Is the Pilates Reformer Good for a Beginner?

There are many options out there for strengthening the body and helping you get in the best shape, but nothing works quite like a Pilates Reformer. Zero Gravity Fitness in Ocoee, FL can provide clients with the best reformer workouts that provide dramatic changes to your body, regardless of whether it is your first time or you have used it many times before.

The reformer may sound hard, and beginners may feel like they should shy away. But it is simply a fantastic exercise device that helps us to work on core strengthening and other important Pilates moves all in one. No matter what your skill level, the reformer will help to get you toned and fit in no time.

What Is a Pilates Reformer?

The reformer has been around almost as long as Pilates itself. In fact, Joseph Pilates, the founder of this wonderful exercise routine, invented the reformer. It is simply a bed-type frame that comes with a platform, which is called the carriage, attached up to the reformer with some springs.

These springs are important because they offer the user different levels of resistance as the carriage gets pulled or pushed, depending on the exercise, along with the frame. Beginners and advanced practitioners of Pilates can adjust the reformer to help get the workout that is meant for them.

Then there is the carriage. The carriage has a few shoulder blocks that are important to keep the practitioner on the reformer rather than falling off. There is a lot of pulling or pushing of the carriage to complete the workout, and having that extra support can be a bonus.

How Can I Use the Reformer?

The neat thing about the Pilates Reformer is how versatile it is. Once the participant has received proper instruction, preferably from someone certified in Pilates, they can use this reformer for many Pilates workouts of their choice. Exercises can be performed in many ways, including standing, sitting, and lying down. It often depends on the type of movement that the user is focusing on, but all of them can work different parts of the body and provide benefits.

The goal of the reformer is to create better flexibility, balance, and strength in the user each time they complete a workout on this. This is done by working out all the different parts of the body and in many ways. Users can choose to use their legs, their arms, their core, or a combination to build strength and endurance while using the reformer.

Professional staff and certified Pilates instructions can teach users the many exercises that work well on the reformer. This makes it the perfect tool for anyone, no matter what their experience with Pilates was in the past.

Are There Benefits to Exercising With the Reformer?

There are many benefits to using the Pilates Reformer for your workout. Whether you are a beginner with Pilates, have done Pilates often, you want to add it to your workout routine, or make Pilates your main workout, the reformer can be versatile and helpful for all of your needs.

It Increases Body Strength

To start, the reformer can boost the overall body strength of the user, while improving balance, increasing coordination, and promoting flexibility. All of these positive changes in the user can lead to more efficiency and grace in the movement for that user, along with an improvement in posture. For anyone with back problems, the reformer can provide easy and natural relief.

It Helps With Range of Motion

The Pilates Reformer can also accommodate many ranges of motion. For those who struggle with certain movements, or who have had limited mobility as they age, the reformer is just the tool. It gently eases the user back into movements, increasing flexibility without causing harm or damage to muscles and tissues.

It Adds in Strength

The reformer is also a good strength routine. While we traditionally associate strength training with weights, the reformer can provide similar results without as much strain on the muscles or the need for heavy weights. The natural pulling and pushing that your arms and legs will do against the resistance springs of this device can help promote strength and strong bones.

Provides the Right Muscle Contractions

Another benefit provided by the reformer is eccentric muscle contraction. This is a process that happens when a muscle lengthens as it resists some force. The reformer can promote these contractions. Why is this important? Eccentric muscle contractions are key to getting strong and long muscles without all the bulk.

Adds in an Element of Stability

There are also several stability challenges available on the reformer, based on which resistance level the user decides to go with. This can help to provide better balance to any user while promoting overall core strength. And who doesn’t want to work on the core while preventing slips and falls along the way?

Basically, using the reformer for a workout can potentially benefit anyone who uses it. Athletes, those who have spent years in the gym, and even those just starting out can benefit from using the reformer for their fitness needs. It is simple, versatile, and can be a lot of fun compared to other workout machines.

If you are looking for a new workout that can improve balance and flexibility, reduce pain, and build strength, then contact us at Zero Gravity Fitness in Ocoee, FL today. Our certified Pilates instructions can help guide you to the right Pilates classes that fit your skill levels and can help you sign up for our Pilates Reformer class too!

How Often Should You See a Personal Trainer?

What are your fitness goals in 2020? Whether you’re looking to tone, strengthen, or become more flexible, a personal trainer can guide you through the process. Our knowledgeable, passionate staff at Zero Gravity Fitness in Ocoee, Florida is ready to help.

Why Hire a Personal Trainer?

Are you feeling lost at the gym? Not sure where to start? Need a push? That’s where a trainer comes in. Our role is to help you adopt and maintain a healthier lifestyle through exercise.

Scientific research has made it clear that frequent bouts of moderately intense physical activity can favorably impact body composition while reducing the risk of many chronic illnesses, such as heart disease, cancer, diabetes, and osteoporosis. Other studies have shown an improvement in mental and emotional health among those who engage in regular exercise. These benefits include greater confidence, improved mood, and a reduction in feelings of stress and anxiety.

