Up against the wall

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Posted on: 31st August, 2017

Category: Health & Lifestyle

Contributor: West Cork People

Of all the different feedback I’ve received of my column, one thing that keeps getting mentioned is the easy drills you can do, with no equipment and (almost) no planning. Like the Saxon Sidebend, which is great for strengthening the core and a very ‘easy-to-get-into position’ abs-exercise.

Another one of these easy-to-do drills is the standing push up which I’ll be detailing in this month column. It is exactly was it says on the tin. A Push Up performed standing up (against a wall or a door). It’s a great drill for your shoulders, back and chest, and performed strict (very literally speaking) it also uses back, buttocks, hamstring and calves.

I know we’re starting to pack the summer clothes away and pulling out the woolen sweaters and big jackets, but training shouldn’t be done just to look great on the few beach days. Training will make you feel great whatever season and it feels good being strong and healthy. The price we put on our health, is often one we only realise after it’s too late, when we get sick or injured. So a daily or weekly routine of some sort of physical exercise will not only benefit your mood but also your body and hopefully help keep it healthy for the rest of your life.

As always, if you’re not used to physical training or had a long break, ease yourself into the exercise, by starting in the easy positions. If you’re training already, I would suggest either starting with the harder positions or go to the floor and perform some good old-fashioned correct push-ups.

Because regardless of burpees and cross fit, fitness trends and yoga, push-ups are one of the kings of physical exercises.

Stand up Push Ups

To start the exercise, find a bare spot by a wall or door. Put your hands against the wall, at the same height as your shoulders, either just by your shoulders or next to. (The further apart your hands are, the easier the push up/out will feel).

Take two or three steps backwards, so you’re leaning against the wall, carrying most of your upper body weight on your hands. (The further from the fall, the harder the exercise will be for your core).

Now stretch your arms, while you keep your core and backside straight. (Think of your body as a plank, during the exercise. Tighten core and buttocks). Bend your arms slowly, and let your upper body ‘fall’ towards the wall, without slagging or ‘loosing up’ around your core and backside.

Push out again, so your arms are straight and breathe out, take a second and bend your arms, ‘fall’ into the wall again and take a breath. Remember keep your whole body ‘tight’ while you do this, so you not only work your arms, chest and shoulders, but your whole backside and core.

I’ll recommend three sets of 10 repetitions with hands quite wide apart, to beginners and for trained people, who still wish to do the stand up version, I’d recommend hands by shoulders and four to five sets, with 15 reps. This is it for this month, as usual if you have any questions you’re welcome to write me at: taniaskitchenfitness@gmail.com.

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Dúchas Clonakilty's first lecture for the Autumn promises to be of huge interest to all: Emerging from the Shadow of Tom Crean – The Parish Centre, Clonakilty, Thursday September 28th 8.30pm.

Lecture by Aileen Crean O’Brien & Bill Sheppard

In May 2016, Kerry man Tom Crean, along with Ernest Shackleton and four other crew members, landed the James Caird lifeboat on the rocky isle of South Georgia. The navigation of that small boat, across 1500 km through icy winds and towering seas, is regarded as the greatest ever feat of navigation. They then trekked across the forbidding and inhospitable mountains and glaciers of South Georgia to seek help for the rest of their crew, who were left behind on Elephant Island after their ship, the Endurance, was crushed by the Antarctic ice.

One hundred years later, Crean’s grandaughter, Aileen Crean O’Brien, set off with her sons and partner to follow in her grandfather’s footsteps. Join Aileen and Bill to hear of their adventures (and misadventures) on the Southern Ocean and the island of South Georgia.
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