Playing The Right Music In Your Gym To Motivate

To this point in our history and lives, we are probably well aware of the effect that music can have in our emotions. It has the power of stirring us up or bringing us down.  A bar, for instance, will usually play music that brings about certain feelings of sadness, loneliness, and depression.  This keeps clients asking for more drinks.  You could even say that some subliminal message might be slipped in.

But when it comes to playing the right music on a gym, the choices are vast and there is no need to tap into the subliminal at all.   According to experts, the right type of music being played at a gym can increase endurance by 15%.  Others agree on that there is not really a generic type of music that will cause the same effects on motivation since each person is unique.    Basically, what works for you might not work for others.  This seems to make sense since we do have different musical tastes after all.

However, we can make an attempt to mention what are the effects of certain type of music on motivation and workout and what type of music is best for what type of workout.

Music with repetitive rhythm

For those who are working out their strength (weightlifting, etc.), these type of rhythms with music at 130 beats per minute are said to keep high-intensity.  Rock music is usually a good choice, but on songs that have the aforementioned rhythm beat.  You could also try some loud beat pop music as well.

Soothing music

This genre is usually best for balancing exercises.  Best beats here are around 90-120 per minute.  If there are minimal or no vocals it is even better.  You can try some soul, indie rock, blues, R&B, and soft rock here to create a soothing atmosphere.   It is funny to think that this specific type of music can help during swimming too.  It is great because it helps clear distractions at the pool and have better concentration.  If you are blasting 90 beats per minute at the pool,  make sure to keep it that way.

Upbeat Pop Music

This type fo rhythm usually goes at more than 130 beats  per second.  It is very energetic music, ideal for pumping up those endurance workouts.  Bring here some hard rock, techno, and upbeat pop music to set the tone for endurance exercises.   This kind of music can also prove ideal for cardio.

As expressed before, different types of music may produce different types of response to them.  Find what best suits you at a determined moment of your training.  If you are warming up or actually working out at home, you might want to add an extra motivation by trying vintage record players.  They will add this unique touch of elegance on your space while you exercise.

 

 

 

Tips for Using a Foam Roller

One first thing that you should consider when using a foam roller for the first time is to take it slow and not force your body.  Start with the easiest and less-demanding techniques.  More and more sportsmen and fitness trainers are moving into using a foam roller to recover from knotted muscles or simply to keep muscles worked out and loose.  The purpose of a foam roller is to loosen up the trigger points that contain knots. Here are some useful tips you could put into practice to more effectively use a foam roller:

Work out the muscles that usually bring more pain

As a boxer or MMA fighter, you know that your legs usually take most of the work due to your own body weight.  It is then recommended for you to start on the muscles of your leg.  You can start with a very simple rolling on your calves.  Sit on the floor and place one calf over the roller while placing your other leg on top.  Lift your upper body with your hands and move back and forth slowly.  You can do this same exercise placing your whole body sideways.  Next, you can move on to your IT muscles, the hip flexors, the quads, and the gluteus.  The idea is to place all of your weight over the roller.

Roll over your back

One exercise that you will actually find relaxing is rolling over your back.  The upper back muscles are very important in this line of exercise and rolling them is actually pretty good.  Just hug yourself and place your back over the foam roller.  Rock back and forth on your back and enjoy a great workout time.

It is ok to stop if it is too painful

When it comes to foam rolling, “no pain no gain” is not necessarily true, especially if you are a beginner.  If you feel it hurts too much, you might want to loosen up on the weight a little bit.  If it hurts too much you can actually have an unwanted result.

Locate sore spots

Find them and work them out. You will usually need to rock it a little longer on these spots.  The idea of the foam roller is to actually get rid of the excess fascia in your muscles.  In order to do this, you must add a little pressure on these trigger points.

Use it regularly

You know that constant workout guarantees you staying in shape and always up to challenges.  It is the same with the foam roller.  Add it to your regular exercising routine. This will keep your muscles loose and ready for action.

Find a foam roller that best adapts to your needs

There are many types of foam rollers and it is important that you find the one the best fits your present needs.  To accomplish this, follow the advice of an expert trainer and get the best foam roller.  To get the highest quality foam roller that better ensures a successful work, click here.

 

How Personal Training Can Help You Become a Better MMA Fighter

For those who are MMA enthusiasts and love the thrills of the sport, there are some tips to be considered in order to stay up to the game.  Mixed martial arts is a beautiful fighting style that actually combines other martial arts into exciting combats that include pretty raw live action.  For those of us who have witnessed a real MMA fight (or even if you have not but you can suppose), there is a lot of training involved in MMA.  Becoming a better MMA Fighter involves working out a lot, especially those areas where major disadvantage is detected.

