Release Tight Hamstrings: Tips by Coach Stephany

Let me say that I am so excited to be joining the BSF team! I cannot to start coaching all you beautiful people and be a part of your journey to be the happiest and fittest YOU that you can be. Today, I want to cover a topic that plagues just about every person I have encountered as a trainer…the dreaded tight hamstrings. We have all been there. Walk into the gym, start stretching, try to reach down and touch your toes, and BAM! You can barely get past your knees, let alone reach your toes. We all blame it on tight hamstrings, and while that’s a possibility, it could also mean that we have a weakness elsewhere, but that’s a conversation for a different day. Today, I want to share with you my top 4 things I do to help my hamstrings.

4. Toy Solder/Zombie Walks
This is usually my first dynamic stretch I do every day. It is very simple movement.
Step 1: Raise your leg as high as YOU can. Read: Don’t try to be Misty Copeland and reach the ceiling. This should NOT hurt.
Step 2: Opposite hand reaches for your foot. Attempt to keep a neutral spine through the movement.
Step 3: Switch sides. I typically do about 10‐12 ‐ possibly more if I had a tough workout the day before. This video is an example. She is stationary, but I walk forward with each step.

3. Eccentric Stretch

I’d like to thank Eric Cressey for giving me a better title for number 3. As you will all soon find out, I tend to give exercises crazy names. Hold each move for about 10-20 seconds on each leg. I don’t do this one every day, usually just once or twice a week. Again, make sure you are feeling that STRETCH and not feeling any pain. I cannot reiterate that enough. We never, EVER want to feel pain during warm-up.

2. COLD Showers
I know, I know. Sounds crazy but funny enough, taking a cold shower has so many health benefits (besides waking us up in the morning!). I’ve been doing this since middle school cross country and I still swear by it to this day. No, I don’t do it everyday, but it’s great after a tough workout, or lots of squatting or deadlifting. Now, I’m a chicken when it comes to cold water so I typically only make it cold for the last 2‐3 minutes. I just let the water hit my legs and do some quick stretching. Such a simple thing will truly help with DOMS or delayed onset muscle soreness.
Here is an article that shares a few other reasons why cold showers are so great for us!

1. Foam Rolling

I swear by foam rolling. It’s the very first thing I do before I warm up or even think about touching a weight. There are a bunch around BSF so there’s no excuse not to use them! Place the foam roller on the hamstrings and just roll your body back and forth, hitting from right above the knee to right underneath your glutes! BOOM! Before a workout, I do about 5‐7 rolls just to workout any soreness from the day before. After a workout, I will hang out for about a minute or so, really getting every little part of my hamstring and doing little pulses on any part that is extra sore.

Alright guys, these are my top 4 ways that I help my hamstrings out in the gym! Nothing crazy and something we can all do without having to go out and spend thousands of dollars. I look forward to meeting you all personally!


Can You Fit into your Skinny Jeans?

You know that hot pair of jeans that’s hiding in the back of your closet? Well…they used to be your hot jeans- once upon a time. Now they’re a couple sizes too small, just gathering dust and craving to see some daylight! You know the ones I’m talking about: that gorgeous pair of jeans that used to show off your curves in all the right places, but now squeeze a little too tight, almost making it a workout just to put them on. Well, it’s time to bust those jeans out of the depths of your drawers and dust them off, because in just 8 weeks, you could drop up to two sizes and look just as smoking as you used to in those fabulous hip huggers, regardless of whether it’s been a few months or a few years since you’ve last tried them on.

The “Skinny” on the Skinny Jean Slim Down

We challenge you to bring your “skinny jeans” into Body Space Fitness, and let us guide you through the second annual Skinny Jean Slim Down– an 8 week program including 4 workouts a week, daily meal plans and weekly grocery lists workouts, as well as constant coaching and support.

You will have 24/7 email/text access to your trainer, Nicole, who will answer any questions you may have throughout the journey. Last year’s Skinny Jean challenge was a huge success, and we’re pumped to have a new group of ladies who are interested in becoming fitter, healthier, and happier!

Want to Learn More?

For more details, check out the flyer above, and come to our free info session at Body Space Fitness, Thursday October 1st at 7 pm. 

You can sign at the front desk at Body Space Fitness, at the free info session, or online by emailing If you have any questions regarding the program, feel free to email Nicole at

Hope to see you there!

Coach Tony gets certified in Progressive Calisthenics

Congratulations to coach Tony for his certification in Progressive Calisthenics!

have always enjoyed calisthenics since I was a child since it only requires one’s own body weight as the resistance. No equipment necessary. When I first learned of The Progressive Calisthenics Certification taking place in NYC on Fri 6/20 – Sun 6/22, I knew I had to be there. I’ve always loved doing body weight exercises and saw this as a great way to not only expand my knowledge base, but to also see how far I can take my own body. Participants traveled mostly from North America, and we even had a few folks from Australia in attendance.

