KONGA®, at Funk & Twist Fitness in Basingstoke, England, is a high-intensity offering that incorporates elements of boxing, cardio, dance and sculpt. The program vibe is fierce and wild, and sessions are set to upbeat music designed to inspire and motivate. The class is updated each month with fresh choreography so that participants don’t become bored or hit fitness plateaus. It’s appropriate for all levels, from beginners to seasoned fitness enthusiasts.Read More
The shoulder blades, or scapulae, are critical links in the kinetic chain from the waist through the shoulders, up to the neck and down to the fingertips. Abnormalities in the position or movement of the shoulder blades—technically called scapular dyskinesis—can trigger pain and discomfort, especially among people who spend long hours sitting and using computers.Read More
Your new client, 16-year-old Alexis, is a competitive athlete who wants you to design a fitness program that will help her prevent a second anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) tear. She partially tore her ACL while playing soccer and rehabbed it with a physical therapist, who cleared her to play again. Alexis returned to spring softball without an issue, but she would like to be as fully prepared as possible for the upcoming fall soccer season. She hopes to be recruited to play in college, but her parents are concerned she will sustain another ACL injury, perhaps a more severe one.Read More
There are three ways to look at battling cancer. For those who don’t have it, lowering risk is the primary goal. For those who’ve had it, successfully recovering and, of course, reducing the chances of recurrence are of utmost importance. For those who currently have it, the priorities are getting rid of it and minimizing the harmful effects that both the disease and the treatment have on the body. Exercise has been shown to help with all three.Read More
Healthy aging is more than the absence of disease, according to the World Health Organization (WHO): “For most older people, the maintenance of functional ability has the highest importance” (WHO 2015). Colin Milner, founder and CEO of the International Council on Active Aging in Vancouver, British Columbia, echoes these comments. “When looking at the healthy aging market today, the focus is all about function,” he says.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
How often do you hear participants complain about neck pain when you teach core moves in your classes? For many people dealing with ongoing neck-positioning issues, this is a real struggle. No matter how effectively the head is supported, they still have issues with neck stress for various reasons, including lack of strength, natural biomechanics or previous injury. These constraints prevent some participants from getting the most from your core/abdominal workouts and may inadvertently limit overall core strength. However, you can support these participants by offering the right moves.Read More
Shoulder pain and injuries make it harder to exercise and play sports. Damaged shoulders also limit basic functions, impair quality of life and disturb sleep (Acton 2011). What’s more, research suggests that almost a quarter of your client base will experience shoulder pain/injury at one time or another (Ghosh 2012).Read More
You’re running along your favorite path and then it happens: You get a cramp in your hamstring. While theories abound, there is limited consensus on why exercise-associated muscle cramps (EAMC) develop and how to get rid of them. A research review from the Brooks College of Health at the University of North Florida may clear up the confusion.
The review, published in Muscle & Nerve (2016; 54, 177–85), featured a series of studies analyzing the etiology and treatment of EAMC. Here’s what they learned:
Yoga injuries in the United States are on the rise, particularly among older adults, according to data from hospital emergency rooms nationwide. Researchers from the Center for Injury Sciences at the University of Alabama in Birmingham (UAB), Alabama, examined data from 2001 to 2014 to establish the injury risk involved in yoga participation.Read More
Migraines have long been a malady of unknown etiology, confounding medical practitioners and sufferers alike. A research review suggests that weight may be a factor.
The review included 12 studies and examined records from 288,981 individuals. Analysis showed that people with obesity had a 27% greater chance of developing a migraine than normal-weight people, while underweight individuals were 13% more likely to have a migraine than those of normal weight. Age and gender also correlated with migraine risk.
While some people with lower-back pain may doubt whether movement is the answer, new treatment guidelines from the American College of Physicians (ACP) recommend nondrug therapies as the first line of treatment to relieve acute, subacute and chronic lower-back pain.Read More
Ratcheting up the intensity of water workouts may help women lose weight without exacerbating knee pain, suggests a new study. Knee osteoarthritis (OA) affects around 13% of women aged 60 and older, and the condition can make it painful for them to exercise and lose weight. It can also become a Catch-22, because carrying excess weight can worsen the problem.Read More
The next time you pick up a dumbbell and hand it to your client, take a moment to celebrate the hard‐working hand. The hand is an anatomically refined dynamo that's often taken for granted until something as benign as a paper cut shifts the focus distally. Here are some interesting facts to grasp: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
Death is not the greatest loss in life. The greatest loss is what dies inside us when we live.
Sooner or later, most of us will lose someone we care about. The pain this causes can be overwhelming, and we may feel that nothing will ever be normal again. Losing someone we love is a highly personal experience, and no two people cope in the same way or progress within the same time frame. There is no right or wrong way to grieve.Read More
Can physical activity help us modulate pain? 2017 findings from Indiana University—Purdue University Indianapolis suggest that physical activity could offer some relief. The study, published in PAIN (2017; 158 , 383—90), aimed to determine if physical activity levels could predict how the nervous system interprets and perceives pain. Fifty–one adults aged 60—77 were recruited to participate. Prior to testing, each wore an accelerometer for 7
days to measure activity levels.