For those of you who aren’t aware of the mountain climber, it is a simple routine that can produce some excellent results. As the name suggests, the exercise is very similar to climbing a mountain, only that it can simply be done at home, on the floor.
You can start by positioning yourself in the push up position. Once there, you bring one of your knees up to the chest, as close to your shoulders as is possible for you. The further your knee gets stretched, the better it is for you. You can then take your foot back to the starting position and do the same thing with the other foot, and thereon keep alternating. Remember to keep your core tensed throughout the process, as that is the part that you are focusing on. As you get used to it, you should pick up the pace while keeping good form.
People assume that doing ab-crunches is the easiest way to build a toned stomach, but that may not be entirely true. That doesn’t burn a lot of calories and takes up a lot of time. The mountain climber is twice the work you do when you lay down on the ground and bring your knees to the chest, like so many people seeking a toned stomach do. The mountain climber is a simple exercise which does not require much time or effort on the part of the trainee, as would otherwise be required in going to the gym or purchasing ab-pro exercise machines.
Biologically, the exercise burns a lot of fat. If done with consistency, you will begin to notice a stark difference in your look and the abs very quickly. As you progress with the exercise and develop a level of comfort with it, you can induce variances to it as well. For instance, instead of keeping your feet grounded, you can push them against the wall (be suspended in midair) and then follow the same routine. It will be more strenuous, but it will definitely pay higher dividends.
During the exercise, some of these pointers will be of great help:
- Breathe steady, try to form a pattern or a rhythm, and gradually increase the pace.
- Keep your back and hips as low as possible. You will find it easy to raise your hips higher; don’t!
- Don’t slouch. Your back must be straight and your core must be firm.
- Take frequent breaks between sets, but make sure that you keep the breaks short. Take a 30 second break between sets, and two minutes between tri-sets.
It can be done anywhere, at any time. It has to be done quickly, since you have to work yourself up like an actual climber does. Another reason why the Mountain Climber is one of the best exercises is that it works the entire body, especially the torso. So the next time you play ‘Eye of the Tiger’ loudly and decide to convert some loose flab into a six-pack, try the mountain climber.
Kelvin wears many hats in the fitness and health industry. He believes in a practical, flexible and sustainable approach to bodybuilding. Initially Kelvin had started bodybuilding as a hobby which turned into passion and later, a successful career. He shares his expertise on strength training and body building to help the GFY community.
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