Circuit Training

Circuit training is a powerful form of physical training. It is essentially doing
specific exercises at a rapid pace, back to back. These exercises form a circuit of
exercises and you typically do a circuit 3-5 times, or sometimes as many times as you
can.

Circuit training can be used to develop various aspects of strength and conditioning.
It is a versatile training modality that allows many people to train at the same time
and can be used throughout the training year.

The principles of overload and progression need to be applied to circuit training to
ensure that the athletes achieve overload to stimulate adaptation to occur.
Effective instruction is required to ensure that circuit training is conducted in a safe
and enjoyable environment, where the athletes are gaining the desired training
benefit.

What makes circuit training so Successful?
It not only works your muscular system but it can also work your cardiovascular
system.

Sample circuit: with instructions and videos.

Each exercise should be done for 30 seconds with a 15 second rest between each exercise.

Circuit Sample

Station 1: Sit Ups

Muscle Groups worked:

  •  Abs,  Also helps train back/shoulder muscles

Benefits:

A routine sit-up workout trains your muscles, including your abdomen, back, shoulder, arms and hip muscles, to work together, which creates more overall body stability and balance, according to the Mayo Clinic. Sit-ups help define abdominal muscles. While aerobic exercise burns tummy fat, sit-ups assist in strengthening and toning underlying core muscles, according to the Mayo Clinic. Core muscles are engaged while helping to support and stabilize the body.Following a regular routine of sit-ups will keep your core toned and strengthened. A strong core will help you carry out other activities with more ease, such as lifting a box,playing tennis, playing with your kids,walking,running, or dancing.

Station 2: Jumping Jacks

Start with your legs side by side and your arms by your side. In one motion jump and spread your legs out to the side while your arms raise out and up over your head. Land in this position and then return to the starting position and repeat quickly.

Muscle Groups Worked:

Deltoids (important hurling muscles – around shoulders used for striking ball)

  • Neck,  Abs, Hips, Calves

Benefits:

The primary benefit from doing jumping jacks is that it elevates your heart rate. You breathe more deeply while jumping, which delivers oxygen to your bloodstream and ultimately to your muscles. You burn fat at a rapid rate, promoting weight loss.

Jumping jacks provide a full-body workout. You move all of your large muscle groups. Breathe deeply to engage your core so that you target your abdominal muscles as well. Jumping Jacks also help co-ordination which is important in football.

Station 3: Push Up

Muscle Groups Worked:

  • Shoulders, Triceps, Deltoids, Core, Chest, Tones arms

Benefits:

Regularly adding pushups to your workout won’t just strengthen your chest. It will also shape your shoulders, triceps, and glutes while toning and tightening your entire core.

High knees combine the typical running motion with exaggerated knee lifts. They are often used by runners and other athletes to improve running form as well as lower body speed, power, and flexibility. High knees really get your heart rate going. High knees help improve stamina.

Station 4: 2 footed jumping side to side over hurdles 

Muscles worked:

  • Quads, Hips, Ankle Muscles, Glutes

Benefits:

2 footed side to side jumps elevates heart rate as it’s a cardio workout. It also helps agility as well as working the above muscles.

Station 5: Spiderman Crawls (15m up, turn and back down)

Muscles Worked:

  • Abs, Inner Thigh, Glutes, Core

Benefits:

Spider-man crawling is a great easy way to start developing a midsection that Superman would envy. Spider-man crawling is done on the hands and feet with the butt held in a low position. The butt is down low, and the head is up to see where you are going. Just holding your body in this position takes strength. Getting used to being in this position builds strength. Reflexively, every time your hands and feet (especially if you are barefoot!) touch the ground, you reinforce strength and dynamic stability. The proprioceptors in your palms and feet signal your muscles to fire. If you get the chance, watch someone spider-man crawl. You will notice that their lats contract as soon as their hands hit the ground. This is also happening in the muscles you can’t see like the muscles of the rotator cuff. Spider-man crawling ties the core, the body, together and prepares it to transfer force. Spider-man crawling builds strength. Spiderman Crawls are great at working your core as well as great for cardio.

Station 6: Scissor Kicks

1.      To begin, lie down with your back pressed against the floor or on an exercise mat (optional). Your arms should be fully extended to the sides with your palms facing down. Note: The arms should be stationary the entire time.

2.      With a slight bend at the knees, lift your legs up so that your heels are about 6 inches off the ground. This is the starting position.

3.      Now lift your left leg up to about a 45 degree angle while your right leg is lowered until the heel is about 2-3 inches from the ground.

