Training and continued personal development is an important part of a PT’s growth and business expansion.
Personal Trainer Monthly offers fitness professionals all the information they need to decide which training courses they want to undertake, as well as informative articles to expand knowledge.
The digital platform will include content that will help personal trainers to find courses that will allow them to take on different types of clients and increase their customer base.
PT Monthly will also have recruitment information from gyms and fitness businesses to help personal trainers find the right role for them.
Sign up to receive the free monthly magazine straight to your inbox.
It can take months of hard work to build up fitness, but while your strength can quickly fade if you stop exercising, you might not have to start from scratch again.
The number of muscle fibres used during exercise decreases by around 13% after just two weeks of no training
Square off to one of our picks of the best punching bags and you’ll have a ringside seat for improved stamina, strength and endurance
Adding some boxing time into your training schedule with the help of a punching bag comes with plenty of benefits. If you don’t fancy stepping into the ring for some sparring action (we are just coming out of a pandemic, after all), setting up a punchbag at home means you’ll still be able to roll with the punches of Covid-19 and still get that one-two fix you so crave.
Throwing on some gloves and wraps in order to fire off jabs, hooks and uppercuts to a punchbag helps to fine-tune those more technical skills in the ring, but it will also help build strength, deliver a hefty cardio blast, increase stamina levels and let you blow off steam all the while.
But, alas, if you were of the impression that all punchbags were designed equal, you’d be wrong. Not only do different punchbags vary in terms of how it feels on impact with your fists, but also how it stays put when you strike it and even whether you can add some kickboxing into the mix.
So, to avoid being sucker-punched by a bad investment, here’s our blow-by-blow account of what to look for…
What should a punching bag be made of?
The materials used to form the surface of the punchbag will drastically alter its feel on impact.
One made from leather tends to be easier on the eye, but it will also be more durable and comfortable to strike. It’s a similar story for synthetic leather punchbags, only these tend to cost less.
There are also bags made from plastic, usually filled with water, which provide a very different striking sensation. Canvas bags are also a durable option, but, again, feel different to hit compared to striking the surface of more commonly used leather or synthetic leather bags.
What shape of punching bag is best?
Bags come in several different styles, meaning you can pick the one that’s best suited to the kind of work you’re planning to do with it. The standard offers a consistent look from top to bottom and are built for basic punch work revolved around hooks and straights, either hung from a ceiling or free-standing.
An angled bag narrows in the middle to make it more suited to uppercut work and combinations, while you’ll also find bags that more closely mimic being in front of another person to give you a more realistic target for when you’re ready to step into the ring.
What are the best punching bags to buy?
Decathlon Punch Bag
This ceiling-mounted burgundy bag is shaped to offer a more body-like target for jabs and straights, with the angled design making it well suited to an array of punching styles. It’s made from recycled fabric padding to reduce the post-punch carnage on your hands and is easily wiped down to clear away the sweaty signs of a tough workout. £99.99. decathlon.co.uk
Everlast’s bag doesn’t need to be attached to the ceiling, letting you drop sand or water into the base so it stays put as you get to punching work. The Omniflex neck gives you a target that can absorb heavy hitting and you can adjust the height of the bag to make that target easier or more challenging to strike. £139.99. At Argos. argos.co.uk. At amazon.co.uk
Hatton heavy bag
This all-leather bag measures in at three foot and is built for heavy hitting. Hatton has filled it with a material it says is unique to its bags to make sure it can withstand big punches and kicks while keeping its shape over time. Coming with a six-hook chain to attach it to your ceiling, you shouldn’t have to worry about this one budging. £152. At bestgymequipment.co.uk
Mirafit’s freestanding option has the look of a big battery, built with high rebound foam to absorb punches and PU leather to make sure it stays in good shape. The base can be filled with sand or water to keep the bag rooted to the spot and is one to step in front of to hone boxing skills or to aim kicks at for MMA work. £99.99. mirafit.co.uk. At amazon.co.uk
Taurus Boxing Target Tree
Instead of firing off shots at a traditional heavy bag, the Target Tree lets you work on punching precision and letting fly with more accuracy. All five of the strike zones can be adjusted and the base is the kind that you fill to make sure the tree doesn’t shake as you land a big combo. £599. At powerhouse-fitness.co.uk
Reebok Punch Bag
Reebok’s five-foot punchbag is one to level your best shots at, built to soak up heavy strikes. Being made from leather, it’s especially satisfying to hit and should mean it holds up for years of training. Just be sure you have the space for it: this one you’ll need to hang from the ceiling or use the accompanying straps to hook it up to a boxing platform. £495.99. At sweatband.com
Body Power Striketube XL
The Striketube stands tall, at well over six foot, giving you a big target to rain punches down on to. Made from foam and PVC, it’s sure to soak up every punch you can throw, while the spring system and base is designed to make sure it won’t budge when you get to putting more power behind those punches. £449. At fitness-superstore.co.uk. At amazon.co.uk
Ten foolproof tricks to looking your best as a middle-aged man
By Jeremy Langmead
The G-Shock ‘Blue Phoenix’ is a lot of watch for the money – quite literally
By Simon de Burton
How to get a killer suntan without damaging your skin
By Teo van den Broeke and Alexander Johnston
Carbon Claw has been making solid boxing gear since the 1970s and this heavy bag is primed for uppercut work. The four foot tall option features a tough leather surface to ensure it’ll hold up with regular punching action. It also doubles up on stitching to make sure it stays strong even at the apex of your Rocky training montage. £334.99. At sweatband.com
The UK’s fittest man’s eight steps to overcoming setbacks
Zack George wanted 2021’s CrossFit Open to be a glorious run all the way to the Games, but an injury put him out of action. Here, he talks GOM Magazine through his setback and how you can overcome yours.
