She is five feet, 3 inches, weighs 112lbs, she wears a size 6 on the top but a size 12 on the bottom. She doesn’t have a great sense of balance so she finds lunges challenging, and her knees tend to get painful after a couple of sessions of squats, lunges etc. Her fitness levels are not great either and I am cautious about getting her heart rate up with bike intervals. I am at loss on how to help her achieve her goals. Any suggestions?
That’s a bit of a disparity between her upper & lower body, but no big deal – I’ve seen greater. That’s just her genetic makeup. At 5’3″ and 112 lbs, that would be my guess. There’s nothing you’re going to do about bone structure – that’s what she was dealt. If she was 160 lbs, then I’d say you have something to work with. I’d be curious about what her body fat % is, but I know you can’t go posting that.
I would set some new goals for her since she might not be able to do anything about her hip measurement. She should also get to the bottom of her knee pain – that would be a big help. That should be her first goal. One more thing – if she’s not in great aerobic shape, you might want to have her do some steady-state activity & then progress to interval work when her conditioning improves. Good luck Tonia – keep her motivated & don’t let her get discouraged.
Hello Tonia Zaloumis,
You could try step work on a very low four inch step to start, for the knees and cardio. I would also do balance work with her.
That measurement is not so bad, like Paul Thomas says, could be genetic and double check the bodyfat.
Maybe you could alter the goals to be more realistic or break the goals into smaller increments. Helping the client choose healthy goals is also part of our job.
Good luck to the both of you.
Natalie aka NAPS 2 B Fit.
As a Pilates Instructor some of the best exercises for the hips, both strength and to reduce inches are the Side Kick Series and Pilates Leg Circles.
I would modify the leg circles either from a bent knee position doing knee stirs or by wrapping a strap or stretch band around her foot and this would support the leg as she circles. You can see pictures and a description with modifications here:
Best to you!
I do think with your client’s height and weight that some of it is genetic. It may still be possible for her to lose inches, but you can’t spot reduce–and you can’t be sure where she’ll lose it.
I would find out what exactly is going on with her knees assuming you’ve checked her form for squats and lunges. She could have arthritis, etc…. The cause will help you develop a plan for leg work around her limitations. Also include a balanced strength plan for her upper body and core.
As far as her cardio, you’ll have to work with her gradually to increase her endurance. She can do steady state if that works for her–she has to start somewhere. Walking, biking, swimming, elliptical–it just depends on whether or not the machines bother her knees. Eventually, intervals can be incorporated, you just have to monitor her.
Good luck with your client.