Thursday, October 9, 2014

Keeping it safe for everyone

As I mentioned in my last post, I like to use circuit training workouts to keep things fresh and entertaining for the kids in my class.

What I didn't mention is that you can modify many of the exercises for use by adolescents. For instance, the Pokemon Master workout..

While children between the ages of 5 and 12 can do most of these, the plank punches, rolls and plank to lunge are a little intense for their young bodies. It's hard to keep them aligned correctly*. Therefore, I modify them.

Plank punches can be modified so that they're done on all fours instead of in the plank position. This way the bodies are more stable and there's less of a chance of them ... face-planting.

The plank rolls can be more problematic... unless you flip them over on their backs. Now you're doing cross-body crunches, which also work the obliques.

Finally, plank into lunge can be modified slightly so that instead of plank into lunge, the kids are moving from a standing position to a lunge. Again, this is more stable and will keep them from falling.

It's good to keep in mind that many adults will require modifications to exercises as well. I know all my adults pretty well, but when we have new adults join the lass, I will ask them if they have any injuries or ailments they are aware of. I have one "wonky" knee that I want to keep from injuring. Therefore I don't do jumping jacks, but I will do calf-raises. High knees would likewise be out for me, so I run instead. And as for the squats, I make sure that instead of my knees going out in front of me, I send my bottom back out (in a chair position, rather than a squat), protecting my knees.

Most modifications can be found online with a little research. It's worth a little research to keep everyone safe.