Take the stairs. You know, some people pay to use stairs (read: they buy a stair stepper machine), so if you work or live above the first floor, consider using your stairs as a privilege. Using the stairs is great cardiovascular exercise, and also tones your calves, hamstrings, glutes, quadriceps, and abs. Next time you're about to take the elevator or escalator, take the stairs instead. If you have some time to spare, take an extra trip up and down. Or, try a stair-based workout like this one.
^ Jump up to: a b Szuhany KL, Bugatti M, Otto MW (October 2014). "A meta-analytic review of the effects of exercise on brain-derived neurotrophic factor". J Psychiatr Res. 60C: 56–64. doi:10.1016/j.jpsychires.2014.10.003. PMC 4314337. PMID 25455510. Consistent evidence indicates that exercise improves cognition and mood, with preliminary evidence suggesting that brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) may mediate these effects. The aim of the current meta-analysis was to provide an estimate of the strength of the association between exercise and increased BDNF levels in humans across multiple exercise paradigms. We conducted a meta-analysis of 29 studies (N = 1111 participants) examining the effect of exercise on BDNF levels in three exercise paradigms: (1) a single session of exercise, (2) a session of exercise following a program of regular exercise, and (3) resting BDNF levels following a program of regular exercise. Moderators of this effect were also examined. Results demonstrated a moderate effect size for increases in BDNF following a single session of exercise (Hedges' g = 0.46, p < 0.001). Further, regular exercise intensified the effect of a session of exercise on BDNF levels (Hedges' g = 0.59, p = 0.02). Finally, results indicated a small effect of regular exercise on resting BDNF levels (Hedges' g = 0.27, p = 0.005). ... Effect size analysis supports the role of exercise as a strategy for enhancing BDNF activity in humans.
The popular belief is that two training methods are needed to be physically fit: working with weight for muscle strength, and aerobics for cardiovascular fitness. This is untrue. One of the biggest jobs of the cardiopulmonary system (heart and lungs) is to service the muscles. If the cardiopulmonary system were a retail store, the muscular system would be its biggest customer. When your muscular system works harder, the cardiopulmonary system works harder; it's not the other way around. So, working your muscles hard will force the cardiopulmonary system to work hard. Muscular work of sufficient intensity requires the cardiopulmonary system to work hard to meet muscular demands, so one activity takes care of both muscular and cardiopulmonary fitness. And that activity is strength training. Think about it, you can't exercise the cardiopulmonary system without exercising the muscular system! So, although the fitness industry remains blind to the above facts, strength training will provide you with every exercise-related health benefit you could possibly want. Doing "cardio work" is a waste of time and physiological resources, and can actually be counterproductive.
By the 1930s, the method was flourishing and the St Thomas faculty was reinforced with two of Randell’s distinguished physiotherapy graduates: Australian hockey star and medical student Barbara Mortimer Thomas (1910–1940), who served as main instructor,29 Sydney Morning Herald [Internet]. Thomas BM: Obituary (1940). 2014 Oct 23 [cited 2015 Aug 30]. Available from: http://www.tiveyfamilytree.com/Barbara-Mortimer-Thomas-Death-Article-SMH-11-9-1940.htm. [Google Scholar] and English dancer and choreographer Margaret Morris (1891–1980), who already used remedial exercises in her dance teaching.30 Margaret Morris Movement (MMM) [Internet]. Margaret Morris - Biography. 2015 Aug 30 [cited 2015 Aug 30]. Available from: http://www.margaretmorrismovement.com/MargaretMorris. [Google Scholar] Exercising to the beat of classical music, the dance moves and grace typical of the St Thomas Method exercises are attributed to Morris.

Fit septuagenarians may even need to be held back: “Strength training is super empowering,” she says. “And people get excited when they see and feel the results. I have older clients doing multiple timed sets of kettlebell swings. One older client biked 2,700 miles in 50 days. It takes a little longer, but they can reach really impressive levels of fitness.”

“Everyone can dance! Just embrace your style! And, if it’s for fitness, well, the point is to get you moving, not to be a professional! So, if you’re sweating and having a good time, you’re doing it right!” says Blogilates creator Cassey Ho. In this video, she takes you through a step-by-step, 14-minute dance cardio workout, complete with instructions. This video is great for those who need a bit of extra guidance. After you’ve learned the exercises, you may even be able to take a few of these moves to the floor.
