Becoming stronger is a goal for many people who are trying to get fit. At the same time, they often want to improve their flexibility. Doing both simultaneously isn’t always easy. In fact, some people who are very strong find that they aren’t particularly flexible. This can be because their muscles get in the way of moving more freely. However, you can build both muscle and flexibility at the same time. You just need to take the right approach to it so you can reach your goals. If you want to improve your strength and be more flexible, it’s also important not to forget your aerobic exercise at the same time.
Take Up Yoga
When people think of improving flexibility, yoga is often the first thing they think of. They know that it involves stretching and moving into different positions. Even beginner’s poses can help you to gently stretch and start to become more flexible. Yoga can also help you to relax, plus it will build your strength. You often have to hold up your bodyweight, which is a great way to get stronger without any equipment. Yoga isn’t always calm and relaxed, however. There are different forms that are more strenuous. For example, many people enjoy hot yoga, which is performed in a heated room. It helps you to be more flexible but is also more difficult.
Pilates is another option you could consider. It can improve both your strength and flexibility. Many people aren’t sure of the difference between yoga and pilates. They may appear similar at first, but there are several differences. Pilates is a much newer practice. It aims to build flexibility, strength, and control over the body. It is excellent for developing a strong core. It often includes different types of equipment too. While yoga sometimes uses equipment, you’ll find it’s used more in pilates. Taking a pilates class is a good way to improve strength and flexibility in your whole body. It can be more strenuous than yoga, depending on how you practice each of them.
Try Chilled Out Tai Chi
Some people want a gentle way to get stronger and more flexible. Tai chi is a good option for those who might have limited mobility or joint problems. Yoga involves getting onto the floor and can be hard on your knees and wrists, among other things. Many mature people choose tai chi as a way to keep fit. It involves a series of slow and controlled movements. They help to improve both strength and flexibility. While it is very gentle, it helps to boost stamina and improve range of movement. Like yoga, it’s a meditative practice, so it’s also a great way to relieve stress.
Find Workout Programs
Another thing you can do is look for workout programs that use moves from these disciplines. There are many programs you can try that take elements from yoga and pilates to give you a more comprehensive workout. For example, many people try Chalene Johnson’s PiYo workouts. These use yoga and pilates moves to create workouts that are low impact and can help to build strength and flexibility. However, it’s important to read PiYo reviews before you buy the program. Many people prefer alternatives, such as Toned in Ten. These workout programs usually come with DVDs and instructions and sometimes include equipment too. Some of them will even help you change your diet to reach your goals.
Explore the World of Dance
Dancing can be an excellent way to become stronger and more flexible. As a bonus, it is often an excellent cardio workout too. So you can work on your body as a whole if you choose the right activity. There are lots of types of dance that will help you improve strength and flexibility. You can also find exercise programs inspired by dance styles. For example, many people are trying ballet-inspired barre classes. Others enjoy dance-based exercise such as Zumba. Dance comes in a wide variety of forms. So even something like breakdancing could help you meet your goals.
Try Circuit Training
Becoming both stronger and more flexible at the same time can be hard. Many types of exercise are focused on improving just one aspect of fitness. Circuit training can help you work on your body as a whole. It’s a high-intensity way to work out that uses a circuit of different exercise. You can use exercises that will give you an aerobic workout, as well as boost your strength and flexibility. If you use circuit training, there’s less need to use several types of physical activity. You can get all the exercise you need using one program or class.
Practice Proper Stretching
It’s often easier to build strength than it is to improve your flexibility. But if you want to work on your strength, you should be focusing on flexibility too. It’s important to be flexible so that you can exercise safely. It can also boost your overall health, especially if you spend your time sitting at a desk. One of the most important things to do to improve your flexibility is to stretch properly. No matter what you’re doing, you should make sure you stretch adequately. Instead of standing still and stretching, it’s a good idea to warm up at the same time. You can do jumping jacks, squats or lunges to get ready for your workout.
Make Sure You Maintain Aerobic Exercise
When you’re working on your strength and flexibility, don’t forget about cardio. It’s just as important, and many would say it’s even more so. Even if you’re doing strength training every day, you need to do some aerobic exercise too. The recommended amount is about 30 minutes every day. If you’re smart, you can include cardio, strength, and flexibility in the same exercise. However, sometimes you might have to do some different things.
There are lots of ways to approach becoming more flexible and stronger. It’s up to you to discover what works for you and what you enjoy.