find-a-personal-trainerCategoriesBlog Fitness Center muscle workout Personal Training

How to Find the Right Personal Trainer to Meet Your Goals

Find the right personal trainer for your needs.

Fitness centers have a wide range of workout and training opportunities, but few are better for your goals to lose weight, be healthier, and gain strength than working with a personal trainer. These certified experts will work with you and motivate you along the journey to a better lifestyle and more fit body. Today, we’d like to discuss a few attributes that you can look for to find a personal trainer who will promote excellent fitness and help make your goals a reality.

Focus on Goals 

The top trainers in the industry will always be the ones that are focused on both short-term and long-term fitness goals. Your trainer should be ready to partner with you by figuring out which workout programs, classes, or even individual exercises will help you reach your goals in a timely manner. He or she must be able to identify when you’re ready to move to a new stage as you progress.

Plenty of Patience 

Whether you’re just starting out or have been in multiple workout programs in the past, the truth is staying fit can sometimes get frustrating. A great personal trainer understands that you may need to move and progress at your own pace. As you begin this partnership, he or she should conduct a fitness assessment and then figure out the pace at which you are most comfortable.

Communication

As with practically everything else, communication is key for successful personal training sessions. The process is actually a two-way street, meaning that you must communicate your goals and desires while your trainer must be available to answer any questions and to keep you motivated. This includes times when your trainer may not be present during a workout but is still able to communicate through text or other means.

Proper Education 

When someone sets out to find a personal trainer, many people don’t realize that they must be properly certified. A reputable trainer will be able to provide you with documentation showing that they’ve been certified in their area of expertise by an accredited organization. This may include the National Academy of Sports Medicine, American Council on Exercise, or National Strength and Conditioning Association.

Have a Great Personality

The last thing that you want is to enter into a training program with someone who has a lousy personality because it can be a severe detriment to reaching your goals and might even convince you to stay home. The best fitness professionals are the ones who come to work in a jovial mood and are always willing to assist as needed. This will help them connect with you more easily, which will be beneficial to everyone involved.

Professionalism

Although you want fitness instructors to be personable, it’s also important that they exude a certain level of professionalism. While the trainer and trainee relationship is often a close one, there should never be a time where you feel that the trainer has overstepped his or her boundaries or surpassed your comfort level.

Contact Fitness 360 to Find a Personal Trainer

Fitness 360 is the perfect place to find a personal trainer who will help you achieve all of your workout and health goals. To learn why our Clearwater fitness center has the best workout community around, give our staff a call at (727) 797-5100 today to schedule your first free training session.

dietary-supplements-for-weight-lossCategoriesBlog Fitness Center Nutrition

Advantages and Disadvantages of Dietary Weight Loss Supplements

Are dietary supplements good for weight loss?

It’s no secret that millions of citizens throughout the United States struggle with their weight. This struggle typically transcends gender, social status, finances, and various other categories. The good news is that now, more than ever before, people are looking for ways to reduce their weight so that they can feel better and live longer – which means there are more solutions! Just recently, we tackled one such solution by creating a brief nutrition guide for weight loss.

Today, we’re going to turn our attention to weight loss supplements, which contain a variety of ingredients such as vitamins, minerals, fiber, herbs, caffeine, etc. Some of these are used to boost energy, improve nutrition, and build muscle, but many of the most popular ones are those that help people burn fat. If you don’t know a lot about them, that’s okay. We’re going to be looking at the advantages and disadvantages of using dietary supplements for weight loss so that you can decide if they’re right for you.

Advantages of Dietary Supplements for Weight Loss

Dietary supplements for weight loss have been proven to be quite effective over the years, allowing people to reach their fitness and nutrition goals more quickly and effectively.

Here are some of the advantages of using these types of supplements:

Jump Start Your Diet

One of the hardest parts of any diet is biting the bullet and getting started. The use of dietary supplements for weight loss will often help you jump start your diet. This is especially true for people who have difficulty losing weight despite exercising and dieting. Keep in mind, however, that it’s best to take them under the supervision of a doctor and that they’re only recommended if you have a body mass index above 30.