What is your current fitness level? – knowing where you are fitness wise may be a hard thing for some to admit, but answering yourself honestly will ensure that you don’t start off with videos you may not even be able to keep up with not to mention finish. There is nothing more discouraging than getting an exercise video and then finding out that you can’t even handle their warm up. The most important thing to keep in mind is that just because you may be starting off at the very beginner’s level, you certainly don’t have to stay there. The more you exercise the stronger you will get and the more your fitness level will increase. It didn’t take over night to end up where you’re starting from so you shouldn’t expect yourself to fix it over night as well.

More recently, exercise was regarded as a beneficial force in the 19th century. After 1860, Archibald MacLaren opened a gymnasium at the University of Oxford and instituted a training regimen for 12 military officials at the university. This regimen was later assimilated into the training of the British Army.[145] Several mass exercise movements were started in the early twentieth century as well. The first and most significant of these in the UK was the Women's League of Health and Beauty, founded in 1930 by Mary Bagot Stack, that had 166,000 members in 1937.[146]
10.  Work the whole body during one session. Exercising different muscle groups on different days is counterproductive. Your whole workout should take no longer than 45 minutes, and this includes time spent on a treadmill to move lymph fluid to prevent lactic acid pooling in muscles. (Forty-five minutes, once a week for a high level of fitness... who can't find time for that!)
Most people instinctively move weights very quickly - they jerk upwards, lower the weight without much control, and tense up and use momentum to "bounce" the weight at both ends of the repetition. The instinct serves a purpose - the speed and bounce at the ends do allow heavier weight to be moved. In competitive weightlifting both explosive speed and momentum are essential.
Simply put, progressive overload means that you are consistently lifting or pulling a little more each week (or progressively on a schedule that aligns with your capacity). Lifting weight will break down your muscles. However — and this is where the magic happens — when the muscles grow back, they grow back stronger, but only if you are subjecting them to progressive overload.
Two moves is better than one, right? You may want to do this move on a mat or a towel for padding. Start in a high plank position with core tight. Lower onto both forearms at the same time, maintaining a tight core and level hips. Now push back up onto hands at the same time to return to starting position. Finish by drawing right knee into chest, then left knee into chest, doing a mountain climber.
More recently, exercise was regarded as a beneficial force in the 19th century. After 1860, Archibald MacLaren opened a gymnasium at the University of Oxford and instituted a training regimen for 12 military officials at the university. This regimen was later assimilated into the training of the British Army.[145] Several mass exercise movements were started in the early twentieth century as well. The first and most significant of these in the UK was the Women's League of Health and Beauty, founded in 1930 by Mary Bagot Stack, that had 166,000 members in 1937.[146]
But many of us made the observation that one of the best ways to objectively measure the aerobic benefits of endurance exercise was the HDL (cholesterol) level, and that these three activities usually had very little effect on HDL. We here are now following 29 patients on this high intensity (Superslow) protocol (17 minutes in the gym every 5th day), and 28 of the 29 have more than doubled their HDL's, mostly from the low 20's to the mid/high 50's. (Show this to your doctor and see if he knows of any drug or activity that can double HDL!)

Start in a low lunge position with right foot forward, left foot back, and fingertips touching the ground for balance. In one smooth movement, bring left foot forward and, as you stand on right foot, continue to lift left knee toward chest and hop up on right foot. Land lightly on right foot and immediately slide left foot behind you to return to starting position. Repeat for half the time then switch to the other side.
Also, my favorite workouts might not be yours. “It's like asking someone for the best musician, or the best craft beer,” says Daniel Freedman, co-founder of online fitness site, BurnAlong. He recommends trying several of the apps out to see which one works best for you. “Who is going to inspire you?” Freedman says, “find who you'll stick with week in and week out.”

