditional and newer classes. Whether choreographed, stylized or athletic in nature, step training remains a great form of exercise.
The William G. White Jr. YMCA in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, “warns” members that they will definitely get results with Metabolic Effect, which includes 30 minutes of “controlled-intensity weight training and athletic cardio drills.” The online description challenges participants to combine push-ups, lunges, squat jumps, sprints and other exercises to get the “strong physique you’ve always wanted.”
Take a break from choreography and give your students this athletic challenge on the step. The interval format is easy to teach and can be adapted for all fitness levels. Interval training is a valuable tool for re-energizing students and increasing their fitness levels, and it fits in nicely with other popular “metabolic training” programs. Also, because of its intensity, this class combines well with other formats such as weight training, yoga or mat Pilates.
Joseph Pilates often spoke of “principles of movement.” Over the years, Pilates enthusiasts and students have cited many principles. Six have remained consistent through the years, acting as pillars of practice. They are concentration, control, centering, precision, flow and breathing. These powerful precepts are relevant not solely to Pilates moves, however. They can be valuable tools for ensuring a safe, efficient, results-oriented workout in any type of exercise or group fitness class.
Water is a heat robber. If you’re not moving at a high enough rate to generate your own heat, water will bring your body temperature down to its level. So instead of a cool-down at the end of a water fitness workout, do a “warm-down.” The idea is to continue moving in order to generate heat, maintain comfort and avoid the “big chill.”
The unique properties of water (buoyancy and resistance) provide a safe and effective modality for both relaxation and vigorous exercise, yet the health benefits of water workouts are not widely known. Current public health trends—especially rising rates of obesity, coupled with an aging population, associated chronic conditions and rising healthcare costs—are a call to new action for both treatment and prevention.
Boogie Box Fitness rolls cardiovascular training, core balance and strength training into one program by utilizing the principle of “applied muscle resistance.” The 50-minute interval class is a “high-intensity fusion of hip-hop and Latin dancing, mixed with kickboxing, plyometric exercises and military drills.”
Some people have limited time in their busy days to exercise. Others think that working out for 60 minutes is tiresome. In either scenario, finding the time or energy to take an entire fitness class can be a challenge. Providing efficient workouts that take less time can encourage these folks to get to the gym. Another big benefit: shorter workouts can also yield many of the same psychological and physiological benefits as longer ones.
Do you fondly recall when hand wraps, focus mitts and challenging combinations ruled the fitness scene? Boxing and kickboxing classes never really went away, and they are still popular in many fitness facilities across the country. Whether you’re already teaching this style of class or hope to in the near future, you’ll want to have a solid warm-up planned for students.
The new year usually brings with it people eager—yet again—to start their yearly quest for health and fitness, after waistlines have expanded and fitness levels have dropped between Thanksgiving and the end of the year. Whether these participants are coming back from weeks (or, in some cases, months or even years) of inactivity, have a tremendous amount of weight to lose or are true beginners, many of them go to the gym to seek the advice of qualified fitness professionals.