Total Body

5 Functional Strength Moves for Everyday Life

Written by 
Canyon Ranch Staff
Canyon Ranch Reviewer: 
Richard Butler, M.S., U.S.P.T.A.

You may already go to the gym or work out at home. And maybe you feel like you strike a good balance between aerobic exercise and strength training. But are your muscles specifically trained to carry the laundry basket or lift the groceries?

6 Common Strength-Training Mistakes to Avoid

Written by 
Holly St. Lifer
Canyon Ranch Reviewer: 
Dawn McCrystal, M.S., R.C.E.P., C.S.C.S.

Whether you’re just beginning to add strength training to your routine or you already do upper- and lower-body muscle-strengthening moves, knowing—and avoiding—common pitfalls is key in ensuring you get the most out of your workout and protect yourself from injury.

Body Bar: The No-Machine Strength Workout

Written by 
Holly St. Lifer
Canyon Ranch Reviewer: 
Brian Wright

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.

Double-Duty Exercises

Written by 
Holly St. Lifer
Canyon Ranch Reviewer: 
Darcy Force McCue

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).

How Strong Are You, Really?

Written by 
Canyon Ranch Staff
Canyon Ranch Reviewer: 
Dawn McCrystal, M.S., R.C.E.P., C.S.C.S.

Think about how you move your body during the day: You carry groceries, lift the laundry, maybe climb up and down stairs, get in and out of the car and so on. Do you know your true strength?

Kettlebells: The No-Machine Strength Workout

Written by 
Holly St. Lifer
Canyon Ranch Reviewer: 
Brian Wright

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.

Medicine Ball: The No-Machine Strength Workout

Written by 
Holly St. Lifer
Canyon Ranch Reviewer: 
Brian Wright

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.

Men v. Women: How to Strength Train

Written by 
Holly St. Lifer
Canyon Ranch Reviewer: 
Richard Butler, M.S., U.S.P.T.A.

Although there are numerous differences between men’s and women’s bodies, our muscle tissue is actually identical. Still, certain areas of our bodies tend to lack lean muscle mass, depending on our gender, making certain strength exercises better choices for women and others for men.

Resistance Bands: The No-Machine Strength Workout

Written by 
Canyon Ranch Staff
Canyon Ranch Reviewer: 
Darcy Force McCue

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.

The High Intensity Interval Training Advantage

Written by 
Holly St. Lifer
Canyon Ranch Reviewer: 
Darcy Force McCue

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.

Use Your Own Bodyweight to Strength Train

Written by 
Elizabeth Goodman
Canyon Ranch Reviewer: 
Darcy Force McCue

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.

Your 20-Minute Strength Workout

Written by 
Canyon Ranch Staff
Canyon Ranch Reviewer: 
Brian Wright

Ever wonder if it’s worth getting into your gym clothes when you only have 20 minutes to spare? It is! We’ve rounded up a set of strength exercises—almost all of which don’t require equipment—that you can do at the gym, at home or even in your office.