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Fitness:  Basic Circuit Training

Working out What exactly is circuit training? It is the best way to continuously enhance mobility, stamina and strength. Circuit training uses exercises in groups of 6 to 10 that are done in one exercise after the other. Every exercise is done for specific repetitions or prescribed period of time before going to the next form of exercise.

Number of circuits and rest periods
The exercises on each circuit are divided by short and timed intervals of rest. Each circuit is divided by a rest period that is quite longer. The sum total of circuits done during training sessions may differ from about two to six, actually it depends upon your level of training (whether you are a beginner, intermediate, or even advanced), the length of your training and training objectives.

The first thing you need to consider in circuit training is the planning. Identify the exercises that can be done using the equipments that are available. Think of three to four circuits of about six to ten various exercises. Try to ensure in every circuit that there should be no two simultaneous exercises should be done on the similar muscle group.

Divide body into parts
Set up each circuit so that you can work each part of the body as upper-body, total-body, core, lower-body, and trunk and so on. Bear in mind that a warm up and cool down is essential. You can perform easy jogging, stretching and the like.

Here are some examples of different exercises that can be performed in sessions of circuit training:

  • For upper-body exercises you do bench dips, press-ups, bench lift, medicine ball chest pass and inclined press up.
  • The core & trunk consists of stomach crunch exercise, sit ups, back extension chest raise
  • For the lower-body, you can do compass jumps, step-ups, squat jumps, astride jumps, bench squat, hopping shuttles and shuttle run
  • Total-body exercises, treadmills, jumping rope, skipping and squat thrusts.
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Sample exercises for circuit training

The six exercises circuit training is made up of press-ups, treadmills, squat jumps, bench dips, sit-ups and squat thrusts. For the eight exercises, you can add shuttle run and back extension chest raise. The length for these exercises should be around twenty to thirty seconds for every exercise with thirty seconds rest or recovery in between exercises.

Training The duration or length can either be based on time or even set of exercise repetitions that can be completed in about sixty seconds of 100% effort. If the training is based on a number of repetitions, regular testing is needed to identify the maximum repetitions that can be performed in sixty seconds for every exercise.

Benefits of Circuit Training
  1. It develops one’s strength and as well as endurance.
  2. It is considered to be an appropriate exercise for training different sports.
  3. Circuit training can suit any age, health and fitness of most athletes by adjustment.
  4. It is very simple to do and can provide a full body workout.
  5. You can select various exercises to motivate you in performing these exercises. Mix up the fun ones with the ones you know you need most.
The downsides of circuit training are as follows:
  1. Many exercises require specific equipment such as is found in the gym.
  2. Large space is needed for the equipments and performing the circuit training exercises.
  3. Adding of equipments need specific monitoring on one’s health and safety. Consult a personal trainer or other qualified individual if you aren't sure.

An example of exercises that you can do includes warming up for ten to fifteen minutes with swimming, easy jogging, or even cycling and then does the exercises below in proper order. Move fast from one exercise to another, but do not perform the exact exercises too fast.

1. Run a 400-meter at a race pace of 5k
2. Perform five chin-ups
3. Finish thirty-six abdominal crunches
4. Fifteen squat thrusts together with jumps
5. Perform fifteen press-ups
6. Finish the squat of 30 body-weight
7. Repeat exercise number one
8. Perform the squat and ten pound dumbbell presses
9. Complete ten-foot (elevated) press-ups
10. Do a thirty-six low-back extensions
11. Perform fifteen bench dips
12. Finish fifteen lunges on each leg
13. Again, repeat exercise number 1
14. Repeat exercise two

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