Staying safe while gaining strength

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If you could do one thing to improve your health, strength training should be at the top of your list.

But when it comes to lifting weights, safety is top of mind. That’s why FOX 13’s Jamie Tompkins recruited her friend, Quincy Sutton of QRUSH FITNESS, to share a few tips. He’s a certified personal trainer specializing in fitness nutrition, weight loss, sports performance, and corrective exercise.

The foundation of weight training begins with proper form. That’s why Sutton is sharing three exercises focused on form to get you started (watch the video above):

1. Squat (with two variations)

Sutton says to start off with your feet shoulder with apart and pretend like you’re sitting into a chair. All the way down, with a flat torso. To make it easier, grab a chair and sit down in it and stand right back up. To make it harder grab a dumbbell or a kettle or if you have a barbell you can put a barbell on your back as well.

“The squat is such a powerful move because it’s a functional movement you are going to do the rest of your life,” said Sutton. “On top of that, it’s going to use a lot of energy as far as your legs, your upper body, your core. It’s going to burn a lot of calories as well as get you stronger throughout the entire body feet up.”

2. Dumbbell bench press

“When doing this by yourself for the first time, make sure you have someone behind you to keep you safe whether it’s a trainer or a friend,” said Sutton. “You’re going to lean back. Feet are strong, back is flat, come down controlled, then push (your arms) up. The best way to think about this is to inhale on the way down, exhale on the way up.”

“Twist your hands, bring them to your knees, and use that momentum like a little roller coaster ride to get you back up,” he said.

3. Bent-over dumbbell row

“The third exercise we’re going to do is a bent-over dumbbell row. To set that up you’re going to hinge through the hips, making sure your back is flat, lean forward – knees a little bit bent – back is nice and flat, I want you to pull your elbows to the ceiling,” said Sutton. “As you perform the row you’re going to be getting stronger through your entire posterior chain as well as your biceps and shoulders, so it’s a very powerful move that hits a lot of different muscle groups at once.”

Sutton says it’s important to remember that everyone has a different starting point.

“If you need to make it a little easier to make yourself feel confident, then I suggest you do that, and you will get stronger every day,” he said.

Of course, always consult your doctor before you begin any type of exercise program.

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