As a photographer, you might not think that working out is important in your line of work, but did you know that most professionals are at risk of slipped discs, muscle spasms, rotator cuff syndrome, tendinitis and even carpal tunnel? Photography is actually very physical, when you consider you spend plenty of time lugging around heavy bags of gear, positioning yourself in awkward positions for prolonged periods of time, hunching in front of your computer and even crawling around on the ground.
Prevent lifelong or chronic injuries by strengthening your muscles and increasing your endurance with these 4 types of workouts. If you are going to be traveling, we suggest downloading videos in Offline mode on your YouTube app for later viewing.
Wonderful for stretching out sore muscles after a long day of shooting and increasing muscle strength across your entire body, yoga is a great low impact workout that you can do practically anywhere so long you have enough space for a mat. Incredibly helpful for improving flexibility (awkward positons will no longer be a problem) and developing core strength (for all those times you need to hold a position for more than 10 minutes), yoga also has the added benefit of improving your posture – just think of all those times you were hunched over your tripod!
If you know you have a long day ahead, we suggest doing a quick 30-minute flow to start your day and get your muscles warmed up and ready.
One of the most efficient workout formats available, you can get in a calorie-torching workout in just 20 short minutes. What makes High Intensity Interval Training so special is that you “work” at a high intensity for a short burst of time, followed by an even shorter “rest” period. This is a great way to improve functional strength (think moves like lunges, squats, push ups etc) while supercharging your endurance levels. Bodyweight only HIIT trainings are plenty on Youtube, meaning all you need is a small amount of space. If you are a travel or wildlife photographer who is always out on the field in foreign countries, where you often find yourself eating unhealthy food, HIIT is one of the best workouts to incorporate into your training to prevent yourself from packing on unnecessary pounds.
Weights aren’t just for gym rats and bodybuilders. By increasing your strength, you’ll find that your gear bag suddenly starts feeling less heavy to roll around, your back less sore from your heavy backpacks and your legs less tired from all the potential hills and uneven surfaces you have to walk across. Strength training also has added benefits of improving your bone density (less chances of cracking something while out in the field), improve balance and coordination and elevates your level of endorphins (the happy hormone).
No we’re not just talking about running like a lab rat on a treadmill. Cardio workouts can take many forms, from kickboxing to swimming. It is important to incorporate cardio into your routine because it helps improve your heart health (muscle strength decreases by 1% every year as you age) and prevents you from getting winded when you perform simple exercises like walking up a flight of stairs. As a photographer, chances are you likely to be moving around a lot, and you won’t be doing yourself any favours if you need to take multiple breaks during a shoot. Cardiovascular workouts are also great for the management of diabetes (if you are afflicted with this condition) as it increases your muscle’s ability to utilize glucose (sugar).