Personal training is very important for an MMA fighter.  A personal trainer will lead you into a better performance in the sport.  Therefore, it is highly suggested for you to get the best personal training there is.  But who can personal training help you become a better MMA fighter?

Better flexibility

As you know, having a great flexibility on legs, hips, and arms is fundamental for a great performance.  A personal trainer is a professional that will be able to target the stiff points and help you work them out to increase flexibility.  During a fight, having ease of movement on your limbs and body is pretty fundamental.  A greater flexibility allows you to move more freely and deliver faster attacks.  This is obviously to your advantage.

This means that you should work those areas where you feel you are somewhat stiff.  Personal training will help you target those points and work them efficiently and without stressing your muscles in excess and unnecessarily.

Greater strength

You need to have strength on pretty much every striated muscle.  Being MMA  a very active sport where you involve the majority of your muscles, it is imperative for you to work out your strength.  As with all workout activities, over-doing your muscles will bring about counterproductive consequences.  If you plan on becoming the best fighter, it is important that you train responsibly.  A personal trainer has the experience and knowledge on what is the right amount of workout for you to develop the necessary strength.

Your body is a machine that provides you with some pretty good advantages.  It also has some limitations and when excess stress is applied to it, it might crash.  These are undesirable results of a non-effective training.  So go and get yourself some targeted, personal training.

Higher endurance

In order to live up to the sport, you must have a high endurance and stamina.  In the middle of the combat, you will submit your muscles to major strain.  You will get hit (unless you are 100% defensive) and these shocks go straight to your muscles.  You need to know how to breathe and how to save energy during the fight.

All the stress your muscles are going through plus all the moving around tends to wear you out.  You need to train your body in order for it to last the greatest amount of time possible.  A personal trainer will provide you with exercises to help you increase your endurance and level up your stamina.

Functional Training: Training with a Tactical Tomahawk

Functional training was originally created to help people undergoing injuries to get back to their normal life. However, health professionals and coaches to adapt the idea of using functional trainings to help anyone in getting the kind of fitness they need to perform their daily activities easier and away from injuries. Functional training is considered a rehabilitation workout which often involves weight bearing activities, targeting abdominal areas, lower back and overall the core strength.

Over the years, functional training has evolved and many physical therapists and coaches are starting to find different ways to achieve the same level of functionality for everyone. Just like using a tactical tomahawk on trainings. It is not something very common, but training with tomahawk is more effective than you think it is.

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The Tactical Tomahawk

You probably wonder how something like a tactical tomahawk would help you achieve the kind of functionality that you need. The history of tomahawk started with the Native Americans. They even used it as a weapon during the Vietnam War. During these days, tomahawks have been widely used for camping and hiking. This tool can be used during emergencies. It is useful for cutting, chopping and even digging. Just like any other tactical devices, tomahawk is considered multifunctional.

Training with Tactical Tomahawk

Then you’re probably wondering, then how can I use an axe to train? Have you heard of the latest thing called tomahawk throwing? Well, tomahawks can be deadly, but many people are now into tomahawk throwing. This activity however requires training and proper knowledge. Tomahawk throwing should be done with precision. And it can be a useful tool for functional trainings. If you are aiming for a good stability and arm strength, then tomahawk throwing is the perfect activity for you. You need to have the proper positioning, proper gripping and the precise way of throwing. And doing this activity regularly will definitely help you to improve physically.

throwing

Fun and Recreation

If you decide to use a tactical tomahawk for training, then you might think that it’s no fun. But that’s absolutely far from the reality. Many tomahawk throwing enthusiasts will testify how exciting and fun it is to hold and throw a tomahawk. It is even a thrilling and a challenging activity. In order to perfect the throwing, you need to learn how to make the right rotation. Making it rotate at least one of twice before it hit the target is your goal. You can try and see how fun tomahawk training is.

Tips for Functional Training

Since functional training has the main purpose of promoting better functionality as well as rehabilitation, you need to consider it a serious deal. You can’t just take it for granted. Unlike any other form of exercise and training, it is about your functionality and how you can live an easy and injury-free life. It is also important that you seek the help of a functional professional or coach. That way, you’ll be able to get the right information and have to perform the kind of training that suits according to your functional needs. Check out a reliable functional training coach today!