Zack George is no stranger to a complication, but 2021’s CrossFit Games hopes were dashed by a very different enemy: after Covid cut numbers last year, this was supposed to be the year the UK’s fittest man hit the world stage. Instead, he had to pull out because of an injury.
“I’ve been training for a year and a half for this,” he told GOMM from his home, a few weeks after pulling out of this year’s Open. “I felt great the whole training season for the last year. Then a couple of weeks before leading up to it, I was getting a little niggle in my hip flexor.” He rolled with it and pushed through – “probably ignoring the signs” – but after a few of the Open workouts it really hit. “There was a lot of squatting in the third workout and it basically just gave way. There was this massive shooting pain down my leg from the hip to my knee. And from then on I wasn’t able to squat.”
He fought through a few more but, faced with a workout that contained 180 pistol squats, front squats and more besides, he finally had to pull out. “I think I had four days of just sulking on my sofa, watching movies, eating about eight chocolate bars a day.”
It’s very easy, especially as men, to feel like failure needs to be pushed aside and proactivity used as a remedy. But George wants to remind you that wallowing is a vital part of hitting a wall. “It’s a process that’s important for your body to go through, physically and mentally, because if you try to bounce back the next day and start setting goals, it’s going to catch up with you at some point.” Whether your setback requires a physical rehabilitation like his, or some other recalibration, we need to get better at combining a sulk with a new game plan. Hell, if Zack George can sit on his own and eat junk food for four days, shouldn’t we all cut ourselves a little bit more slack?
As he recovers from his latest knock-back, we asked George, in his own words, to take us through his advice for picking yourself up and dusting yourself off.
Everyone’s character is different, so they deal with setbacks in different ways. But I think there are some pretty common themes in what people go through in the process of coming back. It’s a very manly thing to just keep on trudging forward and not let anything affect you.
For me, I’ve never been ashamed to just say, “I’m not OK. I just need four days of not talking. I’ll be fine after those days, but just during this time I just need to be on my own.” I need to wallow and I need to sulk for a couple of days. I think if more people openly admitted they’re not OK and that they need some time, the process would be so much more beneficial. People would come back from setbacks a lot stronger.
What this looks like is different for everyone. For me it was sitting in on my own, not speaking to anyone and just eating rubbish. Whereas for someone else, they might love being surrounded by people. You’ve got to recognise what sort of person you are and how you go through that stage. My girlfriend, Sam, if she went through a setback? She would hate being on her own. She’d want her family around her and want to be talking to people constantly. You might want that one best friend, might go out and go shopping, but just find what your thing is to make you feel better and allow yourself just to sulk and just not be OK for those couple of days.
Then know that it’s not going to last forever and don’t fall into the trap of making those couple of days last for weeks and months. I find it really beneficial to set a timeframe on it. Allow yourself three days, whatever it is, just to do that activity that is going to make you feel better. But after that timeframe, get right back into setting goals and a positive attitude.
I had to really push myself to openly speak about it and not just shut down the conversation and say I’m fine. When I’m going through a setback, I tend to just go within and just want to be on my own. I came off my phone and didn’t go on social media. It’s hard, because you have so many people who want to speak to you, but I needed to be on my own.
But then you just fester in your own thoughts. You’ve got to hold back that natural urge to just say, “Oh, no, I’m fine.” You’re just holding it in. I had to openly push myself to talk about it and say “Yeah, it’s been really tough, but now I feel good.” I spoke to a lot of people about it. Having lots of other people around you to implement different ideas made me feel really good: everyone’s there to help you and everyone’s there to see you get through that setback. After speaking to them I was ready to get back with my team and start goal setting for the rest of the year, start getting a plan in place for rehab.
Identify what went wrong
Injuries are so common; it’s always going to happen to some people at some stage in their life. That’s just what happens when you train. You’ve got to make sure that you are looking after your body in the best way possible so that you can carry on training injury-free.
Speak to a specialist in that field, find out what went wrong, what caused it and what you can do to prevent this happening again. If it’s physical, a lot of injuries occur due to muscle imbalances, not warming up correctly or lifting too much weight. So first we’ve got to identify what caused the issue. If it’s about overtraining, identify that and then once you’re fully recovered, make sure that doesn’t happen again.
If it’s a muscle imbalance, your injury might have always been destined to occur because of the way you lift, or because you might train your chest too much and that means your back muscles are really weak. You’ve got to identify the reason for the injury and make sure you are changing your training in the future so that doesn’t occur again. Once you’ve identified that, make sure you’re doing the right rehab exercises so you can get back towards training.
Train around your injury
If you get an injury, a lot of people’s default reaction is “oh, I’m out of training now”. But you’ve got to be willing to change your training programme – speak to the experts and learn how you can train around that injury. For me, I’ve got this hip injury, so I can’t do many squat movements. But there are so many other movements I can do and so many other weaknesses I can work on, which will allow me to be a better athlete when I come back, even though I couldn’t squat for eight weeks. An injury might be an opportunity to work on weaknesses that you’ve always put off, because you don’t like doing them, and now you can dedicate the time towards them.
Tell people if you’re injured
Some men think that it’s a weakness if you’ve got an injury. If an instructor asks, “Has anybody got any injuries in the class?” and you’re the only one who puts your hand up, a lot of people feel like they’re being a wimp letting the instructor know.
