Tommie Copper is a notable brand of compression apparel that is infused with copper and designed to relieve pain in areas where worn. Unlike most compression wear, Tommie Copper promotes the idea of comfortable compression wear. Tommie Copper compression wear bridges the gap between athletic use and pain relief in overworked joints and muscles. Continue reading Tommie Copper: How Does it Work?
Whether you’re a law enforcement officer, firefighter, soldier or just ready for a challenge – mud races and obstacles courses are an exciting way to stay physically fit during spring and summertime. Show off your toned spring body with these workout tips and gear to help you go the extra mile.
Something as simple as finding the right shoe will give you the head start you need on your next race. “You want a shoe with aggressive traction and a thin upper, so that it won’t absorb a lot of water,” says Spartan Race champion Hobie Call. A good shoe must be tough, versatile, and able to withstand everything race organizers throw at them. They also better feel good on your feet.
During longer races, water stations can be few and far between, so it’s important to carry a slim hydration pack filled with water or some sort of electrolyte/energy drink. Although it might be tempting to move faster when hitting an obstacle, you should resist. Keep a steady pace and keep your intensity levels even. It’s easy to get ramped up for the obstacles but that can hurt you in the long run.
Try to avoid cotton or anything heavy. Cotton will absorb water, add weight, and slow you down – Not to mention cause unwanted chaffing. Spandex or compression apparel are safe choices.
Weather has the power to change your game entirely, and it is important to be prepared for anything. For windy days, wear a light pullover windbreaker. Don’t wear a jacket with a zipper as zippers can get caught or clogged with mud.
Mud runs and obstacles courses are a great way to enjoy the spring weather while staying fit. So breathe in the fresh air and have fun!
The most common excuse for missing a workout session, is because “you just don’t have the time.” As a police officer, fitting in the time to workout might be difficult, but it is absolutely necessary. Instead of just sitting around on the bench press doing rep after rep with a five-minute rest in-between, here are some of the best exercises, whether you’re a town cop, state trooper, or SWAT.
1. Sandbag Clean and Press
Start in a quarter-squat position with both hands gripping a sandbag and the sandbag resting softly on the ground. Explosively stand up as you bring your elbows up, then sweep them under the sandbag so it rests on your chest. Pause for a second, then straighten your arms up as you shoulder press the sandbag overhead. That’s one rep.
2. Partner Glute-Ham Raise
Kneel on the ground (preferably on some kind of mat) with a partner holding your lower legs down to the ground. Keeping your core engaged slowly lower yourself (about two to three seconds) until you are in a push up position. Push yourself back up to the starting position and repeat.
3. Swiss Ball Knee Drive/Pike
Get into a push up position with your feet on top of a Swiss ball (stability ball) and your core engaged. For the knee drives, simply bring your knees to your chest in a controlled motion, slowly returning back to the starting position. For a more advanced variation, keep your legs straight as you drive them forward to form an inverted V with your body, pause for a moment, then return back to normal.
4. Walk the Plank
Start in a push up position with your toes on two weights or Valslides. Slowly walk your hands forward, one-by-one, as you try to keep your hips as straight as possible by keeping your core engaged throughout the entire movement. For a more advanced variation, bring your elbows down to the ground and slowly walk your elbows forward, maintaining good hip control and core stability.
5. Rope/Towel Pull Up
Hang a rope or towel on one side of a pull up bar. Grip the rope/towel with one hand and place the other in the standard pull up position. Pull your chest towards the bar, pause for a second, then return back to the starting position. Switch hands after each set.
Fortunately, fitness doesn’t have to be that complex.
In fact, you can boil it down to two simple rules:
- Get a little more exercise on a regular basis; and
- Eat a moderate amount of real, whole foods
Making a commitment to those two rules will help first responders get fit and stay fit.
The two rules above are basically all you need, but if you want more detail, check out the 6 points below.
1. Get moving. If you’re a first responder, you’re already probably active during your shift. In off-shift hours try to do some kind of light physical exercise – swimming, jogging, biking, walking. It doesn’t have to be the same thing each day, but developing a simple plan and making a simple routine will help.
2. Enjoy your exercise. Whatever activity you choose, it has to be fun right? If you don’t like it you won’t do it very long so try numerous things to find what works for you. Enjoyment = motivation.
4. Use minimal equipment. There are a million different exercise gadgets out there, but another way to keep it simple is to have a limited amount of equipment. A pair of running shoes. A bike. A pass card to get into the gym. Simple also equals motivation!
5. Stick to just a few exercises. Get in get out they say. Incorporating a workout routine into your life means you probably don’t have much time or don’t want to spend too much time. Get going with a few simple exercises – or a few simple minutes spent exercising – it can make all the difference.
6. Eat real foods. One of the most important rules on this list, is to eat right. That means stay away from processed, fatty and sugary foods – or go to a minimum on them. Veggies, fruits, lean meats, dairy, nuts, beans, whole grains, etc. are the way to go. Better food = a better you.
7. Eat less. Yes, we all eat too much don’t we? It may be the hardest thing to do on this list because it’s so ingrained into our ‘way of eating’. But cutting back, even just a little to begin with, can make a big impact. And once you see progress start, it will be easier to work on this!
8. Give your new approach time. Lifestyle changes, even small ones, take time. Eating less and exercising more can lead to great health benefits. Progress is generally slow so don’t get frustrated with slow results.
A better, leaner, more healthy you is in there. You can do it!
Gone are the days of the stereotypical, overweight cop eating doughnuts and sipping coffee. Most police officers today take their jobs very seriously – and their overall health plays a large role.
Today’s officers realize that by keeping fit they will be better prepared to handle the physical and mental stress associated with their jobs.
As we all know, police officers endure strenuous physical and emotional situations every day. Their ability to handle the rigors of running, lifting and occasionally dealing with force or self-defense is directly related to their level of fitness. Riding in a patrol car for multiples hours can cause back and leg pain. Standing for long periods can have the same effect.
In addition to the physical demands of duty, police offers are also subjected to psychological and emotional stress. These mental pressures can lead to physical issues.
Because of this, maintaining a healthy body and mind are now necessities of police work.
- So they can be more efficient and capable officers
- Because they understand that a healthy officer is a safer officer
- So they can prevent injury to themselves and others
- So they can portray a better public image
- So they can serve longer
- So they are healthier mentally as well as physically
The health and fitness of police and other public safety officers is often a news worthy topic. And it is certainly a topic that various agencies and departments across the country approach differently. Depending on where you work, you’ll find that some departments place more emphasis on it than others.
Most states do have mandated fitness programs for training academies and entry into the force. And while some departments and agencies have extended those requirements to all officers, fitness programs are dependent on the outlook of the individual agencies.
Some departments provide incentives for staying fit. Some agencies in England and Ireland have even issued lifestyle guidelines designed to help officers maintain a healthy lifestyle. In the end, the whole point is to keep officers fit and healthy.
By and large though, most officers have a real understanding that their level of physical fitness is important to their work. And because they care about the work they do, they try to lead healthier and more active lifestyles.
How do you feel about your personal level of fitness and how it impacts your effectiveness at work? Please share any thoughts and comments below.
You may also enjoy the post on How To Stay Safe While On Duty.