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Archive for September 2006

Stability Ball Training for Sedentary Men and Women

Stability ball training has been used for many years to improve spinal stability and to reduce the risk of back pain. It is frequently employed in both the physical therapy and fitness settings. From an anatomical perspective, clinicians link the mechanisms of spinal stability to the trunk muscles, which are often grouped into two categories: the global muscle system and the local …

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Outwit, Outplay, Outlast?

Was that TV host Jeff Probst or IDEA Club Without Walls instructor Jeff Kress, PhD, hosting “Survivor: Lake Las Vegas”? Designed to enrich delegates personally and create a super networking opportunity, this mostly fun course was one of a select few daylong precon sessions at the 2006 IDEA World Fitness Convention®. Sixteen participants, from all over North Amer…

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A Pleasure and a Privilege

Reflecting on the milestones of IDEA’s busy summer has been a joy for us, accenting the vast potential we see for continued excellence in our conference programming into the future. The IDEA staff pulled out all the stops to prepare for the IDEA World Fitness Convention® and helped us make a longtime dream come true by simultaneously launching the Inner IDEA Conferenc…

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Motor Imagery: Using the Mind to Heal the Body

Athletes have long known the benefits of visualizing specific physical actions to improve sports performance. Now, scientists have been asking whether motor imagery training can be used to improve movement abilities and to stimulate brain development when active movement training is not an option—as is often the case after a stroke.
According to the authors of a research re…

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ADA Takes a Stand on Interventions for Childhood Obesity

The American Dietetic Association (ADA) has issued a new Position Paper to help parents, educators and other health professionals stem the tide of childhood obesity on a grass-roots level. Titled “Position of the ADA: Individual-, Family, School-, and Community-Based Interventions for Pediatric Overweight,” the paper is the first to draw conclusions from an extensive, evidence…

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Yoga Provides Mind-Body Benefits to Breast Cancer Survivors

Practicing yoga postures, meditation and breathing exercises can help women with breast cancer to enjoy greater functional fitness and to feel better about their health, according to findings from a small study presented at the 2006 annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology. “The women who practiced yoga reported better physical functioning, such as the ability to …

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It’s a Wrap

Is it safe to use plastic food wrap for microwave cooking? Which wraps work best for preserving perishable foods? Can aluminum foil actually cause certain foods to spoil more quickly? Is it okay to reuse these expensive coverings if you clean them thoroughly?

Here are answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about plastic, wax paper and aluminum products.

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Stepping Up to the Pen

When you stop to think about it, fitness professionals are highly skilled communicators. Whether you are working on the fitness floor with clients or addressing colleagues at conventions, you are translating highly technical information into understandable language that educates and motivates. For the most part, however, these skills have been honed in person and over the telephone. But what…

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Altering the Course- Permanently.

The IDEA World Fitness Convention has always been an event that moves fitness professionals to the depths of their hearts and inspires their passion to help others. This year’s gathering (July 25–29 in Las Vegas) fed and revved the estimated 5,000 attendees’ engines with educational rocket fuel and kept that tradition vibrant.
When Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee…

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Connected, Centered & Committed

The lights were soft in a hotel banquet room prepared for a convention crowd. People filed in, lightly chattering among themselves, fully present in the Sunday evening space. A subtle oscillation filled the room, broken by the long, low shimmer of a gong, stage center. “You are about to meet a person, the person you came here to be,” intoned Inner IDEA programming director Mar…

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How Does Practicing Tai Chi Improve Balance?

The mind-body benefits that result from consistent practice of tai chi continue to impress researchers. Older adults who did tai chi only three times a week experienced significant improvement in balance, lower-body strength and stance stability. In addition, subjects reported better quality of sleep, concentration, memory and self-esteem, as well as higher overall energy levels, accordin…

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To Vitamin B or Not to Vitamin B

Two studies this year have debunked the belief that vitamin B and folic acid can lower cardiovascular risk. In fact, both reports, which appeared in the March 16 issue of The New England Journal of Medicine, warn
that vitamin B and folic acid supplementation may actually put users at greater risk of heart disease.
This research contradicts previous studies, whi…

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Pilates Improves Youth Fitness

Kids need fun, effective and economical forms of physical activity that not only deliver results but
also stimulate continued participation. Researchers searching for appropriate youth activities found that 11-year-old girls who regularly took Pilates mat classes reduced body weight and considered it an enjoyable form of exercise. According to a pilot study published in Preventive Me…

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Teaching Trainers the Art of Self-Promotion

If you are a director or manager operating on a tight budget, chances are you have spent at least some of your dwindling financial resources promoting your studio’s personal fitness training services. But no matter how much of the budget pie has been allotted to marketing those services in newsprint, radio or television ads, you’ll never succeed if your personal fitness traine…

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Sample Class: Body Circuit

Do you work at a facility on a tight budget, or are you just looking for a creative new way to teach a challenging class? Don’t forget that your own body can be a valuable piece of equipment for both cardiovascular and strength training. Used effectively, body weight can provide optimal functional resistance for anaerobic interval training.
Anaerobic training is an essential c…

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The Hidden Cost of Liquid Calories

Do you find that it takes two hands to hold one of those convenience store 48-ounce soda troughs? Are you having a hard time squeezing your supersized “venti” coffee drink into your car’s cup holder? When it comes to beverage sizes and cup holders, more has become much more.
It wasn’t always this way. Back in 1977, the size of the average soft drink wa…

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Defining Periodization

The term periodization refers to the systematic manipulation of the acute variables of training over a period that may range from days to years. The original concept was developed in the former Eastern Bloc countries in the late 1950s to optimize athletes’ adaptations to resistance training. More important, periodization revolves around the athlete’s competitive calendar so that …

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Resource to Make Kids Media Savvy

We all bemoan the effect the media have had on the health of our nation’s children. For reasons ranging from unrealistic beauty images on magazine covers to the countless hours kids spend playing video games instead of team sports, the media have been blamed for the rising obesity epidemic and the increase in eating disorders.
Now parents and educators have a new t…

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Fresh Cut Fruit & Nutrient Retention

Do you wait till the last minute to cut up fruits, in order to preserve valuable nutrients? Well, wait no more. A new study found that cutting and packaging fruit has no effect on its vitamins and other antioxidants—even when the diced fruit is kept for up to 9 days in the fridge!

Reporting in the May 12 issue of the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry,
the r…

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Business World Warms to Yoga

It’s early days yet, but more corporations are adopting yoga programs to help employees cope with stress and be more active in the workplace. Large organizations such as IBM, Nike and Apple now offer yoga training.
One New York City entrepreneur, Bruce
Van Horn, has developed business-friendly classes with creatively described postures such as “opening bell” and &ldq…

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