Tag Archives: fitness holidays in barcelona

Hur du kan omvandla din semester I Barcelona till en hälso- och fitness semester

Personal training and fitness holidays in Barcelona www.barcelonabienestar.com

En semester kan betyda manga olika saker för olika människor.

Vissa ligger på stranden och njuter av solen. Vissa väljer en äventyrs semester för att utforska och uppleva sin destination. Vissa gillar sightseeing och andra väljer att lägga mer vikt på gastronomi fär att lära sig mer om en ny kultur. Vissa gillar sport-baserade semestrar för att utöva sin favorit sport, eller for att prova nagot nytt, som till exempel golf, ridning, skidåkning eller snowboarding, mountainbiking, surfa/paddle boarding eller vandring. Andra kanske vill ha musik och konst som huvud aktivitet pa sin semester.

Så varför är då Barcelona ett så bra val?
Därför att i Barcelona finns möjligheten att uppleva allt som jag nämnde ovan.

Fler och fler väljer att resa på ett mer organiserat sätt nu för tiden. Visst, dagarna då man bokade traditionella paketresor må vara över, då man numera använder internet mer och mer för att skräddarsy sin egen designer semester, men allt fler vill ha något konstruktivt att göra på sin lediga tid.
Men man vill inte enbart ha aktiviteter organiserade genom hotellet, där hotell chefen bestämmer när och var aktiviteten ska äga rum.
Man vill ha ett skräddarsytt, personligt schema som passar in med andra önskemål och tids-restriktioner.

Det är här vi, Barcelona Bienestar, möter behovet av våra klienter. Det finns ingenting som är omöjligt för oss att arrangera och organisera åt våra gäster, som kommer till oss från världens alla hörn.
Barcelona är en väldigt spännande och inressant stad och vi kompletterar detta med att ge våra klienter ett personligt schema så att de kan få ut det mesta av deras semester.

Vi erbjuder ett hälso- och välmåående paket baserat på klientens intresse. Fitness-aktiviteter såsom personlig tränaing, Pilates, TRX, boxning, träning med vikt-väst, funktions träning, HIIT samt program baserade runt en specifik sport, såsom Stand Up Paddle, skidåkning/snowboarding, surfing, vandring, mountainbiking, bergsklättring med mera. För alla dessa aktiviteter erbjuder vi inte bara träning, utan också tid för att öva och förbättra. Så du får tid på en surf bräda, i skidbacken eller i bergen om du vill, eller så kan du få ett träningsprogram med bas i Barcelona. Valmöjligheterna är oändliga.
Men det är inte bara fysisk aktivitet vi erbjuder. Vi erbjuder också en mängd olika hälso- och skönhets behandligar, inklusive massage, kostråd, viktminskning, ögonfrans böjning och förlängning, gel naglar och meditation. Vi kan också arrangera kulturella aktiviteter, inklusive konst och gastronomi, och vi ger råd angående alla aspekter av Barcelona, från de bästa restaurangerna till de mest sevärda siterna.

Vi fråntar stressen av att planera en semester, men du är alltid i kontroll så att du får exakt den semestern du vill ha och behöver.
Vi kan antingen planera enbart dina aktiviteter, eller så kan vi planera ett fullt paket, där vi bokar hotell, planerar måltider samt arrangerar transer till och från flygplatsen. Vad du än behöver.

För mer information, klicka på www.barcelonabienestar.com eller kontakta oss direkt och låt oss arrangera din drömsemester. En semester där du efteråt kommer återvända hem med en mental och fysisk tillfredställelse. Barcelona väntar på dig, och det gör vi också.

 

Stretching: When should you? How long? Why?

Chris Hunt Blog StretchingStretching: When should you? How long? Why?

www.chrishuntwellness.com

When is the best time to stretch? How long should we stretch for? Why should we stretch? Does Pilates help to improve flexibility in a safer way? All questions that provoke different opinions and attitudes. I have people come from all over the world to work with me here in Barcelona on my fitness holidays or retreats, and I also train teachers in many different countries, so I hear a lot of different ideas and opinions. So….

Today I want to talk about stretching. Whilst I write my articles aimed at fitness professionals to get different opinions, I also know that many members of the public read my blog as well so I want to make this post informative. However this is still a blog post so by its very nature it needs to be short and sweet.

