Monday, April 5, 2010

Proper Posture During Cardio

Have you ever seen (or maybe you’ve done it yourself) the people on the big revolving stairs called the Step Mill, hunched over, hugging the machine for dear life, and letting their buns hang out way behind them?

Have you ever seen the people on the little step machine called the Stair Stepper with their hands turned around behind them constantly holding up their body weight and when the turn the page of their magazine they start thudding on the floor?

Have you ever seen the people on a super high incline treadmill walking up the biggest hill ever created on a machine holding on with white knuckle grip and leaning back with all their weight holding on to the machine through their extended arms?

Have you ever seen (or maybe you’ve done it yourself) the people on the elliptical sprinting away with their hips way out behind them and their head right up in the control screen?

Well I’m here to tell you a few things about getting a good, safe, and result filled workout out of your “cardio time.” First off if you have decided to turn up the resistance or the speed and that results in you changing your posture then it’s too hard for you. If you have made the cardio exercise harder by increasing the resistance and all of a sudden you are getting an arm workout (from holding up your body weight) instead of the intended leg workout then it’s too hard for you. If you don’t walk up stairs normally by pulling your body weight up by the hand rails and bending over so that your head is around your hip height (think The Hunch Back of Notre Dame) then why on earth would you do that while you exercise?

By keeping good posture we not only work our core muscles but we also allow the best oxygen uptake into our lungs. We also help use are body in a real life fashion so that you can be stronger applying those same movements to the real world. In addition, keeping good posture also keeps us from causing injuries, the more out of align our bodies are while being stressed (with resistance or with speed) the more chance you will have to pull a muscle, cause joint inflammation, and or create lack of flexibility.

While it might be tempting to go faster than the person next to you on the machines or to turn up the resistance so you sweat a little more, if you can’t do it correctly you are FAR better off doing it at a slower pace or lower resistance. Make sure you are getting full benefit out of your cardio workouts, and that starts with good posture!

Don’t be that person!

Written by Adriana Brown
Personal Fitness Trainer, Seattle Athletic Club Downtown

No comments:

Post a Comment