That’s not the case: you’re just being smart, you’re being realistic, you have an injury and you need to train around that. Injury is not a weakness or a sign of weakness, because everyone, including the top athletes in the world, gets injured. It’s just a thing that happens in life and you just need to break that barrier and stop thinking you’re a bit of a wuss. That’s not the case at all: you’re trying to improve your body and trying to improve yourself and you don’t want that injury to happen again. You shouldn’t be embarrassed about saying you have an injury. That mentality can save you months and years of repeated injuries.
It’s OK to have bad days down the line
After an injury, you’re going to have a couple of days of feeling sorry for yourself and then you’ll have a great couple of weeks of feeling really motivated. You’ll have good goals that you’ve set ahead, have a great couple of weeks, your rehab will be going really well. And then all of a sudden you try to push it a little bit too much and you feel like you’ve gone back a week.
That often happens with injuries: you start to feel really good so you try and push a bit too much. And then you feel an injury again, when you just thought you’re getting on track. Those days are 100 per cent fine to have. You will have them, just like if you’re training at full capacity for a couple of months, you’re going to have days where you walk into a gym and you just don’t feel like training and the session was rubbish and you couldn’t lift near as much as you could lift the day before. It’s not that you’ve got weaker or more unfit, you’re just having one of those days where you’re just not on top form.
You’ve got to be dedicated, but you’ve also got to be realistic and know that not every day is going to be a breeze. Just because you have a bad day doesn’t mean you turn that into a bad week. Just know that bad days are part of training. It’s part of the journey of achieving a fitness goal. When you have those, allow yourself to have those days. If you ignore them and push through it as hard as possible and not allow yourself to have that rest day when your body’s telling you you need it, that’s when I feel like those days can extend into weeks.
Maybe step back the training or maybe have a rest day. Speak to the people around you and say, “Today’s not feeling too good.” Maybe speak to your physio and they can assess what you’ve done the last couple of days and figure out where you may be pushing too much. Take it back a little bit, push forward in a slightly different direction, and change the programme slightly.
There’s more than one goal
After you’ve had those days of sulking, you’ve got to sit down with your team and say, “The goal I was aiming for is no longer achievable.” You’ve missed your training window, you’ve missed certain competitions, you may have missed a deadline for work, but you’ve got to identify what went wrong. The goal has to change and you’ve got to let that sink in.
It doesn’t mean you’re never going to achieve that goal, because you can always try again next year. For me? I’m going again next year, but I’ve had to identify the situation right now and then set new goals. I think that’s so important in being positive and moving forward for the rest of the year, because that one goal you’ve been working towards for so long is no longer achievable in this year. We sat down and we straight away found some competitions that I wouldn’t have aimed for if I was still competing in the Games. So there are good opportunities to compete in a competition that I wouldn’t have competed in before.
Find the positives in retrospect
If I have a setback, I want to make sure I get every positive aspect out of the situation that I possibly can. If I’d been competing in the Games, I would have been very militant and very dedicated with training and not focused on other aspects of my career. I would have turned down different opportunities because I was so focused on my training. Whereas now I’ve said to myself: Right, I’m not able to compete in the Games any more. I’ve got a big competition I’m aiming for in October, but that gives me three or four months of time where I can try to get my profile out there as much as possible. I want to try to turn this negative situation into a positive and hopefully get a lot of work done.
When we get to five months down the road, I want to be in a situation where I think, “We’ve done a lot.” I want to be in a position where I think, “If I was training for the Games, I wouldn’t have achieved all of this.” That will make me feel really good about the situation, because I’ve turned the negative setback into a positive and achieved a lot of stuff that I wouldn’t have achieved otherwise.
What types of resistance bands are there?
What do the different colours of resistance bands mean?
What are resistance bands made from?
Can resistance bands break?
Shop GQ’s pick of the best resistance bands you can buy…
The ANTELOPE EMS Suit
The wireless EMS Suit from ANTELOPE is a combination of SHIRT and SHORTS that allows you to do partial training. 16 dry electrodes integrated into the textile stimulate the most important muscle groups and enable you to do EMS training without the annoying wetness. The SHIRT area contains a total of 10 electrodes on the abdomen, chest, neck, back and upper arms. The hamstrings, quadriceps and buttocks can be stimulated via the six electrodes in the shorts. All electrodes are supplied with power via the BOOSTER, the EMS Suit‘s energy source. The ANTELOPE.BOOSTER is connected via Bluetooth to the free ANTELOPE.APP, which serves as the EMS Suit‘s central control unit. This app is available for IOS and Android.
In the ANTELOPE.APP, you can choose between special training programs such as Strength, Endurance, and Recovery, which run on different frequencies to optimally work your muscles. The stimulation intensity can be individually controlled via the ANTELOPE.APP, thus allowing you to specifically target your workout. Do you want to get the most out of your workout? Then get an ANTELOPE Wireless EMS Suit for yourself and experience fitness on a completely new level! Our ANTELOPE.APP you can also assist you in targeting specific muscle groups so that you can flexibly pursue your individual training goals. That means your weekly training schedule can be based on days, just like with conventional training – sometimes training the thighs, other times the back or the arms.
Best core workouts to boost your all-round strength
If there is a symbol of fitness in modern culture, it’s the six pack. But you don’t need to have your abs on display just to have a strong core and there are much greater benefits to a firm trunk than looking like a hunk. “Your core muscles are used in every single movement you perform,” explained trainer James Middleton, “from squatting in the gym to carrying your shopping bags and wiping the kitchen table.”
“A well-developed core will improve posture and increase strength output, as it is the body’s primary energy transfer system,” added coach Arby Keheli. “The core also protects the body from injury, due to its role in stabilisation and balance, as well as, from a structural point of view, protecting the organs.”