Let’s start with what is not in dispute (at least I hope we can agree on this).

Your body relies on three main types of tissue when it comes to movement: muscles, ligaments and tendons. However, these tissues can become tight over time, resulting in a reduced range of motion and a higher risk for injury. Stretching can help remedy this problem, when used the correct way and at the correct times within your weekly workout schedule.

One of the main long-term effects of stretching is an increase in your overall flexibility. When you make stretching a habit, you slowly stretch out the connective tissues of your body. Over time, this lengthens the tissues, improving the range of motion in your joints, and in turn your overall ability to move. Stretching these muscles and connective tissues can also help relieve muscle stiffness and reduce the risk of joint degeneration.

More flexibility may also decrease the risk of injuries related to overstretched or overextended muscles and other connective tissues. This is true as long as stretching is thought of as a regular routine, instead of acute stretching directly before exercise, sports practice or a game. Stretching after exercise can also help reduce aches and pains, according to the American Council on Exercise. This is due to stretching’s ability to reduce the shortening and tightening effect of tissues that occurs after exercise and leads to aches and pains.

Static flexibility is stretching one muscle or joint for a duration of time, usually about 30 seconds. This method relaxes the muscles by reducing the amount of neural stimulation which also lengthens any tightness in the muscles and tissues. You should perform static flexibility after your workout, not before, to cool down and relax your body.

Dynamic flexibility is moving one or more joints or muscles in their full range of motion repetitively with control. This method increase neural stimulation, prepares your mind and body for the upcoming workout or activity and increase body temperature. You should perform dynamic flexibility before your workout or activity.

Since the body moves in three primary directions, perform your stretches in all planes of motion that your joint allows. For example, rather than stretching your shoulder in one direction, move your shoulder and together in various directions repetitively until it feels looser, such as over your head, out to the side, in front of you and across your body. Add a rotation to your arm and wrist as you move to experiment with different stretches.

Agreed? I hope so. But now let’s talk about the areas where there is less agreement. There is evidence that static stretching before a game or practice may actually hurt athletic performance (Dr. L.W. McDaniel). The negative effects of static stretching before athletic competition can last up to an hour after the stretching has been completed.

Several papers have been published which has produced a substantial body of evidence that stretching may not be the way to improve performance and decrease risk of injury. There are two studies that have reported that strength was reduced up to one hour after static stretching (Fowles et al. 2000] and Kokkonen et al. 1998). Another study that focused on peak torque during concentric isokinetic leg extension discovered that after one active and three passive stretches, strength decreased at both high and low speeds (Cramer et al. 2004)

So in conclusion, in most cases static stretching before exercise reduces an athlete’s power and strength. If the athlete participates in power or strength exercises acute stretching may not be recommended. For many competitive athletes warming up completely prior to competition and stretching after competition or training may be more important. By stretching afterwards the athlete gains flexibility without compromising power and strength. An additional consideration related to stretching would be to not over extend your range of motion (over stretch a muscle) this practice may cause muscle damage.

How does this evidence relate to the public in general, personal training clients and Pilates client’s in particular? What is your experience personally and with your clients? What are your routines for stretching with your clients?

Chris is an international Pilates presenter and educator based in Barcelona, Spain. He is the creator of Pilates EVO©, bodyFUNC©, and CEO of Pilates Rehab Limited and Sport Core Strength.  He also organises Pilates Carnival and Fitness Carnival, conventions where all profits go to local children’s charities. For more information about Pilates with Chris in Barcelona, please click on Barcelona Bienestar. To learn more about Chris, please read Just who is Chris Hunt anyway? You can also subscribe by completing the form on the this BLOG to receive articles and special offers straight to your inbox.

Chris pays all profits made from this BLOG to his charity partners. More details can be found by clicking on www.chrishuntwellness.com and selecting the “charity partners” tab.

 

What is the difference between Pilates and Yoga?

Chris Hunt Wellness Blog Pilates or Yogawww.chrishuntwellness.com

What is the difference between Pilates and Yoga?

“What’s the difference between Pilates and Yoga” is a question that I am asked probably more than any other, so I am sure all teachers have been asked this many times as well. It is clearly something that many people do not understand.

