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Tuesday, Jul 29, 2014
Health & Fitness

We Tried It: FitDeck playing cards

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$9.95 to $16.95; available at www.fitdeck.com or call 1-800-226-6022

If you’re looking for a low-cost, low-tech, equipment-free way to work out this year, FitDeck just might be for you.

Each deck contains 50 or more cards, each illustrating and explaining a different exercise. You decide how long you want to work out and at what fitness level, then choose the appropriate number of cards, figuring you’ll spend about a minute on each. For example, a beginner might use two to five cards per workout; an experienced user could use 10 to 30 or more.

Flip through the cards one at a time until you’ve gone through your stack. You’ll come across everything from pushups to crab crawls to jumping jacks. And your workout will stay fresh because it will change each time you shuffle the deck.

The cards give you a good description of the exercise, suggest how many to do for your level, and note what part of the body you’ll be working on as you do each one.

My favorite thing about them, though, is they’re excuse-proof. You could do most of the exercises anywhere — in your home gym, your backyard or in a hotel room when you’re traveling. You pick the amount of time you want to workout.

With 40 decks to choose from, there’s something for just about everyone, including seniors (55-plus), juniors (4 to 14), golfers, swimmers and basketball players. There’s even a deck you can use in the office. And all include stretches and ways to add more fun to the workout.

The kids deck is fun, but it isn’t as simple as you might think; it would be great for the whole family. The seniors deck is larger and easier to read, but if you’re in reasonably good shape, go for something more challenging. The body weight workout, which I tried — and I’m 55 — is a good mix of easy and frustrating as heck.

Kim Franke-Folstad

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