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Equipment

Creative Ideas That Inspire

Cardio Sweat Party, at Power Studios in New York City, was designed by Michele Gordon. It combines kickboxing with dance, athletic drills and upbeat music for a 55-minute, high-energy experience. Classes are open to all fitness levels, and each class begins with a dynamic, kickboxing- based warmup before moving into three to four segments of choreography. In between the choreographed moves, rounds of squats, lunges, jacks, burpees, mountain climbers and other athletic drills round out the experience.

Conditioning for Kayaking

Did you know that 13 million people participated in some form of kayaking in 2014, making it one of the most popular flatwater sports (Outdoor Foundation 2015)? If you’re a kayaker, you know that the main challenges are building upper-body strength for paddling and maintaining a strong lower back to avoid back pain.

Product Showcase

Nutrition By The Book
The Endurance Training Diet & Cookbook (Harmony 2017) by Jesse Kropelnicki is both a cookbook and a training nutrition manual. Kropelnicki shares his personal program of optimized nutrition, including 70 recipes that put his concepts into practice. The book provides nutrition information for distance runners, cyclists and triathletes and explores guidelines for what to eat pre-workout, post-workout and during recovery. There’s also a game plan for race-day nutrition.

Does Foam Rolling Really Increase Blood Flow?

One claim about the benefits of foam rolling is that it initiates an increase in blood flow to the treated area. But do those claims hold water? A study published in The Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research (2017; 31 [4], 893–900) aimed to find out.

What’s Hot in Equipment: Fitness Pro Favorites

Fitness professionals like their equipment—from "tried-and-true" to "oh, so new." And equipment companies like to fill convention halls with fresh gear to help trainers and clients hit their goals. Of course, fitness pros also enjoy new gadgets for the pure thrill of them—and will sometimes go for equipment that targets a fun goal over a hypertrophy goal, for example.

Comparing Periodization Strategies for Women

Study reviewed: Bartolomei, S., et al. 2015. Block vs. weekly undulating periodized resistance training programs in women. Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, 29 (10), 2679—87.

If your clientele includes women looking to boost their muscular strength within a specific time frame, creating periodized weight–training programs for them is a great idea. The question is: How should you structure the program? Bartolomei and colleagues' study published in 2015 offers guidance on two possibilities.

Fitness Technology That Shakes Things Up

For me, the annual Consumer Electronics Show combines the joy of Christmas morning with the wonder of Willy Wonka's chocolate factory. The massive Las Vegas trade show surrounds me with the bells and whistles of the latest and greatest technologies from around the world, with booth after booth full of people showing me why their products will be the next game changer in the health-and-fitness industry.

Sustainability Important For Gym-Goers, Says Survey

When it comes to exercise, people might give greater effort if there’s more at stake than calories or improved performance. A recent survey suggests that gym-goers might be motivated to work harder if their energy is converted to power for the gym.

Fit-Tech Trends to Watch in 2017

Fitness technology is part of the fitness industry's "new normal," but it's changing rapidly. Many of the fitness technologies we saw at the beginning of last year have already morphed into new and improved devices and features. We should expect more exciting updates this year as fit-tech companies, app developers and tech-savvy fitness brands continue to iterate.

Researchers Question Effectiveness of Wearable Activity Trackers

The wearable activity market has seen significant growth in recent years, and the trend seems poised to continue. However, new information from Duke-NUS Medical School in Singapore suggests many buyers may not get their money’s worth—at least as far as health improvements are concerned.

“What are the advantages and/or disadvantages to wearing workout gloves?”

The advantages to wearing weightlifting gloves include eliminating the need for chalk, eliminating calluses and preventing sweat from diminishing grip.

The disadvantages are that gloves can make gripping harder because they add girth to whatever you are gripping; gloves can get stinky if not allowed to dry out properly; and gloves can be difficult to get on and off for people who wear them intermittently in a workout. In addition, they can be expensive compared with more modern silicone or neoprene grip barriers.

A Teaching Kitchen in Your Studio?

Those of us who know how to cook typically learned by helping our
parents in the kitchen when we were growing up. We picked up on little
pointers, burned some toast, learned how to eyeball a measurement and
prepared recipes passed down through the generations. Developing a
comfort level in the kitchen requires practice—spending time there
planning, preparing and serving meals (and washing the dirty dishes!).

Wear It Well

Whether you’ve been in the fitness industry since the ’70s or you’ve done ’70s-style workouts with borrowed outfits from your mom’s closet, you know that the trends in fitness footwear and fashions are always exciting and evolving.

The Science of Suspension Exercise

Suspension exercise combines body weight and anchored, seatbelt-like straps to provide an alternative to free weights and machines. The question on a lot of trainers’s minds is whether these strap-based training systems work as well as more traditional resistance training tools. Though research into this question has been somewhat sparse, studies are starting to paint a picture of effective ways to integrate suspension exercise into a workout program.

Top Five Technology Roadblocks for Personal Training Staff

Gone are the days when all that your personal training department needed in order to stay ahead of the curve was a gym full of the latest fitness equipment and a team armed with clipboards, stopwatches and maybe a heart rate monitor or two. Now there’s a barrage of fitness technology, such as wearable activity trackers and mobile apps. Many fitness managers are contemplating if, when and how to formally integrate these new tech tools into personal training services.

Kettlebells and Cardiovascular Improvements

Despite being around for quite some time—the International Union of Kettlebell Lifting suggests their origin can be traced to Ancient Greece—kettlebells have become a popular “trend.” But is all the fuss surrounding kettlebell training sound?

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