How SUP’in can Supplement Your Fitness Regime

Are you looking for an effective yet less stressful way to keep your body fit and healthy? Obviously, there are so many ways for you to achieve the right kind of fitness that you’re aiming for. But it is always about how determined and eager you are. Remember that getting the absolute fitness that you want is a process and it requires constant workouts and physical activities.

For some, doing constant workouts would sound exhausting and very tiring. Some don’t even have the luxury of time to spend. However, there are other fun activities that will help you not only getting the kind of fitness that you want, but still allow you to enjoy in the process.

Fun Fitness Activities to Try

When it comes to getting the fitness that you want, you don’t really have to tire yourself up. There are several fun fitness activities around such as the popular stand-up paddleboarding. With SUP, you’ll be able to do some workouts while enjoying the paddleboarding at the same time. You can also do some other great water sport activities such as surfing and skim boarding which will give you the same fitness and fun adventure.

Stand Up Paddleboarding

If you haven’t tried SUP yet, you probably wonder how it can be a good help for your fitness regime. The way this water sport works is actually the main reason why many fitness enthusiasts would prefer it. SUP can target your core, giving you the strength and the power that you need. Since you will be standing on top of the board, trying to keep your balance while paddling through the water, it also helps you to achieve better posture and great leg strength. Not to forget about it as a low impact exercise. Thus, it works to promote fitness but, doesn’t strain you in the process.

stand up

The Benefits

In would be even more convincing on your part if you know the top benefits of SUP and how it can be a good aid for your overall fitness. Stand-up paddleboarding requires you to exert some effort in keeping your balance and paddling accurately to propel through the water. It may look an easy thing to do, but doing both, balancing and paddling may be hard especially for beginners. The main benefits then are focused on your core strength, muscle building and improving balance over time. The most important thing about SUP is the fun that it provides while you’re doing it. This sport is also for everyone, even kids.

Workout + Fun

You don’t have to get yourself jaded with some hard, boring and tiring workouts. Why not go for a fun workout? It should be a kind of workout that you can do with your family and love one. Just like Stand-up paddleboarding, you’ll get the combination of workout and fun. So you’ll end up getting the body that you want without sacrificing your own happiness. Start making a difference. Check out how you can get started with SUP and experience the kind of workout that’s more exciting and less stressful for you.

 

 

 

Boxing: Avoid Injuries through the Help of a Personal Trainer

gattimayweather-e1330016094937I know it is ironic to say that you can’t have any injury during boxing since it is a contact sport.  And players are at high risk of sustaining cuts, bruises, fractures and the like. The possibilities are even much higher during intensive trainings, where you test your abilities to their limit to gauge whether you are ready for a match or not. However, you can avoid it.

Serious or fatal injuries often occur due to carelessness and ignorance. This does not only happen in boxing, but also in any other sports.  The thing is, there are certain ways you can “avoid” these injuries. You can take the necessary precautions or if you want to be sure about staying safe, avoiding injuries and making the most out of your trainings all at the same time – the best thing you can do is hire a personal trainer!

When hiring a personal trainer, there are a lot you have to consider. More than having a good physical physique, a trainer should have a broad professional experience and substantial qualifications. A brief background check wouldn’t hurt. He must have at least a good foundation of how the human body works. A degree relating to such is good enough. The trainer must be knowledgeable not only about how to help you build your muscles in a healthy way and train you to be a better boxer, but one must also know how to assist you avoid getting severe or serious injuries during your trainings and matches. Hiring a personal trainer can be a little tricky and choosing one can be overwhelming, bear in mind that an ideal personal trainer should not only help you physically, but also helps you with your total well being – Soul Fitness.

Now, going back on how a trainer can help you avoid sustaining injuries in boxing, as previously mentioned, a personal trainer must have a good foundation on how the human body functions biologically, through this, he or she will be able to determine ways on how to avoid injuries. Talking to some of the professional trainers I know, here are what they have to say regarding the matter…

  • Achieve Total Body Fitness

Having a healthy physique doesn’t only let you look good. It is your number one defense in minimizing injuries. Endurance and stamina help you withstand the physical stress during trainings and matches. You’ll be able to think clearly and strategically, and be able to avoid punches, kicks and the like – utmost self defense is very essential in avoiding injuries.

  • Effective Diet Goes a long Way

It is a general fact that food gives us energy. Thus, the right diet gives you the vitality and helps your body heal faster. A boxer’s diet should be high in protein and calcium to give the bones and muscles the aptitude needed for the sport. In addition, having fruits and vegetables helps the body’s cells rejuvenate and renew at a faster. One thing more, drinking lots of water keeps you hydrated at all times, which is very vital in the maintaining biological functions.

