If you value your fitness, don’t click away from this post because it looks scary. Trust me, the only way to expand your comfort zone and increase your fitness is to do what scares you. Period. No way around it. So if you want to stick to the same boring gym routine and never push your limits, this post isn’t for you and you might as well leave now. But for the few of you that are willing to try, or at least consider pushing your limits to become the best version of you, keep reading! (*virtual high five*) These moves are guaranteed to intimidate you (at least a little) if you’ve never done them before. Especially if you are an adult. But they also have the potential to seriously boost your fitness and your confidence.
Handstands – Handstands are NOT just for gymnasts or elite athletes. Anyone who is relatively healthy has the ability to work up to and master this exercise. Here are 3 reasons you should consider adding handstands to your routine: (a. They give you crazy shoulder and upper body strength, (b. They are beneficial to your health because they give your spine and heart a break, and (c. They’re just plain cool. Seriously. Anyone who has the courage and strength to support their bodyweight on their hands seems pretty awesome to me. Now don’t be foolish. I’m not saying you should go try a freestanding handstand on one hand at the edge of a cliff. I’m saying it will do your health wonders to start working up to them now. (I’ll be writing about how to work up to a freestanding handstand in my next post.)
Snatch – This is an olympic weightlifting move. It works every muscle in your body, but especially tests the power of your lower body. It can be difficult to gain this skill at first, but once you have it, it is really fun and will really help you gain strength in both your upper and lower body. Make sure you practice with a light weight until you have mastered the technique of this skill, then work up to a heavier snatch. Please don’t let the complexity of this lift intimidate you – I was confused the first few times I tried it, but the more I practice, the more I love this exercise.
Muscle Ups – This exercise can be done on a pullup bar or with gymnastics rings. I personally prefer rings but that is up to you. It basically is a combination of a pullup and a dip in one smooth motion (see the video below). It requires a lot of work to gain this skill, but like the other 2 moves I’m discussing in this post, once you master it, you will have crazy strength gains and a huge boost in your confidence. This move can be a little tricky. Even if you can do pullups and dips, people often have a hard time putting them together into one movement because it requires that you use a different grip (hand placement on the rings or bar) to change from a pullup to a dip. As with any new exercise, stick with it, persevere, work hard, and it will eventually pay off. I am personally working on getting my first ring muscle up. I’ve come a long way and I can’t wait until I can finally do several in a row!
I promise you – if you work hard to master the above 3 exercises, you will NOT be disappointed. You can do it! If you don’t think you can stay motivated to reach those goals on your own, or if you have any questions, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org to see about receiving personalized coaching from me to help you reach your potential.
Disclaimer: Don’t do something crazy right away after reading this post. If you break your back you will never be able to try these exercises again. Start slow and work up to it. I always recommend talking to a professional before attempting any of these exercises.