It’s been a warm weekend in Barcelona. The weather has turned a little so whilst it’s still hot, there is a slight freshness that is reminding everyone that the heady days of summer are passing and that autumn is not so far away now. The children are back at school and there is the usual surge of people wanting to get back into their fitness and health before the next holidays at Christmas and New Year. I like this time of year. The oppressive heat is dying down, and many of the younger people have returned to their colleges or work, so the demographic of visitors here in Barcelona is older and calmer.

During the weekend I was working with some clients who have travelled to Barcelona from Germany and Russia for one of my wellness and fitness retreats, and yet again, the Pilates or yoga question was asked. I like to let the Universe direct me to what my blogs should be about, so the message at the weekend was clear: what is the best way to explain to people the difference between Pilates and yoga?

In my experience, it’s quite typical that many yoga and Pilates devotees are passionate about their chosen discipline, but it’s clear to me that many members of the public do not understand the differences and are therefore not in a good position to decide which is best for them (or of course decide to do both as I do). As people are so passionate about their chosen discipline, if you ask one of them you are unlikely to get an objective and unbiased opinion.

Some Pilates teachers incorporate elements of their yoga practise into their Pilates teachings and vice versa, so sometimes it could be argued that the lines get blurred (can’t resist a musical MTV reference to Miley Cyrus, our twerking Pilates fan!) I use some Kundalini in my Pilates system Pilates EVO, primarily as stretches and transition movements.

So what really and simply is the difference between yoga and Pilates? How do you describe it to your clients who ask?
Let us use as our starting point the following statements and go from there:

Yoga is an ancient practice that focuses the body, mind and spirit. The yoga lifestyle upholds more than just a healthy physical lifestyle by embracing good moral values such as honesty and tolerance. Its intention was to join the individual spirit with the universal spirit. Pilates is a modern school of exercise developed by Joseph Pilates as a way to improve core strength and spinal alignment. Pilates combines flexibility, core strength and body awareness to support physical rehabilitation.

Ancient yoga practices were passed down individually between teacher and student, so there are many schools and types of yoga. Each school of yoga combines a series of postures, breathing exercises and meditation to form different routines. The repetitive movement of yoga can be very therapeutic while also building flexibility and strength. Yoga has also developed popularity as a great way to relieve stress. Exercises are completed on a floor mat and need no special equipment to begin.

Pilates improves your body from the centre outward by strengthening your core and improving your posture. Pilates is considered a resistance exercise to build muscle and support for the body while aiding flexibility. The core and spinal cord are the central and most important part of whole-body strength and awareness. The cornerstones of Pilates exercises include concentration, control, centring, breathing, flow and precision. A floor mat and specialized machines may be used in Pilates practice.

Pilates reigns supreme as the key to a strong core and improved posture. Practitioners experience stronger abdominal muscles and those hard-to-target obliques from holding positions and using resistance. Pilates exercises will make your body appear taller and leaner. You will also see improved flexibility in your hamstrings and hips. Yoga will provide the most improvement in flexibility. Holding poses while focusing on breathing stretches the body and relaxes muscles, and certain poses will target certain muscles.

So do we all agree? If not, can we all agree on a definitive explanation to clearly explain the differences, or in your experience do you not think we really need one?

Chris is an international Pilates presenter and educator based in Barcelona, Spain. He is the creator of Pilates EVO©, bodyFUNC©, and CEO of Pilates Rehab Limited and Sport Core Strength.  He also organises Pilates Carnival and Fitness Carnival, conventions where all profits go to local children’s charities. For more information about Pilates with Chris in Barcelona, please click on Barcelona Bienestar. To learn more about Chris, please read Just who is Chris Hunt anyway? You can also subscribe by completing the form on the this BLOG to receive articles and special offers straight to your inbox.

Chris pays all profits made from this BLOG to his charity partners. More details can be found by clicking on www.chrishuntwellness.com and selecting the “charity partners” tab.

 

Ideal body shape: Rebecca Judd Pilates backlash

Rebecca Judd Chris Hunt Pilates

www.chrishuntwellness.com

In my article today I want to ask you as a Pilates teacher, as someone who practices Pilates, or as someone who works in the fitness industry, a very subjective question: do you have an opinion of what constitutes a “Pilates body” shape, and how do you manage the expectations of your clients who do have such an opinion?

