Beginners can perform many important exercises in the gym that will not require them to use any more than their Body weight for resistance. The top four activities are the push-up, split squat, inverted row or horizontal pull up, and the plank. These are all simple exercises that everyone probably knows but don’t use in their program.
The most important part about each of these movements is that they are done with perfect form before you add any weight or make the exercise more challenging.
According to gymjobs4u.co.uk, these four exercises are the most recommended for beginners.
1. The Push-Up
It is an incredible action that should be included in your warm up at the very least. The push up is one of the best ways to allow for excellent shoulder health while building a strong chest and triceps. To do a proper push up you can probably look back to your grade school phys ed days. The first thing to check with a push up is hand position. You can move your hands into a variety of posts to make the push up more difficult. For the regular push up your hands should be right at shoulder width or just a little bit wider and in the up position your hands should be in a direct line under your shoulders.
One of the most important parts of the push-up position is keeping the core tight and not letting your hips or lower back arch or droop. Keep your body in a straight line with your eyes looking down between your hands. From such position, you will lower your entire body in one smooth and controlled motion until your nose is 1-2 inches from the ground. You will then press your body up in the same controlled motion. Your feet during this movement can be spread 12 inches apart, or you may bring them in close together to reduce stability. To make this movement more difficult you may elevate your feet, stagger your hands, do the movement with your hands or feet on a stability ball, do them on one leg, or perform a plyometric push-up.
2. The split squat
It is another beneficial exercise for beginners and even the advanced trainee. This training can be carried out with your body weight, with one foot elevated, with a pair of dumbbells, with a barbell, and many other ways. The number of exercises that can be derived from this simple movement is dependent only on your level of training, comfort with the movement, and creativity.
To perform a proper split squat start with your feet together. From this position step one foot forward as if you were going to carry out a lunge, your feet will now be staggered and approximately two or three feet apart. It is important that both of your feet are pointed straight ahead. If you have a balance issue or a muscle imbalance, you may find this difficult and will have to concentrate on keeping your feet in proper alignment.
After your feet are in the correct position, you should shift your weight to the front foot on to the heel and place your back foot in a position so that your heel is off the ground. From this posture, your front knee should be slightly bent and your upper body upright. You will now drop the back knee down to approximately one inch from the ground in a controlled manner. You should feel the tension in your glutes, quad, and hamstring. You will then proceed to push through the heel of the front foot and raise yourself back to the point of starting without locking out the front leg. You should maintain the slight bend in the front knee. Be careful not to push with the back foot.
3. The inverted row or horizontal pull up
This is yet another exercise that is very crucial in many programs for gym beginners. This exercise is great for shoulder health and upper back strength. You can perform this movement on a set of gymnastics rings, a pair of yoga straps (i.e., the TRX system, Jungle Gym, Blast Straps), or of a regular bar or smith machine (about its only proper use).
You will now begin to pull yourself up to the bar keeping your body in a straight line. You may have to concentrate on bracing your abdominal muscles to maintain a straight position. You will pull your shoulder blades back together and down attempt to touch the bar to your chest. If this movement begins to get difficult, you will want to thrust your hips to gain momentum.
4. The plank
It is gym exercise for beginners that is used to stabilize the core and strengthen the most important abdominal muscles. When done properly and when duly progressed this exercise can help reduce low back pain, increase strength, increase balance, and improve your body’s performance.
To begin this exercise lie face down on the ground, from here, you will place your elbows on the ground under your shoulders. Your hands can be clasped together or set in the field. Once your arms are set, you will raise your hips off the ground and support your body from your elbows and toes. This is meant to keep your body in a straight line while bracing your abs, think of what you would do to brace yourself if someone came up to hit you in the stomach.
You should not let your hips sag or your lower back arch too much. Try to maintain a neutral spine. If you feel pain in your lower back, you are most likely letting your hips drop or lower back arch, and your abs are not strong enough to resist this extension. Rest for a few seconds and continue with your set. If you can hold this position for 90-120 seconds, you will be well on your way to having a healthy low back and a strong core.
If most people would only replace one exercise in their current program that places them in a seated position and use one of these four movements their training programs would be surprisingly more beneficial. In fact, you could only use these four movements and their variations to create an effective program. Just change the reps and a few angles, and you will have instant success.
Start with a program doing two sets of twelve repetitions on day one, three sets of eight repetitions on day two, and two sets of twenty repetitions on day three for an intermediate to beginner level trainee. Keep the rest periods at 60, 30, and 30 seconds for each respective day and perform each movement in a circuit fashion. For the planks only work up to a 120-second hold for each set. If you complete this program for four to six weeks your body will thank you, you will look better, and most importantly you will feel better.
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