Lots of research has emerged about the kinematics of running, fueling debates over footwear and strike patterns. A recent study published in The Journal of Experimental Biology (2010; 213, 790–97) sought to slow things down a bit and look at the energy costs of different gait patterns. “Our heel touches the ground at the start of each step,” stated David Carrier, biology professor at the University of Utah and lead study author.
WWhen I was a kid, I used to show girls my biceps. Boys do silly things to impress girls. As adults, both men and women search for countless ways to make their biceps, and the rest of their muscles, look
appealing to themselves and each other. To most people, muscles are external structures, admired from the outside. But what lies within a shapely biceps is a wonderfully complex structure responsible for everything from metabolism to movement.
Have you or has your
facility promoted any mind-body movement classes specifically to strengthen the back
or to prevent low-back pain? For example,
have you designed any programming to target people who are interested in addressing
low-back pain issues?
Share your examples with editor Sandy Todd Webster, email@example.com.
Pilates training effectively improved core strength, posture and shoulder stabilization in a study published in Clinical Biomechanics (2009; doi: 10.1016/j.clinbiomech.2009.10.003). Researchers from the department of kinesiology and physical education
at McGill University, Montreal, conducted the small study, which included 19 healthy male and female subjects with no prior Pilates training—10 experimental group members and nine control group members.
According to the Arthritis Today website (www.arthritistoday.org), 225,900 hip replacement surgeries were performed in the U.S. in 2004; this was an increase of 37% from 2000. If trends continue, that number will reach 600,000 in the year 2015. In order to regain strength and mobility, many surgery patients may seek the guidance of qualified fitness professionals.
The word posture tends to evoke the image of a schoolgirl standing perfectly erect with a book on her head. More accurately, static posture refers to the way in which a person holds his or her body or assumes certain positions, such as sitting, standing or sleeping. The cumulative effect of the time spent in certain positions can lead to prolonged static-posture damage to both the musculoskeletal and myofascial systems of the body.
Exercise professionals regularly exclaim the benefits of exercise for maintaining and improving bone mineral density and bone health. They describe the benefits of gravitational weight-bearing exercise (i.e., ground-impact activities, such as walking, running and jumping) and muscle-loading activities, such as weight training. However, scientists are currently debating which exercise intervention provides more beneficial bone health adaptations.
“Runner’s knee” is a term that describes a painful and sometimes debilitating ailment of the knee present in a quarter of active people. The condition is often associated with runners, but anyone who participates in activities requiring knee bending can become affected. The exact cause of runner’s knee—otherwise known as patellofemoral pain syndrome (PFPS)—has remained a mystery. According to research from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, that mystery may now be solved.
Women: You’re not usually complimented on how great your bones look, but bone fitness is important to keep you strong and to prevent osteoporosis. What can you do to enhance your bone health? Get the skinny on this topic from Jason R. Karp, PhD, owner of RunCoachJason
.com, director and coach of REVO2LT Running Team, a freelance writer and a competitive runner.
When you were young, you probably heard the jingle “The knee bone’s connected to the thigh bone; the thigh bone’s connected to the hip bone; the hip bone’s connected to the back bone . . .” That ditty could go on for some time, since there are 206 bones in the human body—from the large, thick femur that spans the length of your thigh to the tiny, thin stapes, a stirrup-shaped bone that transmits sound inside your ear. Your skull alone has 22 bones (no wonder my mother keeps telling me I have a hard head!).