One way repeated ANOVA was used to compare time to exhaustion between sessions (S1, S2 and S3). Relative reliability was calculated with the intraclass correlation (ICC) model (3, 1) [27]. Absolute reliability was calculated with the typical error of measurement (the standard deviation of the change scores divided by [28, 29]). Bland and Altman’s 95% limits of agreement were also used (calculated for S1 vs S2, S1 vs S3 and S2 vs S3) as an additional representation of measurement error and to identify the presence of heteroscedasticity [19]. As data were heteroscedastic, both raw data and log transformed Bland and Altman’s plots are presented. Limit of agreement ratio (LOA) was also calculated from the log transformed data as follow: LOA = (1.96 × SDdiff / grand mean) × 100; where “SDdiff” represents the SD of the differences between tests (S1 vs S2, S1 vs S3, S2 vs S3) and “grand mean” represents (mean S1 + mean S2 + mean S3)/3. As time to exhaustion data were heteroscedastic, we also calculated the coefficient of variation (CV) for each subject as follow: CV = 100×(SD of the three measurements)/(mean of the three measurements). Mean CV for all subjects were also calculated. We also calculated the smallest worthwhile change (0.2 × between subjects SD) [21].
Each reliability session took place on a Monday, Wednesday and Friday morning at the same time and within the same week. All subjects were given written instructions to drink 35 ml of water per kilogram of body weight, sleep for at least 7 h, refrain from the consumption of alcohol, and avoid any vigorous exercise the day before each visit. Participants were also instructed to avoid any caffeine and nicotine for at least 3 h before testing. Finally, subjects were instructed to consume a set breakfast (2 slices of toast spread with margarine or butter, 250 ml of orange juice, and a banana) 1 h before all testing sessions. At each visit to the lab, subjects were asked to complete a pre-test checklist to ascertain that they had complied with the instructions given to them, and were asked to report any pain or soreness experienced in their leg (to check for the presence of previous session-induced muscle damage). None of our subjects reported leg muscle pain or soreness at the beginning of each session.
OurBloomFIT & MamaFIT classes provide expecting and postnatal mamas with a safe but sweaty, 40-minute workout. Our classes are safe, vigorous and will increase your athletic ability for a stronger pregnancy and a faster postpartum recovery. We like to think of it as personal training in a community based atmosphere. Classes are intentionally kept small [no more than 10 mamas] so that our instructors can keep a close eye on every mama’s form, breathing technique and overall fitness ability.
Do you have any health or physical limitations to consider? If you have back problems, knee issues, arthritis, high blood pressure, asthma, or any kind of health or physical limitations, you need to consider these when looking at the array of exercise videos on the market. There are some that will push you to the very edges of your limits and others that can accommodate a necessity for lower impact and a slower pace yet are still effective. Ignoring health problems or physical limitations is very dangerous. Asking your doctor for any restrictions before shopping is a plus as well.
The Alfredson protocol for Achilles' tendinopathy is actually two separate exercises.  To perform the exercises, you must have a small step or curb on which to stand.  Be sure to check in with your doctor or physical therapist to ensure that it is safe for you to exercise and that you are performing the exercises correctly.   Here is how you perform the Alfredson protocol:
An early detailed documentation of a Western mind–body exercise philosophy was created in the late 18th century by Swedish medical gymnastics teacher Pehr Henrik Ling (1766–1839), who is remembered as the father of Swedish Gymnastics. Ling developed an apparatus-free method to improve functional movement and concurrently address the concept of prevention and healing of human diseases.4 Bakewell S. Illustrations from the Wellcome Institute Library: Medical gymnastics and the Cyriax collection. Med Hist. 1997;41:487–95.10.1017/S0025727300063067[Crossref], [PubMed], [Web of Science ®] [Google Scholar] His early age rheumatism, experiences as a Fencing Master and his studies of medicine at Uppsala University influenced his ideas on the remedial benefits of physical training.5 Brodin H. Per Henrik Ling and his impact on gymnastics. Sven Med Tidskr. 2008;12(1):61–8.[PubMed] [Google Scholar] His 1853 book ‘Gymnastic Free Exercises’ stated: ‘It cannot be denied that the art of preventing disease is far preferable to that of curing it.’6 Ling PH. The gymnastic free exercises. Boston (MA): Ticknor, Reed and Fields; 1853. [Google Scholar] Ling regarded his ‘gymnastic free exercises’ as one of two separate yet related systems; the other being competitive gymnastics and athletics. Together, these two systems defined what became the Physical Culture or Gymnasium Movement of the 19th century.5,7 Brodin H. Per Henrik Ling and his impact on gymnastics. Sven Med Tidskr. 2008;12(1):61–8.

