Keep Fit Classes

By Frank Bolger - Last update

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What is it

Fitness can be broken down into five components: cardiorespiratory endurance (the ability of the body to provide fuel during sustained physical activity), muscular strength (the ability of muscles to exert force during an activity), muscular endurance (the muscles capacity to continue to perform without fatigue), body composition (the relative amount of fat, muscle, bone, etc. ) and flexibility (the range of motion around a joint).

Yet there is more to fitness than such a direct description of it components being fit also means being in good health. Being in good physical condition can help prevent certain diseases such as high blood pressure, diabetes, stroke, cancer, and heart disease.

What does it involve

Unfortunately, the process of attaining fitness is neither quick nor easy. When done correctly, it is a gradual, well-planned process. For best results, a fitness programme must be tailored to meet an individual s specific capabilities, requirements and goals.

A part-time course in Keeping Fit will ensure that this is indeed the case. Not only are participants given the guidance and advice so essential for achieving their goals, but they are also given the opportunity to avail of both accompaniment and accountability someone who is signed up on a Keep Fit programme is far more likely to get where they need to be if they are in an encouraging, co-operative environment.

This is one of the reasons behind the growing popularity of Fitness Bootcamps. These incorporate a number of different aspects of fitness such as cardio, circuit training, resistance and endurance. Another reason for their popularity is that they make exercising much more fun, and so represent an excellent way for those who are new to physical training to achieve their personal goals.

Callanetics classes are another fun way of developing fitness levels, improving flexibility and toning up. These classes are particularly good for conditioning the core and lower body (i. e. stomach, bottom, hips and thighs). Participants will have a warm up and cool down section, thus allowing muscle groups to stretch more effectively at a reduced risk of injury. Callanetics classes are suitable for people with a basic level of fitness as the exercises are slow and controlled, and involve no jumping or running.

Kettlebell training classes use an eighteenth-century Russian technique that allows users to build functional muscular strength by mimicking typical everyday movement using a single piece of equipment. Training with Kettlebells can help participants to increase mobility and strength, burn calories and improve their resistance to injury.

For those wishing to impart their knowledge of fitness techniques to others, there are a number of part-time courses offering qualifications in Personal Training of Fitness Instruction. Learning to become a fitness trainer involves taking a more in-depth look at functional anatomy and physiology, exercise physiology, nutrition and also exercise prescription. To become fitness trainers, participants will also need to develop a good level of familiarity with areas such as weights, circuits and body conditioning. Over time, students will develop the necessary skills to tailor exercise prescription to the individual s needs.

Most Courses in Fitness Instruction are ITEC (Irish Training and Education Centre) accredited. However, for those with a serious interest in becoming qualified trainers the best option is to enrol on a certificate course in Exercise and Health Fitness. The certificate is a professional qualification that is part of the NCEF (National Council for Exercise and Fitness) structure, which is affiliated with the University of Limerick.

Why do it

In addition to some of the advantages already mentioned, being fit also means having more energy and benefiting from better sleep patterns. A person who is fit is also able to carry out tasks more easily.

What comes next

Those with a certificate in Exercise and Health Fitness can go on to work as fitness instructors, personal trainers, gym instructors and fitness consultations. Holders of the Certificate in Exercise & Health Fitness can work as fitness instructors/personal trainers either for themselves or for a fitness/leisure facility. By taking further modules, students can go on to study for a Diploma or Degree in Exercise & Health Fitness from the University of Limerick.

At a glance

Fitness Bootcamps and Callanetics, Kettlebell and Fat Burning classes run for around 10 weeks and are available for between 50 and 215.
Certificate courses in Personal Training, and Health and Exercise Fitness are ideal for anyone with an interest in gaining a professional qualification in fitness instruction. Programmes run for 7 8 months and cost in the region of 2600.

Frank Bolger

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