Supersetting and yoga controversy

Supersets have been discussed on my blog in the past. When it comes to strength training, I actually enjoy them. Using supersets in your weightlifting routine can help maximize your time, keep your heart rate up and give you an all-encompassing workout. I typically don’t enjoy spending hours working out, so any type of workout that provides a nice burn and benefits me in a short amount of time, is one that I’m always willing to try.

If you forget what it means to do a superset, don’t worry, I’ll review. When you complete a supersest, you simply pick two different exercises and complete them back to back. It’s beneficial to pick two exercises that work different muscle groups. Do a set of Exercise A, move right on to Exercise B, move back to a set of Exercise A, then finish out with another set of Exercise B. Superset 1 complete. Get it?

Here’s a quick 25 minute workout that will have your heart pumping and muscles burning by the end. Work at your own level and capacity. Use a weight that is challenging for you but still allows for correct form. I used 10lb dumbbells and completed sets of 15 reps of each exercise, but that does not mean that would be right for you. Find what is and build from there.

Superset 1:
Exercise A – 1-legged balancing bicep curls
Exercise B – Triceps dips on stability ball

Superset 2:
Exercise A – Squats with dumbells
Exercise B – Jump lunges

Superset 3:
Exercise A – This shoulder move (Thanks Ryan and Julie!)
Exercise B – 1-arm reverse fly

Superset 4:
Exercise A – V-ups
Exercise B – Plank twists

Repeat the superset sequence a second time except change Superset 2 to this:
Exercise A – Speed skaters
Exercise B – Squat jumps

*Make sure to warm up and cool down properly to prevent injury.

Now, moving on to the topic of yoga. Did anyone read the article in the NY Times? I know there are many yogis out there that are not too happy about the position taken in this article. In my opinion, I feel it can make people afraid of practicing yoga, which is the opposite of what yoga represents. Yoga is a place to let go of your fears and just be in the moment. It’s a place for calmness, for focus and spending time bettering yourself, both mentally and physically. With that being said, like any sport, workout or type of physical exertion, injury is always a risk. Since yoga has gained so much popularity, it has changed somewhat and many people don’t use if for what it is. Many people now jump into classes and push themselves without having a basic knowledge of the poses first. They try to compete with others in the class and that’s when injury is most likely to occur. Yoga isn’t a place for egos.

I’ve been lucky to have instructors that encourage students to have fun, try different poses, but most importantly, to work at their own level. If it hurts, back off. If you need a break, take one. The NY Times article was good in the sense that maybe it will make people more aware of this fact. What are your thoughts?

“For me, yoga is not just a workout – it’s about working on yourself.”