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COVID-19 (Coronavirus): Updated information and resources from IDEA

Shirley Archer, JD, MA

Shirley Archer, JD, MA



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High-Volume, High-Intensity Exercise Is Safe for Men

October 15, 2019

No need for concern about increased death risk from heart disease among experienced middle-aged exercisers who engage in high-intensity activity, at least if they’re male. Findings from a 10-year study of 21,758 generally healthy, very active men—like marathon runners, cyclists and swimmers—showed that even for those with higher coronary-artery calcium levels, athletic pursuits did not elevate risk of death.

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2019 IDEA® World Scholarship Recipients

September 23, 2019

In rising to meet major challenges and needs—from overcoming cancer, a staph infection and even a four-story fall inside an elevator, to serving reservation residents and low-income individuals in high-crime neighborhoods—the 2019 IDEA World Scholarship recipients have shown character, determination and a commitment to helping others.

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Are 10,000 Steps Necessary?

September 23, 2019

Are some of your clients obsessed with achieving their step counts every day? While 10,000 steps is a popular marker, it turns out that taking as few as 4,400 steps per day is associated with a lower risk of death for women with a mean age of 72 years.

“Clearly, even a modest number of steps was related to lower mortality rate among these older women,” said principal investigator I-Min Lee, MBBS ScD, at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston.

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Morning Exercise and Cognitive Fitness

September 23, 2019

There may be something to the adage “The early bird catches the worm,” and it’s good news for those who love early-morning workouts. Not only is sunrise training an invigorating way to start the day; it may also stimulate adequate blood flow levels to the brain throughout the day, even during lengthy periods of inactivity.

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Childhood Activity and Midlife Brain Fitness

September 23, 2019

Here’s one more solid reason to inspire kids to exercise. The secret to maintaining cognitive fitness later in life may lie in getting active while young and staying active throughout teen, young-adult and middle-aged years.

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Sitting Increases Health Risks Independent of Exercise

September 23, 2019

It’s likely you have many clients who work sedentary jobs. Encourage them to simply move as much possible because, according to research,
people who sit for many hours, regardless of whether or not they exercise regularly, are at increased risk of higher liver-fat levels, a leading contributor to type 2 diabetes.

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Maternal Weight and Pregnancy Complications

September 23, 2019

Encourage your pregnant clients (if cleared by their doctors) to keep working out with you. A new study shows that maintaining a healthy weight before and during pregnancy is a key factor in avoiding pregnancy complications.

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First-Time Marathon Training Has Anti-Aging Effect

September 23, 2019

Here’s a good reason to encourage your midlife clients to try an inaugural running event. First-time marathon runners who trained for 6 months saw a 4-year reduction in arterial age, according to study findings presented at EuroCMR 2019, a scientific congress of the European Society of Cardiology.

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Caffeine—An Equal Opportunity Ergogenic Aid

September 23, 2019

Caffeine is known to increase performance when taken before endurance activities, but more than 80% of studies have focused on men. A recent randomized, double-blind, crossover study out of Queensland, Australia, aimed to determine whether or not gender affects ergogenic responses to caffeine.

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Minimalist Shoes and Stronger Foot Muscles

September 23, 2019

Minimalism is trending in many areas of life, including athletic shoes, with many fans touting numerous benefits. But does the evidence support the hype? Yes, according to research findings published in Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise (2018; doi:10.1249/MSS.0000000000001751). Walking in minimalist shoes is as effective as foot-strengthening exercises and may result in better compliance than doing specific exercises.

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Social Media Influencers Give Inaccurate Health Advice

September 23, 2019

Have you been frustrated by bad health and fitness advice doled out by social media influencers? You’re not alone, and if you sense that much of the popular online health information is wrong, you’re right! A recent study of key U.K. social media influencers’ weight management blogs—presented at the European Congress on Obesity in Glasgow, Scotland, in April 2019—showed that most influencers were not reliable weight management resources.

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Evening Cardio Training and Hypertension

August 20, 2019

In another clinical trial examining the impact of time of day on training effects, researchers found that cycling at moderate intensity for 45 minutes three times per week in the evening decreased clinical and ambulatory blood pressure in 50 middle-aged sedentary men with hypertension more than either morning training or stretching (the control group).

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Self-Selected or Fixed-Duration Rep Speed

August 20, 2019

A small study addressed the question of whether one gets better results from performing resistance training reps at a self-selected pace or at a fixed rep duration (2-second concentric phase, 2-second eccentric phase). Researchers from universities in S?úo Paolo recruited 12 resistance-trained men and evaluated exercise volume, muscle activation and time under tension.

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Cycling Workstations and Productivity

August 20, 2019

Your clients likely include deskbound workers who feel they can’t exercise. Well, maybe they can! A recent research review found that cycling as you work at your desk may be a good way to avoid the hazards of office inactivity while simultaneously improving productivity.

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Can Digital Multitasking Increase Overeating?

August 20, 2019

You may want to review your digital device usage. New research shows that people who mindlessly switch between a smartphone and a tablet or other digital devices are likely to have an increased susceptibility to food temptations and lack of self-control, potentially leading to weight gain. Researchers from three American universities conducted the inquiry to examine whether links exist between obesity and use of digital devices.

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Playing Team Sports Fights Depression in Boys

August 20, 2019

Participation in team sports not only helps children improve fitness and social skills; it’s also linked with development of the hippocampus region of the brain, according to research published in Biological Psychiatry: Cognitive Neuroscience and Neuroimaging (2019; doi:10.1016/j.bpsc.2019.01.011). In adults, lower hippocampal volume has been associated with depression for some time.

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Prolonged Sitting May Undo Exercise Benefits

August 20, 2019

Here’s some less-than-good news for your weekend warrior clients. New findings from a small study suggest that sitting throughout the day may alter the typical metabolic benefits of a bout of exercise. Whether sitting for endless hours daily is hazardous to our health because we’re not exercising or whether the health risks of sitting may be counteracted by exercise are questions to which scientists continue to tease out answers. University of Texas at Austin researchers designed a study to shed some light.

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Walking Benefits Older Adults With Arthritis

August 20, 2019

People with osteoarthritis who walk briskly as little as 1 hour per week can significantly increase their odds of remaining functionally independent. Northwestern University researchers in Chicago examined more than 4 years of data from more than 1,500 adults—age 49 or older—who had arthritis but no disability. Their activity levels varied. Activity data analysis showed that people who did 1 hour of moderate-to-vigorous activity per week had a higher probability of remaining free from disability than those who exercised less.

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Power Training vs. Strength Training for Older Adults

August 20, 2019

For maintaining functional ability—and potentially even for living longer—growing research
supports the benefits of power training, particularly as we age. Power is the ability to move weight with speed and to generate force and velocity with coordinated movement.

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