Do you want low, medium or high impact workouts? – Impact is important when it comes to how intense you workout is. Do you need or want low impact or do you want to really take it up a notch (or several) and get a challenging workout that will have you begging for it to be over? Most exercise videos will give you information on what kind of impact you will experience by doing it.
Many exercise protocols are in use in clinical cardiology, but no single test is applicable to the wide range of patients' exercise capacity. A new protocol was devised that starts at a low workload and increases by 15% of the previous workload every minute. This is the first protocol to be based on exponential rather than linear increments in workload. The new protocol (standardised exponential exercise protocol, STEEP) is suitable for use on either a treadmill or a bicycle ergometer. This… CONTINUE READING
Static Hold. Static holds are familiar to some as a great strengthening technique used in yoga. They can be performed with bodyweight movements — get in the top of a plank or a deep squat position and hold — or they can be done by holding weights (in a slightly contracted position or with full lock out). Our tip? Time how long you can hold a plank to see improvement from week to week.
Fran: Don't let the sweet name fool you. Perhaps CrossFit’s most famous workout, Fran is a 21-15-9 rep scheme of thrusters (95 pounds for men, 65 for women) and pull-ups. For those keeping track at home, that’s 21 thrusters and 21 pull-ups, followed by 15 thrusters and 15 pull-ups, and so on. Elite CrossFitters can finish this monstrosity in less than three minutes, but don’t expect to break twice that during the first try.
Interestingly, one of our subjects presented both a CV and a time to exhaustion greater than the other subjects. As both CV and time to exhaustion are known to increase when the intensity of the exercise decreases [20], it is likely that this subject did not reach its true peak power output during the incremental test, and then performed the three time to exhaustion tests at an intensity below 85% of peak power output. This result is of particular importance for future research aiming to manipulate endurance performance using this protocol. Indeed, when the true peak power output is not reached during the incremental test, due to an increase in variability, it might be harder to detect significant changes in muscle endurance. Therefore, in order to better understand the variability in reaching the true peak power output of subjects, further studies should investigate the reliability of the incremental test used in the present study.
Rather than doing your meetings over coffee, why don’t you invite people to go for a walking meeting? Steve Jobs, Winston Churchill and many U.S. Presidents have been huge advocates of this practice for both health and camaraderie purposes. Even if you’re just taking a phone call, use it as an opportunity to take a walk around the block or to your next destination.
This is a lift that builds full-body power and tests the ability to move quickly. HOW TO DO IT: Start with the bar on the ground. Place your hands on the bar -- a little outside of your shins -- with the bar touching your mid shin. You should keep your weight on your heels with your chest big and pull the bar up like a deadlift, while driving the knees back so that the bar path stays perpendicular to the floor and you stay over the bar. This utilizes your hip hinge and activates your posterior chain. Once the bar passes the knees, you jump up (you may not actually leave the ground, but you should feel like you’re trying to) and shrug so that the bar comes as high as possible. The next step is for you to get under the bar or “catch” it as quickly as possible by squatting under the bar and changing the hand position underneath the bar, putting the body into a front squat position with the bar resting on the shoulders. You then stand the bar up. MUSCLES USED: Glutes, quads, hamstring, calves, shoulders, core and traps.
In the realm of fitness, three-month workout programs dominate the landscape. You’ve even seen plenty of them in our magazine over the years. Are they effective? Absolutely. But we’re going to let you in on an interesting secret: It doesn’t necessarily take 8 or 12 weeks to get your feet wet in the gym. Not that you’ll be a seasoned vet after four weeks, but if you can just get that first month under your belt, you’ll get yourself over the proverbial hump, where so many fail and give up, and set the stage for a lifetime of muscle gains.
Handstand Push-Up: These are a basic movement for gymnasts— but a real challenge (and an awesome bar trick) for most regular folks. In most CrossFit workouts, athletes can kick up to a wall for stability while they perform this movement. Just remember these don’t count unless the head touches the ground at the bottom and arms are fully locked at the top.
It features 12 different 30-second exercises, with five seconds of rest in between. It’s great for beginners and athletes, syncs with your iPhone Health App to take your other daily movement into account, and the workout library has 22 presets that you can customize to create thousands of variations. You can swipe right or left during the exercises to see how much time you have left, watch the instructor, or listen to music from your iTunes.