Appetite Suppression

One of the most effective ways to curtail overeating and help you lose weight is to use methods that suppress your hunger so that you end up eating less. Drinking plenty of water is a popular way to achieve this, but dietary supplements can also be effective. That’s because they contain stimulants such as caffeine and other appetite-suppressing ingredients.

Effective for Weight Loss

Speaking in general terms, one of the biggest advantages of dietary supplements for weight loss is that they work. There are many different popular types on the market that people absolutely swear by whenever they’re trying to burn calories and shave off some inches. Although there’s no magic pill, per se, many people have made supplements a regular part of their weight loss plans.

Works While Resting

Weight loss supplements don’t care what you’re doing. Whether you’re pumping iron, doing cardio, or sitting at your computer, they’re always hard at work burning fat and helping you slim down. This is different from diet pills, which typically work by increasing your energy level to burn calories during a workout. Even when you’re sleeping at night, weight loss supplements are doing their job.

Helps Improve Health

The positive effects of dietary supplements for weight loss go far beyond simply burning fat. As the supplements help you lose weight, you’ll also see a decrease in blood sugar levels, blood pressure, and cholesterol, while experiencing an increase in your sensitivity to insulin. This means that your health will improve, you’ll have more energy, and you’ll be at a much lower risk of serious ailments.

Disadvantages of Dietary Supplements for Weight Loss

While dietary supplements for weight loss have been used by millions of people safely and effectively, nothing is without its drawbacks.

Here are some of the disadvantages of using these types of supplements:

Potential Side Effects

Although weight loss supplements are all-natural, meaning they don’t contain any chemicals with crazy names that no one can pronounce, side effects are still a possibility. You may experience painful stomach aches, diarrhea, or excessive weight gain when you stop using the supplement. This is one reason why you should always consult your physician before taking them. He or she will help you determine which supplements are the safest for you.

May Disrupt Metabolism

Maintaining a healthy metabolism will allow you to more easily lose weight. As we said above, dietary supplements for weight loss will suppress your appetite so that you’ll eat less food and, therefore, fewer calories. This is excellent when it comes to losing weight right away, but a big reduction of caloric intake will slow down your metabolism. This means that you may later find it more difficult to continue losing weight even with the supplement because of your slower metabolism.

No Safety Regulation

Unlike prescription medication, which is heavily regulated by the FDA, over-the-counter dietary supplements for weight loss don’t have any standards that they must meet and don’t require their approval. However, the FDA does monitor the safety and efficiency of each supplement after it’s been released. If one is found to be unsafe, they will issue warnings or ask that it be taken off the market.

Usually High-Priced

The truth is that many dietary supplements for weight loss are a bit pricey, but their effectiveness makes them worth the cost for many people looking for ways to burn fat and shed pounds. To save money, keep your eye out on two-for-one deals and stock up, if possible. Also, avoid cheap supplements because, as the old adage goes, you get what you pay for.

Fraud Can Happen

Since the FDA doesn’t regulate weight loss supplements, some companies will try to defraud consumers. Some of these incidents have proven to be unhealthy or even quite dangerous. If the FDA discovers that false or unsupported claims have been provided, they’ll take action, but you’re the first line of your own defense. Before you take any supplements, check them out thoroughly and ask your doctor.

Contact Fitness 360 to Join A Fantastic Workout Community

It’s always important to consider both the advantages and disadvantages of dietary supplements for weight loss before you begin taking them. With or without supplements, Fitness 360 can help you reach your health goals. As the leading Clearwater fitness center, we offer an amazing gym, personal training options, Les Mills classes such as Body Pump, state-of-the-art equipment, and much more. To sign up, give us a call at (727) 797-5100 today to receive 3 months at our fitness center free!

*Remember, always consult with your doctor before trying ANY dietary or weight loss supplements.

valentines-day-workoutCategoriesBlog cardio workout Fitness Center muscle workout

Valentine’s Day Workouts for You and Your Special Someone!

