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Exercises

Non-Macho Exercise

Exercises Men Should Do, But Don’t

Fitness

These workouts might not look the “manliest” at the gym—but you need to incorporate them into your routine, says fitness guru Lee Bennett.

There are certain areas in the gym that seem void of men. You know the ones: The empty abduction machines or the stretching corner populated by women where the occasional bloke wanders over in search of towels before scurrying back to the weightlifting space. These areas have exercises that men should be doing but don’t, says Lee Bennett, cofounder of Evolve Fitness gyms in London. “People are getting more clued in about what you should do and what you shouldn’t do at the gym”, Bennett explains. “But there are a few exercises that fly below the radar”. Non macho exercises sure, but you need to make these exercises a part of your routine.

Flexibility
“You get a lot of guys, especially at body building gyms, who don’t really want to do lighter balance work”, Bennett says. “The thing is these exercises take time and you may end up doing it for 20 minutes and when you’ve only got an hour you want to spend all your time hitting the weights”. Bennett cautions that as men get older they have to make sure to work on their flexibility to keep joints safe. Incorporating stretching work like yoga and Pilates is great, as are lateral band walks, which improve hip and knee joint stability, areas that are vulnerable to injury as men age.

Scapular Retractions
Weak scapular retractors can lead to hunched shoulders. Bennett says doing regular scapular retractions—squeezing the shoulder blades together—can improve posture by strengthening back muscles. Good form is essential in exercise and this simple movement helps counteract the effects of hunching over our phones and computers for hours on end.

Walking Lunges
Bennett says men often don’t like doing walking lunges because of how tough they are. But they offer full-body benefits. “It’s a very taxing exercise because it incorporate glutes, hamstrings, quads, and core—pretty much everything”.

 

 

 

David Birtwistle

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