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Featured, Fitness

Animal Flow

July 1, 2017

Flow and Learn to Move Better.

Burn Fat, Build Muscle, and Get Back to Your Primal Roots

Dublin-Animal Flow is at the top of everyone’s list for great new workouts that can be done anywhere, anytime.

Animal Flow is an innovative new fitness program that combines ground-based movement with elements of various body-weight training disciplines to create a fun, challenging workout that emphasizes multi-planar, fluid movement. Athletes and fitness enthusiasts of all levels will find significant benefits from the practice.

All animal movements place the body in a “four pillar” position, meaning your hands and feet are touching the floor. By using animal forms for exercise you will be experiencing Animal Flow’s unique multi-planar technique. Exercise becomes more fluid rather than compartmentalized.

Benefits:

  • Increased mobility
  • Fun way to improve your flexibility
  • Improved core stability
  • More Power & Muscular Endurance
  • Improved neuromusclular communication
  • New cardio conditioning that is never boring

Each class comprises of 6 components: Wrist Mobilizations; Form Specific Stretches; Activations; Traveling Forms; Switches & Transitions; and the Flows.

Where did the Animal Flow method come from? Who developed it
and why?

Animal Flow was created by Mike Fitch and his personal journey into bodyweight disciplines. Animal Flow is a combination of his experience with gymnastics, Parkour, hand balancing, circus arts, breakdancing, and traditional progressive body weight training.

While each of the bodyweight disciplines is unique in its own way, they all share common elements. One of these is the concept is “flow” where you seamlessness link the movements together. These movements are powerful for improving the function of the human body.

Animal Flow Classes So who can do Animal Flow?

Animal Flow is for everyone. No matter your age, fitness level, you will notice a change in the way you move.

Of course if you have an injury or recovering form a medical condition, you should consult your physician to get the green light.

Where you may have seen Animal Flow?

Animal Flow has been featured and covered by media all over the world, from IDEA Fitness Conference, Wellfest.ie, The Independent, ECA World Fitness Conference, CBS New York, LA Times, The Doctors, and Mens Health. Last year WellFest had Animal Flow workshops featuring Master Instructor Richard Scrivener from the UK.

Where can I take Classes in Ireland?

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NEW CLASS SCHEDULE (updated as of July 2017)

Strive Studio, 81 Ashgrove, Kill Ave. Deansgrange. 

animal flow dublin kaman

 

There are also other amazing instructors certified in Ireland at the Irish Strength Institute, Pilates Limerick, Setanta Fitness, and independently.  Don’t worry if you can’t find an instructor near you, more are getting certified soon(as you can see from below!)

Here are some other instructors doing classes in Dublin if my schedule doesn’t suit:

Wild Geese 14 Magennis Pl, Dublin

Taught by L1 Certified Instructor and  winner of IUKL World Kettlebell Championships Maria Moran at 7am every Thursdays. Maria does a great blend of mobility and Animal Flow moments. You won’t be disappointed.

Christchurch Fitness Centre  12 Bridge Street Lower, Dublin 8

Taught by Shane and Marcin every Monday at 6pm. Great fun with these guys. Beginners welcome.

FFS Gym  34/47 Lower Leeson St, Dublin 2

The team at FFS are gold. They have Movement & Mobility Classes which incorporates Animal Flow with other methods.

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Sweaty Betty Run Sale

Fitness

Secret to Getting Ahead

January 1, 2017

The secret of getting ahead is getting started. The secret of getting started is breaking your complex overwhelming tasks into manageable tasks, and then starting on the first one.

-Mark Twain

Have you ever wished for a few more hours in the day? Why is it that some people seem to get everything done effortlessly and others feel that time constantly eludes them? The secret to managing your time well isn’t working more hours or sleeping less. It is about prioritising the important things and learning to use the time you have more efficiently and effectively. The secret is working smarter, not harder.

Some of us, by nature, organise and get tasks out of the way before we relax, while others of us play first and work later. It is important to first recognise which type you are and whether your style is allowing you to have the life you really want. Maybe you are super-organised at work, but you’re burned out because you don’t know how to make time for yourself.  Or, maybe you are more free spirited person who knows how to relax, but are dissatisfied because you aren’t fulfilling your goals and dreams.

Rather than labelling yourself or beating yourself up, realise that time management is an area of your life that you can strengthen. Like a new muscle, it takes practice and repetition to make it stronger. To help you get started, here are some steps to streamline your days at work and at home. Try the first one or two that jump out at you:

  • Allocate time for planning and organizing.
  • Create to-do lists that are realistic, not intimidating. Use only one to-do list.
  • Under-schedule your time: Leave time for the unexpected and for interruptions. When you estimate how long something will take, add on a third of that time.
  • Schedule your time in a way that reduces interruptions that lower your productivity.
  • Practice the art of intelligent neglect: Eliminate trivial tasks.
  • Prioritize what is most important and do that first.
  • Consider your biological prime time: At what time of day do you work best? Plan to do your most important work at that time.
  • If you say yes to everything that comes your way, learn to say no.
  • Ask for help and delegate.
  • In the evening make your to-do list for the next day, so it will be out of your brain and on a piece of paper. Leave work with a clear head and a clean desk.
  • Acknowledge yourself daily for all that you have accomplished.

Also take a look at the two biggest hindrances to using time effectively: procrastinating and lacking purpose. We usually procrastinate when a task seems too daunting, too large or too complex, or when we feel we won’t be able to handle it. When you get that “deer in the headlights” feeling, try “chunking”: break the large task into smaller, manageable action steps and start with the first one. We also often drag our heels or use our time inefficiently because we are bored, unengaged and uninspired. The most effective people will tell you that they love what they do and are aligned with a greater purpose. When it comes to managing your time, you may need to ask the larger questions, “Am I doing what I love to do? Am I doing something meaningful to me?”