We spoke to some of the biggest – both physically and symbolically – names in fitness for a guide to getting your core up to snuff. If you feel you’ve given it a good once over and are ready to see how much that work is going to improve your other workouts, feel free to check out our guides to the biceps, triceps, chest, shoulder, glutes, legs or forearms.
Chris Magee, head of yoga at Psycle London
These four exercises work all sections of the trunk evenly for maximum effectiveness, stability and balance within your body.
Exercise one: low boat pose
Press your lower back firmly into the ground and pull your navel towards your spine.
Lift the legs, arms and shoulder blades from the floor. Stay as low as possible with good control over the lower back.
To simplify the movement, bring the knees towards the chest. To make it more challenging bring the biceps to the ears, reaching the arms behind your head. (Feeling extra strong? Hold a weight or yoga block here.)
Perform by holding or rocking for five sets of 60 seconds (or ten slow breaths) each.
This is great for the transverse and rectus abdominals and prepping your handstand.
Exercise two: arrowhead lunge
Starting in a standard lunge position with your arms reaching overhead, actively pull your navel in and begin to lean your torso and arms forward to a 45-degree angle hovering over your front thigh.
Hold the position for ten seconds, before slowly returning to the lunge.
The key here is keeping the neutrality of the spine. If you notice you are rounding forward, try to decrease the range and improve your control. Make life easier by bringing your arms alongside your body. Give yourself an extra challenge by holding a small weight/yoga block between your hands.
Perform three sets of five reps, with a ten-second hold in the end position on each leg.
This is great for torso stabilisation, transverse abdominals and lower-back strength.
Exercise three: arrowhead side-angle pose
Start at a side angle (warrior two legs), with the right forearm resting on the right thigh and the left arm reaching on a diagonal. Your bicep should be by your ear.
Spin your chest towards the ceiling and draw your navel in. Lift your right arm away from your leg and bring it parallel to the left.
Hold 30-60 seconds before repeating on the other side. Not only is this fantastic for the strength and integration of your side body, but has the added bonus of helping build isometric strength in the legs.
Perform four sets, holding for 30-60 seconds (or 5-10 slow breaths) on each side.
Exercise four: Superman plank crunches
Starting from a strong plank position, reach the right arm forward (bicep by the ear) and lift the left foot off the ground keeping the leg lengthened and engaged.
Maintaining the balance, use an exhale to bring the right elbow to touch the left knee (squeezing through the navel and side body) and an inhale to lengthen back out to the start, repeating 5 to 10 times before switching to the opposite arm and leg.
This is an amazing exercise requiring great concentration and control of both the body and the breath. It’s great for the transverse, rectus, obliques, scapular strength, balance and coordination.
Perform three sets of 5-10 reps each on both sides.
To simplify, allow your big toe and fingertips of the lifted limbs to brush along the mat/floor. It takes away some of the balance element and could give you greater success when you first try it.
Arby Keheli, strength and conditioning coach
Exercise one: hollow hold
Lying flat on the back, from here lift the feet and peel the upper back off the floor. To ensure the core is engaged make sure the lower back is on constant contact with the floor at all times. If the lower back starts to lift bring the knees into a flexed position to reduce the lever length.
Exercise two: Superman hold
Lie flat on the floor with the chest down and arms extended. Think about lengthening the body creating as much distance from the toes to fingertips.
Rotate the wrist so that the thumbs are pointing up to the ceiling. Lift the arms and feet off of the floor engaging the glutes.
Hold this position. If you are struggling bring the arms down to your side with your palms facing down towards the floor.
Exercise three: rotational plank
Start movement in a low-plank position with the chest pushed away from the floor (protraction through the shoulder blades), glutes engaged and weight shifted forward.
Lift the elbow off the floor and rotate the torso upward maintaining a bridge position in the trunk (keeping the ribs away from the floor).
Bring the elbow back down and the torso with it. From here, begin to thread the elbow behind the supporting arm.
Exercise four: tuck crunch
Load initially into a hollow-hold position with arms extended and the legs lifted. Ensure that the lower back is kept on the floor throughout.
Draw the knees into the body while simultaneously drawing the chest towards the knees compressing through the core.
Extend the legs and arms out again into a hollow position ensuring that the lower back stays grounded.
Exercise five: beast shoulder taps
Start in a table top/beast position. The shoulders, elbows and wrists are in line, the back is flat and the hips are stacked directly over the knees.
From this position lift one arm off the floor and touch the opposite shoulder. This movement should be done slowly and the beast position is maintained throughout.
Exercise six: bicycle crunch
Lie flat on your back with the shoulder blade peeled off the floor and the chin tucked into the chest. Draw the opposite elbow into the opposite knee keeping the tension through the core.
Ensure that the lower back remains in contact with the floor for the duration of the movement.
Exercise seven: lateral shoot-through
Start in a tabletop/beast position. The shoulders elbows and wrist are in line, the back is flat and the are hips stacked directly over the knees.
You will then extend the leg and draw the arm back like you are pulling back the string of a bow. Keep the hip close to the ground but lifted, hold for a second and then return to centre back into that beast position.
The lateral shoot-through should be performed slowly with a focus on movement quality.
How to build these into a workout
Do 30 seconds of each of the seven workouts in a row, with ten seconds off in between. Do five rounds of the seven exercises, with 30 seconds in between each round.
George Palmer, personal trainer and fitness instructor
Exercise one: hollow hold
Lie on your back with your legs extended and pressed together and arms extended behind your head.
Exhale as you lift your legs and arms five or six inches off the floor by tightly tensing the abdominal muscles. Making sure shoulder blades are lifted off the ground, core is staying engaged throughout and the lower back is pressed into the mat, imagine you’re sending your belly button towards the floor as you contract the abs.