While most of us are convinced of the benefits of exercise, many are confused—even overwhelmed—by the seemingly endless array of workout styles and methods. Others are unsure how to operate the various machines and pieces of equipment they come across in a gym or, perhaps, they’ve had a previous injury or other unpleasant experience during an exercise session.

If any of this sounds familiar, you may benefit from the knowledge and experience of a personal trainer.

What Does a Personal Trainer Offer?

People seek out trainers for different reasons, but a few of the many benefits include:

Motivation

Sometimes life gets in the way. If you’ve been out of the game for a while, our training staff can provide reassurance that you’ll regain the momentum. We’ll be with you every step of the way, reminding you of the many benefits that regular exercise provides, and we’ll do our part to help you stay the course.

We all have our ups and downs, but showing up is half the battle. If you make the commitment, you can count on your trainer to provide positive reinforcement throughout the process. We’ll celebrate every extra rep, every max lift, and every personal best.

Program design

Our trainers are nationally-certified and knowledgeable about exercise physiology and biomechanics. But fitness isn’t one-size-fits-all. We’ll create a program customized to your goals, training background, injury history, and any limitations or restrictions. We don’t offer “cookie-cutter” training routines.

Periodic assessments will be made and modifications implemented, when appropriate, to ensure continued results. This way, you’ll maximize your effort at each session and get the most out of our time together.

Our trainers stay on top of the latest trends in the industry and incorporate plenty of variety to keep the workouts interesting, while also preventing training plateaus.  

Safety

Safety is our top priority. Our certified trainers will provide proper exercise instruction. We’ll monitor your form and technique on all exercises and offer appropriate feedback to minimize injury risk. We’ll never ask you to do something you feel uncomfortable with, and we’ll take a gradual approach, increasing the intensity incrementally.

Accountability

We want you to succeed, and we see our role as partners in that journey. That means identifying and proactively addressing any obstacles that may hinder your progress. Communication is key here. We’ll do our best to keep you on track, but we’ll also empower you to take ownership of your body the choices you make that might impact your results.

How Often Should You See a Personal Trainer?

This will vary by individual, but most of our clients meet with their trainer several times each week. Studies have shown that those who engage in regular exercise reap more benefits than those who do so sporadically.

After an initial consultation, your personal trainer will lay out a tailored program, discuss ideal frequency, and recommend a training schedule that works for both of you.

What Are the Training Sessions Like?

Our personal training programs incorporate strength training, aerobics, pilates, and yoga. We make use of machines, free weights, and kettlebells. Variety is important to keep the workouts fresh. We’re going to push you, but we promise you’ll have some fun!

Can I Bring a Friend?

Absolutely! We offer Buddy Sessions for couples or friends who are interested in working out together with the same trainer. You may also be interested in one of our innovative group fitness classes, such as Russian Kettlebell, Superflex, or Barre Fusion.

How Do I Know If It’s For Me?

Personal training is for anyone who wants to make the most of their time in the gym. A personal trainer can give you the confidence to know that you’re exercising in the safest, most effective manner.

We train a wide range of clients: young and old, male and female, beginners and those who consider themselves more advanced. Our trainers work with those interested in general fitness, as well as those populations with more defined goals, such as athletes in need of sport-specific training and individuals rehabbing an injury.

How Do I Get Started?

Whether you’ve never stepped foot in a gym or fitness studio or whether you’re looking to take your training (or physique) to the next level, a personal trainer can provide the structure and support you need. We offer a comfortable, non-judgemental, and unintimidating workout space.

Call Zero Gravity Fitness in Ocoee, Florida today at (407) 654-2600 to speak with a staff member about our personal training services and for pricing information.

What Makes Prenatal Pilates Different?

Exercise is one of the best things you can do for the health of you and your unborn child. But there’s a lot of misinformation regarding the safety of exercise during pregnancy. At Zero Gravity Fitness in Ocoee, FL, we’d like to talk about what makes prenatal pilates different and how it can benefit you.

What Makes Prenatal Pilates Different?

Prenatal pilates primarily differs from “traditional” pilates in that it focuses on the transverse abdominis. The transverse abdominis is the deep layer of muscles that support your entire core from back to front and around your sides. Essentially, these muscles corset your waist.

Prenatal Pilates is primarily about building and reinforcing the muscles supporting your core. Traditional pilates focuses on strengthening the muscles responsible for abdominal contraction. Pilates designed for pregnant women prepares them for labor and delivery by emphasizing the connection between mind and body and deep breathing.

What to Expect During the First Trimester

Most expecting mothers feel nauseous, fatigued, and lethargic during the first three months of pregnancy. However, this isn’t an excuse to sit in your recliner and eat peanut butter and pickle sandwiches. Rather, it is the perfect reason to practice prenatal pilates.

During your first trimester, there are no restrictions regarding your exercise routine. The biggest thing you have to worry about is listening to your body. Pilates during the first trimester is incredibly reinvigorating, and you may push yourself too far in excitement. Work on breathing and stability, choosing lighter tension for leg and arm work.