The workshop was facilitated by Al and Danny Kavadlo, two brothers born and raised in NY that have streamlined their teachings in a deliberate way that can be used by everyone from those new to strength training to athletes training for American Ninja Warrior (of which we had a few). The 3 days were filled with constant information and coaching. It was almost as taxing on the mind as it was on the body. Keyword being almost. Over the course of the weekend, there were countless repetitions being pumped out in every possible movement pattern imaginable as everyone fought to perform the hardest version of each exercise: one-arm pushup, one-arm pullups, human flags, muscle ups, single leg squats, stand to stand bridges, back levers, front levers, hanging leg raises, l-sits, headstands, and one arm handstands. An enlightening weekend to say the least.

As if all of this wasn’t enough, the actual test that everyone had to pass to be certified as a PCC instructor is The Century – 100 repetitions comprised of 40 squats, 30 pushups. 20 hanging knee raises, 10 pullups. All to be performed within 8 min after 3 straight days of making your body fatigued and sore in ways not previously imagined. Not the easiest when mixed with nerves of the other 30 something people watching. Especially when you are fatigued and quite literally stuck at the very last pullup that will determine if you pass or fail (it happened to me). The main things that will be useful in bringing this new found knowledge back to BSF is that we have a whole new way of working out our clients. It is easy to see that during busier times, space and equipment can become an issue. Having an understanding of how to coach a whole new plethora of exercises will allow everyone to be pushed to their limits in the safest way possible. In addition, while I love most of the other toys that we use, there are very few things that top being able to move your body unassisted for the first time. It’s just as a liberating moment for an athlete to get their first human flag as it is for someone being able to do their first pullup on their own. It feels like you’re flying on top of the world. Hopefully, I’ll be able to help others obtain that feeling with all that I have learned.



Piya Tony Vacharasanee – New York, NY, Coach at Body Space Fitness
ATHLETIC ACHIEVEMENTS: -National Academy of Sports Medicine – Certified Personal Trainer, -Training For Warriors – Levels 1 & 2, -Kettlebell Athletics – Level 1, -American College of Sports Medicine – Cancer Exercise Trainer, -Functional Movement Systems – Level 1
The PCC is a great learning experience for both trainers and fitness enthusiasts alike. The exercises and information presented are done in a deliberate and friendly manner. The whole weekend proved to be educational, intense and a lot of fun. The quality of training and knowledge of the instructors was top notch.

The PCC is a great certification and is in the top 2 along with DVRT. The practical use is obvious and easy to convey to clients. The scope of material is expansive and sometimes felt never ending (in a good way). The quality is superb and presented in a very authentic way.

Coming Soon to Body Space Fitness and Base PT…

BSF and Base Physical Therapy will soon be the home of an AlterG Anti Gravity Treadmill®. The AlterG is the latest in physical therapy and rehab, and clinical research supports its ability to help athletes, physical therapy patients, and lay people alike recover faster from lower body injuries; improve sports performance; and improve mobility.

Check out this video of Base PT owner Nina Figueroa testing out the AlterG!

Nina on the AlterG Anti-Gravity Treadmill

SHAPE in Action

In last month’s newsletter, we announced that Coach Kelvin was featured in the May 2014 issue of SHAPE Magazine. The awesome workout that Kelvin put together included several total-body exercises, all of which are demonstrated in the videos here below by BSF Coach Lauren!

Up your workout ante by including battle ropes, kettlebells, and sandbags. Battle ropes are great for training power development; kettlebells are great implements to increase strength in multiple dimensions and improve deceleration and stabilization; and sandbags’ instability provides dynamic variability to the workout so you have to engage more muscles to stabilize the load.


SHAPE in Action: Circuit #1

SHAPE in Action: Circuit #2

Team BSF Rides for a Good Cause

On March 29, BSF staff and clients teamed up with Flywheel for a charity ride benefiting the Livestrong Foundation. The Foundation “serves people affected by cancer and empowers them to take action against this disease that is now the world’s leading cause of death” ( Together, Team BSF kept hope alive for those battling cancer by raising $1,500 through their efforts.

“The event was a great success,” said participant and BSF co-owner Erin. “We were so honored to have such an awesome group of people riding with us for such a good cause. We’re really looking forward to more Sweat for Yellow events and raising more money for the Livestrong Foundation.”

BSF Culture: A Few Words from BSF Client, Eddie E.

At BSF, we want to see our clients achieve all their goals: success for the client means success for us. Eddie E. is a client who came to BSF hoping to get strong and improve his marathon time. Here’s what he had to say:

How long have you been a member? Since June 2012.

In this last year, thinking back, what did you enjoy most about being a member at Body Space? I like the atmosphere and I always feel welcome. It’s my personal gym as far as I’m concerned. It’s the most at ease I’ve ever felt working out at a gym not in my own home.

What was your absolute favorite workout this past year? And how about your lease favorite? TFW (Training for Warriors) is my favorite. I don’t have a least favorite, although Kelvin (coach and co-owner of BSF) likes to experiment with me when he has a new workout he wants to try. I usually end up enjoying it also.

Did you accomplish any new goals or have anything over the year surprise you? Yes, absolutely. I’d run two marathons before I started  training here and two since and the difference in my recovery and overall performance has been a complete 180. My overall health and knowledge have improved tenfold.

To wrap up, how has the Body Space Fitness team helped you to accomplish these goals this past year? I repeat, they practice what they preach and it shows. They are very knowledgeable and make sure everyone’s goals are catered to. From seasoned athletes to casual athletes, all goals are welcomed.