Exercises

How To Perform A Perfect Turkish Get Up Part 2

The Turkish Get-Up (TGU) is among the rare exercises that works on Stability, Mobility and Strength all at the same time.

In our TGU Part 1 video, we covered the first foundational movements of the TGU. In case you missed that crucial first piece, please review that video below:

Now in this second video, “Kettlebell King” James will take you through the full TGU with the usual detailed instructions, and a little “getting down” with some fun music (you’ll have to watch the video to find out what I’m talking about):

Again, this is somewhat of a complex move, but worth the effort to master.

As always, let us know if you have any questions.

How To Perform A Perfect Turkish Get-Up Part 1

The Turkish Get-Up (TGU) is among the rare exercises that works on Stability, Mobility and Strength all at the same time.

It can be performed, in some variation, by most of the general population with great benefit. It can seem a bit complex at first, which is why we chose to break it up into two videos.

Is it worth taking the time to master?

Absolutely!

In this Turkish Get-Up Part 1 video, “Kettlebell King James” demonstrates the proper set up, basic principles, and the first quarter of the movement:

Key elements to keep in mind:

1) This is a tension exercise, so stay tight!

2) Keep the kettlebell or dumbbell directly over your shoulder joint at all times.

3) The first move is more of a “roll” than a crunch.

Spend some time and master this portion of the Turkish Get-Up, and stayed tuned for Part 2.

As always, let us know if you have any questions.

How To Perform A Perfect Kettlebell Swing

The Kettlebell Swing is an exercise that has tremendous potential to build power in your posterior chain (all the muscles on the backside of your body, more or less).

However, it’s a bending pattern done at high speed, and therefore also has a relatively high-risk factor, if you haven’t developed the sufficient strength base or you’re not perfect with the form.

Related:  How To Perform A Perfect Romanian Deadlift

Check out the video below for the nitty-gritty:

In review, a few key points:

  • Work your way up to at least a 70 pound KB for 12 perfect reps of the RDL before attempting the Kettlebell Swing
  • It’s a bending pattern, NOT a squat!
  • Keep the chest high and bend from the waist
  • Keep you low back flat
  • All of the power and momentum is derived from your hips (no arms)

Let us know if you have any questions.

How To Perform A Perfect Romanian Deadlift

The Romanian Deadlift is a fantastic exercise because it:

  • Teaches the often neglected functional bending pattern
  • Strengthens everything from the lower hamstrings up to the spinal erectors
  • Builds a nice butt (if you’re into that sort of stuff)

However, like with most bigger lifts, there is also a risk involved if your form isn’t perfect.

The Romanian Deadlift, done properly, will create a strong posterior chain, and help to bullet-proof your back from injury.

Done with poor form, like the rounded low back of the adorable toddler in the headline photo… say hello to a disc herniation.

Todays video covers the finer points of mastering this exercise and reaping all the benefits without the risks.

As usual, if you have any questions, please leave them in the comments sections below.

Next weeks video will be a power progression of the bending pattern –  The Kettlebell Swing. So stay tuned!

How To Perform The Power Plank Exercise

Today we’d like to introduce you to the Power Plank Exercise.

The Plank exercise has been a fitness industry standard for decades now, and for good reason.  It is a tremendous exercise for developing stability and strength endurance in the core and shoulder complex.

Traditionally, planks are progressed either by making the exercise less stable (lifting a foot or elbow off the floor) or simply increasing the time the plank is held.

This has led some people and coaches to hold planks for 8 minutes or more per set.

This begs the questions about how much strength endurance is actually needed for these muscle groups, and if there are any potential downsides to these extended sets.

In brief, we feel that few people need that much endurance in that particular position, and that there is potential strain on the muscles, ligaments and tendons of the shoulder.

Enter The Power (or High Intensity) Plank

We’ve got to give credit for this concept to Pavel Tsatsouline and his Strong First crew.  This version is commonly referred to as The RKC Plank.

The general idea is to train the Power Plank Exercise with full contraction of your entire body.  The more you put into this exercise, the more you’ll get out of it.

