Posts in Fitness

6 primal movements to keep you going this winter

Movement symbolizes life.

It’s at the core of our early growth and development and remains the central theme throughout our being. It’s how we survive, communicate, procreate and thrive.

Human movement arises from patterns designed to protect and feed us i.e. to help us receive pleasure and avoid pain.

Movement patterns are purposeful combinations of mobile and stable segments working in harmony to produce effective sequences. These linked sequences give us a command of physical posture during activity and movement through our surroundings.

Basic and advanced full-body movements include crawling, running, jumping and climbing. But less talking, let us get moving!

Here are your six movements:

  • Lunge with a knee up
    Take an easy step forward and then drop the knee of the rear leg towards the ground just behind the heel of the lead foot, but do not let the knee make contact with the ground. This is your lunge position. Then bring the knee up towards your chest as you come to standing, balancing on the lead foot/leg. Bring the lifted leg down as you take step, which is now your leading foot/leg, and drop the opposite knee down. Move forward in this sequence.
  • Bear crawl
    Get in a toddler crawling position and lift the knees (still bent) off the ground. Move forward by taking a step with your opposite hand and foot (e.g. right hand, left foot). Keep the knees low throughout the movement.
  • Walking kicks
    Standing upright, kick your foot/leg out in front of you as you reach with the opposite hand/arm to touch your foot. Get on your toes on the opposite foot. Once you make contact with the ground with the kicking foot, swing the rear foot up to kick and reach for the foot with the opposite hand. Continue moving forward in this sequence.
  • Side steppers
    Turn to your side and bent your knees to get into a squat position, hold the position. Take a step to the side with the lead foot and follow with the rear foot. Once you reach the marked destination, step back to the starting position in the squatting position.
  • Bunny hops
    In a deep squat position, place your arms between your feet/leg. Take a leap forward with your arms, then resting on your arms, kick off with your legs towards your hands/arms to bring you back into that deep squat position. Move forward in this pattern.
  • Walkovers
    Turn to your side and get into a push-up or straight arm plank position, hold this position. With your rear hand reach over the leading hand, and simultaneously take step with the opposite foot/leg. Move the leading hand under the rear hand and take a step with the opposite foot/leg to return to starting position. Move in this sequence. Once you reach the marked destination, move back to your starting point in the same sequence.

Do each exercise 2-3 times over 15-30m. The movements should be controlled and intentional, so do not rush through them. The aim is to move.

Our bodies are miracles capable of unbelievable durability and resilience, with an amazing performance and physical capacity. We are made to age gracefully. Reclamation of authentic movement is the starting point. We cannot simply have better fitness, conditioning and sports performance. We must cultivate it. – Gray Cook.

Want to know more about these exercises or train with Oupa? Leave us a comment below or chat to me during the week via Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter.

8 of the best gym equipment for training at home

There’s really no excuse to skip training if you have your own home-gym. When its raining or you don’t feel like leaving home, here is some exercise equipment to help improve your fitness and overall health:

Skipping Rope

Boxers use skipping ropes as a cardio workout. While skipping, you burn a lot of calories, improve your cardiovascular system, and build muscle. Most sport shops stock skipping ropes. They’re relatively cheap and you can take them anywhere.

Workout intensity depends on the weight of the rope, the heavier you go, the more intense your workouts will be. But with basic models, you can achieve the same result if you skip with increased speed and effort.

Kettle bells

Kettle bells are similar to dumbbells but have a unique shape that makes training with them quite convenient. You can do a variety of different exercises with them; they come in different shapes and are also available in adjustable form.

gym equipment

Stability Ball

This ball is perfect for working your abs, upper body and lower body workouts. They’re also useful for rehabilitation exercises like stretching or sitting on which can help to improve your posture. You can do push ups, bridges and back extensions on a stability ball.

Chin Up Bars

Chin up bars are widely available at sport and fitness shops. They are affordable, easy to set up, and work by mounting them to a door frame.

Chin up bar exercises mostly include, pull ups, chin ups and hanging leg raises with the purpose of strengthening your back or working your abdominal muscles.

