Shake Up Your Foundation-  Fitness Pad Cable Work Out

Shake Up Your Foundation- Fitness Pad Cable Work Out

Get the most out of your multi-directional cable system by introducing an unstable foundation.  Not only can you do every movement with this single piece of equipment, you can add new levels of challenges with simple additions.  If you’re looking for a quick, total body workout, keep this routine handy.  Add the fitness pad to create a new dimension to your workout and add a new level of fitness challenge.

The following exercises are a quick and full body workout designed to be done on a multi-directional cable system.  You will be adjusting the arms of the cable system up, down or inward appropriate to the movement. Make sure you are comfortable with each movement before adding the fitness pad.

Complete one time through: 1 set each; 10-15 reps.  Repeat if you want a longer workout.

Standing Chest Press

  • Get the machine ready for your chest press by adjusting the cable arms, face away from the machine, standing on the ground with the fitness pad in front of you.
  • Before stepping onto the pad, lift the weight stack by doing a press to get the cables in front of your body, pecs fully contracted and stabilize the spine.
  • While in the contracted position, step up onto the fitness pad with one or both feet in a wide stance, soft knees and your body leaning slightly forward.
  • Engage the core to keep the body strong and stabilized.
  • When you feel stable, begin your chest presses.
  • Finish in the contacted position, step off the pad and then lower the weight stack.

Standing Row

  • Get ready for your standing row by standing on the ground facing the machine with the fitness pad in front of you.
  • Bring your arms close to your body to lift the weight stack
  • Step up on the fit pad and stabilize the body.
  • When you feel balanced, begin your rows.
  • Let your arms relax out to an extended position and begin your row.
  • End in the contracted position, step off the pad and let down the weight stack.

Shoulder Raise

  • Get ready for your shoulder raises by standing on the ground facing away from the machine, straddling the fitness pad so you stay close to the machine.
  • Bring your arms close to your body.
  • Step up on the fit pad with one foot or both in a wide stance with soft knees, slightly leaning forward.
  • Stabilize your body by activating your core and your shoulders by slightly drawing your shoulder blades down your back.
  • Let your arms relax down to an extended position and begin your shoulder raises.
  • End in the relaxed position and step off the pad to the side to lower the weight stack.

“Y” Shoulder Raise

  • Get ready for your “Y” position shoulder raises by standing on the ground facing the machine, crossing the cables in front of you. Straddle the fitness pad so you stay close to the machine.
  • With your arms down and chest up, step up on the fit pad in a wide stance with soft knees, slightly leaning forward.
  • Stabilize your body by activating your core and keeping your chest up, shoulder blades down.
  • Let your arms relax down in front of your body without letting your chest drop or shoulders roll forward. Park your shoulder blades to stabilize.
  • Begin your shoulder raise up to a “Y” position. Keep the arms soft without bending the elbows too much.
  • End in the relaxed position to step off the pad.

Sword Draw- Single Arm

  • Follow the directions for the “Y” position shoulder raise but do one arm at a time.
  • Visualize your arm coming across the body “drawing a sword” diagonally across the body.
  • Get ready for your “Y” position shoulder raises by standing on the ground facing the machine, crossing one cable in front of you. Straddle the fitness pad so you stay close to the machine.
  • With your arm down and chest up, step up on the fit pad in a wide stance with soft knees, slightly leaning forward.
  • Stabilize your body by activating your core and keeping your chest up.
  • Let your arm relax down in front of your body without letting your chest drop or shoulders roll forward. Park your shoulder blades to stabilize.
  • Begin your shoulder raise up to a “Y” position without bending the elbow too much.
  • End in the relaxed position to step off the pad.
  • Repeat on the other side.

Standing Chest Fly

  • Get ready for your chest fly by facing away from the machine, standing on the ground with the fitness pad in front of you.
  • Before stepping onto the pad, lift the weight stack by doing a press to get the cables in front of the body, pecs fully contracted and stabilize the spine.
  • While in the contracted position, step up onto the fitness pad with one or both feet in a wide stance, soft knees and your body leaning slightly forward.
  • Engage the core to keep the body strong and stabilized.
  • When you feel stable, begin your chest fly.
  • Finish in the contacted position, bring your arms close to your chest and step off the pad to lower the weight stack.

