Archive for the ‘Gym’ Category
Here are links to some interesting articles I have come across recently:
The Hindu Push Up – a variation on the old classic
Eating quickly is associated with overeating – and overeating associated with…
The human body is built for distance – on a hot day a human can outrun a horse over a marathon
Moderate amounts of protein best for building muscle – over 30g may be a waste of your time
Baseball – head first slide is quicker – and more likely to result in your head hitting baseman’s/catcher’s knees!
Here are 17 home truths according to DietBlog.
I particularly agree with #7:
Don’t ask me about intermittent fasting, macro-patterning, cyclical ketogenic diets or meal replacements if you aren’t eating enough vegetables.
You won’t likely be able to out-exercise a poor diet.
A recent Swedish study showed elite Volleyball players were less injured and performed better when they completed resistance workouts under supervision.
Not really a ground breaking result, but it is good to have some confirmation for what most trainers anecdotally believe.
One of the downsides to Personal Training in New Zealand is the climate. Being able to get outside more often -especially in winter - adds not only enjoyment, but crucial variety, fresh air, and vitamin D.
But it is not only the (winter) climate, there is also a lack of equipment. It is real a downer for people wanting to exercise in the outdoors by themselves, as you find yourself having to use children playgrounds (and getting very strange, angry looks from parents).
Group training sessions have proved to be a good society-wide health initiative. Unfortunately due to the climate I doubt they would pass the “Wet Wednesday Test” in New Zealand – ie if it was a cold, wet Wednesday would you go to an outside free training session?
Cities should build workout areas/circuits in popular exercising areas. I am not talking about building Muscle Beach, but rather a few pieces of equipment spread around popular exercising areas that are totally free to use. It would be interesting to see any studies on the cost/benefit of building such circuits, like I recently saw in Aotea Lagoon. I would imagine they are positive.
I will watch the launch of YikeBike with interest.
Not sure I am prepared to fork out 100 EURO just yet though…
Innovative way to keep people active whilst at work: The Treadmill Desk.
I also like the “hold informal meetings in the halls or outdoors” idea!!
So what are the benefits of stretching?
Let me first ask: Do you stretch as part of a warm-up? To prevent injury? To help recovery? To relax (or as part of an exercise program – ie Yoga)? Or to try and gain flexibility?
It turns out, especially with regards to preventing injury and improving performance, that static stretching before activity is probably of no benefit. In fact there is some research to suggest that it may even be detrimental to certain athletic endeavors (the obvious exception to this is sports that directly benefit from holding static positions in extreme range of motion such as gymnastics). However the real kicker here is the type of stretching that you do – more dynamic stretching seems to be a lot better pre-activity than static. As time goes on, and more research in this area comes out I suspect we will find that specific dynamic stretches improve performance, and static stretching impairs it. I hope that saying “stretching” before activity is a good or bad thing will become a bit like saying “eating” before activity is a good or bad thing – it really depends on the type of stretching/food that you are talking about.
With respect to injury prevention there may well be an ‘optimal’ degree of flexibility, and if you are very flexible already then more stretching may make you more susceptible to injury! There is only minute evidence to suggest that pre-activity static stretching helps performance, and even the supporting evidence shows very small benefits. It currently appears that if you are interested in preventing injury then the type of static stretching you do before the activity is probably as relevant as the colour of your underwear.
When it comes to gaining flexibility though the story is a little different: As mentioned in a previous article, flexibility is very trainable. That is the more you do the more flexible you become. If you want to increase your flexibility PNF stretching is the more effective than static stretching, although not all research supports this claim.
Like exercise in general, the best type of stretching to do is the type that you enjoy – as you are most likely do this in the long term, and therefore experience gains in. If your aim is to increase flexibility then you could not go past a few sessions a week of PNF stretching with a friend/personal trainer or a yoga class, however if the thought of these repulse you then 30mins of static stretching in front of the tv will do the trick for you.