As an example, I’m going to talk about Rebecca Judd. Rebecca is a 31 year-old Australian model, television presenter and the wife of Australian Football League player Chris Judd. She caused controversy last week by posting a picture of herself on Instagram in a bikini (click here to see the picture in question).

She has been criticised before for looking “too thin” but says she has never had an eating disorder. Her weight was a talking point after she has lost her “baby weight” very quickly (she gave birth to her daughter Billie Kate in January and son Oscar three years before). In May, just a few months after giving birth to her daughter, she uploaded a slim bikini shot of herself showing she had already regained her pre-pregnancy figure. Last week she told Daily Mail Australia that morphing into her post-baby shape in record time was all down to hard work. ‘It’s all about Pilates, Pilates, Pilates, Pilates,’ she said. ‘I wish I could run but I just don’t have time. And I just work out on (husband) Chris’ reformer equipment all the time, in his man cave. And there’s a spin bike down there I use… it’s all about being fit and strong and toned.’

Some of the comments posted by her 196,000 Instagram followers criticised her whilst others praised her.

@harriet_rose asked: ‘How is this nice? Way too skinny.’ @wendyrpaton said: ‘I like following you Bec but please reconsider the message you are sending to young impressionable women. You don’t need to flaunt yourself like this. Use your beauty in a positive way and a less self-indulgent. I do think you are inspirational, please consider your message. Eating disorders are real and effect many young girls.’ @minnapurdue said: ‘Eat something. Unfollowed.’ @cina_bina wrote: ‘Omg @kaylahayes5 I would rather look the way I do now than look like this, this is so sad poor girl.’

But other comments supported her. @gabstarflossy added: ‘I think you look beautiful @becjudd don’t listen to the haters. Some of these negative comments are appalling. Some people have no idea when they say stupid things about other people.’ and renata_angarano_makeup said: ‘Well done @becjudd. Your discipline and healthy choices should be taken as inspirational. I can only wish to have as much discipline as you. To all the haters – if you all committed yourselves to exercise as much as you do to bitching, maybe, just maybe, you would be happy with yourselves too.’

So to return to my question for this article, do you have an opinion as to what is the perfect Pilates figure? Of course people will all have different opinions and ideas about what “their” shape should be, and there is not necessarily a right or wrong answer per se, but I am interested as to how as an industry we portray ourselves and our vision of health and fitness to our clients, and how we manage the expectations of our clients.

Chris is an international Pilates and functional training presenter and educator based in London and Barcelona, Spain. He is the creator of Pilates EVO©, bodyFUNC©, and CEO of Pilates Rehab Limited and Sport Core Strength.  He also created Pilates Carnival and Fitness Carnival, conventions where all profits go to local children’s charities. He organises fitness holidays and sports holidays in Barcelona, as well as retreats. For more information about training with Chris in Barcelona, please click on Barcelona Bienestar. To learn more about Chris, please read Just who is Chris Hunt anyway? You can also subscribe by completing the form on the this BLOG to receive articles and special offers straight to your inbox.

Chris pays all profits made from this BLOG to his charity partners. More details can be found by clicking on www.chrishuntwellness.com and selecting the “charity partners” tab.

 

Madonna’s Crotch and Pilates! It must be Friday


Madonna: Chris Hunt Pilates

www.chrishuntwellness.com

Celebrity posts always get a huge reaction in my blogs, usually negative in comments but very positive in the number of hits! So clearly some people feel strongly that I am wasting their time with such posts, but numbers never lie… 🙂

So this is my compromise. Friday is now my day for celebrity Pilates posts. #pilatescelebfriday As I have explained before, I am not obsessed with celebrity. I have never bought Hello Magazine. What I am obsessed with is Pilates. And whilst not every one agrees with me, it’s my opinion that if someone starts Pilates because their favourite celebrity does Pilates, then why not? If a celebrity tries to grab a few headlines by attributing his or her shape/success/abs to Pilates and a few million people read that article, what harm can that possibly do to Pilates? I think no harm at all because it’s our job as teachers to use that enthusiasm people have and turn it into reality.

