Build Up Your Strength & Balance
December 20, 2016
Find Your Balance
Balance is a necessary characteristic for all aspects of our lives, but especially in our bodies. To be an athlete, you need both strength and balance.
Christen Jackson, Head Trainer at Burn Boot Camp Mount Juliet and Burn Athlete, is sharing her favorite ways to stay strong. We train like athletes here at Burn Boot Camp, and we encourage you to join us.
Why It Matters
As we age, our bones become dense and our bodies can become weaker. By practicing moves that build strength and balance daily, you’ll prevent aches and pains in the future.
Balance in particular helps you perform all exercises, especially at Burn Boot Camp. Good balance promotes a full range of motion and mobility. Pair balance with strength and you’ve made a match!
For those who have been injured, you’re not doomed to a life of imbalance. Burn Boot Camp knows exactly how to work with injuries to develop the same strengths as everyone else.
Single Leg Balance – This involves standing on one foot while lifting the opposite foot off of the ground. Put your arms straight overhead to engage all of your core and one leg. Move your arms up and down slowly.
To modify up, add a weight or a medicine ball. By lifting a weight overhead up and down, you’ll improve your balance greatly. To go even further, stand on a Bosu ball and continue the movement.
Hint: Perform a few extra reps on your weaker side to increase strength to be fully balanced.
Single Leg Deadlift – Put one foot behind you and have a slight bend in your knees. Holding a kettle bell, go down into a deadlift. As you become stronger, work your way up to having the back leg off of the ground.
Hint: Engage your core with all of these exercises for improved balance.
Bulgarian Split Squat – You’ll need a plyometric box and your body. Stand in front of the box and put your back foot on the top. It will look like an elevated lunge!
Push through the heel on the ground to engage your legs. Don’t forget to tighten your core to stay engaged and balanced!
Bird Dogs – Get into a high plank on the ground. Lift your opposite arm and opposite leg slowly to focus on balance. Holding this position will help you work your way up to switching frequently.
Side Plank – Get into a high plank position and pivot your body to the right. Keep your arm up for extra balance or both feet beside each other.
Switch back and forth from left to right. Keep your belly button tucked in and make sure you’re squeezing your abdominal muscles.
Compound movements are the key to developing strength because it engages several muscle groups. Use 15 lbs. or more to increase your strength effectively.
Hint: If you can lift heavier than the 15 lb. dumbbells, lift heavier. If you can rep 12-15 easily, increase your weight.
Bicep Curl Press – Begin in a bicep-curl position, curl up and push up into a shoulder press. This engages all the muscles in your arm to build that strength
Squat Press – Go into your squat with the weights by your side. Once you’re in a squat position, press up into a shoulder press. The movement should be one fluid movement!
Renegade Rows – Get into a high plank position with your hands on your weights. Lift one weight with your elbow tucked in your side, and then lift the other. Go into a push-up, and do it again!
Hint: Stay within the 12-15 rep range to increase strength.
To incorporate balance and strength, practicing handstands can help greatly. Christen makes her ladies do single-arm handstands!
If you’re starting out, make sure you walk up the wall forward. This means your face should be towards the wall!
For a more advanced move, kick up with your back against the wall. Try to get the balance on one side and lift one arm up and down.
To prevent injury, push through your hands and fingers. By pushing only through your wrists, you can increase your chances of wrist issues in the future!
Check out Christen killing her single-arm handstand at the end of the video. Talk about motivation!
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