From yoga to running, we all have a favourite workout, but the same routine over and over again does not equate to serious results. It is a well-established fact that the body needs a mix of different exercises to really thrive – cardio with strength training is the ultimate fitness combo for good reason – but do you know exactly which activity best complements your preferred workout?
We went straight to the experts to unveil the ultimate exercise pairings, whatever your tastes. Try these cross-training duos for your best body yet...
Combine: Cycling/Spinning & Yoga
Why: "Yoga is the perfect complement to both cycling and spinning classes. Bending over the handlebars can and will cause tightness in the back, shoulder and neck, but Yoga is ideal for counteracting this, as so many poses lift, lengthen and open the whole area up." – Julie Montagu, yoga instructor
Combine: Spinning & Running
Why: “Introducing a spinning session into your running schedule will give your joints some time off, while still working your muscles. An ideal combination if you are suffering from a slight injury but don’t want to lose any strength in your quads.” – Mark Healy, celebrity trainer
Combine: Barre & Yoga
Why: “The intense muscular endurance required in barre classes is offset well by the relaxing mobility exercises associated with yoga.”– Angela Ioannou, Area Fitness Manager at Everyone Active
Combine: Swimming & Weight Training
Why: “Swimming will help alleviate any muscle tension caused by weight training sessions through active recovery. The low-impact movement encourages oxygenated blood into the muscle fibres, helping remove any toxins that have built up within them.” – Mark Healy
Combine: Pilates & Running
Why: “Pilates helps build core strength, which is important to runners. Likewise, the breathing techniques and stretching involved in Pilates will also help improve your running performance.” – Angela Ioannou
Combine: Yoga & Running
Why: "Running can create an imbalance in the body through repetitive movement and general impact. Over time, this can create larger issues, including lower back or knee pain. Yoga helps counteract these negative effects by elongating tight tissue fibres and expanding your joints' range of motion." – Mark Healy
Combine: Spinning & Pilates
Why: “If you are a spinning fan, Pilates will help open up any tightness in your hips and stretch out your legs, while also improving your core strength and balance.” – Angela Ioannou