You have probably heard of TRX Suspension Training. Over the last few years it has become a popular and portable way to keep fit and is a great way to get fit at the gym too. However, because in many of the exercises you are, quite literally, suspended, you can leave yourself open to injury if you are not sure how to use the equipment correctly or how to do the exercises in the right way. Learning some tips before you try TRX is the best way to achieve a thorough and effective way of getting in shape.
One of the first things you need to know about TRX Suspension Training is that it was devised with the Navy Seals in mind. The suspension gadget, made up of strap and handles, was designed as a portable training aid for elite soldiers to use to stay in shape when on operations. The device was simply wrapped around a pole or tree and provided resistance for doing knee tucks or pushups. The straps can also be gripped while leaning back to perform a variety of challenging exercises and a full cardio and weight-based workout.
In case you didn’t know, the Navy Seals have been through some pretty tough training and a very thorough selection process! Basically, we are talking about people who are at their physical peak and among the fittest people on the planet. This is a point worth considering when you are deciding whether to take up TRX. If most of your days are spent sitting on the sofa or at a computer and eating badly, this might not be the exercise you turn to first-off when you decide to get in shape.
It helps to be somewhat fit to start-off with. You might need some training sessions to get you prepped, or at least make sure a TRX expert is guiding you through the best exercises for you to begin with. If you’re in bad shape and don’t tackle the TRX workout in the right way then there is a risk of musculoskeletal and joint injuries, as well as hyperextension of wrists, elbows, shoulders, ankles and knees.
If you are not sure on how to incorporate TRX, it is worth seeing your doctor or a health professional before you start this, or any other strenuous program. You may need to build up your fitness a little first, to minimise the risk of accidents. There are other factors you need to be aware of too so that you can really take advantage of the real fitness plus points of TRX:
Core strength: One of the benefits of TRX is that in nearly every exercise you need to engage your core to steady yourself. This means building up this most essential of muscle groups. TRX is so efficient this that some people call it ‘yoga on ropes’. You do really need to have a certain core strength prior to doing TRX if you want to really benefit. If you are weak around your midsection, or suffer from a bad back or joint injuries, you run the very real risk of injury.
Work out progressively: If you really want to give TRX a go, it’s important to start simply and slowly progress to the harder or more intense workouts. This is so you don’t hurt your lower back area or midriff when doing the twisting motions. Don’t look at what other people are doing or what the limits of TRX. Instead of jumping in and heading for a big end-goal, set mini-targets instead.
Set your own limits: Safety being in control and not pushing too far beyond your comfort zone. You should stop the exercises if you are feeling discomfort or pain. If your own bodyweight is becoming a strain, you can change the angle of your body till it becomes easier to manage. The level of difficulty increases as the angle of your body increases. One of the best elements of TRX is that you have so many options when it comes to changing angles and, therefore changing difficulty levels. The challenge is in your hands.
Equipment safety: Whether you are using TRX equipment at the gym or perhaps at home or on the move, it is vital that you check it is set up properly. It needs to be at the right height and (this is important) securely anchored. This means you need a platform for installation of 2 metres wide by 2.5 metres long and a maximal weight of 175 kg. You need to make sure that the support is solid as it can be. And of course, before you start, make sure your hands are not greasy or too sweaty, as you will need a firm grip. Always hold both handles when doing your routines too! Being able to come along to a fitness facility that specializes in TRX is a great option. Not only are you working out in a professional fitness environment that is responsible for setting up equipment, but you can ask the advice of trainers too.
Feel fit enough to take up the TRX challenge? Don’t hang around! Get in touch and we will hook you up!