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Archive for March 2010

Welcome to IDEA Pilates Today

Welcome to your first issue of IDEA Pilates Today!

We are excited to launch this e-newsletter specifically for the Pilates community. As in other industries, Pilates has many different interest groups and factions. It is our quest to help grow Pilates and create a vehicle that will unite all parties.

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Finding and Maintaining Your Edge

Although my business still requires diligence, attentiveness and hard work, it is much easier now than it was then because I know so much more. I know what I want, and I am at ease and comfortable with my hours, my skills and my clients.
Regardless of the economy, the weather, the decade or your age, having “the business edge” is about having a business that is organized, dependable and current and that stands out from the run-of-the-mill wellness business.

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Using Talk Radio as a Marketing Tool

What if you could talk your way to new customers, enhance your credibility and add value for your current clients—all for less money? Hello, talk radio. If you have the gift of gab and can hone it to the talk radio market, you may have found a niche that will set your business on fire.

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Business Is Business

This column provides trainers with practical ways to approach common business obstacles using a coaching strategy called gap analysis. A gap analysis helps people identify where they are currently with regard to a situation, where they ultimately would like to see themselves, and the steps they must take in order to bridge the gap. Here’s how a gap analysis can help you improve your ability to establish and maintain professional boundaries with your clients.

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Nutrition 2.0

Clients often ask fitness professionals questions about nutrition, since the topic is closely related to exercise. While it may be appropriate to educate clients about foods and diets, sometimes it is best to defer to a dietitian (Muth 2009). But when a nutrition expert is not on-hand or clients cannot afford one, they may turn to the Web for answers.

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Phase-One Exercises for Breast Cancer, Part One

According to the National Cancer Institute, approximately 2.4 million women living in the United States in 2004 had been treated for breast cancer (American Cancer Society 2007). Fortunately, thanks to early detection and advancements in treatment, many more women will survive breast cancer and go on to live out their natural life expectancy. Despite this good news, cancer treatments take an enormous toll: in just a year of treatment, the body can age a decade. Between the inherent weight gain, muscle atrophy and premature bone loss, women are left weak and physically challenged even by normal day-to-day activities.

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Case Study: Working with a Vietnam Veteran

Greg arrived at my studio in pain, and in a wheelchair. Thirty years ago he broke his back during a “night jump” in Vietnam. A night jump is when a soldier jumps from a helicopter under cover of night, opens his or her parachute and lands blindly. Unable to see in the darkness, Greg hit the ground with his legs completely straight, sending a shock wave through his body, which resulted in a debilitating spinal injury.

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How to Develop a Questionnaire

Wouldn’t it be great to know exactly what your clients want and need from you? If you are like most Pilates studio owners, you probably can’t invest a lot of money in complex statistical computer models or market research to gather data about your clientele. However, you should still collect this information on your own. For gathering data about your customers and their programming needs, there are many vehicles, including focus groups, experimental research or questionnaires.

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The Essential Cue: Reformer

Many exercises in the Pilates repertoire involve thoughtful and calculated initiation before you even begin the movement. Can’t feel the muscle focus? Don’t understand the objective? Then you’re cheating! The art of providing proper cues to clients is crucial to their success. Let’s explore a few exercises specific to the reformer and share ideas on how best to “tell a story” using a variety of cuing avenues.

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Sample Class: Athletic Step Intervals

Take a break from choreography and give your students this athletic challenge on the step. The interval format is easy to teach and can be adapted for all fitness levels. Interval training is a valuable tool for re-energizing students and increasing their fitness levels, and it fits in nicely with other popular “metabolic training” programs. Also, because of its intensity, this class combines well with other formats, such as weight training, yoga or mat Pilates.

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Body-Weight Boot Camp

Boot camps are the perfect format for encouraging participants to move beyond their comfort zones. To mix it up for your deskbound clients, consider offering a boot camp program that uses the most portable, functional and effective piece of training equipment on the market: your body!

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10 Fascinating Brain Facts

Impress and amaze your friends and colleagues with these 10 fascinating “brain facts”! 1. The average brain, which weighs about 3 pounds, has approximately 100 billion neurons. 2. There are about 100,000 miles of blood vessels in the brain. 3. You continue to make new neurons throughout life as long as you use your brain…

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Shake It Up With Shake Weight

A new device that has exploded onto the market is the Shake Weight™,
a 2.5-pound dumbbell-shaped apparatus that promises “strong, sexy, sculpted arms & shoulders” in just 6 minutes a day. The product was originally designed for arm-conscious women, but a male version has recently entered the market. Users grip the tool in one or two hands and then shake it vigorously back and forth with minimal—if any—changes in range of motion.

The Shake Weight website states
that strength benefits are derived from
a “new” technology dubbed “dynamic

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Workplace Tai Chi–Economical and Effective

Tai chi practice in the workplace can improve functional fitness and feelings
of well-being, according to a study published in Work: A Journal of Prevention, Assessment and Rehabilitation (2009; 34 [3], 331–38). Researchers from York University, Toronto, studied the effects of a workplace tai chi program on physical fitness and well-being among female university employees who used computers. Fifty-two subjects participated in two 50-minute tai chi classes per week for
12 weeks.

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Curried Lentils

This spicy blend of crisp apples, brown rice, tomatoes, curry and ginger will make your
family view lentils in a new light. Plus, this dish can be served as a hearty main dish or
as a side. Best of all, you can make this ahead of time and freeze individual portions.

1 cup green or French uncooked lentils
1 carrot, peeled and diced
1/4 cup canola oil
1 onion, diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon (tbs) grated ginger
1 tbs curry powder

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eat well online guide

A nifty website now allows users to plug in their ZIP code or city and—presto—find
real-time sources of locally grown healthy foods at farmers’
markets. This online guide (www.eatwellguide.org)
contains links to nearby
restaurants, bakeries and
caterers, along with news
articles and recipes.

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guide to a greener oven

For those without a self-cleaning oven, this odious chore usually requires nasty and toxic sprays that should only be handled by a fully outfitted HAZMAT squad. But there is a better and greener way to keep your oven sparkling clean. Here are a few tips taken from The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Green Cleaning, by Mary Findley:

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