Don’t Skip a Valentine’s Day Workout

In just a matter of days, another Valentine’s Day will arrive and sweethearts around the world will celebrate their relationships. After the past year we’ve all been through, spending time with your special someone might mean just a little bit more. Even though we’re sure you’re excited to celebrate the holiday, why not add a Valentine’s Day workout to the festivities?!

Valentine’s Day is a unique holiday, as it’s usually celebrated between two people, rather than families and friends. This means that most of us will have a little spare time during the day to squeeze in a workout. Working out together can be a fun and unique way to set the day’s activities off. Get in a workout in the morning to energize you for the rest of your day together!

Or, you can close out your day with a workout and then enjoy a romantic night together.

Working Out Brings You Closer

There’s a reason people who love to work out at the gym will often look for partners who love it, too. Working out as a couple is a great way to stay motivated, but there’s also a biological element involved. As you work out, your body releases endorphins, those awesome little hormones that make you feel good. This means that not only does the act of supporting each other bring you closer together as a couple, but biology is hard at work, too!

Gyms Will Be Open on Valentine’s Day

Given the nature of the holiday, fitness centers will remain open during their normal business hours. Therefore, you have no reason to skip a session, even if you choose to shorten it a bit so you’ll have a little extra time with your partner. You can choose a Valentine’s Day workout in the form of cardio, a Les Mills class, weight training, personal training, or whatever else gets your blood flowing.

Quick DIY Home Workout

Even though there’s no reason to skip the gym on Valentine’s Day, it’s understandable that you might want to limit the time actually at the gym if you have big plans. If you’re looking for a quick workout that you can do at home or at the gym, try five sets of these exercises:

  • 10 Burpees
  • 20 Air Squats
  • 20 Push-Ups
  • 20 Walking Lunges
  • 20 Sit-Ups
  • 10 Leg Raises

Not-So-Quick Workout

Whether you don’t have big plans for the holiday or would simply like your Valentine’s Day workout to be more intense, we have a home and gym option for that, too. For each of the exercises in the following categories, perform two sets of 14 reps:

Core Set:

  • Russian Twists (7 each side)
  • Toe Touches
  • Straight Leg Jackknifes
  • Side Plank with Leg Lifts (7 each side)

Arm Set:

  • Bicep Curls
  • Tricep Press
  • Deadlifts
  • Side Bends (7 each side)

Leg Set:

  • Squat and Dumbbell Swing
  • Donkey Kicks
  • Split Squat Hold and Toe Raises
  • Side Lunges (7 each side)
  • Skaters (7 each side)

A Great Valentine’s Day Workout at Fitness 360!

If you’re searching for a gym you and your partner can hit on Valentine’s Day, check out Fitness 360! Our fitness centers are the perfect place for you and your special someone to workout in a stress and judgment-free environment.

Each of our centers has a variety of workout equipment, classes, and personal training sessions designed to help you reach your fitness goals.

Join today for only $2.14! You can also learn more about our 12 personal training sessions for less than $20 a week!

strength-training-tips-for-beginnersCategoriesBlog Fitness Center muscle workout

7 Effective Strength Training Tips for Beginners

Strength training tips for you!

You may be focusing on cardio and nutrition as a way to maintain body weight and lead a healthier lifestyle. However, do you fully understand the importance of maintaining a regimen that will also help build strength?

It doesn’t take long to start seeing the benefits of strength training, so if you haven’t already added this to your regular workout schedule, now’s the time. Since strength training for beginners is so important, we’ve put together some quick tips to get you started:

Begin with a Simple Regimen

If you’ve never tried a strength training workout before, or it’s been a while, it’s always best you begin with a simple regimen for at least a few weeks. This will help your body get into the groove and avoid potential injuries they can come with pushing yourself too hard, too quickly.

