Monthly Archives: February 2012

Leap Year Leg Circuit

Happy Leap Day!

In honor of the day that only comes around every four years, we have put together a few of our favorite leg workouts for one killer circuit! Perform the following moves as a circuit resting about 2 minutes before you repeat 2 more times. You should be able to do 12-15 reps per exercise. Circuit workouts are geared towards burning fat while building muscle so keep that heart rate up!

Standing Body Bar Split Jump

Stand with your knees slightly bent, gently holding a 6- to 9-pound Body Bar at the back of your neck. Drop your hips and jump slightly so that your right leg lands about 3 feet in front of your left leg. Repeat with the left leg. Start slowly and don’t sink all the way into a lunge.

Standing Body Bar Split Jump

Standing Body Bar Split Jump

Sumo Squat and Leg Raise

Works core, hips, glutes, hamstrings and quads
Grab a 9lb to 15lb Body Bar with your hands wider than shoulder-width apart. Stand just over half a metre to the right of a 30cm-high step or bench. Position the bar across your shoulder blades. Step onto the bench with your left foot, then squat until your thighs are nearly parallel to the floor (A). Stand up, straightening your left leg as you lift your right leg straight out to the side (B). Balance on your left leg for one second, then return to start. Do 12 to 15 reps then repeat on the other side. That’s one set.

Sumo Squat and Leg Raise

Sumo Squat and Leg Raise



Elvis Plie

Works core, hips, glutes, hamstrings, quads and calves
Grab a 9lb to 15lb Body Bar with your hands wider than shoulder-width apart. Rest the bar across your shoulder blades and position your legs wider than shoulder-width apart with your toes turned out. Squat until your thighs are parallel to the floor (A). Rotate your entire body 90 degrees to the left (B). Return to centre, stand and squat again, this time rotating to the right. That’s one rep.
Trainer tip: Contract your glutes and look straight ahead to maintain your balance..

Elvis Plie

Elvis Plie



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Body Bar’s Monday Move : Shoulders and Legs with Joshua Holland

This week’s Monday Move is brought to you by Joshua Holland, our creative trainer of the month!

Exercises that incorporate more than one muscle group can really get your heart rate up.  This results in leaner muscle while burning more fat.  When performing this exercise, remember to sit back on your heels rather than putting your weight on the balls of your feet.  It helps to think about lifting your toes off the ground.  Keeping your core strong will also help you to perform the perfect squat.

Have fun and keep that heart rate up!

Click Here or on the picture below for Joshua Holland’s video!

The Key to Your Heart

Not only does February host the holiday of love, Valentine’s Day, but February also marks the month for National Heart Health Awareness.  Here are some ideas to keep your heart healthy for years to come!

NUTRITION

A box of chocolates this Valentine’s Day may be key for a long-lasting, healthy relationship… and heart, according to a systematic review and meta-analysis just published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

The study pooled data from 42 randomized controlled trials that included 1,297 subjects and found consistent short- and long-term cardiovascular benefits from intake of chocolate, cocoa, or cocoa flavanols—the antioxidant components of chocolate. Chocolate eating was associated with better toned blood vessels, blood flow, and maintenance of blood pressure.

Additionally, chocolate eating was linked to better insulin sensitivity, a previously unreported finding.The researchers evaluated several effects of cocoa flavanols on cardiovascular risk factors such as blood vessel elasticity (endothelial function), inflammation, and platelet function. Notably, chocolate appeared to help blood vessels become more elastic and flexible regardless of how much eaten per day.For most of us, the quantity of chocolate we eat is not a problem, but as usual, quality is the key. The study results are no reason to over-indulge in chocolate, the authors caution, as the sugar-and-fat calories can quickly add up. Unless the goal is to gain weight, there still needs to be moderation in chocolate-eating habits.

High Quality IsaDelight Plus 

Getting cardiovascular benefits from chocolate can be as simple as eating a couple or more pieces of IsaDelight Plus Dark Chocolates, specially formulated to be rich in antioxidant flavanols yet be low in calories. The chocolates also come packed with metabolism-boosting green tea extract and brain-supporting amino acids to assist in weight management. Healthy snacking never tasted so good!

Feeling bitter about dark chocolate for your Valentine? Give your sweetie a sweeter version with the new IsaDelight Plus Milk Chocolates. Still packed with cocoa flavanols, green tea extract, and amino acids, IsaDelight Plus Milk Chocolates offer a delicious, antioxidant-rich alternative.

For chocolate lovers, the additional evidence confirming cocoa’s heart-health benefits is great news. However, note that chocolate will not undo years of inactivity and a poor diet. Yet it can help jump-start the journey towards a healthier heart and overall you, especially when combined with Cleanse Days and Shake Days of an Isagenix system.