Hold for 30-45 seconds and slowly come back down to the starting position.
Exercise two: hanging leg raises
Grasp pull-up bar with an overhand grip, keeping hands shoulder-distance apart.
Forcefully breathe out through your belly as you start to contract the abdominals, slowly raising your legs in front of you while keeping them as straight as possible. Shoulders are pulling downwards throughout the movement.
Upper body stays still and shoulders remain directly below the bar as you start to curl the pelvis up by tensing the abs as you get towards the top of the movement – this gives the abs an extra squeeze.
Breathe out as you slowly bring the legs back down in a controlled manner to the starting position, before repeating the move again.
Exercise three: tabletop crunches
Lie on your back, bringing the legs up so that your knees are directly above the hips, with a 90-degree bend at the knees. Make sure the knees are hip-distance apart and feet are pointed with toes coming to touch. Bring the fingertips to touch the side of the head and elbows pointing outwards.
Breathe out as you begin to tense the abdominal muscles, bringing the upper back off the ground, now coming into a crunch position. Keep the neck neutral and shoulders free from tension throughout the exercise.
Pulling from the core muscles, hold at the top for a second or two and slowly make your way back to the starting position to repeat.
Exercise four: high-to-low plank
Come into a high-plank position by bringing the hands to the ground directly below the shoulders. Keep weight in the balls of the feet and hips lifted by bracing the abdominals and glutes. You should have a straight line going from the head, through the hips, down to the ankles.
Breathe in as you bend at your right elbow to lower the forearm down to the ground. As you lean on your right forearm, now do the same with the left arm. You are now in a low-plank position.
Breathe out forcefully as you straighten the right arm again to place the hand below the shoulder – now partially into a high-plank position – then do the same with your left arm to come to the full starting position. Keep the core and glute muscles tight throughout, not letting the hips drop, even during arm movement.
Alternate leading with the left and right arms as you continue to repeat this movement.
Exercise five: starfish crunches
Lie down on your back and extend your arms overhead wider than shoulder-width apart. Spread legs so that feet are also now in line with the hands – you will now resemble a narrow star shape (which is, of course, where the exercise gets its name from).
Now, exhale as you start to simultaneously lift the upper back of the ground and bring one arm and the opposing leg to reach across towards each other – fingertips come to touch just above the foot. Remember to lead with your abdominal muscles by contracting them and keep the lower back grounded throughout the movement.
Hold at the top for a second and then slowly lower the upper back, bringing the arms and legs back to the starting position. Repeat the exercise on the opposite side of the body.
Exercise six: side-plank pulses
Start on your side with feet together – one foot stacked side-on to the other – and elbow directly below the shoulder. Your free hand comes to rest on the hip with elbow facing towards the ceiling, as you tighten your core muscles solidly. You are aiming to have a straight line running from your head, through the hips, down to your ankles.
Now, in your starting position, start to lower your hips towards the ground until they are just off the floor and then drive them up as far as you can.
Bring the hips back down and keep repeating this movement with pace while keeping it controlled by having the core muscles engaged throughout. Once done with the desired amount of reps on this side, repeat movement evenly on the other side of the body.
How to turn these into a workout:
Try doing two rounds in total, with 45 seconds on each move and 15 seconds’ rest in between – then, one-and-a-half minutes’ rest between each full round. Focus on the left side of the body for the first round during moves such as the side plank pulses, and then change to target the right side of the body for your second round. You can also reverse the order of the exercises to start on the side-plank pulses and finish on the hollow holds in the second round (this can prevent it from feeling too repetitive).
Remember to do a five-minute warm-up at the beginning with exercises that will get your heart rate up and dynamic stretches targeting core muscles (such as torso twists). Cool down for five minutes at the end. This should in total equate to a time-efficient 25-minute session. If you want an even spicier workout, do the moves for longer and/or take out some rest time in between moves – this works visa versa to make it easier.
6 STEPS TO HOME WORKOUT SUCCESS
By ADAM KIANI,
- Follow an online program
- Tune into a live work out
- Be Creative
- Hire A Trainer
- Change your environment
- Set yourself an exciting target
EMD UK teams up with Fisikal to offer instructors a no-fee, revenue generating, digital platform
EMD UK, the national governing body for group exercise, and Fisikal have joined forces to offer a no-fee digital platform that will allow group exercise instructors and personal trainers to stream chargeable digital content. This will support fitness professionals through this period of extended physical distancing imposed by the government to slow the spread of Coronavirus (COVID-19).
“The platform, designed and delivered by Fisikal, will provide many instructors and personal trainers with a financial lifeline,” explains Brett Pearson, Head of Sales and Marketing at EMD UK. “With leisure facilities now closed, most instructors have lost any ability to earn money in a physical environment, creating a high level of anxiety and stress across the sector.
“EMD UK joined in the Government lobbying in collaboration with the Sport & Recreation Alliance to ensure freelance instructors and personal trainers got offered some financial support but, this funding will not be made available until June and our members are keen to access income streams now.
“Through Fisikal, a valued EMD UK Supplier Partner, we are able to offer our group exercise and personal trainer members new opportunities to reach their audiences through professional, digital means. In addition to enabling the maintenance of a connection to their client and participant network during these times of social distancing, the solution also provides a way of generating income through the provision of online classes and training programmes.”
The digital platform is available free of charge and opens up a huge array of functionality, including class scheduling, booking and payment systems which class participants and clients can access via a free to download app.
Instructors and personal trainers have the ability to pre-record and upload their own, bespoke content or, take advantage of a huge selection of quality class and workout content, stored in the Fisikal library, provided by Escape Fitness Equipment and high profile Master Trainers, including Matt Gleed.