Start with these simple exercises:

  • Bench press
  • Squats
  • Push-ups
  • Planking
  • Deadlifts
  • Rows

Choose the Right Weights

While it’s true increasing the weight you use while exercising will help you build strength more quickly as you add on muscle, it’s easy to overdo it when you’re just starting out. If you’re especially new at strength training, you may want to opt for resistance training instead of lifting weights either with workout equipment or free weights. Rather than a sprint, think of strength training as a marathon.

Be Sure to Warm Up First

Strength training for beginners and experts alike can lead to injuries if you neglect to warm up first. Even if the injury isn’t severe enough to warrant a doctor’s visit, you could find yourself sidelined for several days or weeks while your body heals. Start off by doing some simple stretches to help prepare your muscles and joints, and then be sure to do a warm-up rep for each exercise.

Maintain a Proper Form

If you neglect to maintain the proper form for each exercise, the workout won’t be as beneficial and you could end up injuring yourself. You need to rely on posture, slow movements, and breathing. This can be a little tricky at first, but once you’re accustomed to it, proper form will happen without thinking. If you’re unsure of exactly what proper form looks like, ask a staff member at your local fitness center to show you.

Be Mindful of Muscle Groups

Muscular endurance is a big part of strength training, but overworking your muscles can be a detriment to building lean muscle tissue and may cause injuries. The basic rule is that you never want to work out the same muscle groups two days in a row. When you’re developing your strength training regimen, be sure to schedule rest days for each group.

Challenge Yourself Gradually

With any type of workout, challenging yourself is how you improve. However, it’s important that you don’t set unrealistic goals. Strength training for beginners should always include a few weeks of learning how to do each exercise instead of focusing on the amount of weight you’re lifting or how many exercises you’re able to accomplish. Then, as you push forward, you can give yourself more intense challenges.

Change the Routine’s Intensity

It typically takes approximately six weeks for you to see real improvement after you begin your strength training regimen. At that point, your body has grown accustomed to your current routine, so now it’s time to change it up. Some of the things you may want to do is increase the weight, replace or add in exercises, increase the number of reps, or change the order in which you do the exercises for each workout.

Contact Fitness 360 for Strength Training for Beginners

Strength training for beginners will be a lot easier if you follow these helpful tips, but the workout staff and personal trainers at Fitness 360 can make your regimen even better. If you’d like to learn more about the workout community at our popular Clearwater fitness center or have any questions, contact our team at (727) 797-5100 today.

is it safe-to-go-back-to-the-gymCategoriesBlog Fitness Center

Fitness 360 is Ready! Is it Safe to Go Back to the Gym?

Is it safe to go back to the gym?

Any infectious disease is always a health concern, but given the contagious nature of COVID-19, the coronavirus outbreak has changed the way that many of us do business and go about our daily lives. While there is definitely a light at the end of the tunnel, health and safety will continue to be a concern in the coming months.

A lot of people are ready to return to the gym, but they’re concerned with maintaining proper disease control and prevention guidelines. Let’s take a look at some of the ways that Fitness 360 has made it safe to go back to our fitness centers and what you can do to stay safe.

How Fitness 360 Is Keeping You Safe

Our fitness center in Clearwater is doing whatever it can to reduce risks of infection, which includes following accepted guidelines from the Centers of Disease Control. Here are some of the ways that we’re keeping our workout community safe.

Virus Guidelines

The coronavirus is spread through respiratory droplets that are expelled when we speak, cough, and sneeze. Our facility supports health guidelines that include social distancing and wearing face masks that reduce transmission.

Limited Capacity

The fewer people that are inside a facility at one time, the less chance that the virus will be able to spread from person to person. Therefore, we have reduced the maximum occupancy of our facility to reduce the spread.

Temperature Checks

One of the symptoms of the coronavirus is a temperature above 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit. Each person’s temperature will be checked upon arrival.

Any guests who exceed that temperature will not be permitted. Any employee will be sent home until their temperature is normal again.