Isagenix also offers a full line of products to help with Heart Health.  The Heart Health Pak delivers the right kind of nutrition so we can continue to do what we love.

Reference : Hooper L et al. effects of chocolate, cocoa, and flavan-3-ols on cardiovascular health: a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized trials. Am J Clin Nutr 2012; doi: 10.3945/ajcn.111.023457.

EXERCISE

According to Jennifer Mieres, M.D., American Heart Association (AHA), “to get heart-healthy benefits, you need to get your heart rate up” there are dozens of activities you can do to help your heart.  The more you exercise, the healthier your heart will be.   Doctors suggest that strength training, stretching and aerobic exercises will increase your health and decrease your symptoms of heart problems.  Www.Heart.com presents 10 ways to keep your heart healthy:

  1. Aerobic exercises done 30 minutes a day is excellent for increasing your heart rate. Climbing the stairs, a brisk walk, orbital exercise machine or treadmill, anything to get your heart rate up.
  2. Any moderate-intensity exercise like swimming, jogging, Pilates and yoga is good. Exercising your heart muscle means exercising your body. You don’t need a gym, just a bit of motivation and a good pair of walking shoes.
  3. If you “don’t have time” then fit shorter but more frequent periods of time, like 5-10 minutes several times a day throughout your day. Take the stairs, park your car further away from the door, and definitely count in those house chores such as mowing the lawn, vacuuming, or a short brisk walk around the block at lunch or for a break.
  4. If you already do a vigorous aerobic routine or enrolled in an exercise class, then three days a week for 20 minutes a day is good.
  5. For adults that are 65 and older or anyone with chronic conditions or limited mobility, you need the same amount of exercise as younger people – the activity can be less intense. Use good judgment and follow your doctor’s advice. See tip #1 and plan to gradually increase activities.
  6. Strength training is a great complement to aerobic training and helps to prevent age-related bone and muscle-mass losses. Keep in mind that strength training doesn’t increase heart rate but does increase stamina. Use it to target areas where muscle-tone is needed and don’t forget the other muscle groups.
  7. With any plan, start strength training slowly and build up to heavier weights and repetitions especially if you are new or out of shape. The old adage “no pain, no gain” is more often inappropriate and can be dangerous.
  8. Practice balance exercises to help prevent falls and injuries. Balance techniques are used frequently as exercises in yoga or more simple forms of balancing exercises such as walking heal-to-toe, standing on one foot, or standing up and sitting down without using your hands.
  9. Stretching exercises done twice a week helps keep flexibility, which is very important. Consider 10 minutes of stretching twice a week to improve your flexibility

Exercise Routines

Below are some of our favorite exercises with a Mini Body Bar that will get your heart rate going, stretch you out and engage your muscles.  A special thank you to Pilates on Fifth for the great videos!

So this Valentine’s Day, eat your chocolate, enjoy some exercises with your loved ones, and keep your heart healthy for years to come!

Don’t have a Mini Body Bar? All Body Bar products are 25% off this week (February 14th-17th 2012).

Use code bbvds-12 at checkout.  Click Here for more information.

Training the Proprioceptors to achieve Maximum Functional Performance of the Athlete by using DYNAMIC INERTIAL RESISTANCE Exercises with the Body Bar FLEX®

The body processes information from a variety of stimuli.  Proprioception is the automatic sensing mechanism in the body that sends messages throughout the central nervous system.  Proprioceptors are specialized sensory receptors found in muscles, tendons, joints, and the inner ear which enable the body to process the stimuli and turn that information into action.

These receptors relay information about motion or position, and make us aware of our body position and movement.  While unconscious initially, proprioception can be enhanced with training.  By focusing on the improvement of these specialized sensory receptors for specific athletic movement (e.g. throwing a football, swinging a baseball bat, shooting a basketball, or performing the golf swing, etc.), the athlete increases and improves the strength, balance, and coordination that are relevant to the performance of that movement.

Oscillatory movements of the Body Bar FLEX (called DYNAMIC INERTIAL RESISTANCE [D.I.R.] Exercise) involve holding the bar in the center –with either one or both hands– and shaking it, causing the ends of the bar to vibrate back-and-forth rapidly.  The hands and arms are held in various positions, offering a remarkably effective way to train the proprioceptors of various muscle groups, and condition them at the same time.

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The short, dynamic, inertia-based movements, coupled with the resistance inherent to the Body Bar FLEX, help bring the muscles to a heightened state of fatigue very quickly.  The design criteria of the bar make it particularly effective for D.I.R. exercises because the vibrations are dampened.  This means that the athlete must continually put more ‘work’ into the shaking process to keep the bar oscillating – in the up-and-down or side-to-side or back-and-forth movement the athlete desires.  According to one fitness professional:  “I get a much quicker ‘burn’ doing this routine!”  So, a D.I.R. workout can be brief, yet highly effective.

