No matter your fitness level or budget, Heavyhands can easily add something new to your workouts. Invented by Dr. Leonard Schwartz, Heavyhands are fitness training aids used to help improve your cardio endurance while simultaneously improving your overall strength. Schwartz also designed a low-impact Heavyhands exercise program. The program combines walking with traditional arm-pumping movements for an effective whole-body workout.
Heavyhands Details and Features
The first Heavyhands were manufactured by AMF American in 1982 and typically weighed 1 to 3 pounds. The handle is covered with a soft foam or spongy material for comfort, to aid in gripping and to absorb sweat. Part of the handle wraps around the back of your hand which allows you to momentarily relax your grip without completely losing hold of the weight. Unlike dumbbells, which require you to have a constant grip, this relaxation gives your hand and forearm muscles a quick rest, which helps reduce potential muscle spasms. Heavyhands are now designed with add-on weights, and some are made with custom, ergonomically designed handles.
Whether you prefer to work out at the gym, at home or while walking, you have a variety of Heavyhands exercises from which to choose. While moving around in a small area, try shadowboxing exercises. Bob and weave, move your feet and throw air punches as you spar against an imaginary opponent. From a standing position, many traditional strength-training exercises can also be performed with Heavyhands -- biceps curls, chest flyes, front and lateral raises and shoulder presses. To perform these exercises while walking, simply swing and pump your arms with purpose.
While holding your Heavyhands, begin your workout with an easy, five-minute warm-up. Start by walking at a 2- to 3-mph pace and gently swing your arms opposite your legs. After five minutes, increase your walking pace slightly and perform biceps curls -- alternate your arms with your legs for 20 reps per arm. While maintaining your pace and without breaking stride, perform 20 chest flyes and then return to biceps curls for another 20 reps with each arm. Continue walking and perform 20 lateral raises, return to the biceps curls, perform 20 shoulder presses and then end the cycle with biceps curls. Repeat the cycle and then perform a five-minute cool-down -- gently swing your arms as you walk at a slower pace.
Workout Tips and Considerations
If you are new to exercising with Heavyhands, start with a light weight, one appropriate to your strength level. Gradually increase the number of reps and the length of your workouts before increasing the weight amount. Strive to perform 20- to 30-minute workouts three to four days per week with a day of rest between sessions -- recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Get the OK from your health care provider before starting any new exercise program.
- Clarence Bass: From the Desk of Clarence Bass New Heavyhands
- United States All-Round Weightlifting Association: Longstrength, Peak Power: Warming Up Chapter 3
- The New York Times: If You're a Jogger, Heavyhands are in
- LiveLean.org: Intermediate Cardio: Heavy Hands Walking
- Centers for Disease Conrol and Prevention: How Much Physical Activity Do Adults Need?
- Heavyhands: The Ultimate Exercise System; Leonard Schwartz