I’ve had all the comments about glamorising Pilates, about how privileged celebrities are, about creating false hope, about living on a different planet from “real life”. Whilst I respect the opinion of everyone, it is my humble opinion that these people are missing the point of my posts and they are taking everything way to seriously. All I am doing is raising the awareness of Pilates. Plain and simple. And if you do not understand that, then I am sorry for wasting your time and please do not read my blog on a Friday! 🙂

Today I talk again about the Queen of Pilates, Madonna. It’s her56th birthday next week and still there is an obsession with her in the world’s media. This week she was pictured on a yacht with her family enjoying a summer holiday. Of course she is still the Queen of manipulating the media as well, as this week she posted on her Instagram account a picture of her crotch. To see the picture  and what all the fuss is about, click here.

She will be releasing her 13th studio album soon, which as one of her lifelong fans (I’ve seen her perform love a few times, the high-light was live at Wembley Stadium) I am looking forward to see and hear how she has reinvented herself again.

But of course, the thing I love most about Madonna is her Pilates practise. She has been a loyal Pilates fan for so many years now and her condition show’s that her commitment has been well worth it!

Madonna is a very worthy Friday Pilates Celebrity! Enjoy your day and your weekend. I’ll be back on Monday with a more serious article about Pilates, healthy and wellness. Until then….

Chris is an international Pilates and functional training presenter and educator based in London and Barcelona, Spain. He is the creator of Pilates EVO©, bodyFUNC©, and CEO of Pilates Rehab Limited and Sport Core Strength.  He also created Pilates Carnival and Fitness Carnival, conventions where all profits go to local children’s charities. He organises fitness holidays and sports holidays in Barcelona, as well as retreats. For more information about training with Chris in Barcelona, please click on Barcelona Bienestar. To learn more about Chris, please read Just who is Chris Hunt anyway? You can also subscribe by completing the form on the this BLOG to receive articles and special offers straight to your inbox.

Chris pays all profits made from this BLOG to his charity partners. More details can be found by clicking on www.chrishuntwellness.com and selecting the “charity partners” tab.

 

A Fitness Convention that donates profits to charity? That is a breath of fresh air!


PC Cropped Logo

I created Pilates Carnival with one simple aim: to promote and assist with the training of Pilates teachers… all over the world.
Chris Hunt Pilates
My passion
Pilates Carnival does this by providing free places to training courses, conventions and workshops, and by organising Pilates Carnival Conventions for teachers and experienced Pilates followers from all over the world no matter which school of Pilates they come from.
Chris Hunt Pilates Carnival
Pilates Carnival Conventions
The purpose of the conventions are to teach, learn, socialise, break down barriers. Share our passion and ideas. There is a full program of classes, workshops and seminars, and lots of socialising. The conventions are totally different to other conventions, with fresh new presenters, fresh new ideas, and working with a children’s charity as a partner, all profits are donated to the charity. Now that is a breath of fresh air? Pilates Carnival is not about egos, and there are no boundaries and no limits to what we can learn together.
Pilates Carnival Group
Pilates Carnival Barcelona April 2014
The next convention  is in Barcelona on 25, 26 and 27 April 2014. The charity partner is Fundació Pere Tarrés. This is a wonderful organisation which is doing amazing work with children of all ages.
If you want to get involved you can join the Carnival community by clicking on our Facebook Page and learn whilst giving at the same time. Or please spread the word by sharing this post with as many people as you can. What better way to make a real difference to you and to others who really need our help?
Thank you.

Chris is an international Pilates and functional training presenter and educator based in London and Barcelona, Spain. He is the creator of Pilates EVO©, bodyFUNC©, and CEO of Pilates Rehab Limited and Sport Core Strength.  He also created Pilates Carnival and Fitness Carnival, conventions where all profits go to local children’s charities. He organises fitness holidays and sports holidays in Barcelona, as well as retreats. For more information about training with Chris in Barcelona, please click on Barcelona Bienestar. To learn more about Chris, please read Just who is Chris Hunt anyway? You can also subscribe by completing the form on the this BLOG to receive articles and special offers straight to your inbox.

Chris pays all profits made from this BLOG to his charity partners. More details can be found by clicking on www.chrishuntwellness.com and selecting the “charity partners” tab.