Saturday, July 11, 2020

Fitness Exercises – Stretching

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Fitness Exercises - Stretching

All about Stretching

Stretching is an exercise designed to extend the limbs and muscles to their full extent. When you stretch, you expand your muscles and limbs by lengthening or widening. Stretching is essential to overall fitness.

Regular stretching can help increase and retain your flexibility and a good range of motion when you grow old, not only for exercising but for your daily activities as well. Flexibility exercises, such as bending and twisting movements cut the risk of injury from strenuous exercise and lessen muscle soreness. Stretching also has postural benefits. Even so, the key to a healthy and natural posture is a balance of strength and flexibility between opposing muscle groups.

Types of Stretching

Although there are various types of stretching, the two basic types of stretches are the ballistic stretch and the static stretch. It’s essential to combine both styles.

Neck and Shoulder Stretches

The neck and shoulders accumulate a lot of daily stress. This section contains instructions on how to stretch your neck and shoulder muscles properly to avoid the accumulation of tension.

Chest and Arm Stretches Chest and Arm Stretches

The chest is another area that can get tight due to stress. Prevent muscle tension by performing simple chest and arm stretches.

Back Stretches Back Stretches

The back accumulates tension more than any other part of the body. Always stretch your back after exercise. Looking for instructions on how to do basic back stretches? Read here for more information.

Leg Stretches Leg Stretches

Legs also benefit from daily stretching, especially if you’re a runner. Target the most important leg muscles such as the hip flexor with simple stretches. Find the instructions in this section.

Stretching Sequences Stretching Sequences

This section has easy-to-follow stretching routines for the whole body. Relax and improve your flexibility. As you get better, feel free to increase the time you hold a particular stretch. Make it challenging, not painful.

How to Include Stretching into Your Workout

The two basic types of stretches – the ballistic stretch and the static stretch – are essential in your warm-up and cool-down routine. Combine stretching, a strength training routine, and cardio intervals for best fitness results.

Always stretch your whole body. Don’t skip certain muscle groups. If your workout or the sport you play focus on or use a specific muscle group, perform additional stretches for that body part.

Fitness Training with Weights on a Gym Machine

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Fitness Training with Weights on a Gym Machine

The primary advantage of weight training equipment is that they are comparatively safe and easy to use. Experts often advise new exercisers, who are starting on their first strength-training program, to start with machines rather than free weights. This is because in many ways, machines dictate the exercise. Also, by the guiding movement, machines automatically initiate proper form and help prevent injury. Before you begin each exercise on the machine, be sure to adjust the seat to your height and the weight stack to your fitness program. The following are the ten most common weight training routines which you could do:

Leg Curl 
Lying position

  1. Lie face down and hook your ankles behind a padded bar.
  2. Press your hips down and bend your knees to bring your heels toward your buttocks.
  3. Straighten your legs to return to the starting position.

Sitting position

  1. Sit and hook your ankles behind a padded bar.
  2. Lift your lower legs until they are parallel to the floor.
  3. Bend your legs to the starting position.

Leg Press 

  1. Lie on your back with your knees bent.
  2. Rest your feet against a pad.
  3. Push your legs up and forward, but stop a few degrees short of the straightest possible extension.
  4. Bend your knees to return to the starting position.
  5. Fitness Training with Weights on a Gym Machine

Triceps Press 

  1. Sit and clutch the handles at your sides with your elbows bent.
  2. Straighten your arms and press downward and back.
  3. Bend your elbows and return to the starting position.

Arm or Biceps Curl 

  1. Sit and place your arms in front of you.
  2. Clutch the handles.
  3. Bending at the elbows, pull them up toward your shoulders.
  4. Straighten your elbows to return to the starting position.

On some machines:

  1. Stand with your arms lowered in front of you.
  2. Clutch the handles.
  3. Bending at the elbows, pull them up toward your chest.
  4. Straighten your elbows to return to the starting position.

Chest FlyChest Fly 

  1. Sit and raise your forearms to chest level.
  2. Place your forearms behind padded panels or clutch padded handles.
  3. Press your forearms together in front of you.
  4. Return to the starting position.

On some machines:

  1. Lie on your back and grasp handles above your chest.
  2. Extend your arms out to your sides.
  3. Bring your hands up above your chest.
  4. Return to the starting position.

Shoulder Press 

  1. Sit and clutch the handles at chest or shoulder level.
  2. Push them straight up.
  3. Lower your arms to the starting position.

Upright Row 

  1. Stand with your arms extended in front of your hips.
  2. Clutch the handles.
  3. Bending and raising the elbows, pull the handles back and up to shoulder level.
  4. Lower your arms to return to the starting position.

Fitness Training with Weights on a Gym Machine

Chest Press 

  1. Sit and clutch the handles in front of you at chest level.
  2. Push the handles away from your body.
  3. Bend your elbows to return to the starting position.

Seated Row 

  1. Sit and bend your legs.
  2. Clutch the handles in front of you.
  3. Bending the elbows, pull the handles back as if rowing a boat.
  4. Return to the starting position.