What to Expect During the Second Trimester

During your second trimester, you can expect to feel incredibly energetic, but it is okay if you sometimes only feel like you have “normal” energy levels. We all experience pregnancy differently. But you will definitely feel more energy than you had during your first trimester.

Specially designed pilates during this trimester will focus on seated, standing, and side-lying exercises. Most women feel uncomfortable exercising on their stomach at this point, and you should limit back exercises, particularly forward flexion. Such exercises may compress your aorta and inferior vena cava, causing dizziness.

What to Expect During the Third Semester

During the third trimester, most women start to feel anxious. First-time mothers, in particular, are worried about what the labor experience will be like and how well they will care for their first child. This is the best time for you to relax, breathe deeply, and perform pilates specifically designed to accommodate the shape of your body.

Pilates during your third trimester will primarily focus on standing exercises with a fairly wide, turned-out stance to accommodate your larger belly. Moreover, it will incorporate chest and back stretching to ease back pain caused by breasts that seem to never stop growing.

What to Expect After Delivery

Caring for a baby is an often overwhelming experience. Particularly if you’re struggling to sleep at night, taking care of yourself is more important now than ever. After all, how can you care for your little one if you can’t care for yourself, first? There will be days you feel like you can’t tear yourself away from your infant to exercise.

However, we strongly encourage our clients to participate in weekly postnatal pilates sessions. These sessions focus on common postpartum issues, like shoulder tension and extreme lower back pain. The deep breathing implemented in these sessions will ground you, energize you, and provide you with a clear head so you can take better care of your child.

What Other Benefits Are Provided By Pilates?

Learn How to Listen to Your Body

We seem to be born with the innate ability to listen to our bodies. Children never push themselves to the point of injury when they are playing. It isn’t until they get older and feel the need to compete that they injure themselves during physical activity. Pilates during pregnancy teaches you how to release your competitive attitude and listen to your body.

If you feel particularly nauseous lying on your back during the first month of pregnancy, don’t do it. If you feel fine lying on your stomach when you are seven months pregnant, that’s okay, too. We all experience pregnancy differently. Don’t push yourself when you feel fatigued and try to not let yourself feel thirsty. Connecting with your intuition will improve your quality of life drastically.

Strengthen Your Mind and Body

A major component of pilates during pregnancy is deep breathing. Deep breathing grounds and centers you, allowing you to think more rationally than you ever have, even with the flood of hormones rushing through your body. This breathing technique can be used at any time and will help you through any emotional time you’re having.

Moreover, pilates during pregnancy helps you learn how to balance throughout your daily life as you feel off-kilter due to your growing, changing body. It strengthens supporting muscles to prevent or ease pain, and the breathing techniques make delivery easier.

Learn More Today

Would you like to learn more about prenatal pilates? If so, we can help. To learn more, contact us today at Zero Gravity Fitness in Ocoee, FL to schedule your initial consultation. For your safety and comfort, we focus on low-impact exercises and omit exercises that will reduce blood flow to your fetus.

We will walk you through exercises that are safe for you and your baby, regardless of your current stage of pregnancy. When your little one is born, we can help you with postnatal pilates, too!

Pilates Classes FAQs: How Many Times a Week Should I Do Pilates?

Establishing an exercise routine that includes Pilates classes is an excellent thing to do for your health. People who practice Pilates regularly enjoy a variety of benefits, including greater core strength and better posture. Like all forms of exercise, Pilates has the best results if it is practiced consistently. At Zero Gravity Fitness in Ocoee, FL, we recommend two to four times per week.

The Goal of Regular Pilates Classes

Some people think that only professional athletes and dancers use Pilates, but it can actually benefit just about everyone. This form of exercise was developed in the 19th century by a German named Joseph Pilates who did extensive research to design his system. His goal was to create a series of exercises that would strengthen the body, focus the mind, and alleviate health problems.

Today, millions of people all around the world are enjoying the benefits of regular Pilates classes. These benefits include:

  • Stronger muscles throughout the core
  • Better posture
  • Better balance
  • Greater mental focus
  • Improved health
  • A more flexible body
  • Less back pain

How Often Should You Practice Pilates?

The best Pilates schedule is one that will fit in with your weekly routine and support your fitness goals. Here are three options for your practice:

Four Times Per Week

Joseph Pilates himself suggested practicing Pilates four times per week. He writes about the benefits of this schedule in his book, Return to Life Through Contrology [Pilates]. Today, his recommendation still holds true. To get a good Pilates workout, you can either take a full mat class or do a session with equipment. People who work out like this four times a week build strong muscles and can steadily increase the intensity of the exercises.

Two or Three Times Per Week

Not everyone can fit four Pilates workouts into their schedule every week, and some people would prefer to spend the time focusing on other forms of exercise. Not to worry: Pilates is extremely effective when it’s done two or three times per week.

