What are the components of a good exercise program?

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A good exercise program should consist of several key components. These include, Flexibility training (stretching), Cardiorespiratory training (cardio), Core and Balance training (abs and glutes), and Resistance training (weights). Each of these components provides a different benefit to your overall fitness program. When starting, select 1-3 exercises from each category.

A well rounded exercise program should include the following components: Flexibility training, Cardiorespiratory training, and Resistance training. Many different styles of exercise can be selected for each category. For instance, the flexibility portion of the program can include self-myofascial release, static stretching, neuromuscular flexibility, and dynamic flexibility. Cardiorespiratory training can consist of any exercise performed over a long period of time that increases the heart rate anywhere between light to heavy effort. Even doing a weight training circuit with low rest periods can be turned into a cardio workout. Resistance training should consist of a workout program that focuses on the whole body and includes elements of balance training. The parts of the body you want to focus on are the Core (commonly referred to as the "abs", but also includes muscles that support and stabilize the pelvis and spinal column), lower body, chest, back, shoulders, and arms.

What exercises you include into your program are entirely up to you. First of all, you should enjoy the activity that you are doing. When you enjoy a particular exercise activity, you are more likely to stick with it. Also, a well-rounded program should help to reduce your risk of injury and improve long term health benefits. Lastly, the right fitness program will help you achieve results! Seeing and feeling yourself make progress will also help you to keep that program going.

The elite trainers and other health providers on Sharecare are always available to help answer any of your questions regarding which exercise program is the right one for you. As always, please consult your primary care doctor before starting any type of exercise program.

Every exercise program should include warm up, flexibility training (stretching), core & balance, strength training and some type of cardio, followed by a cool-down. The warm up is to help prepare your body for the workout. Flexibility helps prevent injuries and also prepares the body for the workout. Core is the most important because the core muscles are like the foundation for a house for your body. If they are not strong enough to do their job, it can lead to muscle imbalances in other parts of the body that can lead to injury. Balance challenges those core muscles, but also helps prevent falls, and ultimately injuries. Strength training or resistance training is important because it helps build muscles. If your goal is weight loss, strength training is important because lean muscles burn more calories than fat. If your goal is to build muscle, well then, you can’t build much muscle without strength training. Cardio, no matter what you like to do, is important for keeping your heart healthy and helping burn those extra calories! Finally, a cool down is important to stretch the muscles you worked and bring your heart rate back to resting rate.

Chris Embry
Fitness
One of the key components of a good program is progression.  It is important to make sure you are constantly improving.  When weight training, try to increase the weight or the number of repetitions.  When performing cardiovascular exercise, increase the time or intensity.  Every workout does not have to be a personal record.  But the general trend should be moving forward.  You need to give your body a reason to change and adapt.
A good exercise program should consist of flexibility training (stretching), balance, core (abs), resistance and cardio training. There is also a warm up and cool down period. Flexibility or stretching helps improve our range of motion and get our muscles ready for the exercise to come. Balance training because everything is more fun on one leg. But seriously, having good balance can prevent falls and injuries in the future. Core work is important because we need strong abdominal muscles and lower back muscles, resistance training builds muscle, which is what we want, higher ffm or fat free mass and lower body fat percentage, and cardio helps get the heart rate up and burn the body fat we want to loose.

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Exercise provides many health benefits - from fitness to increased physical and mental energy. In order to prepare yourself for a exercise routine, you need to research which exercise is right for you and how to fit a new exercise ...

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.