“ We have opened our library of more than 250 exercise videos to provide users with a professional means of compiling bespoke workout programmes and training plans,” explains Matthew Januszeck, Co-Founder at Escape Fitness. “Instructors have been hit hard. For most, continuing to work and generate income is dependent on them being able to move their business online, at very short notice.
“This partnership with Fisikal enables us to make our content available, quickly and effectively to those who need it. We really are all in this together. The team at Escape Fitness is pleased to be able to play its part in offering instructors an opportunity to continue to service the thousands of people who want to access fitness services despite being confined to their homes.”
Instructors can also stream live workouts via an integration with YouTube Live, helping to connect their community via in-the moment experiences whilst fully respecting physical distancing rules.
Rob Lander, CEO at Fisikal, says: “The platform provides fitness professionals with a means of delivering a chargeable service, without the need for an upfront payment at a time when many are already financially challenged. The solution is super simple to set up. We have created a number of online step-by-step tutorials, ensuring even the most tech unsavvy can be up and running in a matter of hours.”
The platform is free and available to any individual exercise to music instructor or personal trainer, even those not currently an EMD UK member.
Pearson, adds: “EMD UK members taking advantage of our insurance policy will be covered to deliver online fitness content via this platform. Sadly, not all insurers cover all aspects of online fitness content delivery. We urge anyone considering migrating their services online, to check their terms and conditions carefully before embarking. Should instructors need our insurance, included in our membership package, they should use the code ‘FISIKAL’ to get a discount on membership “
Due to the complexities of global music licensing, instructors will need to ensure the music they use is either licence free, or due to the YouTube integration, all original artists songs purchased via another EMD UK Supplier partner, FitMixPro, can be used in live streaming classes. Please visit https://www.fitmixpro.com/music/browse;ref=EMDVIP#keepmix
The platform is available now. To find out more information and how to access the solution, either visit the Fisikal website www.fisikal.com or the EMD UK website www.emduk.org/virtual-instructor-platform
The Prison Workout! What It Is And Why You Should do It:
The Prison Workout
Erick Hudson is a CF-L2 Trainer based out of San Diego, California who has been teaching the CrossFit methodology every day for 6 years. Over the span of those years, he has worked with a wide aray of individuals ranging from young teens looking to become better at their school sports, competitive athletes looking to maximize their athletic potential, all the way to senior citizens looking to fight off the assisted living homes. With each new member joining the gym and asking the same routine questions like, ” How do I get butterfly pull ups” or ” What are some clean tips to help me hit a new PR”, Erick decided to create Constantly Varied Fitness.
The reason Erick became a CrossFit trainer is due to his love for helping other’s become better versions of themselves. That’s why creating a YouTube channel in order to reach as many people as possible and help them during their fitness journyies only made since. CVF is a meme page on Instagram making his following of 70+ thousand people laugh every day, but on YouTube, is a source of all and everything functional fitness and health related. You’ll find things such as rope climb techniques, how to improve your Olympic lifts, the principles of CrossFit Programming, and much more.
Due to the current situation troubling the entire world, forcing people to limit their time spent outside and with others, Erick saw the fitness community hurting due to them not being able to go to the gym and do what they love. He quickly started to produce videos of workouts people can perform at home with only a set of dumbbells, or if they have absolutely nothing, a backpack with some heavy books loaded in it. Even though the channel doesn’t have a huge subscription base, the videos are all receiving several hundred views a day and receiving lots of positive feedback. Check out the videos and give the workouts a try, or use them as inspiration to create a version of your own.
30 Exercises you can do with just a backpack to create a full body workout
An effective upper body workout that will pump your muscles up fast!
Grab your dumbbells for a 15 minute AMRAP that will get your heart rate up quick
Test your grip and grit with this difficult dumbbell complex
Need a serious sweat? This workout can make that happen.
This chipper workout is no joke and will have the muscles burning
Body weight Workouts
No equipment? No problem. Here’s a bodyweight EMOM workout to get your body moving
Follow Erick’s channels for lots of content to entertain, and provide knowledge during this time being spent in doors. Feel free to reach out to him at email@example.com for any questions you have.
HFE partners with fibodo to take on Covid-19 battle
Leading sports training provider promotes fit4thefight
Activity-based e-commerce booking platform fibodo, fit4thefight, have partnered with Health and Fitness Education (HFE), to help raise awareness of fit4thefight among the nation’s fitness professionals.
fibodo created fit4thefight to help grassroots fitness professionals to continue to offer their services to new and existing clients during the current national health emergency. fibodo’s usual £9.99 monthly subscription fee has been waived for all fitness professionals during the pandemic, encouraging full and part-time trainers to meet the UK’s demand for online fitness sessions.
HFE, a leading UK supplier of fitness courses, training and qualifications, will promote the fit4thefight campaign and free access to fibodo to their qualified and student trainers. HFE has delivered more than 25000 qualifications since 2017 and are providing over 200 new qualifications every month.
The partnership will also enable HFE to list courses on the fibodo directory, giving new entrants to the fitness industry the ability to access the very best courses and to begin operating their business in one easy to use platform.
fibodo’s e-commerce and business platform will also be introduced to HFE’s qualified and in-training instructors to enable them to commercialise their skills.
Anthony Franklin, founder and CEO of fibodo, commented: “I’m delighted to add HFE as a partner and welcome their qualified and in-training fitness professionals to fibodo and fit4thefight. The fibodo platform allows personal trainers and instructors to digitise their business within minutes. We look forward to working with HFE to make sure their fitness professionals get all the required tools to engage their clients in these difficult circumstances and secure their digital futures.”