Every Day

If you are very enthusiastic about Pilates and want to do it every day, you can create an effective routine that varies the intensity of your practice. For example, you might want to do two group reformer classes, two private sessions, and a few short at-home workouts every week.

Just don’t forget that Pilates is a strength-building form of exercise that needs to be supplemented with aerobic work. Sometimes, it’s better to trade a Pilates day for a twenty-minute run or a group Superflex class.

Who Can Benefit From Pilates?

Pilates classes improve the fitness level of newbies and professional athletes alike. If you want to begin exercising for the first time in your life, it is a great way to start. You will learn effective exercises and how to do them safely. If you are already involved in an intense activity of some kind, training at our studio will support your body and strengthen it in ways that enhance your performance. Our classes are a great option for everyone in between, too.

How Much Time Should You Spend Training?

Pilates classes are offered in several different lengths. Our group classes are 55 to 60 minutes long. For private sessions, you can choose either a half-hour or a full hour. Training between 30 and 60 minutes allows you to challenge your body and practice a variety of exercises without becoming strained. After class, you should feel a positive sense of well-being that comes from a great workout.

Will Pilates Become Boring if You Do It Often?

Definitely not! Joseph Pilates actually developed this form of exercise to engage the mind. There are 25-50 exercises that you can mix up, and our instructors will always give you new ways to challenge yourself. Beginners start less intensely and build up to a greater level of difficulty.

How Can These Classes Be Part of an Effective Exercise Routine?

Pilates is a strength-building form of exercise. The ideal fitness regime includes both strength training and cardio. At Zero Gravity, we can help you set up a schedule that will get you in the best shape of your life by meeting all your exercise needs. You can work on Pilates several times per week and do cardio on the other days. Most experts recommend at least one day of rest. Here are some classes that you can take alternately with Pilates:

  • Barre Fusion
  • Russian Kettlebell
  • Superflex
  • Yoga

Come Join Us for Pilates

A consistent Pilates practice will make you strong and healthy. It has helped people all over the world build strength, gain flexibility, and stay focused on fitness. With the right routine, these benefits can be yours, too. We care about your results, and we will help you do the exercises correctly.

When you come into our fitness studio, we will evaluate your current state of health and recommend the amount of training that is right for you. By practicing Pilates with us two to four times a week, you will feel great both in class and in your other activities. Try Pilates at Zero Gravity Fitness in Ocoee, FL. Our approach to training will give you exceptional fitness benefits to support your healthy lifestyle.

What Muscles Do Russian Kettlebell Swings Work?

Are you looking for a full-body workout that incorporates cardio while building muscle? The Russian kettlebell swing is a workout that targets many muscle groups in the body and can be performed simply with little equipment. At Zero Gravity Fitness in Ocoee, FL we have the expertise to help you reach your fitness goal safely and effectively.

What Muscle Groups Are Targeted by Russian Kettlebell Swings?

The Russian kettlebell swing is a full-body exercise that burns fat and builds muscle. The Russian swing is a non-impact exercise, so it is excellent for those looking to lose weight without causing stress to their joints. This kettlebell exercise targets the abs, shoulders, pecs, glutes, quads, hips, hamstrings, and lats with a simple motion. Swinging the kettlebell can also have benefits on grip strength.

The Russian swing is designed to turn your body into a hinge with a kettlebell weight in your hands, your legs in a triangular stance to brace the movements, and your core engaged. Participants will feel the burn in their abs when they are braced. The motion begins by engaging your glutes, quads, and hips; moving up through the core to the shoulders and pecs. While it may seem that the exercise is repetitive and unexciting, Russian swings will have you feeling the burn and gasping for breath by the end of your sets.

What Equipment Is Required to Perform Russian Swings?

The traditional method of Russian kettlebell swings starts with a single kettlebell. The weight can vary depending on your athletic ability, but it is best to start with a low weight kettlebell. Wear comfortable and well-fitting shoes to provide grip and protection for the feet. The exercise should be performed on a flat surface with about three feet of room in front of you for your swings.

Benefits of the Russian Swing

The Russian swing is an excellent full-body workout that provides the following benefits:

  • Strengthen a variety of muscle groups, including the core
  • Build muscle mass
  • Increase endurance and stamina
  • Reach target heart rate quickly
  • Increase circulation
  • Burn fat and calories faster than traditional cardio for weight loss
  • Requires only a kettlebell and some space to perform
  • Does not impact the joints and works well for all ages and bodyweights
  • Can start off easy with a light kettlebell weight
  • Weight and number of kettlebells can be increased to increase the intensity

 

The Keys to Correct Performance

Start with your footing just outside the hips but within the shoulders. The knees can have a slight bend. This gives you maximum stability so you can move the kettlebell with an explosive force. Keep the back straight and move the hips back to pick up the kettlebell. Hold the kettlebell close to your groin in between your knees keeping your shoulders back and your core braced. Keep a solid core and use your glutes and hamstrings to drive the kettlebell upward with the force of the hips.

