The end of the year is here, and for fitness enthusiasts, that means kickstarting the new one with more motivation. Well, I must say that this should also include upgrading your ‘following’ list on Instagram. After all, some of the doom-scrolling should at least involve a fitness tip or two, that could add to, or even change, the way you train in 2024.
Social media fitness tips are usually scoffed at but if one chooses well, then it can be a goldmine. And while people may have their preferences, in terms of who to follow and why, here’s a list of pages that focus on different aspects of training: strength, mobility, prevention and rehabilitation, technique, and of course, HIIT.So, depending on what you need out of those, here are the five Instagram pages to follow in the coming year (and hopefully for longer).
ldcfitness/@ldcfitness: Lucas Diaz Colodrero is a former fitness coach at David Beckham’s football club Inter Miami. He specialises in creating short, easy-to-do workouts for people who are more interested in movement-based sport, rather than heavy lifting and muscle gain. That means working on speed and explosive strength, with a focus on conditioning-based workouts.
While most of his videos are targeted towards footballers, anyone playing any sport—or even running or swimming—can use them. He uses resistance bands quite a lot, along with medicine balls, benches, and the cable machine. The best thing though is that he has mastered how to simplify them, and presents workouts in an order with the sets and reps mentioned. He also mentions light or heavy dumbbells in order to further break it down.
One of my favourite ldcfitness posts is the ‘Tired of running? Try this’ post:
The Anatomy of Therapy/@theanatomyoftherapy: With 1.7 million followers, the page doesn’t do justice to Dr. John Cybulski’s bio, which says ‘chiropractor’—a profession which is not very kindly judged in the fitness world. But there is no ‘magical’ back-cracking involved here. Cybulski has created a page that is so much more than just about the back.
It is about strengthening hips, hamstrings, knees, and anything that can affect the posterior chain. There are strengthening tips for the shoulder and upper back and also for the neck. He even covers headaches! He uses a graphic to pinpoint the exact area of concern and that makes it so much easier to identify if the post is made for you or not. Here's one example:
Dr. Susie Spirlockemail@example.com: Posts which provide answers to basic questions that are not usually covered by a single trainer or research are always attractive. Spirlock does really well to figure out the most common questions people ask themselves while working out. And, it must be said, it’s not easy for everyone to go and ask them out loud in a gym, or search for the right answer online.
She also uses statements to introduce the workouts. This one: titled ‘Train your damn hip flexors’ shows people that stretching alone is not the solution for tight hip flexors which slow everything down and hurt during the most basic movements.
Shea Pierre/@pierreseliteperformance: Speed, stability, and barefoot training and the French contrast method—which I wrote about in detail in a Lounge piece titled Get as fit as an athlete with the French Contrast Method—are the central principles of Shea Pierre’s workouts.
The idea of French Contrast training is simple: follow a compound heavy lifting exercise, with an explosive exercise hitting the same muscles. Example: bench press followed by plyometric push-ups. Here is one of his workouts, for better stability
Derick Ansah/@derickansah_: The simplest workouts are usually the easiest to forget on a particular gym day. Mostly out of boredom or repetition, it’s easy to sacrifice the front raise on one shoulder day thinking you’ll do it the next shoulder day. Step in Derick Ansah. The Ghanaian trainer targets the most commonly worked muscles, because that is where most people need help. Shoulders? This 20-minute sitting shoulder workout shows you how creative he can get. My go-to page when I want to take a break from the usual.
Pulasta Dhar is a football commentator, podcaster and writer.