Exercise of the Month: Bear Complex

The Bear Complex is lifting move that is suited for more intermediate/advanced gym goers. The 5 lift involves 5 different parts which are: A power clean from the floor, front squat, push press (bringing bar behind head to rear rack position), back squat, and push press (bringing bar to chest to front-rack position) and then back to the floor. The completion of all 5 moves counts as one repetition (rep). There is the option to perform this exercise with a pause after each of the moves (to break them up) or it can be performed as one continuous movement with no pauses.

It is important to be well accustomed to all the individual parts of the complex, on their own, before attempting to do the full movement. It is also advised that if this is the first time you are performing the complex, you should start with a lighter weight than you usually squat or power clean with. This is to ensure that you are safely able to perform the complex and then you can gradually begin to increase your weight as you get used to the movements.

power clean

1) power clean

front squat

2) front squat

push press

3) push press (to behind head)

back squat

4) Back Squat

push press to chest 1

5) push press (to chest)

The Bear complex is good for developing power and strength. It is also good for conditioning your full body due to having to stabilise yourself whilst performing the movements. It can also be used for development of muscular endurance and cardiovascular fitness if the weight is kept light and performed at a faster rate.

So if you’re looking for a way to take your Olympic/Power lifting to the next level, try incorporating the Bear Complex into your workout.


by Beverley

SportsDock Open Day

How to make the most of SportsDock’s open day

Whether you are already a member or intrigued by the thought of joining SportsDock you need to take advantage of this FREE day! To fit it all in it’s going to take tactics.

We have a good mixture going on. First of all, it’s a Saturday, get a lay in until 9amish? (That counts as a lie in!) in preparation of your day of intense exercise.

Arrive at SportsDock for 10:30am and prep yourself for Kef’s Train Insane, it begins at 11am in Arena 1. This class is circuit based and each exercise is timed so you can push yourself as hard as you want. Take a break and recuperate.

Next up is dance fitness (12pm) with Gintare! An hour of cardio based dance from different styles. Don’t label it for women, guys dance too! Get your Ashley Banjo on and get down to a mix of current hits.

Take a break that was intense! Grab a bite to eat from Munch café, top up your protein shake and breathe…

Time for something different. At 2pm join in the free sports, choose from Basketball, Volleyball or Badminton…or a bit of all of them! You never know, you might find a hidden talent. Could you be the next Michael Jordan?

All that exercise is hard work. But you’ve one more stop to make before you’re done. The Fitness Centre!

It’s going to be busy on the open day, so you have to be tactical. There’s plenty to do so be creative. The rig has a lot to offer so make sure you use it: battle ropes, TRX, boxing, money bars. Try them all! If you’re unsure ask a fitness instructor. Our cardio machines are not to be missed, step up and plug in your headphones, watch television or stick on your own tunes.

This takes you to about half four (Depending on how long you hold out in the gym) and you have fully exhausted everything SportsDock has to offer at the community day.

Only got half a day? Don’t worry, classes run throughout the day with three Train Insane, a dance fitness, two Zumba and a yoga class you’re not going to miss out if you lay in or have to give it an early start. Check out the full timetable here.

Don’t forget about our prize draw! Take out membership on the day and you could win an extra three months of Gold membership!

Keeping those resolutions

On New year’s, like many others, I made new year’s resolutions. I will stop eating lots of chocolate, I will exercise more, I will lose weight. So three months down the line how am I doing?

I will stop eating lots of chocolate

I’m very open about my relationship with chocolate. I love chocolate. I was reminded the other month that every birthday of mine for the last three years has had something to do with chocolate. A chocolate tour, a chocolate festival, a chocolate fountain. So I decided to cut down. It was going so well until my colleague bought me 10…yes 10 Double Deckers as a thank you for work I did for them. I fell off the wagon.

I will exercise more

I started doing classes three times a week. Pilates, Boxercise, Dance Fitness. I had convinced myself that the gym wasn’t for me. I didn’t know what I was doing and preferred dancing to running any day. Problem. Classes are at set times of the day and one over run meeting can mess the whole system up. Exercise goes out the window.

I will lose weight

 So as a result of the above I did not lose weight.

Getting back on the wagon

Three weeks ago I decided things needed to change. This is how I did it.

Find the time

I was never a morning person. I tried classes at lunch (Didn’t work) I tried classes after work (I just want to get home) So I decided I should become a morning person. I get up an hour earlier and spend half an hour a day at the gym…yes, the gym.

Make a plan

When I started at the gym I would amble around doing a bit of this and that. I didn’t expect to see results. So I booked a personal plan with Kef. For those of you who know Kef and are staring at your computer screen with a “What did you do that for?” face I have to say some of the other instructors were surprised too. I knew Kef would challenge me, but also listen to what I wanted to do and more importantly, what I didn’t want to do (Burpees). He knows that you must enjoy a workout to want to do it. So he wrote me five half hour workouts that focus on one part of my body a day.

Stick to it

You know what they say, it takes 21 days (More or less) to form a habit. After three weeks at the gym, at 7:15am when the alarm goes off my body doesn’t scream at me to go back to sleep, but there is still a tiny part of me that says “But you went yesterday and the day before, you can sleep now” by the time that sentence has finished I’m already out of bed because my body just does it.

Find your motivation

I’ve found that my motivation has changed. It used to be to get fit and toned, now that I’ve noticed my body changing and colleagues have started commenting on my hard work my motivation is to keep changing. I recently purchased the Cosmopolitan Body magazine (Which I recommend to all) There was an article about two staff members having a personal training session with a world class trainer and a couple of words stuck with me. “When you hit the wall you start to get better” and I’ve found myself thinking this when I don’t think I can do any more. Your body is capable of more than you think.

Go Compare!

