Do you feel as if your workouts are lacking something? Or maybe you just feel like you’re doing the same thing all of the time. In order for me to be a successful personal trainer in Llanelli then it is so important that I keep my client’s motivated, and improving, using a variety of new equipment and training methods.
It is very common for exercisers to get stuck in a rut. People will go to a gym 3-5 times a week every week, you cannot question their desire to improve but often they won’t get any better or see any major changes. This is probably due to the fact that they are doing the same session’s week in week out. They aren’t getting any worse, so for these people who are in their desired shape then great! But for those who want to improve then the answer is to change things. Your body will work a lot harder to adapt to new and more difficult movements, this will lead to improvement. Plus changing things around can help to prevent you getting bored with your workout.
There are 1000s of different exercises and exercise tools you can use but for today I am going to give you 5 inexpensive pieces of equipment to help you get better results.
Start to use these different bits of equipment in your training program and see if any improvements are made. If the improvements take a bit longer than expected at least you are able to learn new things which will keep your workout interesting and fresh.
Obviously the equipment I am about to mention will not be relevant to everyone’s goals. Each person has their own unique goals so it isn’t a one rule fits all.
If your goal is to tone up, increase strength, reduce injury and improve your level of fitness then adding a couple of these bits of equipment to your workout can help. You can use them at home or even bring them with you to the gym.
1. Skipping rope
Attitudes to skipping or jump rope training have come a long way since the impression that it was just for girls in the playground. Just watching any boxer with a skipping rope will quickly change your opinion if you still view it as something for children.
Benefits of skipping includes:
- Improved cardiovascular endurnace
- Improved muscle strength and endurance
- Improved flexibility and body composition
- Improved co ordination and timing
- Improved agility, balance, speed and power
- Aids with fat loss
Jump rope training is also cheap, requires next to no room and it is fun.
This type of training can also boost your sporting performance greatly. For sports such as football, rugby where short bursts of speed are required then jump rope training is great. Also great for athletics, will help with the explosive first few steps from the blocks as well as the explosive power required for the jumping events.
2. Arm Straps/slings
This piece of equipment is designed to attach to a pull up bar using steel hooks and padded arm straps. You simply place your arms into the sling and grip the area above the arm. The best exercise to do with this is probably leg raises, a great way to help tone up your abs and give them a full workout. You can do various different leg raises using the arm slings, all working your abdominals fully. Good form is key with this bit of equipment.
Kettlebells offer you a welcome alternative from dumbbells, barbells and traditional strength training. As I mentioned it is good to mix things up and try things new so kettlebell training could be for you.
Training in such a unique and different way has many benefits. Practically speaking it is very cost effective you can pick up a good quality cast iron kettlebell (depending on weight) for around £10. You require limited space, a couple of square metres is enough room to complete an intense workout. If you don’t want to purchase one then try going to a kettlebell class, most gyms do them.
With kettlebell training there is a lot more to it than just swinging the bell. A slight change in grip can give you a completely different exercise. There are so many different exercises you can do targeting different muscle groups.
Kettlebell training is extremely versatile and you can change from one exercise to another in a short period of time, this allows you to complete a full body circuit in minimal time. It can help you to build functional strength, allowing aspects of your life to become much easier e.g. carrying bags, standing upright, climbing stairs etc.
Such training will work muscles that you don’t usually work and help to correct any muscle imbalances you have in your body. Hopefully this description will give you the motivation to give it a go.
Oh yes kettlebell training also builds incredible power, develops core strength, power endurance and strength endurance!
4. Power Bands
This is a great resistance tool to have in your workout. They allow your muscles and joints to work in a greater range of motion. Power bands are ideal for pull ups if you are not entirely comfortable performing them. By using power bands when doing pull ups you will take a slight load off (depending on the resistance of the band) your body allowing you to complete the pull ups. By training with these for a few weeks you will soon be able to pull up consistently unassisted.
5. Foam Roller
This is a great piece of equipment for injury prevention, muscle compression and injury rehabilitation. There are a variety amount of different exercises you can perform depending on your specific needs. Using it will help to relieve stress and pain whilst toning the muscles at the same time.
Just by using this for a few minutes every day it will speed up your recovery, ease the pain on your muscles, reduce your chances of injury and allow you to train harder.
If you are unsure about how to use any of these bits of equipment don’t hesitate to ask. A good way of finding out extra exercises or techniques hints just search on the internet.
There are many fantastic different exercise equipment you can use, these are just a selection of my favourite ones.
Let me know how you get on,
PS what bits of equipment do you use to boost your workouts? Please comment below.
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