Jane Fonda’s Original Workout. The original. The classic. The one and only. Jane Fonda! Throwback your fitness routine (and break out the leg warmers!) with a workout video from this ‘80s exercise genius. Fonda will take you through aerobics, strength, and flexibility movements with options for beginners and advanced. The video is available for $9.99.
In his new P90 DVD set, the supertrainer Tony Horton drops the "X" for an all-levels-welcome version of his wildly popular 90-day program. The 10 workouts—including total-body and core on the floor routines—are mapped out for you in a follow-along schedule. The modification options to the mix of cardio and resistance moves "make every set possible" for a gymlike intensity, testers said, all in 25 minutes. "It doesn't get much better than that," one reviewer raved.
Element 5 Day Yoga offers five 15-minute sequences to pick and choose from based on your mood and motivation. "It's an easy way to get to the mat every day," one tester said, whether your body needs a Stretch & Restore session or more of an invigorating Energy & Flexibility set. Plus "the instructor provided just enough guidance, no unnecessary chatter." Namaste to that.
The St Thomas method, however, did not survive World War II, besides the mentioned indications of use in Australia a decade later, and Randell’s work has since been forgotten. Various factors might attribute to this, including the tragic loss in 1940 when two bombs hit St Thomas hospital killing four physiotherapists including Thomas;29 Sydney Morning Herald [Internet]. Thomas BM: Obituary (1940). 2014 Oct 23 [cited 2015 Aug 30]. Available from: http://www.tiveyfamilytree.com/Barbara-Mortimer-Thomas-Death-Article-SMH-11-9-1940.htm. [Google Scholar] and the promotion of rival London obstetric group, led by Grantly Dick-Read and Physiotherapist Helen Heardman, with the concept of natural childbirth. This movement gained favor with the healthcare establishments, chartered physiotherapists and the general public at the ultimate expense of the St Thomas Project.23 Raphael AJ. Natural childbirth in twentieth century England; PhD thesis. London: Queen Mary University of London; 2010. [Google Scholar] Randell left St Thomas physiotherapy school in 1945, just before the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy imposed a new syllabus.37 The National Archives [Internet]. Saint Thomas’ hospital: physiotherapy school. 2009 Aug 12 [cited 2015 Sep 23]. Available from: http://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/details/rd/bdb0366b-f3e1-45d3-a685-887f9f9bc8ac. [Google Scholar] She received the royal title of OBE and extended her career interest with a focus on gynecological cases; in 1948, she co-founded the Obstetric Association of Chartered Physiotherapists, was awarded an honorary fellowship of the Chartered Society of Physiotherapists and was later remembered as the pioneer of modern women’s health physiotherapy (Figures 1, 5–7).38 Pelvic Obstetric and Gynaecological Physiotherapy [Internet]. A brief history. 2015 Aug 30 [cited 2015 Aug 30]. Available from: http://pogp.csp.org.uk/brief-history-acpwh. [Google Scholar]
The military press is similar to the shoulder press but is performed while standing with the feet together. (It is named "military" because of the similarity in appearance to the "at attention" position used in most militaries) Unlike the seated shoulder press, the military press involves the majority of the muscles of the core as stabilizers to keep the body rigid and upright, and is thus a more effective compound exercise.
The main aim of this study was to test the reliability of a novel OLDE protocol performed at high intensity (workload fixed at 85% peak power output [22]). Isokinetic muscle fatigue and its recovery up to 40 s post exercise were also measured. Subjects visited the laboratory on four different days. During the first visit, subjects were familiarized with the OLDE protocol (see One Leg Dynamic Exercise for more details), and performed after 30 min recovery an incremental test to measure peak power output. After 30 min recovery following the incremental test, subjects were familiarized with neuromuscular testing (see Neuromuscular Function Tests for more details) and the time to exhaustion test. As suggested by Andersen et al. [10], torque and electromyographic (EMG) feedback were used to ensure a quick and reliable familiarization to the novel OLDE protocol. Each of the following three visits (reliability sessions) consisted of completion of the time to exhaustion test with neuromuscular testing pre and post-exercise. An overview of these three sessions can be seen in Fig 1.
