There are multiple pros to being a Mobile personal trainer in Twickenham, London. The most obvious one being I get to spend my time in wonderful open spaces such as Bushy and Richmond Park. However, I cannot take an entire gym with me everywhere that I go. As a result, I have a number of different strategies get results when working out.
The issue of equipment doesn’t only affect me as a trainer. Workout gear is not cheap! Thus many people opt for home, bodyweight workouts. Unfortunately, this means many aspects of health and fitness get missed, right? Not necessarily, Changing the dynamics of an exercise can drastically change how it effects you.
Bodyweight Exercises for Multiple Goals
It is commonly accepted that you use bodyweight exercises muscular endurance and muscle definition. However, by manipulating how you move and the time spend on exercises can alter their benefits.
Time Under Tension – Taking longer to complete reps puts increased stress upon the muscles, causing them to break down more. As a result, you can expect to see and increase in lean muscle mass and potential for hypertrophy.
Additionally a lengthened eccentric phase (lowering phase), followed by an explosive concentric phase can lead to increased force production. Thus potential for increases in both strength and power.
To put this into a practical example, 15 reps of bodyweight squat at moderate pace will effect muscular endurance. However, 10 super slow reps, with concentration on engaging the muscles at all times can lead to increased muscle mass. Finally, 5 reps with a 5 second lower and an explosive jump upwards can lead to increased strength and power.
These came principles can be applied to all bodyweight exercises and in fact ALL EXERCISES.
Mini Bands and Resistance Bands
I do make sure I always have 2 pieces of equipment available to me. Mini bands and resistance are easily used to modify the loading and resistance exercises. As an added bonus, they fit in your pocket! It’s quite simple, the thicker the band, the higher the resistance. The greater you stretch it, the greater the resistance.
Use resistance bands to target often overlooked muscles. Going back to my previous example, a mini around the knees in a squat forces you to push the knees outward, thus engaging the Glutes.
Mini Bands can be picked up pretty cheap online – try these!
1 Teeny Tiny Bit of Maths to Remember
You may well already know this, but have never put it to practical use.
1 Litre of water = 1kg
Why is this useful? If you are looking to add a little bit of resistance but don’t have any weights of bands available, simply fill different size water bottles accordingly. Try some Lunges while holding 4kg (2x 2litre bottles), it’s tough!
Limited equipment doesn’t have to hold you back. Change up the dynamics of your workout and attack those weaknesses.