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A Strong Diaphragm for a Strong Core

When you think about exercising core muscles, do you remember your diaphragm? Its two main functions involve breathing and biomechanics, and it’s one of the most important muscles for maintaining intra-abdominal pressure (Nelson 2012). Intra-abdominal pressure is like a weight belt applied from the inside. If your body can’t regulate this pressure, you may experience poor motor control and lack of spinal stability. Plus, when the diaphragm is not properly engaged, other muscles must compensate, increasing your risk of injury.

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Will You Get Faster on a Keto Diet?

Keto Diet and Sports Performance

Many proponents of the ketogenic diet claim that it not only helps with weight loss but also increases exercise endurance by making the body more efficient at burning fat and ketones for energy. However, an investigation by New Zealand researchers, published in Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, hints at a different outcome.

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Hunger on the Mind

Hunger and choices research

British researchers found that hunger can significantly influence the choices we make. For the study, reported in Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, a group of 50 participants answered questions at two separate times, once 2 hours after eating and once after fasting for 10 hours. Participants had the option of immediately receiving a reward (including money) or waiting for a more substantial reward later on.

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Attack on Snacks

Snack tax

Perhaps a snack tax would be more effective than a tax on sugary drinks for reshaping the way we eat. Based on economic modeling, British researchers are suggesting that a 20% price increase on highly processed snack foods like candies and chocolates would reduce calorie intake in the U.K.’s population enough to bring about an average weight loss of 2.9 pounds over a 1-year period.

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Another Win for Gluten

Gluten-free diet research

People without a gluten-related disorder (for instance, celiac disease or nonceliac gluten sensitivity) did not experience gastrointestinal symptoms like bloating after consuming gluten flour twice daily for 2 weeks, according to a double-blind, randomized controlled study in the journal Gastroenterology. This is more evidence to counteract the belief that eating gluten-free as a lifestyle choice is the healthier way to go.

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Gender Equality Among Spotters

Gender equality and spotters

A spotter’s gender does not influence bench press performance during a 1-RM testing protocol, according to a 2019 report in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research (2019; doi: 10.1519/JSC.0000000000003156) This is true whether the weightlifter is male or female.

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Health and Wellness Coaching Approved as Healthcare Service

health and wellness coaching

Health and wellness coaching has hit an important professional milestone. The AMA has officially recognized the role of health and wellness coaches as nonphysician healthcare professionals by approving procedural codes for tracking health and well-being coaching services. This means that health and wellness coaches who are certified by either the National Board of Health and Wellness Coaching (NBHWC) or by the National Commission for Health Education Credentialing Inc. are recognized as Category III healthcare professionals.

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Midlife Gait Speed Linked With Lifelong Aging

Aging and Midlife Walking Gait

How fast you walk at midlife may provide insight into your future physical and mental fitness. Researchers from Duke University in North Carolina and the University of Otago in New Zealand evaluated data from more than 1,000 male and female participants, who were assessed at intervals from birth to age 45 on factors including physical function, gait speed, aging pace and neurocognitive function.

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Best Focal Strategy for Weightlifting

Focal Strategy for Weightlifting

The mental aspect of strength training is often given short shrift, but now a systematic review has analyzed relevant research to determine which most benefits weightlifting performance: focusing externally on the intended weightlifting result, focusing internally on the body or having no specific focus.

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HIIT or CWT: Does Sequence Matter?

HIIT and Weight Training Sequence

A new study, conducted under the leadership of IDEA author and presenter Len Kravitz, PhD, compared cardiovascular and metabolic responses to two exercise protocols: (1) six bouts of high-intensity interval training (HIIT) followed by three rounds of circuit weight training (CWT) and (2) CWT rounds interspersed with HIIT bouts. Fourteen trained young men (ages 25.7 ± 4.4) participated in the study, completing each of the two programs 3 days apart.

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