Learn how mindset and eating for sports performance can improve your athletic training.
How bande helps you get moving outdoors
How bande virtual classes help you build mental and physical muscle to get you moving in the great outdoors.
With summer now in full swing, it’s time to get outside and get moving. Here are just a few ways that indoor workout classes can improve your performance in outdoor sports and recreational activities.
Building Endurance using “Slow-Twitch” Muscle Fibers
If you exercise by sprinting on a treadmill at the gym, you’re working what’s called fast-twitch muscle fibers. “One of the biggest differences between sprinting on a treadmill and taking a class like Slide & Sculpt is in how your muscles contract, or how often they move,” bande instructor Amanda Jenny said. “Slide & Sculpt breaks down your slow-twitch muscle fibers which helps sculpt the muscle. The slow-twitch muscle fibers are all about endurance. They take longer to burn out, so training them and making them more efficient will vastly improve endurance. Fast-twitch muscle fibers support quick powerful movements but they tire quite quickly.”
"Doing all these classes is preparing you to move through life, whether that is picking up a baby or skiing up a giant mountain, it is essentially training you to be successful in life." - Ariel Mann
So, if you’re going for a long hike, or spending the weekend skiing, it’s important to work your slow-twitch muscles to improve endurance. Classes like Barre and Cardio Dance also help strengthen your calves, which quickly tire during long hikes as you ascend and descend terrain. Jenny notes that strengthening your calves also helps support your ankles, which is great for stabilization during an activity like surfing.
“I hike during the summers, paddleboard and bike,” bande member Stacey Morse said. “These are all sports that I have done most of my life, and I do feel stronger now, even though I am older. Upper body weight training has definitely contributed to these improvements, and the leg work we do during Barre.”
Core Strength & Balance
Perhaps the most important thing that classes like Barre or Cardio Sculpt provide is core strength — whether you are lugging around a giant backpack while hiking or trying to find your balance on a surfboard, core strength is critical for many outdoor activities.
“I have awful balance in my left ankle and both feet. I love bande workouts because they help me become more confident in my overall balance, which only helps me with other activities such as yoga, hiking, surfing, and skateboarding,” bande member Madeline Kim said.
Hitting 3-Dimensional Movement & Preventing Injuries
There are three types of movements: sagittal (forward and backward), frontal (side to side) and transverse planes (twisting motions). If you’re working out on a treadmill, elliptical, or bike, you’re essentially moving on one plane of movement: the sagittal plane.
“Our world is three-dimensional, so our movement should be too! While running is great and has benefits of its own, it doesn’t build 3-dimensional movement efficiency and help prevent injury,” Jenny said.
When taking classes like yoga, barre, or HIIT, you’re working through all three planes of movement — and training to safely participate in other outdoor activities. “One of the biggest things yoga offers, as well as other modalities, is injury prevention,” bande yoga instructor Ariel Mann said. “When you start your ski season at the beginning of the year, and you haven’t done yoga or other training, you’re at much higher risk of getting injured because the body isn’t trained to move through those three planes of motion. Your body doesn’t have the mobility and flexibility to remain safe.”
Jenny warns that poor range of motion and instability in just a single joint can cause overcompensation and lead to chronic pain and injury.
Member Mikhail Haramati, who works out every day alternating between yoga and Pilates or sculpt style classes, on anything from Peloton to obe, and most recently bande, says she has noticed a significant change during her recent ski trip. “Doing yoga in between helps me stretch and avoid over-tightening my muscles — while sculpt classes provide strength training and challenge my body to grow stronger,” she said. “My hip flexors were nice and strong as were my knee and ankle muscles [during my recent ski trip]. This helped me have better balance and control of my legs while skiing, leading to more maneuverability and ease. I’m still a beginner, so muscle awareness and control is really important.”
Improving Mental Muscle
If there’s one thing that COVID has taught us, it’s the importance of being present in the moment. When participating in workout classes, you’re more likely to enjoy outdoor activities and sports because your body will be able to fully support you.
“The breathing from yoga can keep you mentally focused and calm so when you’re doing something really intense or challenging, you have the mental as well as the physical endurance” Mann said. "It helps you be more present so you can really enjoy those outdoor activities. Rather than it being a struggle fest, you can actually enjoy that you’re outside in nature and getting fresh air.”
At the end of the day, these workouts are vital for not just outdoor sports and recreational activities, but for daily movement as well. “Doing all these classes is preparing you to move through life,” Mann said, “whether that is picking up a baby or skiing up a giant mountain, it is essentially training you to be successful in life. Use the classes to bolster everything else that you do.”