Check out the video below, and then the key bullet points that follow:

Key Tips:

  • Full contraction of all muscles in your body
  • Squeeze glutes, and tuck them under slightly
  • Drive your elbows into the floor, and towards your toes
  • Drive your toes into the floor and upwards toward your elbows
  • Put a small ball or foam roller between your legs just above your knees – squeeze hard
  • Perform 4-6 sets of 10s on/20s off

Try out the Power Plank Exercise and let us know if you love it (or not) 😉

Lower Body Foam Roller Routine

FRLow

In todays video you’ll get an overview of a lower body foam roller routine.

Self-Myofascial Release (SMFR) has gained widespread popularity in the last 5 years or so.  We’ve been using these techniques here at HF for the past 15 years, with great success.

We’ll cover how to use a foam roller and some other tools to loosen up the muscle tissues of your Quads, Hamstrings, Glutes, IT Band and Calves.

These techniques can be used before or after a strength training session, as well as with running or other metabolic work.

So grab a foam roller and a tennis/LAX Ball and roll along with me.

If you have any questions about this lower body foam roller routine, then leave a comment in the section below.

How To Perform Perfect Push Ups

The Push Up is the King of all horizontal pushing movements, and a standard exercise here at The Human Form.

Baring orthopedic injury, EVERYONE can perform some version of the push up.

In the short instructional video below, Coach James demonstrates the details of the perfect push up form, as well as numerous variations to appropriately challenge the newbie to the seasoned veteran.

The key to injury-free training is to pay strict attention to exercise form, and the push up is no exception.

Test and see which version you can perform with perfect form, and then challenge yourself.

Fast And Effective Hotel Room Workout

What should you do to maintain your hard-earned fitness levels while traveling and stuck in a hotel?

Is there such a thing as a hotel room workout?

We get questions like this all the time.

To be honest, there could be a solid argument made for actually taking a break from working out every now and then.

That is, if you’ve been consistent with your fitness and nutrition plan for a couple of months, your body might welcome a reprieve while you’re traveling.  And you might be surprised to find that you return to the gym feeling stronger than before you left.

That being said, in todays video we’ll demonstrate several simple (but effective) exercises that would constitute a killer hotel room workout.

If you have any questions about any of the exercises presented above, just post your inquiry in the comment section below and we’ll get you fixed up.

The Best Posture Exercise

So, here at HFF we are obsessed with posture.  It’s a borderline fetish. We admit it.

You may  be wondering why, like “What’s the big deal?”.

Fair enough, here’s the short answer:

Proper posture will enable you to feel better, look better, breath better and perform better at everything (except maybe if you’re a contortionist).

For part of the longer answer, see our previous post On Being A Posture Snob Part 1

In todays instructional video you’ll learn how to perform what we believe to be the best posture exercise on the planet.  Of course, there are many other worthy exercises that improve posture, but The Prone Cobra will do wonders for you.

In review:

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Chasing Fatigue And MED


When many people start on a new health and fitness program, they approach it as an all-or-nothing endeavor.  Because you might have been in a “nothing” phase for awhile, the tendency can be to swing the pendulum over to the “all” side of the equation.

First, let me say that all the coaches here at HFF certainly commend the enthusiasm and willingness to work hard toward your new goals.

However, the “shadow side” for many of you can be a Obsessive-Compulsive attitude towards working out and nutrition, along with other aspects of the journey.  That mindset and the level of activity (physical and mental) it generates is usually counterproductive to your specific goals, such as weight loss or completing your first marathon, as well as to your overall, long-term health.

Put simply, more is NOT always better, and can actually create the exact opposite of the results that you’re seeking.

Minimum Effective Dose (MED)

The term Minimum Effective Dose (MED) refers to the idea of only doing the amount of work (in regards to training, nutrition, supplementation etc.) that will trigger the desired results.

In terms of strength training, keep in mind that you’re actually doing damage to your muscle tissues. This is on purpose, of course, in order to force the adaptation response i.e. getting stronger, in preparation for the next anticipated workout.

This system works beautifully, IF you respect the MED principle.

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Crawling For Fitness… What’s Up With That?

 

Guests visiting our studio are often surprised to see that we crawl around on our large turf area.  We also do rolling and other “odd” movement patterns, which we’ll cover in later blog posts.

Crawling for fitness… so, what’s up with that?

Good question!

No, it’s not because our workouts are so brutal that they can’t walk and are about to throw up.

Silly Rabbit, puking is for the flu… and frat parties, I suppose.

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