Hopefully self-isolation mode has been helpful in crossing off all of the tasks that have been sitting on your to-do list since before Christmas, and you may now be wondering what to do next. Rather than binge watch another Netflix series or clean out your bathroom cupboard (seriously, how many body creams does one need?), now is actually the perfect time to dust off that full length mirror in your closet and refine the basic fitness moves that are prominent in most of your HIIT classes.
Scanning your body from head to toe while practising your form in front of a mirror can help you learn the correlation between what looks right and what correct activation of your muscles feels right. At F45, we stick by the principle ‘Form Before Load,’ which means that we want you to nail that technique before we add any extra weight, and you must be able to go slow before you go fast. So get cracking, F45’ers! We already know that you’re living in your activewear, so why not give these moves a try for a few minutes each day so you can wow your F45 coaches when we return to the studio?
We reached out to F45 Master Trainer Coordinator and resident coaching expert, Scott Thompson, for his best cueing tips to ensure your technique is on point:
- Start with your feet hip-width apart. Keeping your feet under your hips is the strongest position to provide power for a hip hinge movement.
- Hinge at the hips, with a slight bend in your knees. Push your hips back while maintaining a straight back (think of closing a door with your butt). You can slide your palms down the front of your legs, or hold something with a little weight in it, like a shopping bag or backpack.
- Keeping that core tight, squeeze your glutes and drive your hips forward into a standing position.
- Start with your feet shoulder-width apart, a slight bend in the knees and shoulder blades squeezed together.
- Push your butt back and down (think of sitting on the toilet).
- Drive your knees out as you lower into the squat—this switches on the glutes and keeps the knees in good alignment. If you have a resistance band handy, pop it around your legs (just above your knees) as an extra cue.
- Take an exaggerated step, with the toes pointing forward. Your front leg should be slightly bent and your back leg extended.
- With the core tight and chest high, slowly lower your back knee towards the ground. You should be aiming to have your front knee at a 90º angle at the bottom of the lunge.
- Drive through your front leg to extend your back leg towards the set-up position.
- Start with your hands on the ground, slightly wider than shoulder-width apart with fingers pointing forward. Your legs should be extended, lying flat on the ground. If you need to regress, you can start on your knees.
- Drive through the hands to push your body up off the ground, with your elbows at a 45-degree angle to the hands (like an arrowhead, if looking from above). Finish with your body in a straight line up on the toes, or if you’re modifying, keep your knees on the ground. Your core should be tight to prevent any sagging through the middle.
- Slowly lower your body while maintaining a straight position and keeping your elbows at 45 degrees to your hands.
THE BICYCLE AB CRUNCH
- Start this movement lying on your back with your hips and knees bent at a 90º angle.
- Keep your core tight and extend one leg, while keeping your other foot off the ground. You can aim to have your legs angled slightly higher to make it easier on the core and prevent you from using your hip flexors too much.
- Lift your shoulders off the ground, with your hands placed behind the head and elbows off the ground. Rotate one elbow to your opposite bent knee. Remember to alternate sides and move with control.