The shoulders should not shrug and should remain relaxed as the apex of the movement is reached. At the apex, the knees and hips should lock. The kettlebell will stop in the air for a second and lower back into the starting stance between the knees, but close to the groin. Avoid going into a squatting stance while performing kettlebell swings.

FAQ

How Much Weight Should I Use?

Start with a lightweight kettlebell and work on proper form. As your technique improves, you can increase the weight for a more intense experience. An excellent gym will have a wide variety of kettlebells to use for the workout. The Russian kettlebell swing has variations in that it can be performed with one kettlebell in one hand or one kettlebell in each hand. The traditional technique is using two hands to hold a single kettlebell, and this is the technique that most people will start out with.

How Many Reps Should I Perform Per Set?

For an amazing cardio workout that burns fat and builds muscle, aim for high reps with low weight. Challenge yourself with as many sets of 10 reps as you can, with small breaks in between. You can also use a lightweight kettlebell and continuously perform reps within a time frame, then rest and repeat to reach your target heart rate and burn calories.

Russian Kettlebell swings can also be great for building muscle by performing using greater weight and fewer reps for an anaerobic workout. The anaerobic process involves short and explosive sets with a longer break in between. This method breaks down your muscles to strengthen them. It also builds endurance and stamina by depriving your muscles of oxygen. Use a medium or heavyweight for a short set of reps and see your muscle mass and endurance increase with each workout.

Can a Personal Trainer Help Me With My Kettlebell Workout?

A spotter may not be necessary for most people when performing a kettlebell workout, but a personal trainer is an excellent addition to your workout. A personal trainer can help you challenge yourself and get the most out of your workout time. They will be there to help you create a routine and follow it, incorporating kettlebell swings in creative ways to help you reach your fitness goal.

Start Your Workout Today

If you want to learn the Russian kettlebell swing with proper form to target the muscle groups for maximum potential, visit Zero Gravity Fitness in Ocoee, FL today for a consultation. We can identify your needs and fitness goals to plan a workout routine that will challenge you to reach new levels of fitness.

What Are the Benefits of Fitness Training?

One of the most important things in life is to have a healthy body, especially as we grow older. You will enjoy your life more if you are in great physical shape. There is no better way to maintain a healthy physical shape than through fitness training. Fitness training is a combination of regular physical exercises and a healthy diet. Besides giving you the body you want, fitness training also prolongs your life and provides you with some mental benefits. Here are 9 physical and mental benefits of fitness training at Zero Gravity Fitness in Ocoee, FL:

Benefits of Fitness Training

1. Improves Your Brain Power

Regular exercise and an appropriate diet boost your mental functions. The increase of energy levels experienced during an exercise routine boosts the production of serotonin in the brain, which is one of the chemicals responsible for mental clarity. This improves your productivity at home or at work.

2. Prevents Disease

Over the years, health professionals have observed that regular physical activity helps to reduce the risk of certain diseases, such as high blood pressure, stroke, heart disease, type 2 diabetes, high cholesterol, osteoporosis, arthritis, and loss of muscle mass. Since regular exercise strengthens the muscles and joints, it reduces the chance of experiencing the pains and aches associated with physical inactivity and old age. When practiced in moderation, physical exercises will boost your immune system, helping you to fight off common illnesses.

3. Good for Relaxation and Quality Sleep

When you exercise, you spend a lot of energy which the body needs to replenish later. This normally happens when you are asleep. You fall into a deep sleep to allow your body to activate the recuperative processes which replenish the energy you spent while exercising.

If you exercise moderately or vigorously for 150 minutes every week, you may see up to 65% improvement in sleep quality. 16 weeks of regular exercise can improve the quality of your sleep significantly, allowing you to sleep longer and more deeply. Regular exercise also improves the sleep quality of elderly people suffering from sleep disorders.

4. Improves Your Mood

Regular physical activity boosts your mood and reduces feelings of stress, depression and anxiety. Fitness training improves brain functions that control stress and anxiety. It also improves the brain’s response to serotonin and norepinephrine, which are vital in fighting feelings of depression. Regular exercise also boosts the production of endorphins which are responsible for positive feelings and the reduction of our perception of pain. Additionally, exercise also reduces anxiety symptoms by helping victims to be more aware of their condition and by offering distraction from their fears.

5. Increases Your Energy Levels

Whether you are healthy or you are suffering from a medical condition, regular exercise will do wonders for your energy levels. Exercising for at least 6 weeks has been known to reduce feelings of fatigue in people suffering from persistent fatigue. Additionally, regular exercise helps to improve the energy levels of people with chronic fatigue syndrome and other serious medical conditions, such as HIV, cancer and multiple sclerosis.

6. Good for Your Skin

When your body experiences high oxidative stress, your skin pays the price. Oxidative stress occurs when antioxidant defenses are unable to protect the cells from the damage caused by free radicals. This damages the internal structures of skin cells leading to unhealthy skin. Vigorous and intense physical exercise can cause oxidative stress. However, regular moderate fitness training boosts the production of natural antioxidants in your body, which helps to protect the skin cells. Furthermore, exercise improves blood flow and promotes skin cell adaptations that slow down signs of aging. 