  • Take a Break and Rest

Although having an intensive training helps you become a better boxer, having adequate rest is more vital. You may have experience having sharp pain during trainings and matches, it is your body telling you that there is something wrong, and that you need to stop and take a break. Go easy on your body, listen to it. Take a break and have an adequate rest. During these times your muscles will be able to recuperate and recover from any injuries.

  • Wear the Proper Protective Gear at All Times

I hope you are aware that protective gears are manufactured to prevent you from having injuries. So, whether it is light or intensive sparring, always wear your protective gears.

safe

These are only some of the ways to can avoid sustaining injuries. There is a lot more, hire a personal trainer to be sure about everything. Hone your skills, especially your defense. Build a healthy habit and always think clear. Boxing is an exhilarating sport, but you also have to be careful at all times.

What to Expect from a Boxing Workout

Boxing Workouts

boxing_sfts

Most of those who participate in our boxing workouts have little or no previous experience with the sport of boxing. Naturally, many don’t know what to expect, and often times they may not join out of uncertainty, intimidation, or other reasons that can be resolved with some simple information.

At SFTS, we have two main streams for those who want to participate in the boxing workouts: The recreational stream and the competitive stream. We do offer a combination of both, but only after you have participated enough to feel comfortable and you and the trainers can identify specific strengths and areas of improvement for your game.

Recreational Stream

The recreational stream is most popular by numbers. Generally speaking, this is a very similar workout to what the competitive boxers do, but we eliminate the sparring component and focus a little more on fitness rather than fine-tuning technique (we do teach proper technique, but won’t waste your time).

If you want to try this type of workout for a few sessions before committing, we totally understand, especially if you are concerned about wasting money by purchasing your own equipment. Therefore, we suggest using the communal equipment until you have a better sense of your commitment level and what you may prefer in a pair of boxing gloves. Then, once you know what to expect, we suggest purchasing your own pair of boxing gloves. Additionally, some find it handy to purchase there own pieces of workout equipment and bring it with them if it is convenient enough (for both the club and the member). For example, some people bring their own jump ropes or foam rollers, but keep in mind we do have many of each of these available for use.

Competitive Stream

This stream is for those who are interested in boxing competitively. Unless you are transferring from another club, you must reach particular achievements in the recreational stream before you can move on to the competitive stream. These are individually assigned by a trainer during one of your recreational boxing training sessions. Please keep in mind, the competitive stream is a much greater time commitment. We are happy to discuss specifics in person at any time!

Structure of Workout

On the whole, the structure of the workout is similar to circuit training. The workouts typically do NOT incorporate lifting of heavy weights, but instead focus primarily on your own body weight. All muscle groups are targeted during the workout, and it’s surprising at just how exhausting it is.

This could be an example of someone’s workout who is at the recreational level, but has become rather proficient:

Warm-up (3 rounds skipping, light workouts on mat, total about 20 minutes)

3 rounds of shadow boxing

3 rounds on the heavy bag

3 rounds on the double-ended reflex bag

3 rounds on the speed bag

* Either one-on-one work on the focus mitts with a trainer, footwork exercises, or something else involving movement within the boxing ring, will be performed at some point during the workout.

*Initial sessions focus more on technique until you are comfortable with it.

Cool down and stretching

How hard is it, and is it fun?

The workout is definitely challenging. In fact, for the very first session, we usually find the warm-up is a solid workout on its own and a great introduction. It will take your body a few sessions to become used to this sort of workout, but if you stick with it, even for five sessions, you will begin to see improvements to your fitness and your boxing skill level.

This does not mean it will ever become an “easy” workout, and that wouldn’t be the point anyway. We will always attempt to push you to your limits, but will never try to push you beyond them. We find the best results long term come when there is an optimal balance between enjoyment and challenge.

Additionally, the workout isn’t purely individual. You may find a lot of workouts are great to do in a group, or you may just prefer to do it on your own. Often times we will teach technique to two or three people at the same time, and this is a great way to point out common mistakes and help many people improve at once. At the end of the day, although it is a fun and comfortable atmosphere, you will definitely get a workout in!

Why is Self-Defense Important?

Do You Need to Learn Self-Defense?

selfdefenseSelf-defense is like many other things in life. It seems like it could be a waste of time until the one moment when it would really come in handy. However, the main difference between self-defense and those other things in life I mentioned is the fact that self-defense could be the difference between a sketchy run-in and a hospitalization, or worst case, death.

