Health & Fitness

Four Exercises that trainers swear by

Battle ropes: Full-body workout incorporates compound movements such as squats, overhead presses and deadlifts. PHOTO | FOTOSEARCH
Battle ropes: Full-body workout incorporates compound movements such as squats, overhead presses and deadlifts. PHOTO | FOTOSEARCH 

Training specific muscle groups on different days of the week is helping many fitness freaks perfectly shape their bodies.

The workout known as split routine where, for instance, one sets aside Mondays for legs and abs, Wednesdays for chest and back and reserves Fridays for biceps, triceps and shoulders, gives you discipline and tones all body parts in the long run.

But finding gym-time and committing to a workout routine is difficult.

Instead of stressing about whether you will find three days in a week to keep up with the split routines, fitness trainer Hezekiah Ambuka suggests a full-body workout that targets different muscles.

“Unlike the split routines, full-body workout incorporates compound movements such as squats, overhead presses and deadlifts,” he says.

If designed and executed correctly, full-body exercises help someone build muscle, lose fat, increase strength and improve performance.

Hezekiah has come up with a full body workout plan called ‘Hezburntone’ which incorporates of high intensity interval training (HIITs) and high intensity training (HITs).

As opposed to the normal full body workouts, his involve practicals rather than a theoretical instruction by the fitness trainer.

“With ‘Hezburnton’, we switch between HIITs and HITs as I lead from the front. This means I work out with you as opposed to bossing you around,” he says.

He says the minimum healthy time for a full body workout should be 45 minutes. As the body gets used to it, you could extend your exercises up to two hours.

If you walk into Hezekiah’s class, these are the workouts that you will do that will shape your whole body and he swears by them;

Hula hoops

Aside from bringing fun to a workout regime, swinging the hula hoop is a great workout. Minutes of hooping result to burning of calories targeting major muscle groups like the glutes, quads and abs.

The health benefits of this iconic toy include a toned mid-section, firmer rear and improved posture.

Stair stepper

This form of workout simulates the motion of climbing a flight of stairs. A session could extend to 30 minutes or more.

This is a common compound workout that is not only effective, but also helps one achieve cardiovascular fitness and tones the calf muscles and hamstring.

Whether you opt to do this at the stadium stair case or at the gym, the end result is that this is a weight bearing exercise will strengthen your bones.


Commonly known as plyos or jump training, plyometrics are quick exercises done within short intervals with aim of increasing body power (speed-strength).

Examples of plyos include split jumps, squats, running as well as bonds and hops of over 10 to 20 metres. Most of the plyos do not target your arms but upper body moves such as medicine-ball throws can be incorporated to cater for this body part.

Battle ropes

Battle ropes burn fat, build muscles and is a perfect cardio workout. They are the latest fitness fads.

Most times called heavy ropes, the battle ropes provide high intensity workout which gets your body moving in new ways.

The ropes are caused to move in waves through whipping, slamming or dragging.
The catch is in the ever-changing movement of the ropes which sort of tells whether you doing it correctly or not.

Battle ropes work on the muscles in the back, abs and glutes as you incorporate movements such as jumps, squats and lunges.

The length and width of the ropes plays a major role in the intensity of the workout. The longer and thicker the rope, the more force you will need to use to make waves.