Keen to jump on the fitness bandwagon, but don’t know where to start? The Weekly‘s guide to the best kind of workouts available in Singapore, and the best places to try them will set you on the right path!
The types of workouts to know
High-intensity interval training (HIIT) involves quick, intense bursts of exercise followed by short, often active, recovery periods. It keeps your heart rate up, builds muscle fast and burns more fat in less time. You get a metabolism boost for up to 48 hours after a HIIT session. Most are 30 minutes or less and only use your body weight, so they can be done at home, in the park, anywhere.
Boot camp training combines exercises that use your body weight, like pushups, lunges and squats, with running, jumps and other high-intensity aerobic moves. Some use traditional gym equipment like kettle bells. Routines are modelled on military methods for getting recruits into shape. Boot camp workouts are unique because they focus on total-body functional training. Most mix vigorous activity with short rests, so are considered forms of HIIT.
Yoga, a branch of classical philosophy in India, harnesses meditation, exercise, and breathing techniques to improve overall health, so an immediate benefit is an increased awareness of your body. It usually involves broad muscle groups and brings flexibility with more emphasis on mental wellbeing. Classes in Yoga can range from very gentle and restorative, to a challenging workout.
Pilates tends to focus on core strength as the main engine of physical fitness, by building the core through exercises that also develop muscle tone, flexibility and control of the body.Pilates also strengthens your pelvic floor muscles, upping your pleasure in the bedroom and making giving birth easier.
Dancing is considered a great way to get aerobic exercise and cardiovascular conditioning. It’s also a weight-bearing activity, which improves bone density (reducing the risk of osteoporosis). The up and down and side to side movements of dance can also activate and train many of your body’s smaller support muscles and tendons. Dancing also improves the “white matter” integrity of the brain, a kind of connective tissue. This tissue breaks down as we age, leading to a loss of processing speed and thinking and memory problems. Dancing, unlike walking or stretching, has been shown to preserve white matter.
Martial arts has two significant benefits: Cardio and weight loss. One hour of moderate intensity martial arts burns 500 calories. The repetitive moves of martial arts like karate or Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu will also build lean muscle. The higher your muscle mass, the higher your metabolism. Martial arts training improves your reflexes during the sport, and also gives you a faster reaction times during all other daily activities, such as driving. You’ll also hone your mobility and agility, which are vital in many martial arts disciplines.
Boxing delivers all these benefits plus a superbly toned, cut upper body.
Aqua Fitness, compared to swimming use a greater variety of muscles with calorie burning is comparable to brisk walking or low-impact aerobics. Exercising in water has many benefits. For one, the water is gentle on hips and knees compared to running and walking. And the resistance of water means each movement massages and drains the skin’s surface. This stimulates blood flow, reduces water retention and keeps cellulite at bay. Water exercise is also perfect if you’re recovering from minor injury, like a sprained ankle or shin splints as you avoid stressing the injured body part.
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