Take your gym for a walk

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Last year Delhi got a fresh lease of physical fitness with the launch of 30 open-air free gyms at various spots including Talkatora Garden, Lodhi Garden, and Nehru Park. It was a breather for students and young professionals looking for a good workout minus the gym expenses. The trend has got bigger this year with even the hardcore gym-goers choosing to step out of the confines of a gym. Neighbourhood parks have turned into fitness zones swarming with personal trainers.

Get functional, get fit

Snapchat and Instagram stories on a Sunday are all about star friends sweating it on a flight of stairs or a new mother doing side bends in her room. Fitness workouts are no more about lifting weights in a gym or sweating it out on the treadmill. The key phrase is 'functional training' where people are training to actually be fit rather than just look fit. And yes, they do not need to go to a gym for that. Just know the moves and your gym could be anywhere. Your pillow could be a free weight to work your major muscle groups or your couch a workbench for a full-body muscle-strengthening workout.

Beyond Biceps

There is a roaring debate about 'gym fit vs actually fit'. Fitness isn't always what it seems to be. Says expert Nidhi Mohan Kamal, "Fitness is not merely a size or a weight game. While a decade ago people would only do weight training with a handful of cardio or stretching exercises, I now see people focus on functional training to strengthen core and improve overall balance and posture." She observes home-based workouts taking centre stage. "A functional training routine makes you less prone to injuries and means lesser dependence on machines. It means you can work out anywhere," explains Kamal.

Train for Life

One of the main reasons people are moving towards equipment-free, no-gym workouts is that they want their workouts to energise them and equip them for their daily rigours rather than simply sculpt them, says fitness expert Urmi Kothari. An open workout offers dynamism which many machine-based exercises may not. Most importantly, in our busy schedules, it offers flexibility of time and location. "We have to bring the gym into people's lives rather than bring them to the gym," explains Urmi.

Functional 5

Squats: Put simply, it is an exercise mimicking the simple motion of sitting on a low stool. It strengthens the lower body & can be done anywhere.

Lunges: Imagine taking big steps while walking. Now take these forward and backward steps in an open space.

Push Ups: Push your upper body weight with your hands to strengthen shoulders, arms and chest. Perfect your posture and keep raising the level of your feet by using a stool or bed.

Pull Ups: Hold your doorway or monkey bars in the park. Now pull your body with your hands carrying all your
weight up.

Twist & Turns: Do twists, turns, bends and basic ab exercises to strengthen core and spine. -By Nausheen Tareen

(Courtesy: The Times of India)

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