As green exercise and the health benefits of spending time in nature gain more prominence in popular and scientific news, the Kripalu Center for Yoga & Health in Stockbridge, Massachusetts, is introducing a Mindful Outdoor Leadership Program in October.
The curriculum includes elements of forest bathing, Ayurveda, yoga, outdoor skills, and research related to nature’s health benefits.
The warmup. Is it simply a time for small talk while people trickle in, or is it an opportunity to ignite attendees’ best efforts? This may be the class section that fitness instructors plan the least, yet devoting some time to designing the warmup is really worthwhile. Why? Because starting on a strong note significantly affects the outcome of the entire workout. We want our participants to get the most from our classes, so let’s set them up for success.Read More
Strength training classes don’t have to adhere to a classic “sets and reps” template. Why not climb your way up and down this fun fitness ladder for a fast and furious total-body workout? Repetitions are high, but so is the frequency of change, keeping interest piqued during intense work sets.
Strength Ladder Details
GOAL/EMPHASIS: total-body strength training
TOTAL TIME: 1 hour
For a moment, think about your own workouts. Tap into that feeling of being completely absorbed in your favorite fitness routine. Everything else fades away, and your entire focus is on the present moment. You feel confident in your body’s abilities, you’re challenging yourself, and you find great meaning in what’s happening now. You’re in the zone. Before you know it, your workout is over, and you can’t wait to do it again.Read More
Tennis is one of the most popular sports in the world. In the U.S. alone, there are almost 18 million players, with another 14 million expressing interest (TIA 2018). Unfortunately, the dynamic, forceful twists and turns of the game pose ever-present injury risks to players (Roetert & Kovacs 2011).
If your fitness clientele includes people interested in playing this sport, you need to understand the causes of tennis-related injuries. This will help you develop strategies to improve movement function, reduce pain and keep clients on the court.
While water fitness was once the domain of older adults, now participants of all ages and ability levels are benefiting from aquatic workouts. Shirley Archer, JD, MA, water fitness specialist and health and wellness blogger, examines what’s new in aquatic training research and looks at different types of programs.
Here are some of the newer findings related to aquatic training:
Step classes are still alive! Many participants remain eager for creative yet easy-to-follow choreography. You can keep yours simple while retaining some of the frills that people enjoy. Here’s an example: This class starts with one 32-count step combination for the warmup and continues with four variations on that combo during the main segment. Try this choreography during your next step class.
Step With Variations Details
GOAL/EMPHASIS:cardiovascular workout with classic 32-count step choreography
As a yoga teacher, you guide participants through a practice that deepens their understanding of asanas (poses) and how these take shape in students’ bodies. You cue, coach, align, adjust, demonstrate and discuss, and you offer tips on breathing, anatomy, “feel” and sensation. Often, the most effective way to help participants understand a specific element is to slow down, grab a prop or two, and work a little deeper. You may have access to straps, blocks and bolsters, but you might be forgetting another perfect “prop”: the wall.Read More
TabataRide, offered at various JoyRide® locations and based on Tabata™ workouts, is an indoor cycling class that offers high-intensity interval drills that include 20 seconds of top effort and 10 seconds of recovery, repeated for 4 minutes. This is followed by 1 minute of rest before repeating the cycle. The high-energy, super-athletic classes at this studio are designed to “torch calories and boost endorphins.” In addition, the instructors strive to provide authenticity, joy, humor and positivity.Read More
High-intensity interval training has been all the rage for a while now, but participants are finally starting to recognize the benefits of recovery. During this restorative phase, the body repairs itself, which leads to optimal training improvements. The following class supports the recovery process by exploring mindfulness, relaxation and breathing techniques. It also addresses body awareness, muscle tension and myofascial trigger points. Make this a stand-alone 60-minute class or condense it to a 30- or 15-minute session.Read More
Every Thursday morning, my cycle studio fills with an array of participants, ranging from accomplished Ironman® finishers to preschool moms trying to maximize their minutes—and Nora, a 92-year-old great-grandmother. Together we pedal like maniacs, laugh, sing a few refrains and walk out soaked through with sweat. In the cycle studio, participants of all ages and abilities can be motivated by being in a group, but riders can still slow down when they need to without sticking out. In fact, my own cycling journey began when I was pregnant and in search of a low-impact workout.Read More
While some participants don’t stick around for the cooldown, those who do are rewarded with the many benefits that stretching offers. Help students go a little deeper with a very simple yet versatile tool: a stretching strap.
Straps are great to have in your fitness toolbox (and relatively inexpensive for the program manager’s budget). They not only assist with proper positioning and numerous techniques but also nullify the “I’m not flexible enough” excuse.
Before we get to the stretches, consider these options:
Participating in a program of regular exercise is a good idea at any stage of life, but particularly as we get older. Exercising frequently and consistently has many documented benefits, including promoting good health, preventing disease, enhancing mental health and physical capacity, aiding recovery from injury and illness, minimizing the effects of aging, and improving one’s ability to handle the physical demands of life (Bird, Smith & James 1998).Read More
KONGA®, at Funk & Twist Fitness in Basingstoke, England, is a high-intensity offering that incorporates elements of boxing, cardio, dance and sculpt. The program vibe is fierce and wild, and sessions are set to upbeat music designed to inspire and motivate. The class is updated each month with fresh choreography so that participants don’t become bored or hit fitness plateaus. It’s appropriate for all levels, from beginners to seasoned fitness enthusiasts.Read More
Education is the foundation of the IDEA World Convention, but this fitness event offers plenty more than stellar instruction. For Jonathan Bernath, publicist-turned-personal-trainer, it’s where he discovered the “fitness family” that would guide him in his new career.Read More
client: Bert | personal trainer: Ann Heizer | location: Oceanside, California
Doctor’s orders. “Thanks for coming into my life and helping me deal with Parkinson’s disease,” says Bert, warmly sharing his respect for his trainer, Ann Heizer. “Working out with you has helped me stay positive and flexible.”Read More
Why is it that so few people can squat correctly, yet my 8-year-old son squats perfectly? I’ve never taught him how to squat; he innately learned how, just as he learned to roll over, crawl, pull himself up and eventually walk. He simply needed the freedom to allow his body to move. Movement before strength is key.Read More