Medicine Balls

Simple yet effective exercise equipment. They’re mainly used for upper body exercises. They come in different sizes and weight. You can easily find one that will fit your fitness level.

gym equipment


Dumbbells are a must-have as home gym equipment. They’re quite useful for training all the major muscle groups, building up strength and isolating muscles.They also help to improve coordination and balance as dumbbell exercises needs more control

Ab Wheel

Constructed with a bar and wheel in the middle, this piece of exercise equipment is useful for exercising your core or abdominal muscles, but can also sculpt your back, arms, chest and shoulders.


Relatively new to the fitness industry, this set of equipment can be used to perform a variety of body weight exercises. The TRX system combines both stability and strength exercises especially for core training.

Do you workout at home? I’d love to hear from you. Drop me a comment in the space below or connection with me on Instagram, facebook, and Twitter.

5 home workouts to boost your metabolism

We all have those days where we don’t feel like leaving the house to go to gym and of course not many of us can’t afford the costly home gym equipment either. But since exercise is important, being inactive is not an option.

So how can you work around your limitations and especially get to do exercises that are enjoyable?

If the weather’s great, you can easily go for a walk around the neighbourhood, but if it’s not, you still work up a sweat using this metabolism boosting workouts:

 Jogging in place

This workout is a great warm up for any other exercise that follows. You can jog on the spot in front of the TV or while listening to music and it really gets the heart going. Of course you’ ll have  to make enough room for yourself but the only equipment you’ll need for this exercise, is a be a good pair of running shoes, which helps to  alleviate stress on your legs.

Jumping Jacks

Another fantastic warm up workout is jumping jacks. It’s a really fun exercise that gets your heart pumping, and adds excitement to your training.


Squats are exceptionally great for toning your legs and buttocks. Use of a chair to assist you with your squat posture. Simply stand and then sit down again. Repeat this in sets, of course the more regularly you train, the more sets you’ll be able to do. You’ll feel a squeeze in the buttocks and legs and this shows that it’s a good workout.

Push Ups

These are known to be the best exercises for building and strengthening your abs. With your hands firmly on the ground, lift your body up until you feel your muscles stretch. Once you’re comfortable with doing a few sets of these, focus on bringing your head all the way up to give you an added workout.

Light Weight Lifting

This is a fantastic home workout because there’s many weight lifting options. You can use anything from a tin of beans to bottled water as a weight. Combine this with jogging on the spot for a full body workout. Once you feel comfortable and would like to move onto the next level, start using heavier weights like used bottles of laundry detergent that you’ve refilled with water. The options are endless.

Remember that at home you can play your favourite music to help you get into action or even just try these workouts while catching up on some series.

Do you have a workout routine that you’ve become addicted to? Scroll down to the comment section below, and let me know what that is.


Shield Motion Sense: Secret of a girl who sweats

REVIEW: I tested Shield Motion Sense deodorant roll-on for one week and this is what I thought of it:

Anyone who’s ever seen me working out knows that I can work up a sweat – excessive sweat. Even when I go to events and end up dancing, I have to give myself a break, otherwise, I would start sweating. It’s interesting that I hardly ever see other women suffering from the same situation – only older women or girls that aren’t usually active, sweat like me.

Shield’s Motion Sense antiperspirants were designed to keep any woman fresher for longer as they contain microcapsules that spurt fresh scents when you move.

I’ve never had a concern with body odour but was excited to try the motion sense range since I hadn’t used Shield in years and wanted to see whether the deodorant, was really activated by movement. If this product was really going to be tried to its maximum potential, my on-the-go schedule would be the ideal tester.

For one week, I applied the deodorant daily. At first, I noticed that the consistency of the deodorant was quite runny and I thought, “Great, now I get to have moist armpits for a week”. I usually also apply two coats of roll-on with my normal deodorant when I apply it because sometimes when you roll the deodorant under your armpit, little or no product appears from the first roll. None of this applied to Shield’s Fresh Confidence roll-on. My armpits were dry within minutes of me applying the product, and I didn’t have to coat my underarms to ensure that the product was actually there.

