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FunctionalGeneral

Hiking Group

Hiking: It’s For Everyone!

Telling a person to “take a hike,” used to be a bit of an insult, but sending someone on a trek is really more of a favor. Besides having physical benefits, hiking improves mental health by fostering a relationship with nature. Research shows that spending time among trees and the great outdoors reduces blood pressure, lowers cortisol and adrenaline levels, and amps up the immune system (Mitten 2016).

Exercising with Hearing Loss

Training Clients with Hearing Loss

Effectively training clients requires us to listen to their needs, but equally important is the knowledge that they can hear you clearly. And then consider those whose hearing loss may make them feel excluded from the fitness world.

Taking Small Steps

Moving More Every Day

As you help your clients understand the benefits of moving more, it’s important to remind them that all movement doesn’t need to be done in the gym.

Families and fitness

10 Ways to Help Families Change

Families need you! A growing body of research makes it clear: Families provide a powerful force in supporting—or opposing—better health behaviors. Indeed, the authors of a state-of-the-art review in a prestigious cardiology journal call families…

Fall prevention training helps seniors stay active.

Fall Prevention for Older Adults

Fall prevention is a vital part of functional training for your aging clients. Changes in communication between the nervous and muscular systems as age we are likely to result in a loss of balance, which is a risk factor in the older population. Kyle Stull, DHSc, a content development manager at NASM and an instructor for the Department of Health and Human Performance at Concordia University, offers some practical advice in training clients for fall prevention.  

Training coaching corrective exercises.

The Top 10 Corrective Exercises

How does corrective exercise programming fit into your business? Clients who are self-motivated to work hard are already star pupils. But what do you do when a client, because of injury, overuse patterns or some other type of dysfunction, can’t quite make it out of the gate? Many people want and need help with reducing pain in addition to meeting functional fitness goals. One goal dovetails into the other.

Student and teacher in a tai chi class.

Personalized Tai Chi

Are customized routines really better than a standard protocol? One recent study posed this question in reference to tai chi: Is it better to offer a standard tai chi sequence or to individualize moves to a person’s needs?

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.

Fall Prevention Training Exercise

Fall Prevention Strategies

Fall prevention is one of the top goals for our active-aging clients.

Historically, the training approach to help clients was a functional “train-to-transfer” mentality, but strategies for balance improvement and fall prevention have come a long way. Thanks to a combination of scientific research and success stories of fitness pros working with this population, we know more now than ever.

DIAPHRAGMATIC BREATHING & NECK PAIN

Diaphragmatic Breathing & Neck Pain

Everyone from elite athletes to average clients can benefit from learning more about breathing or reprogramming the way they breathe. More specifically, by teaching them techniques that emphasize diaphragmatic breathing, you will help them meet their exercise goals.

The Feldenkrais Method®

Are you recovering from an injury or suffering from chronic pain? The Feldenkrais Method of somatic education may help. It offers a holistic approach to human development and motor function improvement through the medium of movement and sensation. The effectiveness of the method lies in its ability to work with the whole person. It is also useful for elite athletes and expressive artists. Buffy Owens, GCFP, a Guild Certified Feldenkrais PractitionerCM with experience as a personal trainer, yoga instructor, birthing assistant and life coach, explains how the method works.

Balance Training for Seniors

One of the most challenging issues that affect older adults is instability and loss of balance. Improving balance is vital for improving the quality of this population’s workouts. Recognizing and enhancing the various components of balance provides the greatest chance for success.

Feldenkrais Method® Improves Balance

Feldenkrais Method balance classes can help older adults improve balance and mobility, according to
a small study published in Evidence-based Complementary and Alternative Medicine (2009; June 24, epub ahead of print). Research suggests that balance training may be more effective in preventing falls than either strength or endurance training.

Guiding New Instructors

As vice president of GoodLife Fitness
clubs in Canada, Maureen “Mo” Hagan, PT, still teaches group fitness, inspiring
200 participants per week in her classes. She also travels to several new club
openings a year, introducing hundreds of members to group fitness programs. She
combines her passion for group exercise and her intere…

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