Health.com is part of the Meredith Health Group. All rights reserved. The material in this site is intended to be of general informational use and is not intended to constitute medical advice, probable diagnosis, or recommended treatments. All products and services featured are selected by our editors. Health.com may receive compensation for some links to products and services on this website. Offers may be subject to change without notice. See the Terms of Service and Privacy Policy (Your California Rights)for more information. Ad Choices | EU Data Subject Requests
All data are presented as means ± standard deviation (SD) unless stated. Assumptions of statistical tests such as normal distribution and sphericity of data were checked as appropriate. Greenhouse-Geisser correction to the degrees of freedom was applied when violations to sphericity were present. For reliability statistics, assumptions of homoscedasticity and heteroscedasticity were checked as appropriate. Reliability analysis was conducted following the guidelines provided by Atkinson and Nevill [19]. Our sample size of eight subjects is comparable to previous studies using high-intensity OLDE [8, 11, 17].

Aerobic exercise also helps relax blood vessel walls, lower blood pressure, burn body fat, lower blood sugar levels, reduce inflammation, boost mood, and raise "good" HDL cholesterol. Combined with weight loss, it can lower "bad" LDL cholesterol levels, too. Over the long term, aerobic exercise reduces your risk of heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, breast and colon cancer, depression, and falls.
A compound exercise is a move that incorporates multiple muscle groups, like lunges, deadlifts, and squats. It may also refer to two moves being strung together, like a bicep curl to a shoulder press. Compound exercises are efficient for increasing overall muscle mass and burning calories (because they require more effort to complete), as opposed to isolation exercises, which focus on working just one muscle group (like a bicep curl).
Yoga, which when translated from Sanskrit means “to control” or “to unite,” is said to have originated in India thousands of years ago. While its origins are based upon religion, many yoga classes today focus more on the connection between mind, body and spirit and achieving a balance within the body. Yoga concentrates heavily on body awareness, breathing and stretching.

Degenhardt B [Internet]. Once upon a time: the evolution of Pilates mat work. 2012 Nov 21 [cited 2015 Aug 30]. Available from: http://benjamindegenhardt.com/once-upon-a-time/.  He was later moved to the Isle of Man where he had duties training the injured inmates in their wards. It was there that Pilates started to connect springs to the hospital bed frames modifying them into effective and comfortable exercise devices which later evolved to become modern Pilates equipment.43 Hessel J [Internet]. Joseph H. Pilates biography. 2015 Jul 8 [cited 2015 Aug 30]. Available from: http://www.jillianhessel.com/pilates_biography.html. [Google Scholar]


The lateral raise (or shoulder fly) is performed while standing or seated, with hands hanging down holding weights, by lifting them out to the sides until just below the level of the shoulders. A slight variation in the lifts can hit the deltoids even harder, while moving upwards, just turn the hands slightly downwards, keeping the last finger higher than the thumb. This is an isolation exercise for the deltoids. Also works the forearms and traps.
Leslie of Fightmaster Yoga teaches hatha yoga for beginners, yoga for energy, yoga for reducing stress, meditation yoga, yoga workouts for strength, yoga for office workers... in other words, she offers a BIG selection of yoga classes! She is a knowledgeable instructor and is an excellent communicator, which makes her classes especially easy for beginners to follow.

