Hollywood fitness trends: All that glitters isn’t gold

Red carpet-ready celebrities stick to a strict fitness routine, often supervised by a professional. (Photos courtesy: Facebook)

Red carpet-ready celebrities stick to a strict fitness routine, often supervised by a professional. Their sleek silhouettes are often desirable and so many people seek to emulate their work out regimens, but should you steer clear of the latest Hollywood fitness trends?

Fitness trend 1: Waist training

The coveted hourglass figure, think Marilyn Monroe and Scarlett Johansson, is held up as the light at the end of the tunnel for many women. However, it is no secret that many celebrities use waist-training corsets to attain their seemingly tiny waists. Although stars including Jessica Alba, Khloe and Kim Kardashian and Brooke Burke have endorsed the corset, does it really work in the long-term?

While it does serve the aesthetic purpose of creating an hourglass figure, it does little for your health.

It is instead an easy, short term solution to a complex, on-going problem. With regards to physiology, when you work out with it or even just walk around with it on all the time, it restricts your breathing capacity and compresses your organs. However, it does help to promote an upright posture.

Once you remove the corset, however, the muscle imbalances and neurological dysfunctions cannot be fixed and your body could once again return to a bad posture.

Many people suffer with dysfunctional core muscles which means these muscles are only working slightly or not at all.

The deep abdominal wall, known as the TVA (core muscles) is ideally suited to perform a girdle-like supportive function (around your lower abs like a belt), allowing you to have a flatter belly. As woman are encouraged to wear the waist training corset whilst working out, it therefore neurologically tells the body it no longer needs to switch on the core muscles to support your spine. As a result, other muscles take over the role of the core and this creates further imbalance and dysfunction in the body.

Fitness trend 2: DVD home workouts

These workouts, often endorsed by Hollywood glitterati, do little to ensure correct posture when working out, and can therefore negatively impact your body.

Our bodies require our joints to be stacked accurately and when the correct muscles are recruited to support our body, it then becomes more structurally sound. Aligning our posture in the best possible way to reduce joint pain requires the correct stacking of our joints.

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In short, our shoulders should stack above our hips; our legs should then stack above our knees and then our knees over the ankles. If we don’t stack ourselves correctly, we will bend like a leaning sky scraper.

If the body is not stacked correctly, home workout DVDs can have a jarring effect on the joints and ligaments.

Due to poor muscle functions in our body, injury and prolonged pain can occur.

Fitness Trend 3: Crossfit classes

Crossfit, which is famous for its extreme workouts, can be harmful in some cases.

A proper, balanced workout should include three different types of movement on three different planes:

Sagittal Plane - Moving from front to back (basic squat, bicep curl, lunge).

Frontal Plane - Moving side to side (side lunge, lateral shoulder raise, lateral flexion of spine).

Transverse Plane - Rotational Movement (Baseball swing).

Movements through every plane of motion are essential to any exercise regimen. Biologically, we have evolved to move in multiple directions. If you analyze how muscular anatomy works by looking at most athletic sports, you will see that we are supposed to challenge our bodies in all planes. Sadly, over the last few years many exercise regimens such as Crossfit seem to be obsessed with one plane of motion - that plane of motion is the Sagittal Plane.

Functional training, if performed correctly, will lead to better joint mobility and stability as well as more efficient motor patterns. Therefore, any workout routine should involve all three planes of motion.

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Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 09:44 - GMT 06:44
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