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7 Principles of Fitness

Updated on April 3, 2011

7 Principles of Fitness

These 7 principles of fitness are essential in developing a successful fitness and exercise program.

Regularity: To be truly successful at your new training program you must be consistent in your efforts to be consistent in your progress. Conditioning in all 4 components of fitness at least twice per week(three times a week would be better). You must be consistent in not only exercise but recovery as well. This means rest, sleep and diet must all be in sync with your goals if you want to see maximum fitness results in minimum time.

Progression: Exercise must be always increasing in intensity(ammount of resistance, or “how hard”) and/or duration(length of time the exercise is performed) to improve conditioning, if even by small ammounts at a time. This is probably the most important of the 7 Principles of Fitness. You can't get better if you don't push yourself beyond your comfort zone!

Balance: This is very important in the 7 Principles of Fitness. In order to be truly effective, an exercise plan must incorporate the first four components of fitness. This means, cardio, muscle endurance, strength and flexibility all need to be addressed to be successful and avoid injury.

Variety: Changing exercises from time to time reduces bordom and increases motivation. Also, variety will help you aviod plateaus in your training progress by creating muscle confusion.

Specificty: Focus your workouts around your goal by performing that activity as your main exercise, making everything else supplemental. If you're a runner, run. If you're a boxer, spar. This will seem contradictory to the other principles already discussed to people who do not have sport specfic goals. For all of you that fit into this category, feel free to skip this principle. For example, if your goal is weight loss continue to focus on a general plan encompassing a balanced exercise routine and an appropriate diet plan.

Recovery: They're are two methods of recovery, some studies show that one is more effective than the other and vise-versa. Try to find a balance between the two to reach maximum recovery between workouts Active Recovery: They're two parts to this method. The first is cool down exercises and stretching immediately after a workout. The second part is becoming more and more popular among atheletes because it is believed to speed up recovery significantly. On the days you are not working out or training you can use a short and light exercise routine such as going for a walk or a quick workout of bodyweight exercises such as squats and pushups. Passive Recovery: This is the most important of the two methods. It is simply resting and taking it easy on the days you are not working out. Giving your muscles time to rest and rebuild themselves is absolutly, without a doubt just as important as the actual exercises you perform.

Overload: This is fairly straight forward. You need to overload the body with every workout. Meaning, you need to subject your body to more demanding actions than it would normally experience. It has to be HARD!


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    • jerryfriend15 profile image


      7 years ago from USA

      I thought this was extremely well written!

    • Crewman6 profile image


      7 years ago

      Excellent advice. Great principles to live by (I do better than average, but don't always maintain consistency). I'm going to print this and tape it to my wall!


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