OUR TRAINING METHODOLOGY
At Spice, we want to make your body functionally work for you, no matter what everyday situation you find yourself in, or goal, challenge, vacation you have on the horizon. Whilst nutrition, mindset and rest play a significant part in achieving a healthy and fit body, our focus here is on the exercise component.
Our training methodology is geared towards the everyday women who wants to take full advantage of what everyday life has to offer, surprise, challenge, or require. We are not a studio that trains and prepares athletes for elite level.
Whilst there are many crossovers in how to train athletes and the average woman, our intent is not to put you through gut busting exercise sessions, but to work with where your body is at, gradually growing and increasing your efforts and load in a way that challenges and improves your overall conditioning and preparedness for the every-days of life.
In the visual representation above there are Four Key Pillars of Fitness that universally, exercise training programs focus on, but deliver as separate exercise programs:
- AEROBIC (Endurance) - The benefits of cardio fitness (walking, biking, swimming, running, kayaking, the plethora of machines in gyms, etc) has been advocated for decades, unfortunately for many that is the only form of exercise they do. If that's you, hey, fantastic for being active, although think about incorporating the other fitness pillars into your program.
- MUSCULAR (Strength Power Endurance) - In the last decade the awareness of the benefits of strength exercise has increased significantly. More and more women are specifically seeking strength exercise, not for vanity, nor just as a great weight loss tool, but as a preventative measure against osteoporosis, arthritis, chronic back pain and latest research in cancer promoting pre/during/post treatment plans incorporating strength exercise. Additionally, having a strong body gives you confidence and independence with the every-days of life. Be aware though, the older we get the more important this becomes, muscle if not used deteriorates.
- FLEXIBILITY / MOVABILITY - Traditionally associated with exercise programs like yoga and pilates, maintaining or developing (depending on your starting point) your bodies ability to be flexible and movable is critical. Many everyday ailments can be alleviated through a program that targets stretching, not just a glute, hamstring, calf etc, but muscle chains that connect calf, hamstring, glute, core, etc are a key when tackling everyday tasks like, bending over then reach out, reaching high on tip toes to grab something, stepping up on something high, simply getting up of the floor easily, etc
- BALANCE / STABILITY - We probably aren't aware how often we find ourselves in situations requiring balance and stability, carry something heavy in one hand up stairs, stepping of a kerb and looking sideways, getting out of a chair, standing reaching high with one leg slightly raised, etc, the problem is we develop many work arounds to achieve or avoid these tasks instead of simply improving our balance and stability. Additionally, being ready for the unexpected fall, push, trip etc can avoid serious consequences.
Our SpiceSTRONG Free-Weight Functional Strength Movement program is the key that links all four pillars into an overall functional training program that empowers any woman for anything everyday life has to offer, surprise, challenge or require.
Primarily we train our clients in ways that replicate the things you would do in everyday life, doing them in a way that prepares you tackle the ever-days with confidence, ie, chop wood; lean into the car to place baby in car seat; pickup your luggage and place awkwardly into an over head plane locker; carry several bags of shopping from car and place on the bench; the up down bending over when gardening, etc etc.
These and many more every-days involve strength; endurance; flexibility; stability. but more importantly they generally are all done in unison, incorporating the linking of muscle chains for strength, stability and effort. Plus, the linking of movement patterns, lifting to carrying to bending to pushing. This is the essence of Functional training.
The SpiceSTRONG Functional Training components that link these pillars and formulate them into exercises that mimic the requirements for everyday life. Whilst some are singular in their movement others link patterns to undertake the movement. They are:
- TWIST - We twist. turn and rotate our bodies at the hinge point of the hip without thinking. Sometimes we do this under load (carrying weighted object), other times its done in a manner when we could be off balance. The problem with Gyms is that the significant majority of machines and exercises don't accommodate movement in this plane.
- SQUAT - We probably do this more than any fundamental movement pattern. Getting up and down from a chair being common. As we age our inability to squat can negatively effect our quality of life. Our training program will help you to do this movement right so you avoid injury and increase longevity.
- PUSH - We need to push to get up from the floor or push a bag overhead to put it in the overhead locker in a plane. There are two primary push movements, vertical, pushing something overhead, and horizontal, pushing something away from you horizontally. Of course there are variations between these two directional planes.
- PULL - Much the same as the push movement, however the directional force is towards not away from you. Again movements are vertical, reaching and pulling a branch to pick an orange, or horizontal, pulling an oar to start a row boat in motion.
- BENDED lift - Regularly we bend from the hip to pick things up from the floor or put things down. Of all the movement patterns this is possibly the most dangerous as a significant majority of adults have back pain at some point in their life. Understanding how to bend without putting unnecessary strain on your intervertabral disks is a key i.e. with a straight and not curled back..
- ROLL - A movement pattern we can loose as we age is the ability to roll or curl over. To roll over in bend or on the floor so you can get up may not even be considered as something needed to train for, but many adults struggling with overweight or mobility issues would understand.
- CARRY - Everyday we are carrying things, sometimes positioning our body awkwardly to do it. But if we unpack what it really looks like, we bend or stretch to grab it; move it around to position it as comfortable as possible; then walk with it however long; reposition it to offload; bend or stretch to unload it, we can see then the need for core activation, muscle chain movement integration and activation, strength, endurance and effort.
- CRAWL - We think crawling is only the domain of babies and toddlers however, crawling is a developmental movement pattern that ties everything about you together. Studies reveal that crawling develops and enhances efficiencies between right and left hemispheres of the brain. Additionally it unites your sensory system, integrating balance, awareness and visual systems, along with building reflexive strength i.e. your ability to anticipate movement before it happens.
- LUNGE - When moving we can extend ourselves in the form of a lunge to step over things or across things. We do this directionally forwards, backwards, sideways or diagonally. Flexibility and stability become significant safety factors when negotiating these movements.
- OVERHEAD lift - This is the motion of taking something from ground level to above head i.e. taking groceries from a bag on the floor to place on shelves above head level and stretching on toes in a vertical and off vertical direction.
- GET UP floor - Many women in their fifties and beyond have difficulty getting up from the floor. Even to the point where fear has paralysed them into avoiding situations that require them to get on the floor for fear of being stuck as they can't get up. This is a life skill that can be learned regardless if you're approaching you fifties or leaving you nineties.
The Chek Institute founded by Paul Chek are Pioneers and Leaders of Functional Movement Training, Strength Training and Rehabilitative Training in our industry, they are a significant influence on how we train and prepare our clients for everyday life success. Sheree is certified through the US based Chek Institute global coaching program.