7. Reduces Pain

Chronic pain can negatively affect the quality of your life. For a long time, health professionals and other experts believed that rest and inactivity were good solutions for chronic pain. However, recent studies have proved otherwise. Regular exercise relieves the chronic pain associated with several medical conditions such as fibromyalgia, chronic low back pain and chronic soft tissue shoulder disorder among others. Fitness training also raises your pain tolerance and reduces your perception of pain.

8. Improves Your Sex Life

Regular exercise improves blood flow, strengthens your cardiovascular system, helps tone your muscles, increases your energy levels and improves your flexibility. All these factors contribute to a better sex life. Fitness training also improves your confidence in your physical appearance, which can play a big role in your sex life. Regular exercise can increase arousal in women, and constant physical activity can reduce cases of erectile dysfunction in men.

9. Good for Your Muscles and Bones

When combined with proper protein intake, regular exercise involving weight lifting helps in muscle building. Exercising improves the ability of your muscles to absorb amino acids. This reduces their breakdown and boosts their growth. In old age, many people lose muscle mass and function, leading to injuries and sometimes disability.

Therefore, elderly people are advised to exercise regularly to avoid muscle loss and to maintain their strength. Younger people are advised to exercise regularly to build bone density and to reduce the risk of suffering from osteoporosis later in life.

Conclusion

The mental and physical benefits of fitness training programs cannot be overstated. Visit us at Zero Gravity Fitness in Ocoee, FL for more information on how you can start a fitness program that will improve the quality of your life in ways you never thought possible.

Yoga Classes for Beginners: What Should You Expect?

Yoga classes can be a little intimidating for beginners. Many people feel that they are not flexible enough to hold the poses, which seem so difficult. The good news is that yoga is actually very accessible to everyone, whatever their fitness and skill levels. For beginners, it is important to find a studio, like Zero Gravity Fitness in Ocoee, FL, where you can feel comfortable and interact easily with instructors and other students.

Introducing Yoga: Harmonizing Mind And Body

Yoga is much more than physical fitness or impossible shapes to twist your body into. It’s an ancient practice developed India to bring mind and body into harmony and to promote overall wellbeing. Yoga has many physical and health benefits, such as improving flexibility and mobility, boosting metabolism and blood circulation, and providing mental focus.

Who Can Do Yoga?

One of the best things about yoga is that it is for everyone. You don’t have to be a gymnast or professional athlete to get started. No matter what your fitness and skill level, you can find a class that is right for you. There are also special yoga classes for seniors, for people recovering from injuries or accidents and for athletes. Most yoga poses and classes can be adapted for nearly everyone.

Yoga is a practice and not an event. Some teachers describe it as a journey, and a personal journey at that. You don’t have to be perfect on Day One and every single day after. What’s important is how you and your body respond to the poses and how you slowly gain control over body, mind and breath. This is the first step in gaining control over your life and goals.

Types Of Yoga

You’ll find that different studios offer many kinds of yoga classes. The variety and terminology can be a little confusing, and it helps to have an idea of what are the different styles of yoga are like.

Hatha

Hatha yoga is best for beginners. It is the classic style of yoga accessible to everyone and teaches the poses that can become the basis for other styles of yoga.

Yin

Yin, or restorative yoga, promotes flexibility and muscle relaxation.

Specialty Yogas

For building strength, you can choose Vinyasa flow yoga, or power or Ashtanga yoga. Bikram or hot yoga gives you a cardio workout, while Kundalini focuses on the spiritual side of yoga. Many studios also offer small group classes for specific types of yoga, for seniors or for those recovering from injuries.

As you progress further with your practice, you may find yourself drawn more and more to the philosophical and spiritual principles underlying yoga, and also focus on meditation. Many yoga students, in fact, go on to become teachers of the practice.

Starting Yoga Classes: What to Expect

With all the different types of yoga classes offers by various studios, how do you choose the one that’s right for you? Most yoga studios offer free consultations and free trial classes so you can get a feel for the surroundings, the instructors, and the other students. This is an important step because you should feel comfortable in the environment.

Yoga classes are typically offered in progression so you can build up your skills levels. Skill levels for each class are clearly defined, and instructors can help you make sure you’re enrolled in the right class. Many studios also offer other programs like lectures, healthy meals, discussions and mediation groups.

Beginners soon find that yoga is also very much about community, and most studios have a round of events to help students ease into the culture. These may include meditation, music, ceremonies and readings.

Your First Yoga Class

By now we hope you’re looking forward to your first yoga class and wondering how to prepare for it. You don’t need any special clothing so long as your clothes are loose-fitting and allow free movement. To start with, you’ll only need two pieces of equipment – a yoga mat and a towel.