As you strengthen your new time management muscle, keep your focus on getting organised so that you can live the life you came here for. Instead of being a chore, good time management can be your ticket to more fun, greater satisfaction and a vibrant, exciting life.

Fitness

Rice Bucket Wrist Strengthening Exercises

May 18, 2016

The Rice Bucket Exercise is a simple but very effective exercise used regularly by American Football players to build arm and handgrip strength. It is deceptively simple: by simply pushing your hands – with fingers extended – into a bucket of raw rice, you will build strength from your fingers all the way to your shoulders.

Preparation:

  1. Fill a large bucket with raw rice to a depth of about 6-9 inches (the rice should be high enough to submerge your hand when fully extended).
  2. Place the bucket on a stable, waist-high table. Then, stand close enough to the bucket so that your lower abdominals are touching the bucket. Place your forearms against the inner side of the bucket while digging your hands into the rice. Remember, the deeper you go into the rice with your hands, the more resistance you will receive.

You can either do one hand and switch, or submerge both hands in the rice.

Basic Technique

Push your extended hand into the bucket with your palms facing outward. When your hand is fully submerged, grab a handful of rice and – with your fist remaining submerged in the bucket – slowly turn your wrist in a clockwise direction (towards your body) until your (clenched) palms are facing inward. Repeat.

Grab and Drop

Push your extended hand into the rice. When fully submerged, grab a fistful of rice, lift your hand and open your fist (dropping the rice) once you get close to the top of the bucket. Repeat.

 

Internal Wrist Rotation

With palms facing away from your body, push your extended hand gently into the bucket until fully submerged. Then rotate your wrist upward (fingers moving toward the inside of your forearm) while drawing your elbows close to your side. Repeat.

 

External Rotation

With you palms facing each other, gently submerge both hands. Then rotate each hand inward (thumb moving inward toward your abdomen) for as far as you are comfortable or until your palms are facing outward and the backs of your hands are facing each other with your elbows pointing out. Repeat.

 

4 Way Palm Drop

  1. Palms facing each other, submerge, grab, lift and drop.
  2. Palms facing away submerge, grab, lift and drop.
  3. Palms facing your body submerge, grab, lift and drop.
  4. Palms facing away from your body submerge, grab, lift and drop.

The Pincher

With hands submerged in the rice, use your thumbs to slowly pinch two fingers together, starting with index finger down to your pinky. Once you have done one cycle, go back to the 4 Way Palm Drop (internal and external) before coming back to this exercise for 1-2 more sets.

Cardio Palms

Open and close fully submerged hands quickly for 8-10 reps. Rest and repeat 2 or more times.

Featured, Fitness

Power of the Breath

January 8, 2015

Life is often stressful enough. Sometimes a glass of wine does the trick, or a bit of chocolate. But sometimes even that doesn’t do it. SO what can you do to relax?

Breathe…

Breathing not only helps you to calm your mind form your possibly hectic schedule or stressed out day, but for an expecting mum, it can help connect to your body and your baby.

Here are a few breathing exercises:

Continue Reading…
Featured, Fitness

Your New Year Resolution Here.

January 7, 2015
How to pick a trainer

January is one of the busiest day for gyms, it’s the day many start their New Year resolution to get healthier, skinnier, stronger for the year. Many can jump onto it carelessly and end up injuring themselves. The best way is to start slow and not burn out if you have never consistently maintained a fitness regime. Also consider hiring a personal trainer whether it’s just for a few sessions or a few months. A trainer can show tell you if you have any imbalances in your body, what your weaknesses are, and how to hit your goals.

How to pick a trainer? The majority will pick trainers by sex, physical appearance, personality, and price. Other factors you should be aware of when choosing a trainer; are they knowledgeable of the anatomy, the functionality of muscles, and joints? Are they passionate about what they do? What do they specialized in, and is that in line with what you are looking for? If they are training you at your home, are they insured? Are they punctual?

Once you find a trainer you like, try a session and test them out. The trainer should go over your medical history, help you determine your goals and give you a plan on how they plan on helping you achieve it.

Be wary of trainers that are just drill sergeants because you can jeopardize yourself and get seriously injured. Look for a trainer that motivates you, and pushes you to try harder without the injuries. For those that are unconditioned and haven’t seen the inside of the gym since last summer, it’s the slow and steady that will prevent injuries.

Fitness

Tummy Tamer 2015

January 1, 2015

 Boat Pose (Paripurna Navasana)

Benefits:

  • Tones and strengthens your tummy muscles
  • Strengthens your spines and hip flexors
  • Aids in stress relief
  • Improves balance and digestion
  • Stimulates kidneys, prostate, thyroid, and intestines
  • Stretches your hamstrings(great if your are a avid runner, or cyclist)
Instructions:
  1. Bend your knees, and shift your weigh back to your sitting bones.
  2. Using your lower abdominal muscle, lift bent legs until your calves are parallel to the floor.
  3. You can rest your fingertips on the floor while you are establishing balance
  4. Extend your arms at shoulder height, parallel to the floor. Palms facing in, thumbs up. Try to keep your shoulder blades relaxed.
  5. For an added challenge, you can straighten your legs. But make sure if you do straighten the legs, your back is flat and your chest is lifted. If you find yourself collapsing in either areas, do the modified bent leg version until you are stronger.
  6. Once the legs are up, draw the tummy muscles in, keep lower back off the floor and gaze at your toes.