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The Fitness Zone

How to ACTUALLY Use Top Fitness Trends
October 26, 2015

High intensity interval training (HIIT). Body weight training. Strength training. These are just some of the current fitness trends of 2015. Why? Because when they are done properly they get serious results, which makes them a popular choice with all people, of all fitness levels.

But how can you start integrating them into your own or clients programs? Firstly you really need to know your stuff about all these training methods. Secondly you need to remember the client’s goals. Thirdly you need to know how to change a client’s current training to achieve those goals. Here are a few tips to get started.

How To Use Body Weight Training

Try integrating body weight training into whole-body strength training sessions. Body weight training can also incorporate an element of balance training. This can enhance muscle fibre recruitment and incorporate an ‘overload’ effect on the muscles. You can also progress the client by varying the tempo.

You can also try including balance training in your body weight training. For the more advanced, this may involve doing one-legged squats on a Bosu. Integrating balance into functional, bodyweight training increases muscle activation because the client is at a mechanical disadvantage. It also adds neural complexity to the overload variables.

Try It Now: Try a single-leg bosu squat hop up

  1. Start by squat on the flat ground

  2. Hop up on Bosu ball with one leg and hold for 3 seconds

  3. Repeat for 20 seconds

  4. Rest for 10 seconds

  5. Complete each round 8 times for a 4 minute-style workout

Hint: Make sure you train both legs!

How To Use Strength Training

We already know the amazing benefits of strength training; increasing lean body mass is just one of them! Integrating strength training using various contemporary pieces of equipment such as Kettlebells and suspension systems is a great way to teach great body mechanics and achieve significant improvements in lean body mass, strength and muscle tone.

Using slower movements emphasises time under tension for greater hypertrophy and stabilisation effects. You could later shift to more explosive power exercises to teach the brain to command high-speed movements under heavy loads.

But it’s easy to forget that strength training also plays a part in the training program if your goals are more aerobic, like running a marathon. Traditionally we thought that if you want to be a runner then you need to do loads and loads of running. That is the fundamental philosophy of the specificity principle after all! But now we know that strength training can have amazing benefits even for these clients. In fact it can:

  • Improve the recruitment of Type 2 muscle fibres thus making the client faster – this is great for the end of a race!

  • Reduce the risk of injury because there is less need to do such excessive amounts of cardio training where the bones, joints and muscles are exposed to excessive pavement pounding.

  • Help improve speed and power, which is awesome for hill running!

Try It Now: If you are a runner or love steady state training you might want to try adding in a ‘heavier’ weight training session day to your program to help you get a little faster. Try:

  1. Barbell squats (5 x 5 reps)

  2. Romanian deadlift (5 x 6-8 reps)

  3. Walking lunges (4 x 30 m)

Hint: Remember you should never progress to heavy loads if you haven’t done any foundation training.

How To Use HIIT Training

Incorporate HIIT into some of the training sessions by replacing some of the steady-state cardio sessions. HIIT can help to:

  • Increase maximum oxygen consumption (yep, so that means you are fitter)

  • Super charge the release of fat metabolising hormones such as the growth hormone and testosterone

  • Minimise the release of stress-related hormones such as cortisol (remember this hormone that also encourages fat storage?).

You can choose to replace all or even part of a session with HIIT. This can be as simple as programming a 4 minute sprint interval session where there are 15 second sprints interspersed with 15 seconds of rest.  It doesn’t have to be long. In fact, if you are pushing your client to perform at ‘high intensity’ then technically they shouldn’t be able to continue the HIIT for very long!

Try It Now:  Try getting the heart rate up with this short, high intensity interval session

  1. 10 Burpees

  2. 10 Mountain climbers

  3. 10 Star jumps

  4. One Minute of Skipping

Hint: Repeat 10 times.

Fitness trends will come, stay and go in the fitness industry. Adding variety to your training sessions has the potential to improve results if your program then changes. As well as this, a variety in your workout will ensure you stay motivated and keen for the next session. Boredom in your routine will surely result in a lack of focus and ultimately mean you stop your workouts. The key to staying focused and achieving results is knowing your stuff! HIIT, bodyweight training and strength training are just some of the 2015 trends in the fitness industry, so always be prepared to learn something new and adapt.  

This content is not intended to be used as individual health or fitness advice divorced from that imparted by medical, health or fitness professionals. Medical clearance should always be sought before commencing an exercise regime. The Institute and the authors do no take any responsibility for accident or injury caused as a result of this information.

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