On the second day of using the deodorant, I was too busy to focus on whether it was working. I started my day early – I had an evening training session at ETA; I was going to have to prepare for a meeting the next day, and I still had to do some grocery shopping.  Needless, to say, I was exhausted. As I was rushing through the shopping mall to get my groceries, after work, I bumped into some friends that I’d met on my trip to Zimbabwe. I didn’t have time to chat but I was really happy to see them and caught up for five minutes before shopping. By 7PM, as I walked to greet my boyfriend before my workout, he complimented me on my unfamiliar scent of perfume. I hadn’t even worn perfume that day – I was in such a hurry; I had only been wearing Shield Motion Sense since 5:45AM that morning.

Via Facebook
Via Facebook

The next evening, before showering, I noticed a powdery consistency under my arms which was residue from the deodorant. If anything, I’m happy that the product isn’t clogging pores. Another full day’s activities had gone and went and here I still smelt great. The scent of the deodorant enhanced throughout the day and every now and again I could get a whiff of the musky scent – that made me feel good. I felt confident, just as they said I would.

Buy your Fresh Confidence deodorant roll-on at any Clicks store or Dis-Chem Pharmacy for R28,99.


This product was sent to me by Beauty Bulletin, South Africa’s leading beauty review network. Click on the Beauty Bulletin icon on the right sidebar of this page for more information.


5 ways to really stop smoking

Every smoker will tell you how relaxing it feels to purse their lips against a cigarette butt and slowly inhale those carcinogens. They know what it’s doing to their bodies but it’s just too good to quit. I can vouch; I was a smoker.

Avoiding any hypocritical bull like when people who’ve successfully quit bad habits try to preach to those who are still occupying the habits – love to every one of you who still smoke. The self-experienced tips below are guidelines for anyone who has tried to quit smoking but failed to do so. You can see more of how I started smoking by clicking on this link: I wanted to be badass, now all I want is to be good. 

I stopped smoking because as I grew older, I developed different goals. My health became more important than everything I cared about in the above post. Here are some tips to help you quit the habit for good:

Stop hanging out with people who smoke

At least until you feel comfortable that you won’t be influenced to light up again. There’s a story of a captain who instructed his men to burn their ships in an attempt to win  a war. His logic was that he and his men would either win the war or die but they would not flee from their mission. That’s how  you need to treat avoiding your friends who smoke – because you love spending time  with them but it’s going to be so much harder for you to stop smoking if everyone around you is doing it.

Change your routine

You have to switch up your routine to avoid your regular smoking habits like your after breakfast, after lunch, and after supper cigarettes for instance. It’s going to be a challenge but find a substitute like sugar-free sweets or gum.

Write down all the reasons why you should quit smoking

It’s funny how you’re loyal to everyone you love but don’t honour commitments to yourself, hey? Why do you think that is? You’re usually quite reliable until it comes to matter that that involve only you. Let’s change that. Write down all the reasons why you should stop smoking and put it in a place where you can see it every day – remind yourself why you are quitting. You deserve that.

Get yourself a progress partner

Ever heard the saying, birds of a feather flock together? The more you normalize a lifestyle without smoking, the easier it will become for you to stop smoking. You also need to give yourself time to experience activities without trying to squeeze in a smoke here and there.

Design a reward system

Of course, your health is the greatest reward here but sometimes it’s easy to look past the overall benefit as the incentive. Track how much money you are saving after two weeks, to a month of no smoking and gift yourself with it. You’d be shocked at how much you’ve been spending once you track it and will feel relieved when you decide to use the money for something else.

Are you a former smoker who’s quit the habit? I’d love to share your story. Leave me a comment in the section below or email me directly to


Fit girl feature: How combat sport can literally change your life

“I’d broken my nose in the first round and my left foot in the second round, but that was not enough to stop me.”

Combat sports are fast growing in South Africa and more so among women. I myself have dabbled with kickboxing for fitness and continue to enjoy training with my coach, Cristiano Ndombassy. While combat sport physically tests your limits and improves your physique, there are much greater lessons to be learned from combat sport such as strategic thinking, endurance, and confidence. I chatted to MMA fighter and fellow blogger at Boxing Barbie, Wisaal Adams, on how MMA has literally changed her life.