This isn’t a scare tactic. We aren’t just trying to rope people into joining our gym by instilling fear. Rather, we find many people, particularly women, come to us after something happened where they feel they now need to learn self-defense. This is extreely unfortunate, and as happy as we are to help, we would much prefer that self-defense is never necessary.

Isn’t Boxing Enough Self-Defense?

Learning how to box will definitely help with self-defense, but having someone attack you on the street is way different than having a heavy bag swinging slowly in front of you. Of course, having a wealth of experience in multiple fighting domains, for example, boxing and muay thai, will help even further, but this likely isn’t practical. Furthermore, this likely won’t interest someone who is looking to learn self-defense for that sole reason as opposed to taking part in various workouts for the sport and fitness aspect.

Self-Defense Classes

The impracticality of becoming an expert in multiple fighting sports is the main reason we decided to introduce self-defense classes. Most of these are designed for women, but anyone can participate. We also offer more general sessions that may be more applicable to the entire population.

We aren’t trying to say that women can’t stick up for themselves. We’ve seen the pure effort and impressive athleticism of the women at our gym, so we know better than to think that. Simply put, it just seems to be more common that women experience threatening occurrences that require self defense, at least that we have heard of, and we want to help.

Our self-defense classes focus on eliminating the threat as quickly as possible. This doesn’t mean engaging in a 5 minute long altercation with a suspect. The most important part is being able to neutralize the threat to the point where you can run to a location where there is a greater chance you can receive help. Topics often covered include effective strike zones and evasion methods (e.g. how to break free of someone’s grasp).

Summary

At the end of the day, it’s up to you to decide if it is worth it to be proactive and spend some time to learn self-defense. We highly recommend you do so, but how you do this is up to you. The main other thing to keep in mind is that although you may be fit or have knowledge of a particular sport or martial art, it may be beneficial to learn some simply tactics to quickly get out of a tough spot.

Why Should We Care About Fitness?

Health and Fitness

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You have probably heard the term “Health and Fitness” used somewhere before. Although the two words are often lumped together, it is important to recognize that they are not synonymous. The WHO defines health as a state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or deformity. Physical fitness is merely one component of health, albeit an important one that can benefit other components of health as well.

One thing many people don’t realize is that you can achieve extremely beneficial health benefits from exercise well before you experience any drastic changes to your fitness. For example, one of the first things that can happen when you begin an exercise program is a drop in triglyceride levels, which is a good thing for your long term health. This can actually happen so quickly that you won’t even see any fitness benefits at that point, so it can be easy to be unaware of the great health benefits you are gaining from exercise.

Confidence and Happiness

One of the most underrated benefits of improving your physical fitness is a change in mood. It is very common to hear people say how much their confidence, and subsequently their happiness, has increased since committing to an exercise program. There are many reasons for this, some based in biology (i.e. release of specific neurotransmitters), some are due to social changes, and even just a change to a routine can make a big difference.

One reason we like to promote sport-specific exercise is because simply learning a new task can help increase confidence as well. Many people are intimidated by the prospect of going to a gym or similar place where most people are already comfortable with what they are doing, perhaps in better shape, etc. However, we press that everyone has to start from somewhere, and the act of breaking out of your comfort zone and learning something new can have profound effects!

Social Outlet

Another overlooked item is the fact that exercise can be social. Even if it is an individual workout, you may start recognizing people who generally workout around the same time as you, maybe there was a group lesson at one point, or perhaps you’re making the effort to arrange some sort of group exercise. In any case, it’s a great way to meet people while benefiting your health and fitness.

Appearance

We put this at the bottom of the list primarily because we find it can be difficult to stick to a program if the only thing that motivates you is a quick change in appearance. We recommend that you consider this a bonus to an improvement in your health and fitness. Even if weight loss is your goal, focus on the health and fitness and pounds lost, rather than assessing yourself in the mirror. Now, all that being said, we do recognize that an “improved” appearance can help boost confidence. It can also be a rough indicator of fitness, but that’s about it.

Summary

The amount of evidence showing that regular exercise, even in small amounts, can drastically improve health and fitness on multiple fronts is overwhelming. If exercise is a substantial lifestyle change for you, we suggest finding something that you think can be enjoyable, that you can progress with as you learn and improve, and that you can set goals in small steps that are smart and attainable. We hope you consider us to help you achieve your health and fitness goals, but at the end of the day, whatever works for you is the most important.