I

Station 9

Station 5

Station 7

Station 6

Figure 5.1. Traditional square.

Room Arrangement

In its basic format, a circuit is usually arranged around the perimeter of the room (see Figure 5.1).

Alternative layouts, which may better suit the dimensions of the exercise room, are shown in Figures 5.2 to 5.6. Using different room arrangements provides variety, while still using the same stations.

Often circuit classes are held in physiotherapy departments, where other equipment is stored. Figure 5.4a and 5.4b circuit arrangement gets round the problem of participants finding themselves crammed into the corners. In Figure 5.4b only four stations are displayed at any one time then the circuit cards are changed to display four different stations. This is helpful when there are several beginners in the class as it keeps it simple for both the participants and the instructor. Participants follow the circuit in order of the numbers.

In circuit 5.5 the whole group is split into two smaller groups. One group goes round the perimeter stations in a clockwise direction, while the other group goes round the perimeter stations in an anticlockwise direction. This means that participants exercise with a different person at each station, rather than going round the whole circuit with the same person. This can be a useful way of getting the group to mix and it can promote better self-pacing and less competiveness, since the exercise partner is constantly changing.

Circuit 5.6 works best in a long hall, when class sizes are bigger and exercises are all aerobic in nature. The group is split into four or more smaller groups which remain in a line. Each group starts with a different exercise, moving from group A to E. Participants look along to the next line on their right for the next exercise. The line at the far end (line E) will not be able to

Stations 1 and 2 Stations 5 and 6

Stations 1 and 2 Stations 5 and 6

Figure 5.2. Bow tie circuit.

Stations 1-3 Stations 10-12

Stations 1-3 Stations 10-12

Figure 5.3. Corners circuit.

see the start line so the exercise leader has to demonstrate. After all five exercises have been completed the exercise leader gets the group to perform an active recovery walk and then changes the line exercise for the second circuit. This circuit relies on at least one participant in each group acting as a line leader.

Station Duration

Aerobic stations can vary between 30 seconds and three minutes, with the duration dictated by participants' functional capacity. Least fit participants will

Stations 3 and 4

Stations 1 and 2

Stations 3 and 4

Stations 1 and 2

Stations 5 and 6

Stations 7 and 8

Stations 5 and 6

Stations 7 and 8

Stations 2 and 6

Stations 1 and 5

Stations 2 and 6

Stations 1 and 5

Stations 3 and 7

Stations 4 and 8

Figure 5.4a. and 5.4b. Diamond circuits.

Stations 3 and 7

Stations 4 and 8

Figure 5.4a. and 5.4b. Diamond circuits.

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