Posted on 01 November 2010.
Whether you’re starting a new fitness program at your local rec center or purchasing equipment for your home gym, understanding the different types of equipment out there is valuable knowledge for anyone with an interest in physical fitness. Your custom routine will determine the equipment you’ll be most familiar with but knowing what’s available can give you the opportunity to expand your workout to something new and exciting.
Many weight loss fitness programs will incorporate cardio machines to get your heart rate up and get your blood pumping. Treadmills and elliptical machines offer adjustable speed, inclination, and resistance settings that let you customize your workout while cycling and rowing machines are another option if you’re looking to focus on certain muscle groups.
Weight Training Equipment
For any weight training workout you will be able to choose from free weights or a weight machine and many people will incorporate both into their routines. Free weights will generally be used with an adjustable weight bench that give you the desired inclination for each exercise. Weight machines can be either plate loaded or stack machines and the one you choose will just be a matter of personal preference.
Stretching and Yoga
Flexibility and stretching is an important part of any workout so using the proper mats can make this aspect more enjoyable and save your hands and knees some potential grief. To add some extra meat to your warm ups and cool downs you may want to try using some exercise bands and tubing. They come in different thicknesses so having a few different bands on hand can give you a variety of resistances.
Other Machines and Equipment
Exercise balls and balance disks can be used on their own for toning and stability exercises or used concurrently with weights to add a little more difficulty to your weight training. Hand exercisers are excellent little pieces of equipment that will help you work on your grip. You may even want to try things like ab and thigh machine to tone specific areas.
No matter what type of workout you want to get there is a piece of equipment out there that can either provide the workout or simply enhance it. If you aren’t sure about a certain machine try it out or have a trainer or store clerk show you how to use it. Learning about new machines and equipment can be an interesting way to spice up a previously stale workout routine.
Posted in Featured Articles, Fitness Tips And Advice
Posted on 31 October 2010.
Physical fitness does not have to be something you dread. Getting into better shape can be whatever you make of it and it can be something you find enjoyable. Whatever you decide to make of your fitness plan, there are three basic categories to physical fitness that need to be maintained if you want to get into shape and feel great. Muscular strength, aerobic endurance, and flexibility are all vital components to any successful exercise plan and what you decide to do with each of those categories will be entirely up to you.
Everything movement you make uses muscles. Working on strength training will not only help to get you into shape, it will help you do things more easily in your day to day life. Anything from carrying groceries, to mowing your lawn, to folding your laundry can become a whole lot easier once your muscle are a bit better shape. There are many different exercises you can do without or without weight training equipment, and you can decide what intensity to work at, but keep in mind that you need to challenge yourself and use adequate resistance to progress to a higher fitness level.
Cardio training is a key element to keeping your heart and lungs in shape and will be a very important aspect of your workout routine if you are trying to manage your weight. This aspect of physical fitness is so versatile you may find ways to exercise you would never think of as work. If you hate running on a treadmill don’t think you can’t still maintain your aerobic fitness. Try cycling or swimming, or perhaps even just going for a fast paced walk on your lunch break. You will be surprised at how much you can start to enjoy these activities when you see what you can accomplish.
Flexibility is so easy to overlook. Weight training and cardio seem like “exercise” whereas stretching and giving yourself a proper warm up may feel like an optional fitness bonus. Its importance should not be underestimated! Stretching your muscles will go a long way in preventing injury and will help your joints and muscles in your every day activities. You’ll save yourself a lot of pain if you take an extra five minutes before and after your strength and cardio training to stretch out and maintain a good rande of motion.
Each of these three categories is something you can have fun with. You’ll likely discover new past-times you hadn’t thought of trying before such as skiing, mountain biking, or yoga. Once you start seeing the results of your efforts and noticing new abilities you never though you could have, physical fitness will likely become an exciting activity for you that you can’t believe you were ever living without.
Posted in Featured Articles, Fitness 101