Routine Cleanings

Although the virus does not seem to live on most surfaces for very long, there’s still a possibility. Fitness 360 has always maintained meticulous cleaning, but we’ve been able to exceed even our high standards.

Hand Sanitizer Stations

Hand sanitizer effectively kills the virus upon contact. Our fitness center has hand sanitizer stations available and we implore you to use them when you arrive, throughout your visit, and when you leave.

Closed Areas

Areas that promote groups of people to be gathered together will be either closed or limited. This includes showers, changing areas, and shared locker rooms. Some activities may be limited as well, such as group fitness workouts.

What You Can Do to Stay Safe, Too

As a matter of public health, it’s important that you take it upon yourself to stay safe from the coronavirus. Here are a few things that you can do while at the gym to reduce the risk of infection:

Wear a Face Mask

Face masks have proven to reduce the chance of respiratory droplets making their way to another person. Whenever you’re in the fitness center, be sure to wear a face mask for your own safety and the safety of others.

Socially Distance

Staying at least six feet apart from other people as often as you can is even more effective than wearing face masks. We implore you to do your part and socially distance as much as possible while you’re inside the gym so that everyone feels safe.

Wash Your Hands

They say that cleanliness is next to godliness, and right now, it could save you from getting sick. Whenever you use the restroom or finish a workout, take the time to thoroughly wash your hands.

Use Hand Sanitizer

Hand sanitizer is so effective at killing viruses that the coronavirus caused a shortage for a while. In addition to washing your hands, routinely use hand sanitizer for extra safety against getting sick. As we indicated above, hand sanitizer stations will be available, so please take advantage of them.

Wipe Down Machines

Wiping down a machine has always been the courteous thing to do, but now it’s even more important. Each time you finish using a piece of equipment, wipe off any areas where a part of your body came into contact with it.

Disinfect Items

If you bring any gym bags, clothes, towels, or other items from home, please make sure that they’ve been disinfected. Although the chance of transmission is low, this will further keep everyone safe.

Contact Fitness 360 for More Information if You’re Asking “Is it safe to go back to the gym?” 

Adding to our reputation as the most comprehensive Clearwater fitness center, we’re dedicated to keeping our workout community safe. If you have any questions about our safety protocols, personal training, Les Mills classes, or other programs, give us a call at (727) 797-5100 today to claim your $4 enrollment!

active-rest-daysCategoriesBlog Fitness Center

Importance of Taking Active Rest Days

Active rest days are important. Are taking advantage of rest days?

Working out can help you stay fit and healthy, but there is no denying that committing to a regular workout schedule is much more challenging than it sounds. To do this, you will need to be dedicated and determined, but some days, it can be harder than usual to find the motivation to exercise. If you ever feel this and start to get discouraged, know that you are not alone as everyone experiences these and has days where they do not feel like working out. One way to address this concern is by learning about the importance of taking an active rest day.

A common misconception about becoming fit is that you have to exercise as many days in a week as possible. Naturally, training regularly will help you reach your fitness goals. However, this does not mean that you should avoid having rest days and work out every day. This mindset is not only misleading but can also be harmful as you may overexert yourself and cause psychological stress.

When working out, your goal is to achieve an efficient work to rest ratio, so adding active recovery days to your routine is essential. Read on to learn about how you can incorporate these into your training and how to make the most out of your workouts.

Importance of Active Rest Days

Taking time off at least once a week is important to give your body and muscles time to repair. If you are training intensively in a gym, you are tearing your muscles and pushing your body, so once these heal, you can become stronger. Essentially, rest days allow you to recover your overall system to consolidate all the hard work that you have done.

One important thing to note is that an active rest day does not mean that you simply lounge around and do nothing. As the term suggests, you are still “active” but dialing the intensity down by doing much lighter activities throughout the day. Rest days can help balance your workout program to ensure that you get the results that you want, but aside from these, sleep and hydration are also crucial to help your body recover.

What to Do on Active Rest Days

Now that you know that rest days do not literally mean sitting on the couch all day, you may be wondering what you should do on an active rest day. During this time, you can skip on intense workouts and swap them for a light cardio or active recovery workout. Yoga is the perfect light workout since it is low impact but still promotes range of movements and meditation. Stretching and foam rolling are also highly recommended since these allow you to relieve any tension and strains that may have built up in your muscles.

You need not pressure yourself on what to do on a rest day, but you must still be mindful of your health. Take this time to spend time with friends and family, prepare meals in advance, practice mindfulness, take a walk outside to bask in nature, and generally move around without doing anything too intense. Do not overexert yourself on these days, but it can still be easy to go back to your old ways if you break your routine abruptly.

Frequency of Active Rest Days

There is no hard rule to determine how many days a week you set aside for rest, but you must always allot at least one day per week for this. If you are undergoing personal training, your trainer will likely recommend a certain number of days based on the type of workouts you are doing. The frequency may vary based on your lifestyle, training style and intensity, and other factors that can affect how long your body takes to recover.

Training rigorously will certainly help you stay physically active and fit, but as with anything else, too much can be harmful. When it comes to working out, active rest days are key to achieving the most efficient and effective results. If you are exercising everyday but see no results, it may be because you are not giving your body enough time to heal and rejuvenate.

Join our fitness community at Fitness 360 and get 3 free months at our fitness center in Clearwater!

leg-gym-workoutCategoriesBlog Fitness Center muscle workout

Leg Day Workout: Building Strength and Muscle in Your Legs

Leg Day Workout for Your Leg Training

When it comes to working out, it is important to target different muscles in your workouts to ensure you work all parts of your body. Without a doubt, leg days will always be killer, yet it seems extra challenging to build strength in your legs. That said, doing a leg gym workout can be difficult in itself, but pairing this with back exercises can have even more benefits than you may realize. Working the two body parts on their own will be effective in itself but putting the two together can make a world of difference.

 

While it can be extremely tempting to skip on leg day because of how painful it can be, your legs and back engage the largest muscle groups in your body. Thus, working them can improve your overall body function, especially your lower body area. Whether you do your workouts in a fitness center or at home, there are tons of leg exercises that you can do to build strength and muscle.

 

Leg and Back Muscles

 

The leg muscles include your quads and hamstrings and calves. The major back muscles, on the other hand, include your lats, erector spinae, and trapezius. The lats are located at the back of your ribcage, from the bottom of your shoulder blades to the pelvis area. The erector spinae then stretches from the lower back to the neck, providing the much needed support for your back. Finally, the traps, short for trapezius, are one of the widest back muscles found around your shoulder blades and stretch from the lower back to the neck.

 

Essence of Following a Proper Form

 

When doing a leg gym workout, or any workout for that matter, following proper form is key to working your muscles effectively and preventing accidents or injuries. If you are new to fitness, it can be tricky to get into the proper stance and form for different exercises. However, practicing this is critical to ensure your energy is utilized in the most efficient way possible. While starting out, take your time to get used to the right form, as this will be more important than the number of reps you can do.

 

Getting personal training can help you learn more about proper form, but even without it, you can still teach yourself as you go along your journey. For leg workouts, you will often have to follow a hip-width or shoulder-width stance. Essentially, standing hip-width means that your feet align with your shoulder blades, while standing shoulder-width means your feet align with your shoulders.

 

Strength-Building Leg Exercises

 

Now that you are more familiar with what muscles to work, you can consider these effective exercises to include in your leg workout.

 

Deadlifts

While holding a barbell, stand with feet slightly wider than shoulder-width apart, bend your knees, bringing the barbell down with you. After that, head back up and stand straight. You will feel this the most in your hamstrings and glutes while also training your back. Make sure to keep the barbell close to you throughout and engage your core as you lower the load.

 

Sumo High Pull

The sumo high pull is similar to a deadlift, but this exercise requires a wider stance. Here, you lower into a squat, grab a loaded barbell or kettlebell, then hoist it to chin level. This exercise works your traps, upper back, shoulder, glutes, and hamstrings, and can typically be done more times than the regular deadlift.

Superman

Lie face down on a mat, with your arms and legs stretched out. Keep your neck neutral to avoid straining it, and as you exhale, lift your arms, upper back, and head off the floor. From afar, your body will look like it resembles a U-shape, but make sure you do not lock your legs when raising it up. This exercise will be a killer for your lower back, glutes, and core, but it will surely work those muscles effectively.

Glute Bridge

Lie on your back with your knees bent and feet at least hip-width apart and flat on the ground. Lift your hips until your shoulders, hips, and knees form a straight line, then squeeze your glutes and keep your core engaged. This exercise works almost every muscle in your lower body, particularly your glutes, quads, hamstrings, and calves.

Take your leg gym workout to the next level by joining Fitness 360 today and receive 3 free months at our fitness center in Clearwater!

proper-squat-formCategoriesBlog Fitness Center

Squats: How to Execute Squats with the Proper Form and Technique

What is proper squat form and the benefits of this workout.

When working out, whether it be in a fitness center in Clearwater or at home, you will likely be doing different workouts to target various areas in your body. As you go through your fitness journey, you will learn about different muscles and the right exercises to work them effectively. Without a doubt, one of the most basic yet most effective exercises you can do is the squat. This exercise can work your glutes, butt, quads, hamstrings, hip flexors, and calves, making it such a dynamic move to include in any of your workouts.

Squats may seem simple to execute at first but following the proper squat form is much harder than it sounds, especially if you are a beginner. Kickstarting your fitness journey can be one of the most life-changing steps you take for your overall health and well-being, but it is understandable if you feel intimidated by it. That said, as you go through your journey and learn more about exercises, different squat variations will certainly become a staple in all your workouts.

The big question now is: How do you execute the proper squat form? Learn about the right technique when doing this move, along with the common mistakes that people often make with them.

Proper Squat Form

Knowing how to do your squats properly will ensure that you work the right muscles and prevent straining any area or causing injuries. Take note of the following steps and reminders to learn how to squat correctly and get the most benefit out of your workout:

  1. To start, stand with your feet slightly wider than hip distance apart, with your toes facing the front.
  2. Pull your shoulders back and lift your chest as you bend your knees and ankles and pull your navel back to engage and tighten your core.
  3. While keeping your upper body straight, lower down as if you were sitting on an invisible chair. Your torso may tilt naturally, but make sure to keep your shoulders back and chest up. It will also be harmful if you force your upper body to be too rigid or erect as this can strain your knees, so go as low as you can without tilting your upper body too much. Another important tip is to keep your knees in line with your toes and prevent them from going past your toes. Additionally, stretching your arms out can give you extra balance when doing the squat.
  4. As you go back up to your starting position, straighten your legs until you are standing. Avoid locking your knees and keep your heels stuck to the ground to work your glutes effectively.
  5. Depending on your workout, perform the squat for 10 to 15 reps or until failure.

Common Mistakes When Doing Squats

Squats are considered to be compound exercises since they work multiple muscle groups at a time. While they are focused on your leg muscles and hip flexors, they also work your abdominal muscles to maintain balance and bear your body weight. Likewise, if you throw in a weight like a dumbbell or kettlebell while squatting, you are also working your upper body. Indeed, there are tons of squat variations you can do, making them such a go-to exercise.

No matter what squat you do, following the proper squat form as explained above is essential. To ensure you do this, take note of the common mistakes that people may unconsciously do, so you can avoid them as best as you can:

Overhanging Knees

One common mistake is allowing your knees to go far beyond your toes, which can cause added knee stress. As much as possible, try to keep your knees in line with your toes, while still permitting movement to avoid causing strain on your hips.

Ignoring the Core

Squats are often assumed to be leg exercises alone, so most of the focus tends to be placed on the leg muscles or buttocks. Engaging your core, however, is crucial as you lower down into the squat position. Your core serves as a stabilizer to give you more power and help you keep your balance.