Additionally, the vibrating movement of the bar forces the athlete to apply isometric contractions of the torso –the abdominals, core, and lower back– and even the legs.  Isometrically challenging the torso and legs to remain relatively stable, in combination with the very rapid concentric and eccentric contractions of the muscles in response to the movements of the oscillating bar, aids in balance, enhances strength in other muscle groups, and improves quickness and coordination.

The science supports that oscillatory exercise enhances the performance of an athlete by training the sensory receptors located in the muscles and tendons – the proprioceptors.  Neuromuscular efficiency is achieved by improving the timing, efficiency, and speed of muscle contractions:  more effectively activating the right muscles at the right time.  The athlete shakes the Body Bar FLEX in a manner mimicking the movement in a particular sport.  This training targets specific multi-muscle movements necessary for shooting a basketball, throwing a baseball or football, swinging a golf club, etc., resulting in those movements being executed in a more controlled, effective, and efficient manner.

The Body Bar FLEX is an inexpensive and versatile device which can be used to gain the benefits of D.I.R. exercises.  Simple and effective drills, performed several times per week, will improve muscle strength and tone, balance, quickness, and coordination.  Incorporating D.I.R. training into the strength and conditioning program of the athlete will ensure performance at the peak of the athlete’s capabilities.

Visit www.bodybar.com/Body-Bar-Store/Body-Bar-Flex to purchase the Body Bar FLEX as well as to access the drills specific to DYNAMIC INERTIAL RESISTANCE.  Or call 800-500-2030.

Body Bar’s Monday Move : Abs & Shoulders

The Body Bar FLEX is one versatile training tool!  Joshua Holland provides us with this great exercise that will target your shoulders and abs!

Enjoy!

For more information about Joshua Holland visit http://www.joshuajholland.com and Josh’s company www.zoomtionfitness.com

Got an exercise you want to share?  Or maybe you need some exercises to target a certain muscle group.  Contact us and we’ll post it on our blog! 

Creative Training with Celebrity Trainer Joshua Holland

Joshua Holland is an accomplished, certified, celebrity fitness expert with a wide range of experience in athletics.  He played 4 years of collegiate basketball, 2 years of professional basketball overseas, and has earned a 2nd degree black belt.  He has used his personal athletic skills to help train superstars like Madonna and has helped many people meet their fitness goals, push themselves to new limits, and just feel better overall.

Body Bar was fortunate to come across Josh’s Body Bar videos.  The exercises he provides with the Body Bar are fun, versatile and very challenging.  We were excited to have Josh try out the Body Bar Flex especially after seeing how versatile he could be with the Original Body Bar.  Below, Josh reviews the Body Bar and Body Bar FLEX.  We also included a great full body circuit workout Josh created using the Body Bar FLEX.

“There are two key components in fitness that really stand out to me – Variety and Excitability. My outgoing personality and inquisitive nature constantly force me to search for the coolest training devices and workout methods. Throughout my quest last year, I came across a company that has a simple, yet very effective product – Body Bar (www.bodybar.com)

When I train with a particular product, I like to think “outside the box” and discover non-traditional ways to use that product. I quickly began to have fun with the Body Bar. It was like being kid in a candy store. It seemed as if I had no limits on what could be done with it. And then, Body Bar came out with the new Body Bar FLEX!! It’s basically a bendable version of the standard Body Bar. I love the variety in the FLEX because one can utilize the bend resistance and the shake benefits.

Performing the right exercises, it’s easy to see that training with the Body Bar and Body Bar FLEX makes for a great full body workout to develop coordination and a lean, tighter body. In fact, when working with my clients at the Core Club (www.thecoreclub.com), I’ve noticed that many of them are surprised at the intensity and quick benefits the Body Bar FLEX offers.”

Joshua Holland’s Body Bar FLEX Full Body Circuit

Move #1 : Back & Shoulders

Move #2 : Back, Shoulder, Triceps & Biceps

Move #3 : Abs

Move #4: Obliques

Move #5 : Chest & Balance

Move #6: Chest

Note: Josh is really strong and only using a 20lb Flex for this circuit.  Please make sure you DO NOT flex your Body Bar Flex past a “U” shape or it may lose its resistance

For more information about products and workouts, visit www.bodybar.com and Josh’s company www.zoomtionfitness.com

Are you a personal trainer who has been using Body Bar or Body Bar FLEX?  Do you have a unique way of using these products?  If so, we want to hear from you!  Email us at info@bodybar.com for more information.