Many people who hit the gym tend to concentrate more on the lower body exercises and the body parts with muscles that tend to bulge easily, and they can end up forgetting about the back and shoulder exercises.
You should know that working out your upper body is very important if you want to maintain an all-round fit body. Being well rounded and robust from your back, shoulders and the rest of your body gives you a good posture and an excellent body shape.
Strength training is a popular, effective and growing form of exercise which aims to use different apparatus in order to strengthen and refine your muscles. Often relying on body weight and muscle control, one of the benefits of strength training is that it teaches users to get to know how their bodies and muscles work, and to focus on how different muscles work together to initiate movement.
As with any form of exercise, different moves and sets develop popularity, based on their perceived efficacy. A form of strength training called ‘hanging’ is one such exercise. Below we’ll take a look at what hanging is, and why it’s a good thing to integrate into your routine.
What Does ‘Hanging’ Mean, Exactly?
Hanging is almost exactly what it sounds like – it involves using the grip strength in your hands and forearms to suspend your body from an object. As an exercise, the main use for it is to really develop our often-underutilised grip strength; a type of strength which has been eroded by modern life as it’s not something which we use much in our domesticated lives.
Hanging can be performed as a passive exercise or as an active exercise (or even combined with a power band). In the passive form, once you have ably suspended yourself from a bar or an object using your hand grip strength, your concentration moves to relaxing your muscles – apart from those in your hands and forearms. Pay particular attention to any tightness in the shoulders and trapezius muscles – this is a good opportunity to focus on keeping these muscles relaxed and disengaged.
The active form of hanging introduces extra tension into the body. In this version of the exercise, concentrate on flexing each of your muscle groups, including your abdomen muscles, your biceps, and your glutes. Flex your shoulders while keeping their posture fixed back. (more…)
I recently made a post on how to exercise while traveling. Below you will find a few ideas that you can perform. These can be done at home as well, which can save you a ton of cash in gym memberships.
You won’t get nearly the results you’d get from training regularly with real free weight equipment, but certainly it works in a pinch.
Lunges – Take a step forward, bend the front leg until your thigh is parallel with the ground, and step back. Repeat on the other side. Be careful not to come down hard on the knee of the back leg.
Chair Dips – Sit on the edge of a chair, with your legs straight out in front with your knees locked. Place a hand directly under each cheek, and scoot your bottom off of the chair. Slowly lower your body, and when you have gone down as far as you feel comfortable, push yourself back to the top.
Jump Squats – Bend at the knees, back straight, eyes looking ahead. Touch your hands just below the knees, and jump straight up. Land softly, and repeat.
Push-ups – Laying face first on the floor, place your hands on either side of you chest. Keeping your legs, and back straight, push yourself straight up off of the floor. After you have reached the top, lower yourself down.
Planks – Start off in a push-up position, except this time place your elbows, resting on your forearms. Simply hold this position for 30-60 seconds.
There you have it. Do two to three sets of this routine, with 10-15 reps per set, and you have just done a body weight routine that will build muscle and tone up what you already have.
There are two common comments that I hear from people that want to start on a fitness program. They can not afford to go to a gym. They do not know where to start. Probably the best way to start involves no equipment and very little space. In other words, you can do it at home, in the park, whatever. Bodyweight exercises are just what they sound like; exercises that use your own body’s weight for resistance.
When used with no rest from one exercise to the next, not only can you get great resistance training, but fantastic cardio as well.
Below is an example of a workout that involves nothing but your own will and weight (and maybe a watch). If you are a beginner, do this one time through, three times a week.
For instance, Monday, Wednesday and Friday. The next week, try doing it two times through on those days. Then Four times per session.
Pull-ups are very simple, but very hard. To perform a pull-up, hang on to any bar, doorway, tree branch, etc… with your arms straight and your palms facing away from you, and pull yourself up until your chin passes the bar. That’s it.
Pull-ups can be performed on anything that allows you to hang with your arms straight and your knees not touching the floor.
Beginners can’t typically do a single pull-up, which is why we need a proper tutorial for increasing pull-up strength. This post will teach you how to do increase your performance with pull-ups using the correct technique.
Proper Pull-up Technique
Now that you know how to perform a basic pull-up, let’s consider proper pull-up technique. No need to waste your time performing half reps or place your shoulder health in jeopardy. The following tips should be used for optimal pull-up technique: