Con­quer the moun­tain climber

Women's Health (UK) - - CONTENTS -

Climb­ing, you say? Up a moun­tain? It sounds hard. Well, yes, there’s a rea­son they don’t call this one the ‘down­hill stroll’. But the fact that 30 sec­onds of the move is a quick and easy way to get your blood pump­ing might ex­plain why it’s a fre­quent fix­ture in any HIIT class. ‘The moun­tain climber is great to add to a work­out be­tween re­sis­tance sets to keep your heart rate el­e­vated – but it’s not an ex­er­cise you want to do in iso­la­tion,’ says bioki­neti­cist David Fabri­cius. At­tempt to do it for more than a minute and you’ll probably find your el­bows be­gin to buckle.

It might look like one for leg day, but it ac­tu­ally tar­gets the core and shoul­ders – those leg move­ments just help to raise your heart rate and in­crease the burn. ‘Your core, chest and tri­ceps will be do­ing most of the work here,’ ex­plains per­sonal trainer Aneeka Buys. ‘To reap the re­wards, fo­cus on form, oth­er­wise you risk shoul­der strain,’ she cau­tions. To start with, get down on all fours. Your hands should be di­rectly be­neath your shoul­ders, your arms fully ex­tended and your fin­gers fac­ing for­ward, slightly spread apart. Then move into a high plank, keep­ing your back straight and your head in line with your spine. From this po­si­tion, you’ll be work­ing your up­per and lower abs. Now pump your knees to­ward your chest one at a time. Breathe through it, this halfminute will be over soon.


You’re preg­nant or suf­fer from lower-back pain, es­pe­cially if you can’t keep your spine neu­tral through­out the ex­er­cise.

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