A lot of coaches are being told they can’t help people unless they do things like they have always done them. While many will espouse the “good ole days” (not sure when that was but people keep telling me about them), the reality is that fitness for many decades wasn’t formal gyms or tons of equipment. Metal was VERY expensive and we saw fitness in a far more holistic way than we do today. Gymnastics, running, throwing, jumping, rope climbing were just as much a part of fitness as lifting weights or “doing cardio”. That means with the challenges we are all facing today, we should look back at how we can make great workouts without having to rely on tons of different equipment to distract us rather than focusing on good fitness concepts. Here are 3 that are going to make your training so much better and smarter!
#1: Focus on Movement Patterns
The idea of training the body as a whole is not a new one even though it is for most people that workout today. 100 years ago we knew that training the body as a whole was so much more effective in not just building strength, but in great other qualities like coordination, agility, athleticism, and so much more!
Nowadays, we know that focusing on movement patterns (squat, hip hinge, lunge, push, pull, rotation, and locomotion) help our fitness in such better ways. If we were thinking about making sure to hit every muscle, since there are over 650 muscles in the body, how in the world would we hit all of them with the mentality of isolation? You might not care how jacked your multifidus is, but when you realize it is an important muscle in having good core stability and low back health does that change your mind?
The point is that trying to isolate is both inefficient and going against how our body is designed to function. When we focus on movement patterns we hit more muscles and train the body as it is suppose to function, which one sounds better?
View this post on Instagram
I didn’t know how to do it, I was really just guessing. Like probably a lot of young coaches, creating programs that I knew were thoughtful, progressive, and effective was something that I didn’t really feel comfortable with when I began my fitness career. Unlike today, back 25 years ago, information wasn’t nearly as abundant. Now, the challenge is finding trustworthy resources to help guide the next generation in doing better than we did when we began. ___________ That is why my passion lies now in teaching those that really want to make a difference how simple, but also thoughtful, good programming can be to create. First, if we just focus on the 7 foundational human movements (squat, hip hinge, lunge, push, pull, rotation, locomotion) we will be ahead of 95% of the industry that still sees much of the body as a mish mash of parts which couldn’t be further from the truth! ___________ Once we embrace the idea that movement patterns do truly the best job of blending the software (our nervous system) with our hardware (joints, muscles, ligaments, etc.) we are well on our way to actually help! From there, we want to think about how do we position the weight on our body and the stance we take. This starts to teach how we can use weight for more than just a way to stress an exercise, but to teach HOW to create better movement. ___________ Creating specific tension against the weight (as I show in the squat, the side plank, and front loaded good morning) that gives me core stability that allows me to express greater strength and better stability. Having these changes to my stance as well as the load position which brings in the 3 planes of motion we often neglect. Why? Because what muscle do we use when we have to resist force? A LOT of them! __________ As you can see in the last slide, our body is not meant to work in isolation. Training in our #DVRT system doesn’t take away from building muscle, in fact, I’d argue we train way MORE muscles creating programs in this manner. Muscles you didn’t even know existed, but are so powerful for how we move, perform, and gain resiliency. _________ Amazing work @thesandmaven !!!
When you see what Lina Midla shows in demonstrating these movement patterns is there are many progressions in each one. That means we have more variety, but also better direction with our training when we focus on movement patterns and not just muscles.
#2 Think About Holding & Body Position In Your Workouts
One of the best lessons for smarter workouts I got for old time strongmen was how to make a light weight feel like a heavy weight. Again, because old time strength athletes that had way less equipment than we do today were able to develop strength and fitness we would love to have today because they looked for ways to manipulate how heavy or light a weight felt just by our holding and positions.
As the science of the body gave us more information, we found out that these ideas weren’t just about stressing the body more or less, but training important chains of the body that made our workouts smarter and better in every way!
Changing the position of the weight allows us to emphasize not just strength, but stability in all planes of motion as well. Learning how to be strong in all 3 planes makes us more resilient and real world strong!
View this post on Instagram
Minimal Equipment, Full Body Workout 🏋️♂️ With all the new regulations and limited training space coaches need to be smarter to create well rounded programs. This is one of the reasons I fell in love with DVRT many years ago. The biggest advantage of DVRT however is how we use all 7 movement patterns and build strength progressively using all three planes of motion to both resist and produce force. These 5 exercises represent this very idea! #fitnessforlife #functionaltraining #functionalfitness #movementculture #coreworkout #coretraining #ultimatesandbag #menshealth #physiotherapy #sandbag #sandbagtraining #fitspo #mobility #hipmobility #highintensity #fitdad #ukfitness #ukfit #mobilitytraining #movewell #movebetter #trainertip #unconventionaltraining #fitnesscommunity #corestrength #dynamic #ukfitfam #ukfitspo
DVRT Master, Greg Perlaki shows how we apply these principles to the 7 foundational movement patterns to make amazing workouts that give us so much more variety and purpose.
#3 Planes of Motion
It is crazy to me in 2020 that almost all workouts are up and down only. In fact, many coaches fight the idea that only moving up and down is the only way to build strength even though the research shows the OPPOSITE! When we move in different planes of motion or resist different planes of motion (both are very important) we teach our body how to move and perform in smarter ways.
Since our most foundational movements like walking require us navigating all 3 planes of motion, it makes you wonder why people don’t emphasize this more in their workouts. The answer is sadly most don’t know about the planes of motion or their relevancy to building strength and better movement.
View this post on Instagram
The more I do complexes with DVRT Ultimate Sandbag, I get more functional, and I gain more strength in some unique areas of my body. Sprinter Starter Dead Lift TO Clean TO Squat TO Overhead Press (Thrusters) TO Front MAX Lunge. The last part (MAX Lunge is the tricky part of this complex. We feel more comfortable by making reverse lunges because we can win over gravity. But in front lunges gravity is stronger, and it pulls you down now imagine you add extra 70LB, you need to build that strength and core stability to control all. That’s where functional training and functional fitness makes more sense. I did three on my right side, which took me around 30 sec. Then I took 1 min rest, and I did on the left side. Ten on each side. It was brutal. Remember, if you need more rest time, by all means, take more rest time. @ultimatesandbag @joshhenkindvrt @perform_better #ultimatesandbag
DVRT Master, Ara Keshishian, shows a great total body complex that makes our workouts better by teaching us how to resist lateral forces during functional movements.
View this post on Instagram
I believe @megan.the.trainer and I experienced what @coach_dos would call a “dirty thirty.” 30 seconds of work followed by 30 seconds of rest at @fitnesslyingdown today. Seems legit and sounds like a long break, but if you’re putting in the work, thirty seconds is not enough rest 🥵 Thank goodness this is on the low scale of intensity of the #HIIT protocols and only a work capacity session 💦
DVRT Master, Cory Cripe and Megan Berner show a workout focused on movement patterns that teach how to move laterally, produce rotation, resist lateral motion, and resist rotation.
Using smarter training concepts doesn’t make our workouts weak or easy, in fact, a lot of the “old school” coaches don’t like them because it makes them feel so frustrated that all their “basics” haven’t developed the overall fitness they think. That is why we get excited to share these workouts because just a little more thoughtfulness about how our body functions opens such a bigger world of success!