Standing Lat Pull

  • Get ready for your standing lat pull by standing on the ground facing the machine with the fitness pad in front of you.
  • Bring your elbows down and close to your body to lift the weight stack.
  • Step up on the fit pad and stabilize the body.
  • Let your arms relax out to an extended position and begin your lat pull.
  • End in the relaxed position but keep tension on the cables to step off the pad and let down the weight stack.

Squat to Shoulder Raise

  • Get ready for your squats with a shoulder raise by standing on the ground facing away from the machine, straddling the fitness pad so you stay close to the machine.
  • Bring your arms up into the shoulder raise position so your hands face out next to your ears. Keep them close to your body while getting into position.
  • Step up on the fit pad with one foot or both in a wide stance with soft knees.
  • Keep your body leaning forward to keep your arms safe.
  • Stabilize your body by activating your core.
  • Begin your squat when you feel balanced. Complete the squat then do the shoulder raise.
  • Return to the beginning shoulder raise position to step back off the pad and lower the weight stack.

Heavy Squats

  • Get ready for your squats by standing on the ground facing the machine, straddling the fitness pad.
  • Use enough weight so you can only complete 10-15 reps.
  • Step up on the fit pad with one foot or both in a wide stance with soft knees.
  • Keep your body leaning backward to balance.
  • Stabilize your body by activating your core.
  • Begin your squat when you feel balanced.
  • Return to the beginning squat position to step back* off the pad and lower the weight stack.

*stepping forward may pull you out of balance too quickly.

 

Top 10 Tips To Get The Most Out Of Your H4LO Pad:

Top 10 Tips To Get The Most Out Of Your H4LO Pad:

Start on the ground. Make sure you are comfortable with each movement on the ground before adding a fitness pad.

Start in the contracted position. Before you start your set of exercises, get into a fully contracted position (lift the weight stack by contracting the muscle group you’re about to work). Then step up on to the balance pad and begin your reps.

Stabilize. Engage your core to stabilize the body.

Be intentional. Concentrate on contracting the intended muscle / muscle group without smaller muscles trying to take over.

Stay contracted. Fully contract the muscle you are working though the entire rep.

Relax. Don’t over grip with your hands.

Breathe. Coordinate your breathing with the contractions in a rhythmical pace.

Put it into the muscle. Relax everything except the muscle being worked, including your facial expressions and grip. Direct all your energy into the muscle being worked.

Decrease weight. When doing functional movements, it’s not how much weight is moved but how it’s moved that counts. Decrease your weight and focus on the movement rather than focusing on strength.

Modify. Use the pad according to your fitness level. Try stepping up with one leg until you can balance on two. Use a wider stance with a lower center of gravity. And most of all, feel free to be creative and have fun.

The Functional Warm-Up – Foam Rolling, Static Stretching and Dynamic Warm-Up

The Functional Warm-Up – Foam Rolling, Static Stretching and Dynamic Warm-Up

Foam Rolling, Stretching and Dynamic Warm-Up

Preparing your body properly for a training session is very important. Foam rolling and stretching, followed by a comfortable dynamic warm-up is critical to staying injury free, and allowing your body to perform optimally during your workout.

In the last 10 years, we all have seen Foam Rollers of various types in training gyms and fitness centers. Self-massage or self-myofascial release as it is referred to in the fitness profession is the easiest and most economical way you can treat or prevent soft tissue injury, short of going to a massage therapist. Muscle tissue filled with trigger points or knots will not function optimally even after a good warm up. Thus, the reason to practice self-massage using a foam roller.

Using a Foam Roller prior to training will make the muscle tissue more pliable and extensible. The key here is to slowly roll out the muscle areas of the quads, hamstrings, calves, hips, glutes, lats, pecs and back to find the trigger points or tender areas. Rolling out these areas will reduce muscle density and soreness. Once you find a trigger point, spend 45-60 seconds in that area doing short slow rolls over the area until the pain starts to dissipate.

