Aerobic Exercises & Exercise Equipment
Dumbbell Exercises, Kettlebell Workouts & Exercise Programs
Create a balanced exercise program by fusing these five essential fitness exercises with cardio training for a total body workout. Get solo aerobic exercise at the Gold’s fitness club near you with simple workouts on the treadmill, elliptical, rowing machine or stationary bicycle. And mix dumbbell exercises with the body weight and kettlebell exercises below to strengthen all of your major muscle groups. And for even more kettlebell workouts, ask a Gold’s fitness trainers to show you an array of exercises using kettlebells to trim and tone your body.
The 5 Essential Moves for Every Body
With so much to choose from when it comes to fitness, we decided to zero in on five moves that cannot be missed. So we asked three Gold’s Gym Fitness Institute trainers to weigh in. Here are their picks.
Read on to see the 5 workout moves that our Gold’s fitness experts think are definite do’s for any trip to the gym.
For each move below, we suggest trying three sets of 10 reps.
Why: "Your glutes are the most important part of your core," Robert Reames, Gold’s Gym Fitness Institute member and author of Make Over Your Metabolism, explains. "And if your glutes are strong, that helps your lower back and knees."
How: Lie on your back, with arms comfortably at your sides and knees bent. Press your heels into the floor and raise your hips, shifting pressure to the upper shoulder. No pressure should be felt in the neck or back. For advanced-level positions, try touching your fingertips to the back of your shoes or clasping your hands behind your back and drawing your shoulder blades together. For added difficulty, place a Pilates ring between your knees and squeeze your legs to hold it in place.
Helps: Zeroes in on your butt.
Why: "This move really helps to establish that power needs to come from the glutes and abdominals," says Adam Friedman, celebrity trainer and Gold’s Gym Fitness Institute member. "Engaging the midsection in the movement first will help you to be more stable, strong and powerful when and where it’s needed."
How: Place a kettlebell between your feet. Bend down as if you were sitting and pick it up. Snap your hips and swing it up to chest level. To see a video, click here.
Helps: Strengthens your core muscles.
Why: "We constantly ignore the muscles we don’t see in the mirror—a big mistake," Tracey Mallet, Gold’s Gym Fitness Institute trainer and author of Super Fit Mama, explains. "It’s important to counteract what most of us do every day, which is sit in front of a computer at a desk." To do that we need a strong back and core for better posture, and this move works all the extensors and the mid-upper back, glutes and hamstrings.
How: Lie on your front on the floor with your neck parallel to the ground. Lift your right hand and left leg off the floor simultaneously. Repeat with the left hand and right leg, then continue switching back and forth.
Helps: Makes sure you are working your back and butt muscles.
Why: "Works your whole body in one move, especially your arms and core," Mallet says "A strong core is really important—if your center is weak then the rest of the body will be weak."
How: Lie facedown with your hands slightly more than shoulder-width apart and your feet together. Keeping your body straight, push up. For less effort, lower your knees onto the ground. For more difficulty, try it with a BOSU, an inflated rubber hemisphere attached to a rigid platform. (It resembles a stability ball cut in half.) Place the BOSU soft side down and hold on to the edges while you perform the push-up.
Helps: An all-over body exercise
SQUAT WITH MEDICINE BALL ROTATION
Why: "The most important thing is doing a correct squat," Reames says. "Then I add in the upper body rotation with a medicine ball to emphasize everyday-life movement."
How: Place your feet hip-width apart. Hold the medicine ball at chest level. Keep your chest high, draw in your abdominals and slowly squat down until your butt is parallel with the floor (and never further). Have a firm foot plant, and put emphasis on your heels. Make sure to keep your knees directly over your ankles, and never in front. As you stand up, hold the medicine ball out in front of you, shoulder-high, and slowly twist to the right, then back to center, then to the left. Watch a video of a basic squat here.
Helps: Guarantees that you’re building your lower core muscles.
Your daily exercise program, whether at home or at the gym, should include “30 minutes or more of moderate intensity activity on most, and preferably all, days of the week,” according to the Surgeon General’s Report on physical activity . Join aerobic exercise classes ranging from Latin dance-inspired Zumba to martial arts-inspired BodyCombat, and find your fitness niche at a Gold’s Gym near you. And mix dumbbell exercises with the five essential exercises in this article to add strength training to your cardio plan. Or try kettlebell workouts for a change of pace from your usual gym routine.
Keep your exercise program varied so that you are never bored, and do these five full body exercises when you are limited on time and don’t want to overthink your workout. Alternate between aerobic exercise using the treadmill or elliptical and high energy group classes to stay energized and engaged. And switch up solo dumbbell exercises in the weight room with group weight lifting in classes like BodyPump or GRIT Strength. Whether you prefer kettlebell workouts and heart pumping group cycling classes or completing the resistance machine circuit and running on the treadmill, discover the combination of cardio and strength training that works for you by trying new things.