There are a wide variety of yoga mats available, and you should pick one that provides cushioning and support as well as a good grip and stability. This can help reduce injuries due to pulled muscles or loss of balance. A towel is useful to dry off sweat so you don’t slip during poses.

Meditation

Even at the beginners’ level, mediation is an important part of the practice. Most yoga sessions begin with a sun salutation, which sets the intention. Beginners’ classes start with simple poses, and you can work at your own pace. Classes usually end with the relaxation pose. At the end of each session, too, there is a brief period of meditation to transition back to the everyday world.

The instructor will help you work on your form because holding a pose correctly provides the maximum benefits. Two things you have to focus on during each pose are your breathing and the position of your back muscles. It’s important to communicate with your instructor through each class so you can get the most out of each session.

Getting Started With The First Consultation

Though it might appear intimidating, yoga is for everyone. As you deepen your practice, you’ll find that you have more energy, more mental focus, and an overall feeling of well being that overflows into other areas of your life. Now that you’re ready to begin yoga classes, it’s time to call Zero Gravity Fitness in Ocoee, FL to schedule a free initial consultation.

10 Fitness Benefits of Yoga

Yoga can be an incredible tool for athletes to use to increase their mobility, strength, and overall performance. But, that’s not all yoga does. It can even help with weight loss, provides your body protection from injury, and can improve your mind-body connection: all things that any athlete needs to keep themselves at the top of their game. At Zero Gravity Fitness in Ocoee, FL our yoga classes can take your performance to the next level.

Top 10 Benefits of Yoga

1. Increases Flexibility & Mobility

We all know that yoga increases your flexibility almost instantly. Regularly working through bendy, stretchy poses will gradually loosen up your muscles and give you more room to freely move. Even impossible poses will become second nature to you as you power through consistent yoga classes.

If you’re an athlete that isn’t too keen on stretching, you’re severely limiting your body’s range of motion, which will hinder your overall performance. Yoga poses that focus on increasing mobility can help you boost your performance and give you an edge over your competitors. So, even if you never want to be able to bend your legs behind your head, increasing your flexibility through consistent yoga classes is a great way to have well-rounded strength and mobility.

2. Builds Strength & Endurance

We all know the familiar burn after holding a plank for a few seconds, but try doing that multiple times within one short yoga class. Yoga may look like a delicate practice, but don’t let that fool you.

Yoga is one of the best ways to build both strength and endurance. Headstands and planks are key moves in many yoga sequences and both build incredible strength in your core. Many yoga poses use bodyweight exercises to give you a different kind of workout and strength than just lifting weights alone would.

3. Provides Protection From Injury

Tight hamstrings or hip flexors are a surefire way to find yourself injured playing sports or lifting weights. By balancing out your athletic performance with flexibility, you’re increasing your body’s ability to move freely, which decreases your risk of injury.

Nobody wants to waste valuable training time healing a torn hamstring, and keeping your muscles flexible and pliable will help you prevent that. Plus, a regular yoga practice even helps prevent cartilage and joint breakdown by regularly stretching and lubricating the joints.

4. Helps With Weight Loss & Boosts Metabolism

Yoga is an excellent way to lose weight, especially for people who are experiencing chronic pain or are recovering from an injury. Yoga is low impact and won’t aggravate your joints as running would, plus it builds well-rounded strength that will give your body a nice, lean appearance.

5. Boosts Athletic Performance

If you have hit a plateau with your training or performance, try incorporating yoga classes into your training schedule. Yoga uniquely challenges your body for a different strength-building experience and can have a positive effect on your athletic performance. If you struggle with a limited range of motion, yoga can help keep you quick on your feet.

6. Supports the Body’s Natural Healing Process

By increasing the body’s circulation, regular yoga practices helps keep the lymphatic system draining properly, which stimulates your body to naturally fight infection. It also increases the number of red blood cells that are available to the cells, which will help keep freshly-oxygenated blood flowing to every cell in your body.

7. Increases Mind-Body Connection

Yoga builds strength in not just your body, but your mind too. The goal of any yoga practice is to harmonize the mind, body, and spirit of the body to work seamlessly together as one. Yoga can teach you how to listen to your body and improve your mind-body connection. This can be especially helpful for weight lifters looking to activate certain muscles or athletes who need more body awareness on the court.

For an athlete, there is probably nothing more important than a strong mind-body connection. Having control and mindful awareness of your body will keep your performance at its best. Plus, it can help you deal with high-pressure situations with mindfulness and strength, rather than letting it frazzle you and throw you off your game.

8. Stress Reduction

Weight lifters know that cortisol can kill gains and keep stubborn fat from budging. Spikes in cortisol can harm your performance by throwing off your body’s natural homeostasis. When your body is in a state of stress, it tends to store fat in the midsection and inhibit your body’s ability to fully recover. Yoga helps calm your mind by allowing you to practice mindfulness and awareness.