Resting hormone concentrations have been a topic of many studies and discussions. It has been suggested that conflicting results were, at least partly, because of a lack of standardisation in both the way overtraining was measured and in the hormone measurement protocols used. Results from the present study show that variability in resting hormone concentrations is also present within groups of NFO and OTS patients. The arguments for contradictory findings are not valid within this study where blood was drawn at the same time of day always after an overnight fast. However, the diurnal variation in cortisol cannot be ruled out with this protocol because tests are separated by 4 h. However, each test was done with the same protocol and timing so that the data were collected in a standardised manner. One possible reason why the cortisol levels do not show the same pattern as ACTH might be because of this diurnal variation. Therefore, it must be concluded that resting hormone concentrations are not sensitive enough, at least not to diagnose unexplained underperformance in athletes. It has been suggested that hormonal reactions to stress tests are more sensitive.1 11

Hessel J [Internet]. Joseph H. Pilates biography. 2015 Jul 8 [cited 2015 Aug 30]. Available from: http://www.jillianhessel.com/pilates_biography.html.  He claimed that ‘sports are wonderful … but of little value for correcting whats wrong with you … corrective exercise is the only way to build a beautiful, strong, youthful body.’44 Readers Digest [Internet]. Ray MB. Cutting a fine figure (1934). 2012 Dec 13 [cited 2015 Aug 30]. Available from: http://www.isofit.com.hk/assets/files/193410_Readers_Digest_Joe_Pilates_Interview.pdf. [Google Scholar] He explained in his 1939 book ‘Your Health’: ‘Practically all human ailments are directly traceable to wrong habits which can only be corrected through the immediate adoption of right (natural, normal) habits’ … ‘the present day efforts of our so-called health departments are in vain so far as physical health is concerned’ … ‘this condition will prevail until such time as marks the recognition of a standard formation of sound and sane physical culture, based upon the natural laws of life.’45 Pilates J. Your health. Nevada: Presentation Dynamics; 1934. [Google Scholar] In his 1945 book ‘Return to Life Through Contrology,’ Pilates clearly supported Checkley, Müller, and Alexander stating that ‘Contrology is not a system of haphazard exercises designed to produce only bulging muscles’ … ‘Rather, it was conceived to limber and stretch muscles and ligaments so that your body will be as supple as that of a cat and not muscular like the body of a brewery-truck horse.’46 Pilates J, Miller WJ. Return to life through Contrology. Nevada: Presentation Dynamics; 1945. [Google Scholar] In this book, Pilates presented a list of 34 full-body equipment-free exercises, which if performed regularly at home, were promised to ‘give you suppleness, natural grace, and skill that will be unmistakably reflected in the way you walk, in the way you play, and in the way you work’ … ‘You will find your body development approaching the ideal, accompanied by renewed mental vigor and spiritual enhancement’. Pilates famously stated: ‘Physical fitness is the first requisite of happiness.’46 Pilates J, Miller WJ. Return to life through Contrology. Nevada: Presentation Dynamics; 1945. [Google Scholar] As with Müller,15 Müller JP. My system. London: Link House; 1904. [Google Scholar] Randell,25,26 Randell M. Training for childbirth from a mother's point of view. 4th ed. London: J. & A. Churchill Ltd.; 1949.


It is well known that exercise in the older population may prevent several diseases [1–4]. Reduced physical activity impairs the quality of life in elderly people with Alzheimer's Disease [4], Parkinson's Disease [5], and Depressive Disorders [6]. Moreover, musculoskeletal, cardiopulmonary, and cerebrovascular decline are associated with poor physical fitness because of the cumulative effects of illness, multiple drug intake, fatigue, and bed rest [7, 8]. The effects of physical activity and exercise programs on fitness and health-related quality of life (HRQOL) in elderly adults have been widely studied by several authors [9–11]. De Vries et al. [11] conducted a meta-analysis focusing on elderly patients with mobility problems and/or multimorbidity. Eighteen articles describing a wide variety of actions were analyzed. Most used a multicomponent training program focusing on the combination of strength, balance, and endurance training. In 9 of the 18 studies included, interventions were supervised by a physical therapist. Intensity of the intervention was not reported and the duration of the intervention varied from 5 weeks to 18 months. This meta-analysis concluded that, considering quality of life, the exercise versus no-exercise studies found no significant effects. High-intensity exercise appears to be somewhat more effective in improving physical functioning than low-intensity exercise. These positive effects are of great value in the patient population but the most effective type of intervention remains unclear. Brovold et al. [7] recently examined the effects of high-intensity training versus home-based exercise programs using the Norwegian Ullevaal Model [12] on a group of over-65-year-olds after discharge from hospital. These authors based their study on the Swedish Friskis-Svettis model [13] which was designed by Johan Holmsater for patients with coronaropathy to promote their return to work and everyday activities and improve their prognoses. This model includes three intervals of high intensity and two intervals of moderate intensity, each one lasting for 5 to 10 minutes. Included in each is coordination. Exercises consist of simple aerobic dance movements and involve the use of both upper and lower extremities to challenge postural control [13]. Exercise intensity was adjusted using the Borg Rating of Perceived Exertion (RPE) Scale. Moderate intensity was set between 11 and 13, and high intensity was set between 15 and 17 on the Borg Scale.
×