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Saturday, July 12, 2014

Body Weight Training with the TRX Suspension Trainer: Part V - Upper Body Training

The TRX Suspension Trainer is quite a toy that can be used to train any part of your body as you may have seen in the previous four segments of this series. We focused in body parts in stages of what I feel is most important to important and now the final piece of the puzzle. We worked on the core because it's what separates your lower body from your upper body. Then we worked on your lower body because it's what has to carry you all day. Now we will address the upper body because it's what completes what is left of your body.Your upper body handles pretty much ever other task that doesn't fully require your legs. You grasp with your hands, pull and push with your arms and then of course your arms are led in many different directions by your shoulders to complete the tasks required by the arms. Your back muscles aid many of the requirements when pulling. Make sure that when you train your body you focus on balanced training principles. Some people love working out on their chest so they focus a lot of work on that. Some people love flexing their arms because they want to show off their guns. That's all great but if your muscles aren't worked out in a balanced manner you will end up having weakness in the area you workout the least. Imagine having big arms but no chest or a big chest and no arms. We all know those folks with the big upper body and the skinny legs. You probably remember Popeye the Sailor cartoons. Popeye had these enormous forearms which were very un-proportional in comparison to the rest of his body. Then you have Brutus who's belly was over enlarged compared to the rest of his limbs. Those are cartoon characters but people too actually have some of these unbalanced traits in real life either because of under-training, over-training or lack of exercise. Wimpy love hamburgers so his belly reflected it. When you exercise please remember to balance some cardiovascular activities with endurance work, strength training and core work. It great way to make sure you do balanced training is to consider the exercise you are performing. Are you flexing at your arms as much as you are extending? Do you do equal amounts of Chest Presses with Rowing exercises? Are you pressing upward as much as you are pulling downward? Are you flexing at the hips as much as you are extending? Here is a good suggestion on cycling your exercise regimen best known as Periodization. Start a week with 1 - 3 sets of 15 to 20 reps, the next week go train at 12 - 15 reps, then go for 8 -12 reps. Don't push to much to fast. Work up slowly but surely. Over time you will get the results you want. If you push to hard to soon you will get hurt just as fast or fail to make continuous progress because of poor progressions. Journal your workout to see how your progress is coming along. The same holds true with your diet.
I found this great chart of upper body exercises using the TRX Suspension Trainer. Work on uni-lateral exercises before trying bi-lateral exercises when it comes to this style of training. When you work with free weights, you are better off doing the opposite to see if there is an in-balance in strength or endurance. For example, if you do arm curls try and see if you can crank out the same amount of reps with both sides. If you can't then don't do barbell curls until you have equal strength on both sides. If you find these in-balances it may not be a good idea to use the TRX until you balance both sides. Download the workout chart here!
To Purchase a TRX Suspension Trainer which comes with a Guide Click Here: TRX Suspension Trainer

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