I think it is very important that your mind and body work together in all of your workouts. I make sure to tell my clients to always train their mind, to think and focus on how they're lifting, to be in tune with the muscles when they are being worked. Many times I give them different series and combinations of exercises, hoping that they see the patterns and the purpose of each round. I challenge them not only physically but mentally...trying to bring out their mental toughness when exercises and combinations are difficult. Professor John Martin of Columbia University states, "the more difficult the movement, the more activity in the brain, and the more you will benefit from it.
As a matter of fact today I challenged one of my clients mentally..making him focus on the movement and engaging more than one muscle group. At first, he seemed pretty excited about the exercise (I am sure thinking that it was going to be very easy) but ended up being very challenging for him. He had to focus on the exercise and his movement in order to get through each repetition. If you want to give it a try, here was his exercise:
Sit on a Swiss Ball
Grab two resistance bands (red/iron woody bands)that are attached to a low pole or barsMake sure there is no slack in the bands/keeping arms and elbows up in order to perform a bicep curl
Lift one leg off the ground (keep it either bent/straight)
Balance and Focus
Begin curling the bands to your shoulders/making sure you keep elbows up at all times/parallel to the floor
Do 20 repetitions with one leg up/then switch legs and do another set of 20 repetitions
*Your challenge is to have perfect form/try to get full range of motion with elbows up/if your leg drops or you roll to one side of the ball-reposition yourself and start your set over.
PRACTICE MAKES PERFECT! AND THE MORE YOU PRACTICE THE BETTER YOU GET!