Josh Douglas-Walton, marketing manager at HFE, said: “Giving our graduates access to a cutting edge e-commerce platform which allows them to build and grow their business digitally is game-changing. We aim to help increase industry standards and empower our graduates to make a lasting difference to peoples’ lives. A large proportion of fitness classes are viewed online, but fibodo will give our fitness professionals the ability to commercialise both interactive 1-2-1 and group fitness sessions with increased visibility.”
To find out more about HFE visit www.hfe.co.uk
Creative Ways Fitness Businesses Are Approaching Life with COVID-19:
Keeping your client’a active with livestreaming classes. Offer classes live, and if you’re a personal trainer, you can do one-on-one or small group training on a conference call or FaceTime.
Offer on-demand workouts for clients to watch (and re-watch). If you prefer a more polished look, pre-record workouts to share with your members. That way they can sweat with you from home whenever their schedule allows it.
Create workouts just for kids. With kids home from school, parents everywhere are feeling a little bit stressed. Whether you livestream, record on-demand, or simply share a printable workout, both parents and children will appreciate movements that can be done together or specifically with kiddos in mind. Make it into a game use your imagination and get those kids engaged. It’s a great way to burn that extra energy.
- Network and cross-promote with your neighbors. All our small businesses are feeling the pinch, so talking with one other and sharing ideas will help the entire community and put us in contact with businesses who can help promote your online classes.
- Let your local media know what you’re up to. Pitch your live stream and/or your on-demand workouts and provide all relevant details. Our studio was grateful to be featured on the local news paper / radio along with other local businesses offering online workouts.
- Use social media to connect with customers. If your members follow you on Instagram, use stories as an opportunity to showcase what you’re up to and local resources available to them (including those businesses you’re cross-promoting). Social Media is the perfect platform Instagram / Tick Tock & LinkedIn. Add Live content daily by keeping your client’s and community motivated.
Create a members-only Facebook group. Again, use social media to your advantage. Make it private and encourage members to engage by sharing healthy recipes and Netflix recommendations, coordinating FaceTime workouts, and offering exclusive content from your business. Consider marketing your Facebook group as a perk of being a member to help maintain autopays during this time.
Start an at-home challenge. Challenges help keep clients motivated throughout the year—and in a time like this, an extra dose of motivation will be just what your community needs. Have fun with an at-home plank or squat challenge with rewards like discounts or free swag. Our studio is hosting an at-home bingo challenge to keep our community engaged. To get the word out, we used our members-only Facebook group.
- Do a review campaign. Your loyal customers want to help you, and getting more reviews is a great way to engage them while strengthening your brand (and your SEO), too
Let your customers pre-buy packages, memberships, or services. Loyal members will feel good knowing they’re helping our businesses in the short-term so they can receive the services they love (hint: our workouts) later down the line.
Discount packages. Ideal? No. But if discounting is a sort term measure to drive in revenue for a month or two then do it. At least you have cash flow coming in , and at the same time build your client base and brand
Ramp up retail. Whether it’s offering to send swag packages, opening an online retail store, or both, our clients will be looking for gear to wear and use while at home. Our studios can help them out with branded sweatpants, bands, or other equipment, and more.
- Pick up the phone and call, text, or FaceTime your members. That’s right, we’re talking good old-fashioned connection. If our clients aren’t seeing us in person, they’ll miss those interactions. Make their day by contacting them directly and letting them know you’re thinking of them. It’s a simple gesture that means a lot—several of our clients told us so.
The best multi-gym 2020: multi-gyms to workout all muscle groups at home
Is a multi-gym the ultimate home workout purchase? It’s certainly the most versatile
BEST MULTI-GYMS: SUPPLY IS SHORT
HOW TO BUY THE BEST MULTI-GYM
LIFE FITNESS G7 MULTI GYM
The best multi-gym, when it’s available
Chunky multi-gym unit for crafting chunky human units
BOWFLEX XTREME SE HOME GYM
The smarter home multi-gym
MARCY ECLIPSE HG3000
Best, more affordable and compact home gym
NORDICTRACK FUSION CST
Super high-tech machine for versatile workouts
Best Crossfit Workouts Done Even at Home.
Crossfit workouts are workouts that put together strength, stamina, agility, flexibility, power, speed and balance. It is a kind of training where you combine heavy workouts with just being fit workouts. This is what the military are using to make them strong and fit. Fitness trainers also choose to have this training instead of any program out there since this is proven true a lot of times by a lot of individuals. Men and women who wanted to have a strong and fit body prefer to use it since it will make you work your whole body and not just a part of it.Well if you wanted to have just a fit body then this workout may not be for you. This is for people who just do not want to be fit without any fat in their body but also wanted to build muscles and tone them firm. Crossfit trainers need to have certificates in order for them to train people who wanted to be taught. But you can do Crossfit training even without a trainer. How?
These are just samples of trainings you can do at home:
1. Sprinting. Sprinting can also be known as running. Since we are referring to CrossFit training, we are going to do sprinting or running constantly for 20 minutes. You can use your own backyard or your neighborhood to do this. It is very costless yet very effective. When you start running, you can start with a very low speed. Then you can gradually change to a faster and faster space until you finish it within 20 minutes. If you are just a starter, you can do it first in 10 minutes then add time on the next day or next training. This will not just tone up your lower body muscles but can teach you to improve speed, stamina and agility.
2. Squats. Same as sprinting, you must do this also constantly in 20 minutes. This will help your butt muscles become toned and firm. It will also reduce the amount of cellulite in your bottom area. This will also help strengthen your muscle thighs. Do this as many rounds as possible within 20 minutes.