When she’s not studying towards a Bachelor of Arts degree in Corporate Communication, working full time or blogging at Boxing Barbie, Wisaal can be found engaging in exciting outdoor activities or practising her MMA techniques.

As a self-acclaimed adrenaline junkie, she recalls immediately falling in love with MMA when she first started training in 2006. Her brother and friend were both training at Dean Scott’s MMA in Planation Road, Ottery, and had frequently suggested that she check out the gym. By the time she’d attended her first fight night with her coach and team in 2012, she knew that her next best adrenaline rush would come from getting into the ring – that night became the defining moment of her deciding to pursue a career as a fighter.

Take a look at Wisaal’s latest feature in Get it Magazine: Barbie in the ring

Currently an amateur K1 fighter, she recalls how the excitement of viewing her first fight was really overwhelming, and how what really grabbed her attention was the courage, heart and commitment she saw in each fighter that night.

“Fighting has definitely taught me some great life lessons that can be applied inside and outside of the gym. I’ve learned discipline; how to be patient; how to work with what I have, and most definitely to be humble, regardless of how great you are. I’ve put every lesson fighting has taught me, into practise in most of what I do daily. I’d fought at Cape Fight League in December 2013 and at that fight, I’d broken my nose in the first round and my left foot in the second round, but that was not enough to stop me. I’m often asked how I had not given up – everyone assumes that the adrenaline rush is too great to feel pain, but aside from having a shockingly high pain tolerance, my heart was in that fight.”


With inspiration from fighters like Amanda ‘Mad dog’ Lino and assistance from her new personal trainer, who offers tailored training sessions according to her preference, Wisaal maintains her training and motivation since her beloved fight club, Dean Scott’s MMA closed down in 2015.

When finding the ideal gym to train at, she recommends having a trial session at a few places and also basing your final decision on whether the training periods match your schedule and location. “There are quite a couple of good gyms in Cape Town. Finding the right gym is a personal choice; it’s best to have a trial session at a few places before you decide which gym to make your home.”

Boxing Barbie covers combat sporting events in and around Cape Town with live feeds from the events on Twitter. Follow the news feed, here.


Connect with Wisaal on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter for more information on her MMA career and social life.

How to fit 1hr workouts into your daily routine no matter what

With an honours degree in Exercise Science and just under 10 years of experience in the fitness industry, Jane Kilian is any girl’s go-to expert on effective training.

“Everyone is different, everyone don’t have the same goals. You need to adapt your training

according to the client and also listen when they need you to,” says Jane.

Jane in the gym / @gijane_zn

Affectionately known as SA’s own G.I Jane, this Durbanite fitness junky can’t get enough of weights and cardio. “I generally do 45 minutes of training… I’ll have short rest periods so that my heart rate stays elevated. I mix it up by alternating between super setting and circuits. For cardio I love running along our beautiful Durban promenade! You just can’t beat that view.”

5 Training Tips from Jane

Plan your meals as much as you can

It’s 80% diet so be sure to plan ahead for meals. Take an hour on a Sunday and cook your lunch for the week.

Find a workout that works for you

Do what you love! That way you’re more inclined to want to train.

Don’t be afraid of weights

Weight training is your friend. You won’t bulk up, it’s a misconception! It gives you that nice toned appearance and actually makes you smaller. (Not cardio as everyone thinks)

Pregnant ladies can also train

Training during pregnancy is encouraged. It actually helps you keep your weight gain to a healthy minimum, helps you lose the weight after, keeps baby’s weight healthy, and helps you fit and strong for the birth.

Workout when you can

The best time to train depends on you. Everyone is different and we aren’t all morning people. So you choose what time of day is your best hour.


Follow Jane on Twitter and Instagram: @gijane_zn


“I train girls one-on-one as well as in groups of four.

The group sessions enable girls to train while being affordable using a group rate.”

Do you have any other questions for Jane? Visit her website for tips on healthy living and fitness training or leave a comment in the section below.

I’d love to hear from you. Connect with me on Instagram, Twitter, or Facebook.