Tuesday, July 02 2019

(The above video preview is for Noodle Core Mix, posted 11/11/15)

Noodle Core Mix is now streaming on the Fitmotivation website and I am super excited.  Okay…you are probably rolling your eyes and thinking, “why are you so excited Mark?”  I am excited because I practiced this routine for two weeks in the pool and really, really felt this workout in my torso.  Even better, my students love this routine and they are killing it – even the Bonus Round.

However, I think I am most excited about the second half of the video where I am filmed teaching the routine to my students.  Keep in mind this is a core workout that changes position from upright, to reclined, to suspended, side-lying, prone and kneeling.  In other words, it is a bitch to teach on deck.  Subscribers will get to see me TRY to teach the moves from a chair, with ladder rails and of course on the floor.  And they will get to see me trying to be very creative with using arms as legs. 

Now I am not saying that I am all that and more on deck, but I think this video will provide instructors with ideas for teaching challenging core movement from deck.   And yes, once again I screwed up while teaching my students.  This time I messed up right in the beginning.  Viewers will be able to see me do a few too many jogs in the opening segment, thus throwing the simultaneous action off between the deck instruction screen and the video inset screen of me in the water.  Fortunately, I figured out my ‘screw-up’ shortly into the routine with my class and got back on track.  

So what is core training?  In the past, we used to try and teach “isolation work” for the abdominals…during the ab portion at the end of class.  This style of isolated training has been pretty much disavowed by the fitness industry for the past several years.  Instead, the training wisdom now is to train all of the muscles in the torso and trunk as a core unit.  According to the article, Best Core Exercises, different experts include different muscles in this core unit, but almost all include Rectus Abdominis, Erector Spinae, Multifidus, External & Internal Obliques and Transverse Abdominis.  Many lists also include the supporting muscles adjacent to the core in the hip area and upper back.   According to this article, core training is summed up as being most effective when it engages many muscles throughout the torso that cross several joints and work together to coordinate stability.

Noodle Core Mix strives to nail this definition of core training with a variety of coordinated movements in various body positions that require core stability and movement.  This workout is very challenging and it is meant to be.  It is essential for modifications to be provided by the instructor.  And it is even more important for students to own their share of modifying.  When creating the routine I tried to provide progressions in most of the movement combinations.  Each combination starts with a base move, such as jacks, skis, kicks and jogs.  The fun begins as each base move then progresses into different body positions.  Students can go as far or as little into the progressions as they want to.

The recommendation for noodles used in this workout is the cheaper, less dense (Dollar Store) variety of noodle.  The denser, more expensive noodles would not work in this routine. The noodle needs to be flexible enough to wrap around the body in order to change positions and it needs to be less buoyant (dense) so it can easily be submerged for resistance and neutral buoyancy for older populations.  More fit students can progress to denser noodles over time.    

Between the Noodle Cardio Mix and Noodle Core Mix videos, you should now have oodles of noodle ideas for your classes.  In 2016, I will offer both of these routines in one CEC approved workshop - Noodle Cardio Core Mixes.  Interested in hosting workshops, feel free to contact me.

NOODLE ALERT!  Stay tuned there is more to come next month!  One of my Fitness Friends, Anne Pringle Burnell, will be filming a video that features some of her signature Aqua Pilates, which includes noodle work.

NOTE:  Because I enjoyed doing this workout in the water so much myself...and I REALLY felt it...I am considering recording an audio workout for it.  I would love to hear back from some subscribers who have been exercising to the audio workouts as to whether or not they would be interested in seeing this routine made into an audio workout.

Now get busy studying the Noodle Core Workout.  Your students be like - BRING IT!

Author: Mark Grevelding is the founder of Fitmotivation. He is also a training specialist and consultant with the Aquatic Exercise Association’s (AEA). Mark has been active in the fitness industry for 22 years as a group fitness instructor, personal trainer, international presenter and a continuing education provider for AEA, AFAA & ACE.