Leg Circles

Major Muscles Worked: Legs, Glutes, Hips Set Up: Start on the floor or mat on all fours; hands and knees hands should be shoulder width apart, and knees, hip width The Movement: Shift your weight in your palms and the knee of your right leg Raise your left leg to the side as far as you can without compromising your hip height. engage your core Make large circles with your knee, trying to move throughout the entire range of motion for your hip Only go as far as you can without twisting or shifting weight between your arms. Reverse Direction Change Legs Specific Cues: Keep your hips square to the ground. Resist the urge to bend the arm of the stabilizing leg. Keep your arms the same throughout the movement. Keep your core tight, and resist the urge to raise your leg higher than the joint will allow. Just do Read More . . .

Chest Press/Chest Fly

Major Muscles Worked: Biceps, Triceps, Shoulders Set Up: Lie on a bench, floor or a ball, feet firmly on the floor. Hold a dumbbell in each hand, palms facing your knees Elbows are straight, holding the weights towards the ceiling, positioned over the chest. The ends of the dumbbells are either touching, or and inch or two apart. The Movement: Bend your elbows, lowering the weights with control until your upper arms touch the floor. As you lower the weights, keep the weights (and your wrists) directly over your elbows. This means that the weights will separate from each other as they lower. Without pausing at the bottom of the movement, press the weights back to the ceiling. Reverse the movement of the weights, keeping them over the chest, and gradually bringing them closer to each other at the top of the motion. Twist your palms so that they are now facing each-other Read More . . .

Side Plank

Major Muscles Worked: Core, Shoulder Side Plank: The Side Plank exercise is a holding exercise performed on your forearm, one side at a time. Although it targets the core, you should be engaging all of your muscles. Specific Cues: You should press through your forearm, not your elbow You can add extra thickness (a towel, or double-up the mat) if it’s uncomfortable Your shoulder should be more over your forearm than your elbow Your shoulders should be stacked directly over one another (see picture below) Engage your core, glutes, legs, and back. You should have a straight line between your shoulders, hips, knees and ankles. No sagging of the hips, or hips towards the ceiling. Gaze straight ahead of you to create a neutral spine. Modification 2 Set Up Instead of stacking feet, as shown in the core position, place your top foot in front of your bottom foot, heel Read More . . .

Hip Dips

Major Muscles Worked: Core Set Up: Hip Dips start out as you would the Low Plank – on your forearms. The Movement: Keeping your shoulders above your forearms, rotate your hips to the right so that the right hip touches the mat. Return back to the low plank position Repeat on the other side. Special Cueing: Your shoulders should be directly over your forearms,  not your elbows. The weight should be distributed over your forearms. not on your elbows. Tuck your hips Engage your core, glutes, legs, and back. You should have a straight line between your shoulders, hips, knees and ankles. No sagging of the hips, or hips towards the ceiling. Look at the ground 1-2 feet in front of you to create a neutral spine. Your feet may travel away from you. That’s totally normal. Just pick up your feet, re-position them, and continue from where you left off. Read More . . .

Chest Fly

Major Muscles Worked: Biceps, Triceps, Shoulders Set Up: Lie on a bench (incline or flat) or a ball, feet firmly on the floor. Hold a dumbbell in each hand, palms facing each other Elbows are slightly bent, holding the weights towards the ceiling, positioned over the chest. The Movement: Keeping the bend in your elbows the same throughout the entire movement, and palms facing each other, slowly separate the weights, lowering your arms to the ground. Go as far as you can Get a good stretch across your chest, and go as far as you can without losing control of the weights. Reverse the movement, squeezing the chest, and bringing your hands back together above your chest. Specific Cues: If you could trace the path of your dumbbells in the air, it would make a semi-circle – not a triangle At the top of the movement, with the dumbbells towards Read More . . .

6 Basic Movement Patterns

We all have exercises that we like, and therefore do a lot; and there are exercises that we dislike, and don’t do, unless we’re forced. I have them too. We tend to gravitate towards those bodyparts that we enjoy training, and steer clear from those that we don’t. The problem with doing the same exercises over and over again (and not doing others ever) is that you risk injury. When one group of muscles is significantly stronger than another group, you will move differently than if your muscles are balanced in strength. Strong muscles pull on other muscles in the body, and weaker muscles stretch out. An example of that might be if you have weak lower back, the stronger muscles in the glutes and hamstrings will pull on your lower back muscles. That could pull your pelvis out of alignment, and cause pain not only in your lower back, but also Read More . . .

Burpee/Push-up/Renegade Row

Set Up: Stand with your feet hip width apart or closer at the top of your mat. Hold one dumbbell in each hand. Chest is up, shoulders are back. The Movement: Start by bending over, and placing the dumbbells on the floor. Kick your feet back so that you are in a high plank position. Perform a push-up Perform the Renegade Row movement Jump your feet up towards your hands. Stand, taking the weights with you. Notes: This is a freakin’ HARD exercise! If the video seems a bit choppy, it’s becasue I edited out the valuable seconds that you didn’t want to watch me catching my breath! You can alternate the rowing motion (as I did in most of the sets) or you can do one side at a time (like I did in the 3rd set). As you tire, you could put your knees down in the push-up Read More . . .

Plank

  Major Muscles Worked: Core High Plank: The High Plank exercise is a holding exercise performed on your palms. Although it targets the core, you should be engaging all of your muscles. Specific Cues: Your palms should be directly under your shoulders Tuck your hips Engage your core, glutes, legs, and back. You should have a straight line between your shoulders, hips, knees and ankles. No sagging of the hips, or hips towards the ceiling. Look at the ground 1-2 feet in front of you to create a neutral spine. Low Plank: The Low Plank exercise is a holding exercise performed on your forearms. Although it targets the core, you should be engaging all of your muscles. Specific Cues: This variation is good if you have wrist issues. Your shoulders should be directly over your forearms,  not your elbows. The weight should be distributed over your forearms. not on your elbows. Tuck Read More . . .

Chest Press/ Pullover /Crunch

  Set Up: Lie down on your back. Hold the ends of one dumbbell with each of your hands. Arms are straight, holding the weight towards the ceiling. The Movement: Starting with the weight towards the ceiling. Lower the weight, with control to your chest, and press back towards the ceiling. At the top of the motion, hinge at your shoulder to lower the weight to the floor, overhead. With straight arms, reverse the motion to bring the weight back towards the ceiling. Push the weight towards the ceiling lifting your head & shoulders of the mat. Specific Cues: Use a weight appropriate for the Pullover exercise. During the pullover movement, your arms should be straight. Do not bend your elbows. The lower back stays glued to the floor during the crunch movement. Your neck is relaxed during the chest press and pullover movements. Your legs should be engaged, toes pointed towards Read More . . .

Push-Ups

Major Muscles Worked: Chest Set Up: Start in a plank position. Hands are directly underneath your shoulders, elbows are rotated towards your hips, middle fingers are pointing straight ahead, at 12 :00, and your fingers are spread wide. The Movement: Engage your core, legs and glutes. Tuck your hips. Bend your elbows, lowering your body with control, until your chest is just a few inches (like 3 inches) off the floor. Your elbows should be bent at a minimum of 90 degrees. In one solid motion, press back up to the top of the movement. Specific Cues: Make sure that your upper arms are not perpendicular to your body. They should be either at a 45 degree angle, or skimming the sides of your body. There should be a straight line between your shoulders, hips, knees and ankles. Do not let your butt rise in the air like a tepee. Read More . . .