Some fitness professionals believe that there is no such thing as stabilizer muscles as there are no specific muscles that can be defined as stabilizers. The stabilizers are muscles that aren’t directly involved in a movement, but instead keep certain parts of the body steady so that the main working muscles can do their job properly. Therefore, virtually every muscle can play a stabilizing role depending on the given movement.
That being said, MOST fitness professionals agree that when one speaks of stabilizer muscles they are referring to the core and trunk muscles; the muscles that stabilize the joints and spine during a movement. The reason for this is that the core is your power center and works at stabilizing the body in virtually every movement.
Take a soccer player for instance: he can have the strongest leg muscles ever, but without strong abs, back, hips, and glutes his kick won’t be as powerful. When strength training, lack of a strong back and abs may reduce the amount you are able to lift even with strong arm muscles. Even regular daily activities like picking up grocery bags or walking up stairs requires the body to balance and steady itself.
Without a strong core one doesn’t have enough stability in the spine and joints which can cause joint degeneration, back pain, and injury. Strong stabilizers also mean better balance, coordination, power, and speed.
2 ways to train to increase your body’s stabilization abilities:
1. Perform exercises that puts a decent amount of tension on the entire body. Some exercises are more effective than others at keeping the body tight throughout the exercise. For instance, for leg exercises try squats, deadlifts and weighted lunges (these require the back and shoulders to support and steady a barbell) instead of leg presses and leg extensions (these rely on the seat to support you).
2. Do exercises with one arm or one leg at a time. (Examples: one-armed dumbbell bench presses, one-legged squats, one-armed dumbbell rows, etc.) Unilateral exercises adds balancing to the exercise which causes the obliques and the lower back muscles to tense in order to keep the trunk steady.
The Human Trainer is an easy way to workout in both the ways mentioned above. The core stabilizers are present in ALL Human Trainer exercises because of the balancing aspect of doing the exercises suspended from straps. Imagine how strong your core will be when you incorporate those muscles into every exercise you do! The Human Trainer is a full body workout system, giving you strength and cardio training all in one.
It’s always easy to lose the first set of pounds when you are trying to lose weight. This could be 5, 10 or even 25 pounds; the problem comes when we hit the dreaded plateau. It’s like hitting a wall. No matter how hard we work in the gym or how many calories you count per meal it doesn’t seem to work.
This is because your body has gone into the autopilot mode. Doing the same exercises and routines every day is what makes you hit a plateau. A plateau is when your body adapts to your exercising routines and weight loss stops. You should always seek to challenge your body by increasing the pace and intensity of your workouts.
Here are a few intense exercises that will help you get out of your plateau state and rid your of those love handles.
This is a strong move and can be incorporated quiet easily into a string of other workouts. This routine has you quickly shift from one side to another, keeping the stress on oblique muscles.
To perform this exercise, lie down on the floor and raise your legs in the air up till your waist. Provide support to your back by placing your elbows under your lower back to make sure that your legs are fully off the ground. Now perform the cycling movement with your legs. To make it harder perform the exercise in a slow but constant speed as this keeps the maximum tension on your oblique muscles.
For this exercise you would need an exercise ball. This routine is a effective way to target those unwanted love handles. It makes your muscles work hard to keep balance which in turn helps to tone up your love handles.
Lie on your stomach on the apex of the exercise ball with your arms wrapped around the end of the ball. Roll the ball from side to side keeping yourself on the ball by maintaining balance so that you don’t fall off. The further you go to the side the harder and intense it will get, killing the fat on your oblique muscles.
This is one of my favorites and perhaps one of the easiest looking; but it’s not. It is a great exercise as it works a lot of muscle groups, especially the core. It is a very challenging exercise that will put your body out of the autopilot mode and work your oblique muscles sufficiently.
To perform this, lie down on your side with your legs straight. Place your forearm underneath your shoulder and propel yourself up so that your body forms a diagonal line, making sure your hips and legs are off the ground. Place your hand on the side on your hip and brace your abs. Hold this position for at least 60 seconds. If can’t do it for 60 seconds then do it for as long as you can and then rest for 4-5 seconds and get back in the position to complete your 60 seconds in intervals.
These are great exercises for soccer players to build agility, balance and strength.