Leaning Forward

When doing a squat, try to stay upright as best as you can. The common analogy is as if you were sitting on a chair, so avoid leaning forward as much as possible. Keep your back straight, shoulders back, and chest out. You can lean forward the slightest, but do not go lower if you are already leaning forward too much.

Learn more about squats and join Fitness 360 today to get 3 months free!

disinfecting-gym-equipmentCategoriesBlog Fitness Center Lifestyle

How Fitness 360 is Keeping Our Fitness Centers Covid-19 Free

Fitness 360 is actively disinfecting gym equipment in all of our fitness centers!

COVID-19 has definitely been hard on a wide variety of businesses. Sadly, many businesses aren’t likely to recover as concerns over the virus continue to be at the forefront of so many lives. This includes gyms, which have often been forced to close due to safety concerns.

As the most reputable and health-conscious fitness center in Clearwater, we knew that it was imperative to develop responsible guidelines to ensure a clean gym at all times. To put your mind at ease, we’re going to explain some of the techniques that we’re utilizing such as disinfecting gym equipment, educating our staff, and other such measures.

Thorough Cleanings

At Fitness 360, we have always prided ourselves in maintaining a clean environment for its members and visitors. Even before the virus existed, our fitness club was the cleanest in town. Since then, we’ve increased the frequency of our cleaning procedures along with more specific instructions for the entire staff. You’ll notice that we wipe down the workout equipment, door handles, keyboards, sinks, toilets, faucets, and other high-touch surfaces.

Disinfection Protocol

Disinfecting gym equipment is perhaps the most important part of our cleaning procedure since this is what our members use most. There are specific household disinfectants that are made for use against SAR-CoV-2, which is the virus that causes COVID-19. Our facility keeps plenty of these disinfectants on hand, so you can rest assured that every piece of equipment is not only being cleaned but also disinfected, which will kill the coronavirus on any surfaces.

Social Distancing

Maintaining social distancing of at least six feet apart has become instrumental in staying safe from COVID-19. Fitness 360 enforces a social distancing policy at all times. We realize there are situations where this may be more difficult to maintain and our staff is always standing by to assist you. If you have any concerns with members not following the rules and they’re making you feel unsafe, speak up to us rather than being confrontational.

Wearing Face Masks

Since the virus spreads through droplets that can be expelled while you breath, cough, or sneeze, it’s important you wear a face mask while at our gym. Some members have expressed concern about wearing a mask while exercising, but it has proven to be entirely possible, even during a personal training session. If you have any questions or concerns, our staff can show you how to exercise with a face mask safely.

Employee Training

Fitness 360 wants every member or visitor to our gym to feel entirely safe. We have dedicated a good amount of time training our employees in a variety of techniques meant to maintain a clean and safe gym at all times. This includes disinfecting gym equipment, conducting thorough cleanings, showing members the proper way to exercise, and more. We are positive that this specialized training will create a safe, welcoming environment for everyone.

Smaller Classes

At this point in time, extremely crowded rooms aren’t very safe because they create an environment where COVID-19 can more easily spread from person to person. To help ensure that everyone will be able to maintain social distancing, we are reducing the size of our classes for the foreseeable future. This includes all of the Les Mills classes that we offer. But don’t worry, – you’ll find the same level of quality that you always expect at our fitness clubs.

Posted Notices

In addition to employees helping keep our facility virus-free, you will find posted notices both inside and outside the gym. These will basically provide notification that members and visitors are expected to abide by the social distancing and face mask rules that we’ve set forth for everyone’s safety. These postings are clearly stated, but if you have any concerns, please don’t hesitate to ask one of our staff members.

Contact Fitness 360 and Join Our Workout Community

Fitness 360 is dedicated to disinfecting gym equipment, maintaining social distancing, teaching our workout community, and other related tasks to keep our members safe. To learn more about our safety guidelines, Les Mills classes including Body Pump, or if you’re looking for a personal trainer in Clearwater, give us a call at (727) 797-5100 today.