Gina Paulhus, CPT and Owner, Home Bodies Fitness Training
As coaches we are always worried about our athlete’s conditioning program. We need to make sure our athletes’ bodies are physically prepared for the demands of gymnastics. When is the last time you thought about if YOUR body is prepared to coach?
Think about it–the demands include: spotting, moving mats (hopefully you have trained your kids to move the mats!!), long hours on your feet and with your body in less than ideal positions. Coaches have a dominant side which can throw the body out of whack over time. Then there is the stamina required of being the only coach at a meet with kids in four separate squads…
Here are 5 simple tips you can use when thinking about your own workout. You ARE working out, RIGHT??
1. For strength training, choose dumbbells over machines and barbells.
Dumbbells prevent your stronger side from ‘taking over’ developing muscular balance in the body. A balanced body is less prone to injury.
2. Favor ‘interval training’ over steady cardio.
Interval training, where you vary your pace within a workout (such as jog, sprint, alternating, or jog, walk alternating) is more similar to the demands of your job. It is also more effective in helping with weight control. 20 minutes of intervals is worth 60 minutes of steady cardio.
3. Do some core.
I bet you know a billion core exercises for your gymnasts. Pick two for abdominals, two for your sides, and two for your back.
4. Work out before work.
You will not be able to put much into your training after a long day at the gym. If you have kids, try hitting the gym right after dropping them off at school. Don’t go home, you will find something else to do!
5. Stretch tight areas as priority.
Who has time to stretch for an hour? But everyone can find five to ten minutes to stretch your tightest areas. Hamstrings, hip flexors, chest, and back are typical culprits.