Fitness is universal. Good principles and proper techniques are evident in talented trainers across the Las Vegas Valley. Different coaches have different ways of explaining and illustrating proper technique, but the underlying principles are virtually the same.
Principles such as core activation, spinal alignment and proper hip extension are basic elements of healthy movement. Whether your goal is to get big, small or just look better naked, feeding your machine with the right nutrients and staying active definitely will be part of the program.
Today’s column features a guest coach who applies the fitness principles in a way that is different from what you see in most gyms.
Royce Laguerta is the owner of CrossFit Mountain’s Edge, a new CrossFit affiliate in Las Vegas.
Laguerta says CrossFit Mountain’s Edge is dedicated to improving the health and fitness of the community through an elite form of fitness. The aim is to turn ordinary people into extraordinary athletes.
The gym’s equipment includes ropes, kettle bells, pull-up bars, barbells, Olympic rings, boxes, medicine balls and tires. They all are used to improve functional movement.
Initially, you may wonder where all the machines are. The only machines in this gym are its members.
Laguerta says the emphasis is on gymnastics, weightlifting and metabolic conditioning. The gym constantly varies its modalities to create a balanced form of general fitness.
Laguerta drives a culture of members who are willing to push themselves beyond what they ever thought possible, to break both mental and physical barriers. In return, success goes beyond the gym walls and into their daily lives.
As part of Laguerta’s program, he teaches nine elemental movements to transition new gym members to a general CrossFit class and bring them up to speed safely. Laguerta says he strives to find the balance between safety and intensity.
A CrossFit class is more fun than it is initially intimidating. After completing an onboarding elemental program, members will have the skills to properly execute the most basic to the more complex movements.
Today we emphasize the “hollow body,” an exercise that gets drilled specifically in gymnastics until it is near perfect. It teaches proper body positioning in maintaining a tight midline through an array of movements. The movement requires a tight abdomen, tight glutes and tight upper back. Believe me, it is easier said than done.
Hollow bodies make you aware of your spinal alignment, and holding the same position until your core gives out is an effective way to ingrain a position into your brain. It also serves as protection for your spine.
Having confidence in your strength to keep a straight back will carry over to successful lifts both in gymnastics and weightlifting.
The exercises are called hollow bodies because of the “hollow” space created when done properly. The hollow body carries over to movements such as a gymnastic pullup. In a pullup, a tight midline is required, so practicing the hollow body helps improve athletes’ pullups.
Laguerta believes in simple coaching, so the fewer the words, the better. The goal is to take the most complex movement and simplify it to teach to anyone.
If you are a Las Vegas trainer and want to share your love of fitness as a guest coach, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Chris Huth is a Las Vegas trainer. He can be reached at email@example.com. Consult your physician before beginning any exercise program.