The Essential 6 Exercises you need to focus on

Here’s a quick exercise, just for fun and giggles.

You’ve to pack a bag for a trip into the bush (the countryside for you non-aussies) but can only bring 6 things to fit into a back-pack! Write down what 6 things really, really matter to prioritise.

Go… (I’ll wait for you to finish writing…)


Here’s mine, and I think 6 is maybe too much.

  1. Toothbrush – good oral hygiene can prevent a long list of health issues.
  2. A knife – always handy and useful to make other stuff.
  3. A plastic bottle – need something to keep water in.
  4. A hat – sunburn sucks.
  5. Flash light – I don’t like the dark and scary things don’t like light, correct?
  6. Whiskey – in case the light breaks!

Well, that’s my kind of frivolous list of things that I consider essential, well, except the whiskey haha, but maybe!

A simple principle was observed by the Italian 19th economist Vilfredo Pareto that describes how 80% of an outcome derives from 20% of the effort expended or invested. The rule or law as some describe it as can be applied or observed in many  areas from economics, science, business and even exercise training.

You may call this principle the 80:20 rule or even something more easy to relate to, like ‘big bang for the buck’ rule.

That of course is where I’m heading here.

If I was to ask you what 6 exercises you’d choose if you wanted the biggest bang from your buck, what would they be?

If you’re a well balanced human that cares and values all round good physicals health, you’ll not list 6 different kind of bicep curls, but a short list of moves that target all the great moves we as humans are meant to thrive with.

Screen Shot 2016-03-07 at 1.28.43 PMI’ll get to the point here:

  1. Hinge aka a deadlift
  2. Squat aka a deep knee bend
  3. Push, like anything
  4. Pull, again, anything
  5. Brace, as in brace yourself
  6. Carry stuff

As a small point, if I was asked to list two things, it would #1 and #6.

There are nothing fancy about these movements although technique and choosing the best personal variation is important. The importanter (yep, a new word for your wordinary book) bit, is keeping it simple, not easy, just simple. Mastering the most important and frequent movements we put ourselves into.

Make great efforts in the simplest things to see the best outcomes.

This leads on to a program pitch… Aye, I’ve something to offer y’all and it ain’t snake-oil!

I’ve loved a simple approach to exercise programming and have been providing programs based on this 80:20 principle for years but it’s only occurred to me recently to really promote the benefits.

Odd hey?! It’s a bit like knowing that drinking water is the best detox the liver needs and never telling anyone…. Who’d do a thing like that!

So, it is with great pleasure that we are launching the Simple Strength program – tada!


At this point, I’ll just redirect you to a special page that has a little more info and a sign up section if you or a friend in need is keen to take this principle personally and grab the opportunity by the horns.

Jamie Hunter

Head honcho at FitStrong PT

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