It’s that time of year when just the thought of wriggling into a swimsuit can be scary. But it doesn’t need to be that way if we accept and embrace the fact that we come in different shapes and sizes.
Virgin Active’s biokineticist and personal trainer, Richard Woolrich has devised summer workout plans for five different body types and says “training for your own shape means you set realistic and attainable goals and you balance out your physique in a way that brings confidence”.
Find your shape below, and get on the right track to your summer body.
Weight carried on the hips, thighs and behind.
Defined waist with narrower shoulders than hips.
Pear shape exercises:
Rows and reverse flies back exercises to help improve the shape of the back and develop your upper body.
Deadlifts will help tone and recruit the large muscles of the buttocks.
Static lunges allow you to focus on good form and lateral lunges will help recruit the muscles of the quadriceps and the inner thighs.
Carry fat and weight around the middle.
Lower body is generally slimmer with good shaped legs.
Prone to having a rounded shoulder line and a flattish derriere.
Apple shape exercises:
High intensity cardiovascular interval training to help increase calories burnt per session.
The biggest muscles, legs in the case of apple body shapes, will burn the most calories, but also keep focus on the body as a whole and strengthen all the muscles. Where is the exercise/activity here
The plank and Pilates play a big role in increasing the strength of the core.
The Inverted Triangle
Narrower hips than shoulders and the shoulder line is fairly straight and squared.
The waist may curve in slightly.
Often this body type is referred to as “the swimmer’s body.”
Inverted Triangle shape exercises:
Squatting, lunging and deadlifts are great for achieving increased muscle mass and tone in the legs and glutes.
Twisting type exercises play a role in improving shape and tone around the mid-section and also helps sculpt and shape oblique stomach muscles.
Low weights and high repetition to ensure nice tone and shape without increasing the size of the muscles.
A combination between an inverted triangle and triangle.
Hips and shoulders are more or less the same width and in proportion with a defined waist.
Many hourglass figures also have a big bust.
Hourglass shape exercises:
Double arm rows, bent over rows and reverse flies can bring shape around the shoulders and strengthen back muscles – trapezius and rhomboids – and help maintain great posture.
The plank will help maintain shape and tone around the abdominals. Side plank and rotational exercises performed with control can also make the midsection look amazing.
Combination exercises like glute bridging with tricep extension works well. Step ups with bicep curls is another great combination routine.
Shoulders, waist and hips are more or less the same width.
No obvious curves.
Ruler shape exercises:
Core work and Pilates will improve and tighten the abdominal area.
Glutes exercise are a big focus to get shape around the hips – deadlifts, step ups and squats are all great for the lower body.
Chest press, back rows and shoulder work – frontal and lateral raises can build the shape and size of upper-body muscles.