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SERGEANTMAJOR Posts: 6,415
2/14/13 5:30 P

The resistance bands which are associated with most Pilates programmes with which I am familiar are not strong enough to give adequate resistance in my opinion. I also do not think they are as versatile as the ones to which you can attach handles and add or subtract bands to match different exercises.

A Pilates Reformer, is basically a form of assisted bodyweight training, the Total Gym and Total Trainer are similar. All of them can be used for an acceptable strength building workout if used on a regular basis. I have a Total Trainer and also a Pilates Reformer, I am trying to sell the latter.

If you look at the hyperlinks in the general discussion forum at the Spark team Resistance band and bodyweight training you will find some excellent resistance band programmes.

SUMTHINGSPECIAL SparkPoints: (11,608)
Fitness Minutes: (20,284)
Posts: 413
2/14/13 3:04 P

How does that compare with Pilates? I got a reformer recently and I use it often - but wonder if I really want to make a difference - do I need to do something more? I already have resistance bands - and used them with a Pilates workout - I loved it. Is there anything specific you recommend for using them?

SERGEANTMAJOR Posts: 6,415
2/14/13 2:59 P


Kettlebells are not the answer for your situation neither are Bob Harper, JM or Tony Horton all are only in the business of selling things regardless of if they are qualified on the topic or not. Investing in a decent set of resistance bands will give you all you need for a comprehensive workout. You can get an inexpensive starter set at Walmart for $15 which includes three different strength bands, attaching handles, a door anchor and a DVD. A more upscale site for resistance bands is www.LifeLineUSA.com where you can find complete home gyms based on resistance band training. Check out the Spark team Resistance Band and Bodyweight Training for more information and ideas.

SIMPLELIFE2 Posts: 707
2/14/13 1:58 P

I wouldn't recommend it without a trainer. Also, it is very demanding. If you are fairly new to exercise or back after a layoff, you probably would only want to incorporate one or two KB movements into a full-body routine because you probably won't have the endurance to do much more with proper form. To prep for trying this, focus on strengthening your core and perfecting your form on squats and deadlifts.

BEANBYDESIGN SparkPoints: (31,282)
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Posts: 1,021
2/14/13 1:09 P

If you're looking for strength training that doesn't require scary equipment, look into Jillian Michaels' DVDs (30 Day Shred and Ripped in 30 are my two favorites - note that she also has a kettlebell one, which I'd skip if you don't have access to a trainer), and also Tony Horton's 10 Minute Trainer program. Jillian's DVDs only require 1 or 2 sets of handweights and primarily utilize body-weight exercises, and Tony Horton's program only uses a resistance band (which is included with the DVDs). Bob Harper also has an hour-long DVD that uses bodyweight and handweights - I think it's called Pure Strength - that I really enjoy, but given that it sounds like you're often pressed for time, that one might not be the best fit for you.

SUMTHINGSPECIAL SparkPoints: (11,608)
Fitness Minutes: (20,284)
Posts: 413
2/14/13 12:56 P

Yes - I know what you mean about the risk. Dh works late often - I homeschool 3 kids and have a baby with no family to babysit and most of my friends are pretty busy either homeschooling or with kids as well. So - I'm assuming the best thing is to forget about it - but thought I'd ask. I'm just glad that I looked it up here yesterday before actually getting anything - because I wouldn't want to find out the hard way.

Thanks, Sumayyah

BEANBYDESIGN SparkPoints: (31,282)
Fitness Minutes: (36,402)
Posts: 1,021
2/14/13 12:53 P

Is there any way you could squeeze in just 1 or 2 sessions with a kettlebell-certified trainer, just to learn the basics? My understanding is that kettlebells present a significant risk of injury if your form is not correct, and I don't think it's a good idea to try to teach yourself the proper form from videos or books without the supervision of a professional.

SUMTHINGSPECIAL SparkPoints: (11,608)
Fitness Minutes: (20,284)
Posts: 413
2/14/13 12:26 P

I love the idea of kettlebells, I'm just not sure if it is for me or not.

Essentially - I used to go to the gym regularly but homeschooling 3 kids with a baby it is just too difficult to make the time (travel, getting ready, etc.) I used to use the weight machines and loved it. The problem is - I don't have those at home. I had a routine I used at the gym and was hoping to find a way to replicate it at home with free weights. However, I recently found out about kettlebells and I am really interested.

The problems are: (1) no trainer (2) no time for a trainer

My ideal situation would be to find a way to learn it at home - but I worry about the possibility of injury since most people are stressing that you need a trainer. I would love to have the opportunity to try kettlebells as it would be an excellent way to achieve even more than I was able to with the weight machines. So, what do you suggest? Should I just try to do the routines with free weights or is it possible to do kettlebells on your own?

If anything - perhaps my situation will change some time in the future (just not any time soon) and I can work with a trainer.

Thanks, Sumayah

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