HT Foot Cradle 1-Leg Suspended Split Squat (Balance, Core and Strength)
Begin placing one foot in the foot cradle with the hand resting on the hips. Squat down with your suspended leg in the foot cradle pressing back and down behind the body. Do 3 sets of 10-15 on each leg.
HT Alternating Cross Reverse Lunge (Legs and Power)
Holding the handles in neutral position, step back with your right leg into a reverse lunge, but cross it over to the left side as you lunge. Come back to center and repeat with your left leg. Do 3 sets of 10-15 on each leg.
HT Jump Squats (Power)
Facing the straps, firmly grasp both handles and hold on so that the straps and your arms are fully extended in front of you with palms facing down. As you jump straight up press downward on the handles to increase the height of your jump. Focus on landing into a proper squat position and make sure not to land hard. Do 3 sets of 15.
HT Chest Press with Alternating Knee Tuck (Upper Body Strength / Conditioning and Core)
Facing away from the straps, hold a handle in each hand, arms extended in front of you at shoulder level, palms facing down. Keeping your shoulders back and down, lower your chest towards your hands so that your hands come just below your shoulders. As you press back up to the starting position, with the arms extended straight, lift one knee towards the chest, then place it back on the ground. Go into your next chest press but for this rep bring the opposite knee towards the chest. Do 3 sets of 20 (on each leg)
HT 1-Leg Squat & Row (Power, Coordination and Strength, Linking Upper Body and Lower Body)
Facing the straps, grasp both handles in neutral position and hold on so that the straps and your arms are fully extended in front of you (arms should be parallel with shoulders). Lean back and press your hips back and down into a low squat position. As you come up, pull your body up to meet your hands. The end position should be with knees straight, hands right up against your shoulders, elbows up and behind you. Release arms back in front of you and then come back down into a squat. Repeat sequence. 3 sets of 10-15 on each leg.
HT 1-Leg Foot Cradle Burpee (Strength, Balance, Conditioning)
Facing away from the straps, with one foot in a foot cradle, come forward a bit so that the strap in partially extended. Once in this position, drop down into a push up while suspending the original standing leg off to the side and in line with the leg in the strap. Drive the original standing leg forward, plant it, and then jump up toward the ceiling off that leg. Upon landing, go right back into a push up and repeat the sequence. Repeat for 20-30 seconds.
HT Foot Cradle 1-Arm Extended Balance (Core Strength and Endurance)
Facing away from the straps get into a high plank position with toes in the foot cradles. Both hands should be directly under the shoulders. Lift your right hand so that your arm is straight out in front of you. Make sure to keep hips level. Place your hand back on the ground and repeat with the other hand to complete on set. Do 3 sets of 20 (10 on each side)
HT Dips (Stronger arms for more speed and running propelling)
Standing right under your straps, hold the handles on either side at waist height. Flex your triceps and press your body upwards off the floor into a full extension. Lean forward slightly to engage the chest, stabilize the arms and torso, and slowly dip downwards until your triceps are approximately parallel with the floor. Contract your triceps and chest and push back upwards to full extension. (Starting position) Repeat for 10 reps.
HT Alternating Hamstring Curls (Injury prevention, Strength)
Facing the straps, lie down on your back with your heels in the Foot Cradles. Make your legs straight and lift your hips off the ground. Keeping your core engaged, bend one knee and bring your heel towards your butt. Then do the same with the other leg. Extend your legs back out. This completes one rep. 3 sets of 10-15.
HT 2-Knee Side to Side Tuck (Core Strength, Endurance)
With your feet suspended in the foot cradles get into a plank position (straps should be fully extended). With legs together, bring your knees up to your right side. Return to center and then do the left side. Do 3 sets of 20 (1 rep = knee tuck on both sides)
HT Plank (Core Strength, Endurance)
Get into a plank position with your feet elevated in the foot cradles. Make sure to keep your core engaged. Hold the plank for 30 seconds, rest and repeat 3 times.
HT Pushup and Knee Tuck (Upper Body and Core Strength, Endurance)
Maintaining the plank position in the above exercise, lower into a pushup. Return to plank and bring your knees in together towards your chest. Do as many as you can in 30 seconds.
HT Alternating Sprinter (Core Strength, Endurance)
Begin in a high plank position with both feet placed in the foot cradles, face down. Bring the right knee towards the chest, then bring switch legs bringing the left towards the chest. Continue alternating legs keeping the core engaged with hands directly under the shoulders. Do as many as you can in 30 seconds.
