Professional athletes of all kinds have discovered that adding Pilates to their training can improve performance, reduce injury, speed recovery, and help their hardworking bodies stay balanced and healthy (Caple 2016; Knowlton 2016; Saxon 2016). Pilates—a whole-body exercise system that can help you develop strength, functional flexibility, coordination and balance—can offer those same benefits to recreational athletes. A well-rounded program, particularly one offered in a fully equipped Pilates studio, can do wonders for athletes of almost any age, ability or sport.Read More
Many fitness professionals have dealt with an Achilles tendon injury, either their own or a client’s. The largest and strongest tendon in the body, the Achilles connects the lower-leg muscles and calf to the heel. “Synchronous functioning” of the tendon and calf is crucial for many activities, including standing on tiptoe, running, jumping and climbing stairs (Bhimji 2016).
Dutch surgeon Philip Verheyen named the tendon (after the Greek hero Achilles) in 1693. Previously, it was known as “tendo magnus of Hippocrates” (van Dijk 2011).
client: Frank | personal trainer: Frank McKenna, MEd, owner, Beach Better Bodies | location: Virginia Beach, Virginia
A dire situation. In the summer of 2016, personal trainer Frank McKenna received news he never expected to hear. At age 56, he had recently completed his own physical transformation and was arguably in tiptop shape, so when his doctor told him he had stage 4 lung cancer, he was stunned.Read More
Many clients can’t seem to get enough of workouts that meld functional movements with high-intensity resistance training. Indeed, workouts using dynamic, high-intensity, full-body movements are great for strength and health—provided the body functions properly and exercisers use correct technique.Read More
There's nothing like post–knee surgery downtime to catch up on my IDEA Fitness Journal reading. The February 2017 issue is just chock‐a‐block full of delectable goodness. In particular, I enjoyed Ryan Halvorson's article "Embracing the Joy of Movement" and Kelly McGonigal's "Ready to Love Your Stress?" Even after 38 years as a fitness pro, I learn something every issue to help me improve as a group fitness leader and baby boomer specialist. Both articles made their points logically, succinctly and persuasively.Read More
Tai chi practice may help veterans with posttraumatic stress disorder to manage symptoms like instrusive thoughts, concentration difficulties and psychological arousal. Boston University Medical Center researchers conducted a small pilot study with 17 veterans with PTSD to
evaluate whether tai chi would be a feasible and beneficial activity.
According to Lynn Panton, PhD, professor of exercise science at Florida State University, breast cancer survivors are often discouraged from lifting weights after treatment, for fear it could cause lymphedema, or swelling of the arms and/or legs. Panton, however, facilitated a study that suggests otherwise.Read More
client: Gary | personal trainer: Tracy Markley, owner, Tracy's Personal Training | location: Florence, Oregon
Surviving a stroke. In May 2014, 65–yearold Gary had a stroke so severe his doctors were skeptical he'd survive it. Fortunately they were wrong, but he suffered so much damage that physical therapists were initially convinced he'd be wheelchair–bound for life.Read More
In February 2006, Danny Strong was on top of the world. After years of working as a gym manager, he had opened his own personal training gym, making his dream a reality. The husband and father was also eager to welcome a second child into the family. A month after receiving the keys to his new facility, he took his family on a trip to visit his godmother. While on the road, Strong lost control of his vehicle and was hit by a tractor-trailer traveling at full speed. His pregnant wife, Sandra Urbano Strong, was killed instantly.Read More
A recent special edition of the Journal of Applied Physiology focused on eccentric training, best defined as using active force to produce muscle tension while the muscle is lengthening.Read More
Fitness professionals may work in concert with a physical therapist to encourage a client to engage in “prehab” to maintain or enhance his strength preoperatively for knee or hip arthroplasty. (Shakoor et al. 2010). Pain is often a limiting factor, and it may be difficult for the client to participate in even the most basic daily activities. Below are a few suggested exercises.
Isometric quadriceps sets. Lie on back with legs extended. Tighten quads and push knee into mat/surface. Hold 10 seconds. Do 10 repetitions, 5 times per day.
Many older adults who break a hip contend with physical limitations even after rehabilitation. According to researchers led by Nancy K. Latham, PhD, PT, of Boston University in Massachusetts, a home-based exercise program may offer a way to reduce those limitations and improve strength and mobility.Read More
The impact of land-based running can often have significantly debilitating effects
on the body. Yet running is one of the most popular cardiovascular activities, and
enthusiasts have difficulty cutting back, despite the potential for injury. If this is the case with a client of yours, you might suggest deep-water running (DWR) as a more accommodating alternative to the unforgiving terrain o…