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Have Fun Working Up a Sweat

By Khristine Clark Hammond, MS CSCS

 

After nearly 20 years of working as a fitness professional, I have developed a discriminating eye when it comes to the seemingly unending stream of “new” fitness products in the market. Some turn out to be revolutionary, others are not. In 2006, I attended a conference where I learned about a new and effective workout known as “Gliding”. The idea was developed by fitness guru Mindy Mylrea while she was playing around with paper plates on the carpeted floor of her den.

 

The glider, which has become very popular among fitness professionals, utilizes two discs. Gliding discs come in two varieties. The nylon version is designed for hardwood floors and the hard Frisbee-like version is for carpet. You can either purchase Gliding discs online, or you can make your own using two potholders on hardwood floors or two Frisbees on carpet. Place the balls of your feet on each disc leaving your heels as a brake. Gliding allows you to replace abrupt, high-impact movements with low-impact fluid motions. The gliders work your core muscles as you try to maintain control and avoid slipping. Gliding can re-energize common exercises. Try these familiar exercises with gliders so you can have a new experience. (Remember to discuss with your physician prior to starting any new exercise routine.)

Lower Body Gliding Workout

For each exercise, complete two to three sets of 10 reps on each leg.

Back Lunge Slide

  1. Stand with feet hip-width apart, toe of left foot resting on the glider. Hold onto a chair for balance if necessary.
  2. Bend the right leg while sliding the left foot back into a lunge position, keeping the right knee behind the toe, torso upright, and abdominal muscles tight.
  3. Slowly slide your left foot back to the starting position and repeat for all reps before switching sides. Dumbbells may be held for added intensity.


Side Lunge Slide

  1. Stand with feet hip-width apart, toe of left foot resting on the glider. Hold onto a chair for balance if necessary.
  2. Bend the right leg while sliding the left foot out to the side into a lunge position, keeping the right knee behind the toe, torso upright, and abdominal muscles tight.
  3. Slowly slide the left foot back to the starting position and repeat for all reps before switching sides. Dumbbells may be held for added intensity.


One-Legged Squat

  1. Stand with the left heel resting on the glider.
  2. Keeping the abdominal muscles engaged and the torso straight, bend the right knee while sliding the left heel out in front, pressing into the floor with your heel. Squat as low as you can while keeping your knee behind your toe.
  3. Straighten the right leg as you slide the left foot back to the starting position.

 

Be creative, have fun, and enjoy the glide!