Ancient yogis teach their students that the goal of yoga is to train both the body and the mind. So if you are someone that struggles with overwhelming feelings of stress, yoga can teach you valuable tools you can use to alleviate that burden on yourself. Let’s face it, daily stressors aren’t going anywhere in our modern, chaotic worlds, but we can learn to deal with them in healthy ways to improve both our athletic performance and mental strength.

9. Improves Sleep Quality

Rest is one of the most important things to do following a big workout. All the work you did in the gym needs time to assimilate into your body, and the muscle-building process happens when you’re resting. However, if you’re not able to get the proper rest between big workouts, you’re missing out on your maximum gains.

10. Keeps Your Spine Flexible

A flexible spine is a happy spine! While backbends may not feel natural to you if you don’t regularly practice them, they are an excellent way to stretch your body and can improve lousy posture and increase a limited range of motion in tight backs. Backbends are a great way to keep your spine moving and keep your disks nicely lubricated.

Painful conditions, such as degenerative disk disease, can happen when there isn’t enough movement happening in the spine, which dries out the disks, causing pain. Starting a regular yoga practice now that keeps your spine bending is a great way to avoid injury and pain in the future.

Conclusion

Yoga can help boost your performance with a regular yoga practice and keep your body feeling its best. Check out Zero Gravity Fitness in Ocoee, FL today to learn how their yoga classes can boost your athletic performance.

How to Lose Weight the Right Way

The struggle to lose weight is real. There are many people who try and try again to lose weight but aren’t successful because they don’t have the knowledge or experience needed to create the right routine for them. Cutting back on your calories dramatically and limiting what you eat isn’t always enough to reach your goals. Exercise is crucial as well.

Determine Your Caloric Needs

Most people don’t know that their body actually needs a certain number of calories each day in order to function properly. You need to be sure that you get a majority of your calories from healthy, nutrient rich foods. You need to have an eating regimen that properly fuels your body, satisfies your cravings and creates habits you can use for the rest of your life. You don’t want to limit yourself so much that you can’t stick with your new way of eating for years to come.

Determine Your Workout Routine

You need to workout in order to lose as much weight as you can as quickly as you can. Being afraid to do weight training because you think that there is a chance that you could bulk up isn’t a good idea. You need to use weight, as well as cardio training, in order to get a great body because they both burn calories, but weight training continues to burn calories long after you put the weights down. You need to learn which exercises are best for your particular place in life. Pushing yourself to do things that your body isn’t ready to do can cause you to be injured or demotivated during your weight loss process.

Determine What Motivates You the Most

In order to lose weight, you have to stay motivated. Many people are motivated for their first few weeks of the new exercise routine but lose motivation rather quickly when they aren’t able to see changes quickly. We can help you to track changes that may not always be visible on the scale, such as noticing changes in skills and abilities. This can help you to stay motivated so you keep pushing to reach your goals.

Reach out to the team at Zero Gravity Fitness to get started on your weight loss journey. We will be able to tell you more information about which fitness routines are best for you. Contact us today to speak with a team member in Ocoee, FL.

The Power of Exercise Support

Let’s face it. Starting an exercise routine is not difficult. After all, most people have done it many times before. The challenge comes with sticking with the plan. In most cases, the initial enthusiasm and energy wane when we don’t see results quickly or get distracted by other activities. We want you to stick to your exercise plan and achieve your weight loss or fitness goals. That’s why we offer exercise support.

Fortunately, most people have managed to stick to their plan and succeed in their quest. What’s their secret? Continue reading to find out.

Choose Activities You Enjoy

Even before choosing any activity, keep in mind that there’s no rule that dictates you to invest in equipment. Over the years, most of us have focused so much on physical activity that we forget the benefits of regimented exercise.

For instance, having different activities such as cycling, walking, weight lifting, aerobics, and running ensures you can always exercise regardless of the time of day or weather. All of this is available at our facility.

Don’t Exercise Alone

Never ignore the social aspect of exercise. It’s extremely easy to let yourself off if you exercise alone. So if you want to stick to your routine, it’s important to find exercise support solutions to boost your commitment.

Most people who join exercise programs often get great results after just weeks. In fact, you can even supplement your plan by exercising at home and with the group later. Just make sure you exercise within the recommended limits.

Make Exercise Non-Negotiable

Weight management should not be taken lightly, so make exercise a priority. It’s not uncommon to find people who stop exercising when friends and family visit. If you want to reap the benefits of exercising for weight loss, you must make it non-negotiable. It won’t be easy when you start adopting this stand, but once it becomes part of your identity, your friends and family will support you.

Look for Indicators of Progress

Sometimes, we focus so much on weight loss that we forget other benefits of exercise. So make sure you note any positive indicators to keep you motivated.

For example, other than working out longer without feeling exhausted or having loose clothes, here are other indicators to look out for:

• A good night’s sleep
• Feeling more energetic
• Improved blood pressure, cholesterol, sugars and more

Exercising is a great way to achieve weight loss. But sticking to a routine can be difficult for most people. That’s why we offer exercise support solutions at Zero Gravity Fitness in Ocoee. Contact us today to learn more information about our services!

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