4.      Switch movements by raising your right leg up and lowering your left leg. Remember to breathe while performing this exercise.

5.      Repeat for the recommended amount of repetitions.

Muscles Worked:

  • Abs, Hips, Glutes

Benefits:

The primary muscle involved in scissor kicks is the transverse abdominis (stomach muscle), the deepest muscle in the stomach. The muscle aids in maintaining your stability, posture and balance. It also pulls the abdominal wall inward, and with the help of the rectus abdominis (stomach muscle) and the obliques (hips), it holds the abdomen flat. Because the transverse abdominis is involved in so many daily movements, it’s beneficial to strengthen the muscle through exercise.

Station 7: High Knees

Benefits:

High knees combine the typical running motion with exaggerated knee lifts. They are often used by runners and other athletes to improve running form as well as lower body speed, power, and flexibility. High knees really get your heart rate going. High knees help improve stamina.

Station 8: The Plank

Lie face down on mat resting on the forearms, palms flat on the floor.

Push off the floor, raising up onto toes and resting on the elbows.

Keep your back flat, in a straight line from head to heels.

Tilt your pelvis and contract your abdominals to prevent your rear end from sticking up in the air or sagging in the middle.

Hold for 20 to 60 seconds, lower and repeat for 3-5 reps.

Muscles Worked:

  • Abs, Back, Stabiliser muscles

Benefits:

The plank exercise is a great way to build endurance in both the abs and back, as well as the stabilizer muscles. This move is also great for building strength for pushups, an exercise that requires quite a bit of core strength. If you’ve a strong core, you’re whole body will feel/look better.

Station 9: Burpees

This is probably the toughest station of the circuit.

Burpees
1. Start in a standing position and bend your knees and place your hands on the ground.
2. Extend your legs back into a push up position. Bring your knees back in towards chest and stand back up.
3. This should be a continuous motion and be fluid.

Muscles Worked:

Nearly all of them. All Core muscles

Chest, Abs, Glutes, Deltoids, Hamstrings, Calves, Quads, Lower Back

Benefits:

Strength Training- Burpees are a great exercise in order to build and strengthen muscles. Some of the muscles worked during a burpee include trapezoids, lower back, pectorals, deltoids, triceps, hamstrings, glutes, calves, quadriceps, and abdominals.

Aerobic Exercise- Doing burpees will keep the heart rate up at a maximum rate.

Flexibility- Burpees provide an increase in flexibility in areas of the body such as the back, hips, legs, and core.

Weight Loss – Burpees are a great fat burner and can be used effectively to lose excess weight.

Cardiovascular Endurance- Burpees are useful for reducing muscle fatigue for long athletic events, as they improve cardiovascular endurance.

Tone Muscles- Because the burpees work numerous muscles and areas of the body, muscle tone becomes much improved with frequent exercising, creating a better looking appearance.

Time Efficient & Convenient- The burpee is a very convenient exercise; it requires no equipment and can be done almost anywhere.

Station 10: Side Plank

Muscles Worked:

Hip muscles, Glutes, Abs, Lower Back Muscles, Quads, Hamstrings

Benefits:

Top 5 Benefits of doing Planks

1.   Works your upper abs, your lower abs, your obliques, and your lower back (do standard and side planks to work your entire abs).

2.       Builds the stabilizer muscles.

3.       Builds strength for pushups.

4.       Promotes good posture and helps prevent back injuries.

5.       Teaches your abs to stay contracted in a regular standing position.

Station 12: 180 Degree Turns (Helicopters)

Two-footed jump.  Rotate 180 Degrees in mid-air. Hold landing for 2 seconds and then repeat in reverse direction.

Muscles Worked:

Legs, Glutes, Core, Abs

Benefits:

This is a plyometric exercise that will target your quads, hamstrings, and glutes while building explosive power and improving agility and coordination.

Also, since this is a plyometric movement that requires many muscle groups to work together, your cardiovascular system will be working hard and your body will require a lot more oxygen.

Is this a challenging exercise?  A big YES to that question!  The movement itself is fairly straight forward but the challenge comes with the jumping and turning part of the exercise.  Your heart pumps faster and harder and your breathing rate increases quite a bit to get that much needed oxygen to your muscles.  But…the rewards to doing this exercise and many others like it far outweigh the uncomfortable feeling while doing it.  You will burn more calories with this exercise than just a regular squat and if your goal is fat loss then definitely try adding this to your routine!

Station 13: Boxing

The main muscle group worked at this station is your arms. Shoulders and deltoids.

Muscles Worked:

  • Shoulders, Arms, Deltoids

The main benefits are speed of hands and cardio.