While the legs may be the stars of the show in indoor cycling, the core is the vital foundation that affects all movement, including the pedal stroke. A solid core helps eliminate unnecessary upper-body movement so that riders can focus and deliver energy for a smooth and powerful pedal stroke. Most cyclists will agree that, whether you’re riding inside or out, the core is the power center for efficiency. These five functional moves strengthen the core muscles and improve overall performance. All you need is 5 minutes before or after your next indoor cycling class.
Speak with enough personal trainers at the start of their careers and you’ll quickly notice a common aspiration: They want to train professional athletes. Of course it’s fine to dream big, but it’s important to remember that professional athletes are extremely rare individuals. Consequently, pro athletes are neither as numerous nor as varied in age, gender or ability as everyday adult athletes.
Tabata training is a popular high-intensity interval training format consisting of 20 seconds of all-out, intense work followed by 10 seconds of passive recovery, totaling 4 minutes of very strenuous exercise. HIIT protocols such as Tabata are effective and promising for time-crunched exercisers whose goals are weight loss and performance enhancement. Deep-water exercise is a great nonimpact fitness experience that includes full-body movements. Combine the two and you have a powerful HIIT workout that features all the intensity without the impact and joint stress.
NewVo, a dance fusion class offered at Being Fit Gym in San Diego, combines Middle Eastern dance and cardiovascular training for a total-body workout. The instructors offer multiple movement approaches to make this class challenging and appropriate for all fitness levels, according to the online description.
Running, jumping and throwing are integral to most sports. A rebounder, also referred to as a fitness trampoline, is a sometimes-forgotten sports conditioning tool that trains all three. In fact, it provides a multidimensional and multifaceted environment. The rebounder is a perfect playground for a multitude of training options, including plyometrics, high-intensity interval drills, explosive movement patterning, balance work, throwing sequences and more.
Back in Canada, when my colleagues and I developed strength and fitness programs for hockey athletes, we began to notice something fascinating: Farm kids had distinct advantages when their “farm strength” was transferred to the ice. These young athletes were stronger on the puck, stronger in front of the net when battling their opponents, and stronger in odd body positions.
A woman’s body will change more in 9 months of pregnancy than a man’s will in his lifetime—and she needs an exercise program to match the transformation. So says maternal exercise expert Farel Hruska, national fitness director of FIT4MOM® (formerly Stroller Strides®) in San Diego. “The biomechanics of motherhood are unique and specific,” Hruska explains. “A mom-to-be will need to master strength, agility, balance, speed, acceleration, deceleration, directional change and rotation . . . all with load that increases every day.”