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How to Correct Imbalances in Walking Biomechanics

By Justin Price, MA | May 28, 2018 |

Participating in a program of regular exercise is a good idea at any stage of life. One of the most popular forms of exercise is walking, and it’s an ideal physical activity for older exercisers because they generally feel confident performing the required movements—after all, they’ve been doing them all their lives (Williamson 2007).

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Diet, Exercise and Bone Health

By Maria Luque, PhD, MS, CHES | May 18, 2018 |

As a fitness pro, you can’t fix the genetic and environmental contributors to bone loss, but you can encourage physical activity and proper nutrition, both of which improve bone health. More than 70% of Americans don’t get the recommended amount of physical activity (Laskowski 2012), and 50% are considered deficient in vitamin D (Karaguzel & Holick 2010). One systematic review rated calcium, vitamin D, dairy and physical activity/exercise as the most important modifiable lifestyle factors that can influence the development of peak bone mass (NOF 2016).

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Bone Loss and Aging

By Maria Luque, PhD, MS, CHES | May 18, 2018 |

Bone loss and aging are inseparable: “The skeleton is a systemically regulated mass of mineralized material that is born, grows, reaches a more or less high peak, and then declines faster or slower as to develop a correspondingly high or low fracture risk”(Ferretti et al. 2003). Musculoskeletal aging—declining bone and muscle mass, increasing joint pain and stiffness, and decreasing physical mobility—is a normal part of aging. However, how rapidly or slowly bone mass declines depends on different factors.

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Exercises for Clients with Osteoporosis

By Maria Luque, PhD, MS, CHES | May 18, 2018 |

When working with any clients diagnosed with osteoporosis, you want to maximize the benefit, but you must also take care to avoid unnecessary risk. If mobility and posture are altered after a vertebral fracture, pay close attention to correct lifting technique and avoid pitfalls such as loading the spine in a flexed posture. For example, since exercise machines often require twisting and forward bending, you may need to avoid using them with clients who have osteoporosis (Giangregorio et al. 2014).

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Bone Health in Women

By Maria Luque, PhD, MS, CHES | May 18, 2018 |

Fitness professionals have to be aware of just how great the osteoporotic fracture risk is for women. Worldwide, osteoporosis affects 200 million women, and the lifetime risk of a hip fracture is 1 in 6, compared with 1 in 9 for breast cancer (IOF 2017).

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Bone Modeling and Remodeling

By Maria Luque, PhD, MS, CHES | May 18, 2018 |

The skeleton is composed of two types of bone: cortical and trabecular. Cortical (compact) bone comprises 80% of the volume in the adult skeleton and forms the outer layer of bone (Lerner 2012). Trabecular (cancellous) bone makes up the inner layer; has a spongy, honeycomb structure; and is mostly found in the skull, pelvis, sacrum and vertebrae. Although peak bone mass is reached in late adolescence, bones never stop changing. An adult skeleton replaces its bone mass every 10 years (OSG 2004).

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Positioning Yourself to Get Hired

By Shirley Archer, JD, MA | April 20, 2018 |

Corporate wellness represents significant growth opportunities as organizations embrace a culture of personal well-being and optimal health to retain the best employees and reduce healthcare costs. Fitness professionals who enjoy being part of a collaborative team with employees, other wellness staff and corporate management are likely to thrive.

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Fit Pros Face Body Image Pressures From Both Directions

By Amanda Vogel, MA | March 29, 2018 |

How do personal trainers and fitness instructors fare in the face of body insecurities? A lot of us put pressure on ourselves—and each other—to look a certain way. Individually, fitness pros vary widely in where they fall on the body image spectrum, which extends from abject dissatisfaction to healthy self-perception. But even if our own perspective falls within the “contented range,” we must recognize that, as an industry, we have a problem. There’s tacit, and sometimes blatant, body shaming.

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Distracted Clients? How You Can Help

By Erin Nitschke, MS, EdD | February 16, 2018 |

It’s a busy, technology-dominated world—and most of us are continually spinning, twisting and turning in an effort to “get things done” and “produce.” We work, we raise families, we have countless responsibilities. The truth is, this is distracted living, and it raises stress levels, lowers productivity, interferes with our ability to focus and compromises the mind-body connection. When we live this way, we fail to cultivate a sense of contentment and joy, which is counterproductive to our work as fitness and wellness professionals.

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Partner Warmups

By Christy Stevenson | February 16, 2018 |

Have you noticed the latest trend? Instructors are incorporating partner work to add intensity, motivation and a sense of community. Prepare your class for success by teaming people up during the warmup. Below are a few full-body exercises that hit the upper body, lower body and core in a coordinated movement pattern. Before you start, get everyone in the “sidekick spirit” with these tips:

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Cardio–Strength Combo: Maximizing the Benefits

By Amy Ashmore, PhD | February 16, 2018 |

In today’s marketplace, knowing how to offer combined training is a must-have skill. People want it all—cardiovascular, strength and flexibility training—in just 50 minutes.

It’s easy to design individual or small-group programs that combine several exercise modes so that clients can meet multiple goals in a single session. But there is one challenge to keep in mind: Doing cardio, strength and flexibility training during the same session seems to confuse muscles at the molecular level, in effect interfering with their ability to respond properly (Doma & Deakin 2013).

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