After 5-10 minutes of foam rolling, we then begin the Static Stretch portion of our warm-up. Stretching while your muscle is cold before the dynamic warm-up is now recommended by many top tissue experts. Warm muscles tend to elongate and return to their normal length. Cold muscles actually undergo an increase in length and plastic deformation. Holding the static stretch for approximately 30-45 seconds will optimally elongate the muscle.

I start with my quadriceps first. I perform my first stretch in a stretching cage located in my gym or you can put your leg up on a training table. The key here is to get your heel pressed to your buttocks. If you do not have a cage or training table available to you, use a balance pad or a yoga mat on the floor to put your knee on, on the side you are stretching. Reach behind you and grab the ankle of the leg you are stretching, and pull your heel to your buttocks.

My hamstrings are next. The standing hamstring stretch is easy to do anywhere. Just find a place to put your leg on elevated to about waist level. A training room table, a plyo box or the bars on the inside of a stretching cage. Bend at the waist, grab the back of your calf or ankle and try to touch your nose to your knee and hold that position for 30-45 seconds. Another one l like is standing with feet crossed and legs straight (left over right and then repeat right over left). Bend at the waist and grab your calves or ankles. Slowly pull your nose into your knee and hold for 30-45 seconds, then switch it up (left over right if you first put right over left) for another stretch of 30-45 seconds.

My hips. The Kneeling Hip Flexor Stretch: Extend one leg out in front of you with your foot flat on the floor. Your upper leg and lower leg should be at a 90-degree angle. Use a balance pad or a yoga mat to put your knee on, on the side you are stretching. Press the knee into the balance pad or mat so it stays firmly in place. Slowly rock forward until you feel the stretch in the quadriceps and hip. Hold that stretch for 30-45 seconds. Another effective hip stretch I use as part of my daily routine is the Pigeon Stretch. Bring the heel of your front leg to the pants pocket on your other leg. This will align your hips and allow you to drive them into the floor, accentuating the stretch. Exhale and lay your torso down over the leg in front of you while the leg behind you should remain as straight as possible.
Stretching your calves: Keep your right leg forward, foot flat on the floor, and extend your left leg straight back, placing your heel flat on the floor. Don’t bend your back knee. Lean into the wall until you feel the stretch in the calf of the straight leg. Hold for 30 – 45 seconds and switch sides.

The last part of my warm-up is a dynamic or active stretch. I begin by warming up my quads and lower body. I begin this portion of my warm-up with the bodyweight lunge walk. Take short lunge steps to begin with and gradually increase the length of your stride as you begin to get warm. Do this 10-15 times for each leg.

The next one on my list is called, walking knee to chest. As I walk slowly down the field or track grab one knee at a time and pull to my chest. I like to alternate legs. Do this 10-15 times each side.

Body weight side squats are next to really warm up my quads, glutes, and hamstrings. These I do for 10 reps to each side.

We now move to focusing on our hamstrings. The hamstring kicks is a calisthenics, stretching, and warm-up exercise that primarily targets the hamstrings and to a lesser degree also targets the glutes and outer thighs. Begin walking down the field or track and alternate kicking each leg as high as you can out in front of you trying to touch the outstretched opposite hand. Ex. kick the right leg into the left hand and vice versa. Alternate legs for 10 reps each side.

And finally, I like to finish off my dynamic warm-up with side band walks. I position an exercise band just below both knees and begin to step to the right, followed by the left. I do this for 12-15 reps. I then return taking steps to the left followed by the right for 12-15 reps. This will really do a job on warming up my adductors.

This is my basic dynamic warm up. It takes just 5-10 minutes, but really finishes off a great warm up or pre-hab of foam rolling, static stretching, and active stretching, and really preps my lower body for a good workout, which may include leg strength training such as single leg squats, plyo training such as box jumps, or sprint training. Give this quick 15-20 minute pre-hab warm-up a try and feel the difference in your workouts and your recovery.Foam Rolling, Stretching and Dynamic Warm-Up