Tips for your outdoor buggy classes

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If you teach buggy outdoor fitness classes, my hat goes off to you.

It really does take a special kind of instructor to enjoy training in the outdoors in all weathers with mums and potentially screaming babies in tow.  Tee hee.

When I first started out, I set my postnatal classes up to be indoors only, and then the following summer, I decided to put an outdoor class on the timetable, mainly to target a different market and to see whether it would take off.

I was not disappointed and actually had very good attendance.

I can even remember one day where we were the only group of people in the park trudging through mud and getting soaked to the bone, but boy we had a good time.

The weather did not dampen our spirits.

The main reason I haven’t picked them up again in recent years is due to:

  1. time constraints – my timetable is pretty full and putting on another class for me, doesn’t necessarily provide the best use of time and/or profit
  2. venue – I trialled a few different parks/venues nearby to my indoor classes, but for whatever reason, they just weren’t ‘perfect’

Today, I’m sharing some tips for those of you who teach outdoor buggy classes to freshen up your exercise content, get your mums burning some fat and helping them return to their pre-pregnancy fitness levels.

Here goes:

 

OUTDOOR FURNITURE

Make use of outdoor furniture if your venue’s a park.  I’m talking mainly about park benches mainly here.

Let’s analyse a few moves you can do on a park bench:

  • Press ups
  • Tricep dips
  • Stand and sit (literally that – they sit on the edge of the bench with their heels under their knees and using their bum and not their hands – stand up)
  • Step ups (depending on the height of the seat, or just do foot taps instead)
  • Modified plank with knee lifts (set them up for press ups at the back of the bench and using their core, they slowly bend one knee/lifting the foot of the floor)
  • Knee lifts (in a seated position, engage core and lift one heel or foot off the floor to work the core)

 

ACTIVE REST

This is simply cardio, followed by core.

Here’s the instructions:

Pick a point in the distance that your mums can see and tell them that’s the cardio element.

So, essentially, you want them to walk to the edge of the park (or wherever) and then return to back to you.  (This is called ‘getting your clients to do the work here’ whilst you check Facebook – I’m kidding!)

Once they’ve returned to you, you then get them doing a standing (or a floor-based) core exercise if you prefer for x number of reps, sets or for a minute or whatever.

And, just keep repeating the process.

Off they go for a walk, then they come back and do the core-based stuff.

The cardio’s the active part.  The core’s the rest section.

Best bit is – the fast-walkers return back to you first and do ‘more’ core reps.  The slow-walkers walk slower and do ‘less’ core reps.

 

KEEP ON MOVIN’

Get creative here and think of exercises you can do that involve moving the buggy forwards or backwards, and mums get a good workout, and if anyone’s baby’s kicking off – they’ll be more settled too.

I used to like performing things in sets like a group-style circuit, using the buggy, so:

  • Walking lunges – you could do this forwards and/or backwards pushing the buggy as mums travel
  • Superman – stand on the left leg with your right hand on the buggy handle – push the buggy forwards with your right hand and take your right leg behind you then return to starting position and repeat.
  • Squats – push buggy forwards and backwards whilst mum squats down and returns to standing
  • Cardio – either using the buggy to walk to a designated spot in the distance, position the buggies in a circle and mums walk around the buggies waving at the babies as they go past, or whatever – the choices are endless!

And, there you have it!  My top tips for freshening up your outdoor buggy classes.

Obviously the only thing that’s constrained here is your mind, so get creative, walk over different paths and give your clients a great outdoor workout.

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