Not completely sure which membership is best for you? Find out more about them here.

The Pitch Invader

Fancy a kick around or shooting some hoops with your friends? If so, the Bronze Membership is perfect for you. Splitting the £6 monthly membership along with the £15 per hour pitch hire, with your friends, is the best and most cost effective way to enjoy a game of football at SportsDock. Taking out a bronze membership will save you £12 on a 60 minute game, split between five people just £2.40 each! Check out how much you can save, just by becoming a Bronze member here.

The Gym Machine

Our Silver Membership is a perfect fit for those who are flexible with their working hours. You can enjoy free use of our fitness centre and the strength & conditioning room during off peak hours, which are 4pm to 9pm. If you want to enjoy our classes, you can do so for a reduced rate. However, if you’re going to take part in more than 2 50 minute classes a week at £4 each, you’re better off getting the Gold Membership and saving yourself some money!

The Class Addict

Do you have a hectic work schedule? Do you only get to enjoy leisure time after work? Then look no further as our Gold Membership is the perfect option for you. Enjoy full, any time, access to our great services including; the fitness centre, the strength & conditioning room and unlimited exercise classes! This is the best package that we offer and provides you with a great opportunity to distress after a long day at work.

To check out all of our prices visit our website here.

New personal programmes!

Beach body ready

Summer is approaching and I don’t know about you but in July there will be a sun bed in Egypt with my name on it! Want to prepare for that new bikini or those snazzy swim shorts? The weight loss plan will get you in ship shape for beach selfies and the “Summer reading” but really i’m showing off my legs photos! The fitness instructor will check your BMI, consult your on your diet and put a plan together to beat the bulk.

The Incredible Hulk

Or maybe you want to beef up for the beach? The Strength and Size Personal Programme will get you running to the shops for bigger clothes in no time. Get your current routine check over by the team and get tips on new exercises, frequency and intensity. The fitness instructor will take you through everything, improving your technique and helping you make the most out of our facilities.

Fitness Fanatic

Do you live on the top floor too? Find yourself gasping for breath by the time you get through the door? You need a programme to increase your fitness. Your fitness instructor will base your programme on functional equipment and compound exercise, to prevent those awkward pit stops when climbing the stairs.

Now you’re faced with the question. Which fitness instructor do you choose? Check out our blog on which fitness instructors are best for you.

Student competition!

Calling all UEL Students! Want to win a free personal programme? email Lukas Volskis at l.volskis@uel.ac.uk with your name, student number and contact details!

5 Tips to stay healthy….

by Jasmine Wing

Always thought going to the gym and calorie counting had no appeal to you what so ever? And you’ve heard it all before, ‘cut out the junk food; have your five a day; go running; blah blah blah…’ well this isn’t one of those articles. Here are five practical and easy steps to the new you! 

  • Tip 1 – Fail to plan, plan to fail! One of the best ways to get on the right track for thinking healthier is planning your food, taking seconds from your day to consider your food intake for the week will save you time, money and help you curb your unnecessary bad eating habits. Plan meals, don’t skip them! 
  • Tip 2 – Bat your way to a healthier you. Why not ask a friend to come play a game of badminton for 30 minutes once a week? Having fun whilst exercising is a great way to get fit without realising it
  • Tip 3 – No more late night snacking. Try not to eat 3-4 hours before you go to sleep. Eating before bed is likely to store unwated fat due to a slower digestive system in the evenings, sound easy enough? Why not challenge yourself for a week! 
  • Tip 4 – Phone a friend. Find someone who also wants to start looking after their body and challenge each other to start being healthier. Encouragement from others is a key to success when making lifestyle changes. 
  • Tip 5 – A helping hand. Lastly, ask one of our fitness instructors at SportsDock to show you an exercise that you may not have tried before or something completely new that will help you to reach your goal in notime.  

Choosing a Fitness Instructor

Name: Sarina Duggall          Age: 29          Specialisms: Pregnancy

Sarina is firm but fair when writing personal plans. She likes a good balance between weights and cardio and uses them both to help build muscle and burn fat. Sarina isn’t a believer in fad diets and gives members nutrition advice they can use in the long term.

Choose if: You like Olympic lifting

Name: Alex Hibbert          Age:  29        Specialisms: Fitness development

Alex likes to focus on resistance exercises involving bands. He is currently helping clients prepare for Tough Mudder and pushes people until they realise their potential. He’s tough but you know it’s for your own good.

Choose if: You are training for an event and like functional training.

Name: Kyran Arusalm         Age: 21         Specialisms: Female body

Kyran is a shock to the system, he comes across as kind and caring but as soon as you stop so does his watch. He loves a good resistance cardio workout so if you want to develop your stamina he’s your guy…every exercise is his favourite exercise.

Choose if: You need tough love

Name: Kef Ras-Kassa          Age: 24         Specialisms: Combat Conditioning

Kef describes himself as a drill master and likes a lot of body weight floor work. If you need someone who will push you and give a bootcamp style workout this is your guy. Kef is trained in martial arts so ask him to mix things up a little.

Choose if: You like floor work and burpees!

Name: Pedro De Jesus          Age: 26    Specialisms: Diet and nutrition

Pedro is the go to for those who aren’t too sure about the gym. He’s holistic in targeting your diet as well as your exercise routine to help you lose weight. Pedro likes to use a lot of equipment, you’ll leave your session well informed.

Choose if: You need to change your diet as much as your exercise

Name: Kim Baptiste         Age:   22       Specialisms: Athlete Training

Kim is described by her colleagues as the toughest of them all! If you want someone who will set the bar high and put you through your paces she’s your gall. She focus’ on own body weight workouts and her favorite exercise is the box jump so prepare yourself!

Choose if: You like strength and conditioning