Bending, lifting, sitting at your desk, and other common maneuvers can eventually cause pain. That’s why keeping your back in mind when crafting your workout is essential to your health and wellbeing.
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Of all the strength training equipment out there, a body bar is one of the simplest to use. Whether you’ve used one in a fitness class or want to incorporate one into your at-home workout, there’s a variety of body bar exercises to help keep things interesting—especially helpful for new exercisers.
These exercises are a combination of strength and cardio, helping you build muscle while boosting your heart rate and burning calories. Incorporating these moves into your workout routine is a great way to challenge your body in different ways (and save some time on busier days).
Dumbbells are a great option for strength-training anywhere—in a gym, at home, outside—because they're compact and easy to use. The key to strengthening your muscles is to keep them challenged by changing up your workout—and your exercise equipment.
Showing your back muscles some love can actually be achieved with moves that target them specifically as well as total-body exercises that help promote fluid movement and prevent your back from becoming overburdened.
Exercising with kettlebells—weights that look like cannonballs with handles—tones muscle, increases your cardiovascular fitness and improves your posture and balance. As if that wasn’t enough, a typical kettlebell routine is done in less than half an hour—a great option if you’re short on time.
Smaller and heavier than a stability ball, a medicine ball is great for functional strength training—that which requires several muscle groups to work together so that you can lift, twist, reach and more, all with the specific intention of preparing you to perform everyday activities that involve the same movements with ease.
Protecting your back likely isn’t top of mind when you start your workout. It’s important to remember that in the process of strengthening one part of your body, you could be straining another too—and, in many cases, it is your back.
Resistance bands may not look like much compared to the other gear in the strength training area of your gym. They are, however, a great tool for keeping your muscles challenged. Beyond the fact that they can provide a welcome break from weight machines, they offer results without as many safety concerns.
When you want to take your core strength to the next level, or are ready to mix up your workout with something new, consider using the stability ball as a prop in your routine.
Improving your posture isn’t just about changing how you sit or stand. It’s also about strengthening your core so you carry your body in the best way possible for your health and comfort.
High intensity interval training (HIIT) is a combination of quick, give-it-your-all exercises and slow-it-down recovery periods that allow you to get an effective workout in a short amount of time—even if you only have 20 minutes to spare. The best part: You can do at the gym, in your backyard, on the bedroom floor or just about anywhere.
Many of us equate core strength with a flat belly or six-pack abs. And while those may be motivating goals to you, there are so many more benefits that come from improving core strength than how your midsection looks, including improved posture, reduced back pain and more.
Taking the time to work your quadriceps should be near the top of your strength-training to-do list. Exercises that specifically target and strengthen them can help reduce wear and tear on knee cartilage and will improve your hill climbing and biking power.
Strength-training machines look pretty impressive—and they can help you achieve results that are just as remarkable. However, though there are entire sections of the gym dedicated to them, you don’t really need machines to get an efficient workout. Your amazing body can serve as its own strength-training tool.
Keep your lower body moving in new ways—and your workout interesting—by shaking things up. Consider these moves, which target your lower back, gluteal muscles, hips and legs.
You have your upper body strength training routine so down pat that the weights know you’re coming even before you put the resistance band down. Kudos on your dedication to this important aspect of fitness! After all, it’s essential to increasing lean muscle mass and conditioning your body to move easily today and tomorrow.