HT Alternating Superman (Upper Back Strength and Endurance)
Facing away from the straps, Keep your feet planted, and stand holding both handles out in front, perpendicular to your body. Without bending your knees, lean forward into an incline that you are comfortable with. Keeping the core engaged, and with controlled movement, raise your arms so they are extended above your head. Pause for a couple of seconds, and return to start position. Do 3 sets of 15.
When you have rheumatoid arthritis, exercising can seem counterintuitive. Just doing normal activities, like light chores around the house and garden, walking around a store, or playing with the dog can trigger joint pain ranging from aggravating to agonizing.
But exercise is actually incredibly good for rheumatoid arthritis. In fact, it’s just about the only way to maintain the range of motion in your joints when you have RA. It also strengthens the muscles that support and protect them and helps build and maintain strong, healthy bones. Finally, exercise is vital to your overall physical and mental health. It can help you lose excess weight—and keep it off—and contributes to heart and lung health, too.
According to the American College of Rheumatology, exercise also helps to prevent diseases like type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and osteoporosis. It can improve your sleep, reduce your pain, increase your energy levels, lower your risk of injury, and help you function better—all in spite of having RA.
But what kind of exercise works best with RA? Along with stretching, which further increases joint flexibility and range-of-motion, low-impact exercise is the best because it doesn’t pound, jar, or otherwise stress the joints. Walking at a brisk pace is a great low-impact exercise. So is swimming, water walking, bicycling, and strength training.
Those last words, “strength-training,” conjure up scary visions of barbells, dumb-bells, hand-weights, and weight machines. And you can use those, even with RA. But one of the best ways to strength-train with any type of arthritis is to use resistance bands, such as Ripcords, offered by Astone Fitness. You can increase the amount of resistance you’re working against and build your strength at your own pace—and you don’t have to go to a gym to use them. Resistance bands are convenient, easy to store, and last just about forever.
Made of latex and rubber, resistance bands require varying amounts of muscle strength to stretch. With different exercise positions, they can work just about every muscle in the body. You start out with bands that offer only light resistance and do minimum repetitions. Then, as your stamina increases and your muscles strengthen, you slowly increase the number of reps and, over time, the level of resistance.
Our muscles not only move our bodies, they support and protect our joints. And, when we lose muscle because of disuse, age, or both, fat often settles into its place. Using resistance bands for low-impact exercise burns fat for fuel and replaces it with lean muscle. And when done regularly, strength training with resistance bands can help reduce RA soreness, stiffness, and pain.
According to the Arthritis Foundation, a 2009 study in Great Britain showed that progressive resistance training may improve physical function in people whose RA is mildly disabling but well-controlled. None of the study participants experienced a flare caused by the exercise, which was high-intensity but not high impact. Instead, their endurance rose, they increased lean muscle, and the lost fat from the chest, abdomen, and back. The study involved weights rather than resistance bands, but the principle is the same.
Keep in mind that some mild, temporary pain is normal during and following any kind of exercise. But sharp pain that doesn’t go away and sore, swollen joints may indicate that you’ve overdone it. And never exercise a flared joint. Listen to your body and stay focused on smart, active health.
With the Human Trainer X-50 Agility Kit, we’ve assembled everything you need to get you started on your SARQ training program. Once reserved for athletes, Speed Agility Reaction and Quickness training using agility ladders and cones are one of the quickest ways to improve dynamic balance, coordination, and movement skills and burn maximum calories for fitness enthusiasts of all ages.
The Human Trainer X-50 Agility Kit includes 2 Workout DVD’s chock full of functional movement drills that will keep you moving and motivated. Get fit and have FUN at home or on the field.
Includes: 2x 9 foot Agility Ladders, 10x Cross-Training Cones, 2x Instructional DVD’s, 1x Product Manual, 4x Metal Ground Anchor Pegs and 1x Extra Large Carry Bag
The Human Trainer X-50 Workout Kit has got ALL your bases covered. The completely portable training system that will do it all, in one small package: Strength, Endurance, Speed, Power, Agility, Balance, Coordination and Flexibility PLUS burn maximum calories in record time with our exclusive Human Trainer X-50 HIIT workouts. Our Premium portable workout kit, for those that want RESULTS-anywhere-anytime!
The Human Trainer X-50 interval training workouts will burn maximum calories and torch body fat to get you in the best shape of your life.
