We always think first of strength as the goal of personal training. Curls for biceps, deadlifts for legs, forearm planks for core, … Whether we are trying to lose weight or gain weight, we still want to gain strength. We want our bodies to look good. Prominent pectorals, flat abdominals, fence-post legs.
Look at any website and you will see the five components of health-related fitness: cardiovascular endurance, muscular strength, muscular endurance, flexibility, and body composition (muscles, fat, skin, bones, organs). Cardio and flexibility are there. But one is missing, isn’t it? Balance. Strength, flexibility, and balance. All three are necessary for healthy and happy living.
So what about balance? You need it every day, all day. How about standing on your toes to reach a top shelf? Climbing the steps on a moving escalator? Navigating an icy sidewalk in the winter? Standing in the one-legged palm tree pose in a yoga class? As we get older, our balance tends to weaken, especially if we lose musculoskeletal functioning. Is balance an inherent skill – you have it or you don’t? – or a learned ability? It is some of both. That is why Bench Gym Personal Training program located in Washington DC has a role to play.
Bench Gym Personal Trainer will design a Personal training program that can incorporate flexibility and balance into an hour’s routine. How about the slider lunge – from a standing start, weights in each hand (just to make it harder), right leg slides back with knee near to the floor, left leg bends. Then lift and return to standing. It builds strength in the left leg, but it trains for balance, too. Repeat with the other leg sliding back. Then there is the infamous Bosu Ball, right-side upstand on it with one leg and raise the other leg and curl weights. Or put the Bosu Ball upside-down - jump onto it and squat. Strength and balance both.
We need to include balance exercises and not just strength training in our personal training sessions. We can minimize the risk of falling and protect ourselves from injuries. Maybe we should add it to the list of the health-related components of fitness that we see in websites?
By: Jon Ponce- Personal Trainer/Fitness Expert, Bench Gym Personal Training, Washington DC
Stan Nollen, Emer-Professor, Georgetown University- Blog Contributor/Fitness Enthusiast