As a rugby player, core stability is extremely important to me. I always try and incorporate some form of core stability exercises into every workout that I undertake. Having a strong core ensures that every time I hit a ruck, scrummage, lift in the lineout, make a tackle or try to make a line break, I am more powerful and effective.
In addition, core stability and great balance are prerequisites for rugby, as they allow you to step around players, as well as stay on your feet to offload the ball after a tackle.
I’m always looking for new and more interesting ways to strengthen my core. I tend to use the Swiss Ball a lot, but its bulky nature doesn’t exactly make it great for transporting easily. Given that I travel a lot, for work and please, something more portable would be great.
This is why I was so excited to come across the Reebok balance board. It’s a balance board that gives me many of the same core workout options as a Swiss Ball, but is portable enough for me to take it with me wherever I go.
If you’re really looking to get into great shape, chin ups are probably the best all around means of working your upper body; they engage your shoulders, arms, back, and countless other smaller supporting muscles. Chin ups are, quite simply, the ultimate exercise if you’re looking to sculpt your back.
If you’re anything like me, however, you hate chin ups. I know they’re good for me and I know that I should include them as part of my weekly exercise regime, but I don’t. There is just something thoroughly depressing about only being able to do so few of them that stops me from wanting to get up on that bar.
I tend to workout at home, I have a great chin up bar, but it just sits there gathering dust. When I first installed the bar, I tried using a chair to assist me in doing chin ups, but it was impractical and hurt my back; that’s when I gave up.
The P90X Chin-up Assist Band might just be a piece of equipment, however, that is beginning to change my mind about chin ups. It’s a great piece of gym kit that makes chin ups more accessible for the beginner.
How does the P90X Chin-up Assist Band work?
The very idea of skipping is something that fills a fair share of people with dread. Just imagining taking out a jump rope tends to conjure up images we would rather forget from childhood.
This is exactly how I used to feel, until I did a bit of digging and found out that jumping rope is one of the most effective forms of cardio exercise that one can perform. Jumping rope not only adds a much needed bit of variation to your exercise regime, but it also is a great, low impact means of burning calories, helping greatly in the battle against weight loss.
I’ve been jumping rope now for about 5 years as part of my regular training regime and I don’t see this changing anytime soon. Jumping rope is a great way to perform a high-intensity interval training (HIIT) session, alternating between one minute of hard work and one minute of rest, which has been proven to increase your metabolic rate, thus burning fat more efficiently.
Boot camps are creating a buzz in the health and fitness industry and it’s not hard to see why, when a course of early morning drills or a week of intensive exercise can improve tone, boost weight loss and even help you to drop a dress size or two!
But the work doesn’t start when you touch down in Spain or Thailand; to get the most from your boot camp holiday you need to prepare in advance. Here are my top tips on how you can make the most of your boot camp getaway.
Think carefully about what you want to get out of your boot camp experience. Do you want to lose weight, tone up, learn a new skill, or a combination of all three? Shop around to find the best location and style of camp for you, and conduct an independent hotel search to make sure that the boot camp checks out. Better yet, look for testimonials from other happy campers before handing over any cash.
One of the worst things about exercise is you just can't make time for it. If you don't have the right equipment and space to lose weight at home, you have to go to the gym.
Let’s say you work out for an hour at the gym. If you add that hour to the time it takes to get all your stuff ready, leave the house, travel to and back from the gym, get changed, have your shower… you’re easily looking at 2 hours.
With everyone being as busy as we are, who on earth has 2 hours a day to spare for exercise?
I mean it’s easy for athletes, sportspeople and celebrities to tone up - these people can dedicate their whole DAY to exercise. But for everyday folk like you and me with a busy life and hectic schedule, doing regular effective exercise and sculpting a chiseled body we can be proud of, can seem like nothing more than a pipe dream.
Yet new research by the National Institute of Fitness and Sports in Kanoya, Japan, suggests that pipe dream may not be as unattainable as we previously thought.
The study took 94 adolescent boys and pided them into one control group, who went about life as usual, and one training group. The training group did 100 bodyweight squats a day, 4-5 days per week for 8 weeks. Each session took less than 10 minutes.
Do we have to rely on government health expenditures for an ageing society or is there something we can do to help?
There is no mistaking the comfort and convenience of having exercise equipment in your home. What better way to make sure that you set a good example for your kids than showing them how to integrate daily physical activity in your life?
The problem is that treadmills can pose a number of safety concerns for children. Sometimes young children and treadmills are placed in the same area and competing for the same space. Frequently parents will place treadmills in play rooms in order to multitask their work out while supervising children. Unfortunately without adequate supervision or education, children can, and sometimes do, become injured in the home while playing on or around treadmills.
Foam Roller Stretching - You've seen them laying around the gym, but do you know what they do?
A foam roller is exactly what it sounds like for those of you that have never seen one. And foam roller stretching is the first step in any serious workout nowadays. It is the tool used to achieve myofascial release, a vital part of flexibility. Everyone can benefit from improved flexibility - simply because it is a core element of physical fitness.
As we humans become smarter as a species, we learn from injuries of others and we try to prevent them. This forward thinking is something every athlete must keep in mind while performing. Preventing injuries is not hard, and it’s not expensive either. Since the beginning of time, back rubs and massages have been considered the ultimate medium to achieve relaxation. And surprisingly it wasn’t until recently that they could be thought of as injury prevention. Sports health science exploded in North America after seeing its success in European nations in the 60’s and 70’s. It is common sense to stretch before any kind of physical exertion, but stretching only goes so far.
There are many great reasons to love working out, from the increased confidence it affords you, to the way it can help in your relationships, to the way it increases your ability to compete in sports and other physical activities.
However the main thing I love about the gym is that it's action packed. You see I spend most of my time working on the computer, and when I'm not doing that I tend to come home and read or play computer games. It's a sorry state of affairs really because what I actually want to be doing is having adventures and engaging in battles.
I don't really want to play games like Skyrim, I want to live them - but sadly the reality of walking through woods all day carrying a large weapon and attacking animals is a lot less practical and realistic than that game would have you believe.
When it comes to making the decision over whether buying a large piece of exercise equipment or paying a monthly gym membership represents better value for money, the decision is never a straightforward one.
Over the years, gym fees stack up and you can end up paying an astronomically high price, over the long term, for access to high quality exercise equipment. Buying a large piece of exercise equipment, on the other hand, is a large one off investment; so many people are put off by this.
With people’s monthly incomes being forced to stretch ever further in these recessionary times, many gym goers, myself included, are sacrificing a few months of monthly gym fees for the long term investment in a good quality piece of exercise equipment.
When making such a purchase, however, it’s important to do your homework. So, if it’s a solid, worthwhile investment in a home exercise bike that you’re looking to make, the Nautilus Recumbent R514c Exercise Bike could be just the bike for you.