Includes: The Human Essential Kit Pro Suspension Trainer, Human Trainer X-50 Agility Kit, RipCord Resistance Band, Speed Rope, 3 Workout DVD’s, 2 Program Guides and Carry Bag
Many people view golf as “the sport for the non-athlete”, and golf players themselves seem to think the better the clubs, the better the swing. What many golfers fail to realize is that the best way to increase their drive and decrease their handicap is to improve their body (strength, cardio, and flexibility).
More and more golfers are turning to The Human Trainer to improve their game. Because a suspension gym is not static like exercise machines are, it allows for sport specific movements. Its virtually endless degree of difficulty makes it suitable for amateur and pro golfers alike.
For golf, exercise should be focused on core strength and flexibility so you begin to rely on generating your power from your core and put less pressure on your arms, wrists, and lower back. It should also focus on building overall range of motion in the joints and spine.
For an impeccable game, master the ten exercises below. These exercises will prevent injury, and improve the strength, effectiveness, and consistency of your swing.
Do 3 sets of 10-15 reps per exercise.
HT Arm Circles (Increasing range of motion of shoulders, opens up lats)
Facing the straps, put one foot in front of the other so you are in a light lunge. Holding a handle in each hand, start with the straps full extended in front of you so that your hands are in front of you at approximately hip level. Rotate your arms out to your sides and up so that your hands meet above your head. Circle back out, and down to start position to complete 1 rep.
HT Squat and Row (Linking Upper Body and Lower Body)
Facing the straps, grasp both handles in neutral position and hold on so that the straps and your arms are fully extended in front of you (arms should be parallel with shoulders). Lean back and press your hips back and down into a low squat position. As you come up, pull your body up to meet your hands. The end position should be with knees straight, hands right up against your shoulders, elbows up and behind you. Release arms back in front of you and then come back down into a squat. Repeat sequence.
HT Plank (Core Endurance, greater swing stability)
Get into a plank position with your feet elevated in the foot cradles. Make sure to keep your core engaged. Hold the plank for 30 seconds, rest and repeat 3 times.
HT Foot Cradle Pushups (Arm and Upper body Strength for greater distance on swing)
Maintaining the plank position in the above exercise, lower into a pushup. Return to start and repeat.
HT Reverse Flies (Upper back strength)
Face the straps. Hold a handle in each hand with arms extended (elbows slightly bent) in front of you, palms facing each other and close together. Keeping your elbows down and slightly bent open your arms so that they are extended at your sides. Return to start and repeat.
HT Bicep Curls (Arm and Upper body Strength for greater distance on swing)
Facing the straps, hold a handle in each hand. Straps and arms should be fully extended in front of you at chest height, palms faming up. Curl your hands up towards your shoulders, bringing your body up to meet your hands. Return to start and repeat.
HT Overhead Triceps (Arm and Upper body Strength for greater distance on swing)
Facing away from the straps, hold handles together overhead. Palms facing out, elbows bent. Extend the arms until they are straight, still overhead but slightly in front of you. Return to start and repeat.
HT Chest Flies (Arm and Upper body Strength for greater distance on swing)
Facing away from the straps, start with the straps fully extended, hands in front of your chest, palms facing each other. Elbows should be slightly bent. Open your arms to the sides, keeping them at shoulder level without locking the elbows. Return to start and repeat.
HT 2 Arm Golf Swing (Replicates torso swing building flexibility and strength)
Facing the straps, hold a handle in each hand, and get into a golf stance as you would if you were getting ready to hit a golf ball. Press down on the handles and keeping hands 6-10 inches apart, swing arms as far right as possible while shifting your weight to the right. Your head should follow the direction of your arms. Swing arms all the way to the left and shift weight to the left to complete on rep.
HT 1 Arm Golf Swing (Replicates Torso swing building flexibility and strength)
Get into the same stance as with the previous exercise. Press down on the handles, and rotate the right arm to the right side as far as you can, gazing towards your hand. Return to start position, rotate the left arm to the left side while gazing upwards towards the hand.
Sometimes it’s hard to reach all those flabby areas you want so hard to tone up. Leg Cords give the ideal resistance you need to target the inner and outer thighs and front and rear glute muscles. Strengthening these neglected muscles goes a long way in improving our bodies in daily activities, running and sports, and helping injury prevention.