Ranveer Singh and Hrithik Roshan
Body weight exercises
What is it?
The beauty of this trend, says Mustafa Ahmed, owner of Akro and trainer to Hrithik Roshan and Ranveer Singh (in pic above), is that it lets you take exercise outdoors.
Ahmed believes that it is more important to connect with nature. “Lifting weights will give you muscle. But if you can’t employ that muscle outdoors, in your daily life, what’s the use? A housewife doesn’t need to do a barbell curl to lead a healthy life, but she needs to have stamina and strength to be able to walk for long periods or spend the major part of the day outdoors without it affecting her. You won’t learn that from a machine,” he says, adding that his gym is designed to give the feel of the outdoors, with natural light, bars, ropes and a monkey bar.
“Fitness cannot be done chained to machines. It is about managing your body weight and having more control over your surroundings. Body weight exercises use the body as a tool; you can do it anywhere, even outdoors,” he says.
Ahmed’s workouts include mobility drills, push-ups, squats, frog leaps, and guerilla walks.
The advantage with body-weight workouts is that they are pain-free. They are easy to do, and use your body’s resistance to burn fat, improve balance, flexibility, endurance and strength without the need for machinery. “They will help improve your mobility and prevent injury. If you do the right form of training, you can be fit and healthy, and build a great physique,” assures Ahmed.
At: AKRO, Linking Road,Khar (W).
Kiara Advani, Yasmin Karachiwala and Huma Qureshi; (below) one of the exercises on the circuit
What is it?
Celebrity fitness trainer Yasmin Karachiwala is kicked about a new fad that she’s introduced to Bollywood’s swish set. “In circuit pilates, we have stations with different pilates machines. People have to move from station to station within a given time frame,” says Karachiwala of Body Image Personal Training Studio. The trainer who has worked with the likes of Kareena Kapoor Khan, Katrina Kaif and Sonakshi Sinha, has just introduced Alia Bhatt to the workout.
The first round lasts one minute, the second for 45 seconds, and the third round, 30 seconds. In between each round, there is a two-minute break for simple cardio. There are four machines used in this workout — core activation is done on the reformer, lower body strength on the chair, upper body strength on the trapeze and balance on the coralline.
Circuit Pilates is a whole body workout. “It improves your coordination, core control, gets your heart rate up, improves upper and lower body strength and balance, and the circuit has a bit of cardio too,” says Karachiwala.
At: Body Image Personal Training Studio, 101 Classic Corner, 133 Hill Road, Bandra (W).
Mobility/Stability training for movement
What is it?
Our body is made in a way that certain joints need to be stable while others need to be mobile for optimum functioning and good movement quality, says Urmi Kothari, IFAA Master Trainer and Founder of Kinetic Living. Any imbalance in this leads to injuries. For this, mobility and active flexibility combined with stability is crucial. “Mobility is the range of uninhibited movement available at a joint. Stability comes from the strength and adaptive nature of the muscles, tendons and ligaments around a joint,” says Kothari.
For a general fitness enthusiast, dedicated mobility, active flexibility and stability drills once or twice a week are sufficient. “This is a low-impact workout that involves stretching the muscles that tend to overwork, and tightening and strengthening muscles that tend to weaken. Using foam rollers can release knots in the muscles that occur due to over-training or over straining,” she adds.
Urmi Kothari; (inset) with model Dayana Erappa. Pic/Pradeep Dhivar
The benefits include improved posture at rest and in movement, increase in body awareness, reduced chances of injury in load bearing joints, increased energy efficiency due to correct weight distribution over the joints, and keeping the body supple and light. “People with back, knee, and hip issues are loving it because it restores their mobility” she says.
At: Kinetic Living, first floor, Fatima Villa, Khar (W).
Praveen Tokas with Emraan Hashmi
Strength and conditioning/ Exercise science
What is it?
Certified strength and conditioning specialist Praveen Tokas credits the booming sports market in India for bringing the strength and conditioning workout back into the public eye. It is a study course that applies scientific knowledge to help people and improve their physical abilities, Tokas has been using it extensively. “This workout is designed to make you stronger, leaner and energetic with the science of strength and conditioning techniques. It incorporates different components of fitness,” he says, adding that Emraan Hashmi and Imran Khan are doing offshoots of this method.
The workout has three phases. “It begins with mobility drills to open up the joints; the main section has exercises such as dead lifts, lunges, push-ups, pull ups and multi-joint movements; and the cooling down phase involves yoga,” says Tokas, adding that it needs to be done at least twice a week.
A tailored programme results in tougher ligaments, improved flexibility, and prevents injuries. Although it feels like a hardcore workout, Tokas mentions this routine can be customised. “Anyone and everyone can do it. You don’t need a level of fitness.” It also helps avoid under- and over-training, and angular movement training helps you finish your workout without feeling drained out.
log on to: praveentokas.com