Lat Pull-down

  1. Sit and clutch the overhead bar.
  2. Leaning back a little, pull the overhead bar down in front of your body to chest level.
  3. The weights will pull your arms upward to return to the starting position.

Whether you prefer working with free weights, weights on gym machines or just with your own body weight, the important thing to do is to start realistically and keep at it – at all costs.

Kids Camp Offers a Fun and Safe Summer Alternative

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Kids Camp Offers a Fun and Safe Summer Alternative

12-Week Kids Camps for All Ages

LifeCenter Plus Health and Fitness Club is offering a variety of summer fun programs for kids ages 3 to 15 starting June 4 and continuing through August 22.

Parents can select from full-day and half-day summer camp options as well as before and after camp care at the Hudson-based premier health and fitness facility.

The 12 weeks of Kids Camps offer:

  • Sports-oriented programs,
  • Action camps and
  • Summer-themed weeks of fun

Kid Camp Themes

Each camp is designed to appeal to different age groups.

With more than 35 different weekly camp programs to choose from, Kids Camps at LifeCenter Plus provides children with a memorable summer and parents with peace of mind and a supervised alternative.

Some of the camp themes available for children aged 7 to 12 include:

  • Golf
  • Arts & Science
  • Outdoor Adventures

For younger children, choose Backyard Fun or Super Hero camp.

Additional Services: After-camp care and counselor-in-training program

The half-day and full-day camp options begin at 9 am. The half-day is until noon and the full-day ends at 3 p.m. Additionally, before and after camp hours care is available for school-aged children. All of the weekly camp options are available to members as well as nonmembers of LifeCenter Plus.

We’ve also developed a new counselor-in-training program specifically for the 13-15 aged students interested in becoming camp counselors and gaining supervision experience, said Jerry Lynch, co-owner of LifeCenter Plus. Students interested in learning supervision and leadership skills can select a camp they would like to attend as an assistant and be partnered with an experienced counselor.

To learn more about the Kids Camps programs available at LifeCenter Plus, go online to www.lifecenterplus.com. The Kids Camps information is under the Kids Klub/Plus tab and includes downloadable descriptions, enrollment, and registration forms.

Anterior Deltoid Stretch – Neck and Shoulder Stretches

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Anterior Deltoid Stretch – Neck and Shoulder Stretches

We always stress the importance of regular stretching: increased flexibility, injury prevention, relaxation for the mind, and the body.

This article is about a simple upper back stretch you must include in your routine.

How to Stretch the Deltoid Muscle

The deltoid muscle consists of three parts:

  • The front (anterior deltoid)
  • The side (lateral deltoid)
  • And the rear (posterior deltoid)

They cover the shoulder cap and allow different movements of the arm to the front and side, as well as rotation to the ear.

Anterior Deltoid Stretch – Neck and Shoulder Stretches

How to Do the Anterior Deltoid Stretch

Strengthen and relax your shoulders by doing the Anterior Deltoid Stretch. Here’s how to do it:

STEP 1: Stand with feet hip-width apart and keep your back straight. Holding by the wrist, take your right arm behind you and gently ease it behind your back.
STEP 2: You should feel the stretch at the front of your shoulder. While doing this, be sure to keep your shoulders straight. Hold for about 8-10 seconds, then repeat on the other arm.

When stress accumulates in the body, it can be the cause of many aches and pains. If you often get

  • A stiff neck
  • Tightness in your jaw
  • Headaches
  • Back pain

be sure to start stretching daily.

Check out our other articles for more full-body and targeted stretches.

Prone Quadriceps Stretch (Leg Stretches)

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Prone Quadriceps Stretch (Leg Stretches)

Quad Stretches: the How and the Why

Many people skip stretching while in fact it shouldn’t be overlooked. Stretching regularly not only improves your flexibility, but it also plays a part in injury prevention.

Quadriceps stretches strengthen your knees. Bear in mind that by keeping your quads strong, you also cut the risk of knee injury from strenuous fitness activities.

Prone Quadriceps Stretch (Leg Stretches)

The quadriceps consist of four muscles located at the front of the upper leg. These muscles are called:

  • Vastus Lateralis
  • Vastus Intermedius
  • Vastus Medialis
  • and Rectus Femoris

They attach at the hip and the knee joint. This makes them responsible for the action of flexing the hip and extending the knee.

Keep these muscles and joints healthy. If you’re a runner, make sure to include additional quadriceps stretches into your routine.

How to Do the Prone Quadriceps Stretch

STEP 1: Lie face-down on your mat. You can place your free hand in between your forehead and the floor to be more comfortable.
STEP 2: Maintaining your hips on the floor, bring your left leg up behind you and hold your foot. Keep your head down and your neck relaxed. Hold for about 10-12 seconds. Repeat on the right leg.

 

Cycling, skiing, and hiking also work these muscles.

Other exercises that target your quadriceps include leg extensions, squats, lunges, and leg presses.

A relaxing stretching session helps release accumulated tension in the body.

For a great full-body or targeted stretching routines, check out more of our articles.