3. Powerlifting and weightlifting. Powerlifting and weightlifting as we all know builds muscles all around your body. Muscles will become larger especially on the arm part and the thigh part. Muscles will also build around the tummy and form your abs.
4. Jump rope. Jump rope is not usually done as training but in this kind of training, jump rope is very important. It will train you how to jump faster and higher. Yes, also jump higher. This training is so much easier than powerlifting or squats. You can also do it easily at home.
5. Pull up bars and climb rope. Just install a rope in your place that you know can carry your weight. Same as for pull up bars, look for a good iron bar that you can install that can hold your weight for a long time. Pulling yourself up will also strengthen most of your muscles and you can see the difference after a while of doing it.
There are still a lot of trainings out there that can be added to Crossfit trainings. These are just simple and very effective workouts that you can do at home. Crossfit workouts will definitely give you the muscles and fitness that you like as long as you do it in a right way.
Premier Global NASM Launches New Prenatal and Postnatal Course
Premier Global NASM, the leading provider of health, fitness and wellness training in the UK, has launched a new course to help Qualified Personal Trainers, Gym Instructors, Yoga Teachers, Group Trainers and more address the unique biomechanical and physiological demands of prenatal and postnatal clients.
The 6-week, self-paced course is led by Premier Global NASM’s team of Success Coaches and Tutors, who are experts in prenatal and postnatal fitness and nutrition. Students will explore 6 modules of information, including a section on overcoming barriers to exercise for new and expecting mums, the importance of balanced nutrition, and crystal clear guidance on safe and effective program design.
The programme also includes a 74-page manual, 9 hours of live webinars, weekly discussion forums, an exercise library and interactive lectures with 7.5 hours of content. All are delivered via a flexible and easy to use live learning through digital technology platform. A platform that allows personal trainers to fit learning into their busy client schedule.
“Through our new Pre and Postnatal programme, we are proud to provide the highest level of support for this extremely important area of focus,” said Dan Rees, Commercial Director for Premier Global NASM. “It ensures our trainers are collecting accurate client information and designing the safest exercises for new and expecting mums.”
The Secert To The Six – Pack – Abs
The secret to the six-pack abs you’ve always wanted goes far beyond 100 situps a day. But that doesn’t mean it takes hours upon hours of ab work.
No, the chiseled core you’ve always wanted has long been about more than a few daily minutes of workout — and it’s always been about more than merely “training” your abs. In fact, ab training is the least of your worries.
Truth be told, you don’t actually need that many ab exercises to build the abs you want. What you need is a holistic approach to fitness, one that takes into consideration your diet, some smart core training, and fat-incinerating total-body movements, too.
It’s an approach that isn’t easy, but it isn’t as extremist as you may think, either. No, you don’t have to say “no” to every M&M in sight, and you don’t need to drip buckets of sweat every single workout. You don’t need to train 365 days a week, and you don’t need to do core moves until you can’t feel your midsection. In fact, you can probably build the midsection you’ve always wanted in an hour or so a day, 4 to 5 days a week.
The key: A smart, targeted approach that includes equal parts discipline and hard gym work—and some occasional dietary freedom too. Follow these tips below to get started on the road to a six-pack.
Start in the Kitchen
Abs aren’t just made in the weight room — the real work starts in the kitchen. You’re going to need to approach your diet with the same discipline you bring to your workouts.
Some experts recommend eating six small meals a day, instead of the more conventional three, cutting out added sugars and processed foods, and loading up on dependable sources of protein to help build new muscle in your midsection. Before you commit to any new diet, though, speak to your doctor and/or a nutritionist to see what they believe will work best for you.
You’ll also want to drink plenty of water; aim to drink upwards of a gallon a day if you can. Keeping your body hydrated can help control hunger cravings.
Work Every Single Muscle
“Muscle is your body’s primary fat burner,” said Rasmussen. Your muscles require energy to contract, which is why you burn calories when you exercise. But resistance training, unlike running or cycling, also causes a significant amount of damage to your muscle fibers. And that’s a good thing.
“Your body has to expend energy to repair and upgrade those fibers after your workout,” Rasmussen continued. “And a single total-body weight-training session can boost your metabolism for up to two days.”
So you shouldn’t neglect a single inch of your body. That goes double for the legs because, when you train legs, you’re essentially training your whole body. Think about it: A squat or deadlift doesn’t just tax hamstrings, glutes, and quads, but it also challenges your core (and those abs) to maintain stability and stay braced tightly.
No wonder Syracuse University researchers determined that people burned more calories the day after a lower-body resistance session than the day after they worked their upper bodies.
Your lower half houses more muscle. The upshot: “A busy guy’s smartest approach is to train his entire body every other day,” says trainer Craig Rasmussen, C.S.C.S. “That allows you to elevate your metabolism maximally all week long, even though you’re working out only three or four days a week.”
Build your workouts around complex, multijoint movements like squats, deadlifts, and cleans, and watch the abs gradually show.
Don’t Max Out On Crunches
“You can do lots of crunches and situps and still have a weak core. “We see that all the time.”
The reason: Classic ab moves like crunches and situps work the muscles that allow you to flex (that is, round) your lower spine. True core exercises, on the other hand, train the muscles much, much more than that. “Your abs can rotate your torso, fight against rotation (anti-rotation), and brace your torso, in addition to flexing your lower spine. “You should work to train those other traits too.”
And you can do that with better core exercises than crunches. Planks are solid (and we’ll come back to that soon), mountain climbers and ab-wheel rollouts work, and Samuel loves hollow body hold and rock variations.
“You can do so much with hollow body holds and rocks,” he says. “They seem like mere bracing moves, but you can train anti-rotation and rotation from that position too.” We will continue with even more facts and exercises in our June issue.