You may commit to crunches and planks, Pilates and yoga, all in an effort to target your abs, which they do, but don't stop there. Broaden your "rep"ertoire to include some of these other types of moves and methods (some of which you can do at your desk), and suddenly your core is being challenged with every motion—even though your mind is never on your middle. (Just don't forget abs are made in the kitchen too. Steer clear of these foods to prevent bloating.)

Although there is research concluding the effectiveness of the Alfredson protocol, some individuals find the completion of 180 repetitions of exercise daily to be difficult to achieve.  A study in the February 2014 issue of the Journal of Orthopaedic and Sports Physical Therapy indicated that a modified version of the Alfredson protocol with a "do as much as tolerated" approach achieved similar positive results as the full 180 repetition protocol.


Making older adults exercise and keeping them in exercise programs is a major challenge. Understanding how older adults prefer to exercise may help developing tailored exercise programs and increase sustained exercise participation in ageing populations. We aimed to describe exercise patterns, including frequency, intensity, type, location and social setting of exercise, in older adults instructed to follow continuous moderate-intensity training (MCT) or high-intensity interval training (HIIT) over a one-year period.
The baseline testing included clinical examinations, physical tests and questionnaires about health and lifestyle. Age and sex were obtained from the National Population Registry. A previously described questionnaire provided information on physical activity level and sedentary time at baseline [19]. Detailed protocol for assessment of body weight (kg), body height (cm) and body mass index (BMI; kg/m2) is described elsewhere [19]. Testing of peak oxygen uptake (VO2peak; mL/kg/min) was performed either as walking on a treadmill or cycling on a stationary bike. The test started with 10 min at a chosen warm-up speed. Approximately every two minutes, either the incline of the treadmill was increased by 2%, or the speed was increased by 1 km/h. The test protocol ended when participants were no longer able to carry a workload due to exhaustion or until all the criteria for a maximal oxygen uptake were reached [22].
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.

We recently developed a high intensity one leg dynamic exercise (OLDE) protocol to measure muscle endurance and investigate the central and peripheral mechanisms of muscle fatigue. The aims of the present study were to establish the reliability of this novel protocol and describe the isokinetic muscle fatigue induced by high intensity OLDE and its recovery. Eight subjects performed the OLDE protocol (time to exhaustion test of the right leg at 85% of peak power output) three times over a week period. Isokinetic maximal voluntary contraction torque at 60 (MVC60), 100 (MVC100) and 140 (MVC140) deg/s was measured pre-exercise, shortly after exhaustion (13 ± 4 s), 20 s (P20) and 40 s (P40) post-exercise. Electromyographic (EMG) signal was analyzed via the root mean square (RMS) for all three superficial knee extensors. Mean time to exhaustion was 5.96 ± 1.40 min, coefficient of variation was 8.42 ± 6.24%, typical error of measurement was 0.30 min and intraclass correlation was 0.795. MVC torque decreased shortly after exhaustion for all angular velocities (all P < 0.001). MVC60 and MVC100 recovered between P20 (P < 0.05) and exhaustion and then plateaued. MVC140 recovered only at P40 (P < 0.05). High intensity OLDE did not alter maximal EMG RMS of the three superficial knee extensors during MVC. The results of this study demonstrate that this novel high intensity OLDE protocol could be reliably used to measure muscle endurance, and that muscle fatigue induced by high intensity OLDE should be examined within ~ 30 s following exhaustion.
To strengthen and tone your abs, Marks says to go with V-Ups. Here’s his instruction: Begin lying on your back with your legs straight and arms extended overhead. Engage your core by pressing your lower back into the ground. Keeping your legs and arms straight, simultaneously lift your legs and torso up, reaching your hands toward your feet. Your body will form a “V.” Slowly lower to the starting position. And if you want an added challenge? Dempsey says “don’t let your arms and legs rest on the ground in between reps.” Ouch! If you’re working this hard (even for just 30 seconds!) don’t undo your efforts by making any of these 30 Flat-Belly Mistakes Women Make.
4) The schedule of workouts, while ideal for those in good shape, is a bit too aggressive for most. Your muscles NEED rest (and proper nutrition) to recover and become stronger. The calendar given provides only 1 day per week to rest. You may find you need more, especially early on while you are using and building new muscles. Modifiy and listen to your body accordingly.

Once you become more comfortable with the technique, you can try it while sitting up. Chickedantz says it will change your body by alleviating anxiety and stress, fix your posture, alleviate pain and strengthen abdominal and intestinal muscles. On a similar note, you can make the most of your stuck-in-a-seat time with these 21 Tricks to Lose Weight While Sitting Down!
HIIT stands for high-intensity interval training. “This refers to tough quick, intense bursts of exercise, followed by short recovery periods. This type of training gets and keeps your heart rate up,” explains Laferrara, while also (typically) decreasing the overall amount of time you spend training. This workout is great for burning fat because the intense intervals help kick-start the process known as excess post-exercise oxygen consumption (AKA the “afterburn effect”), which helps you burn more calories even after you stop working out as your body has to work harder and take in more oxygen to return to its resting state.
My Free Yoga is pretty much exactly as it sounds -- it offers free yoga classes for you to enjoy! It is a little different than other yoga options on this list in that it is really a hub for yoga instructors to post their free yoga class videos. The video library is huge and you can search for classes that focus on your specific problem areas. For example, there is a category for those suffering from hip issues and another for those experiencing back pain.
EMG of the Vastus Lateralis (VL), Rectus Femoris (RF), Vastus Medialis (VM) and Biceps Femoris was recorded with pairs of silver chloride circular (recording diameter of 10 mm) surface electrodes (Swaromed, Nessler Medizintechnik, ref 1066, Innsbruck, Austria) with an interelectrode (center-to-center) distance of 20 mm. Recording sites (belly of each muscle, as distal as possible from the hips when the subject was asked to contract his quadriceps at a knee angle of 10 deg) were then carefully adjusted at the beginning of each testing session (electrode placement was drawn on the skin with permanent marker to ensure reproducibility of the recording site). Low resistance between the two electrodes (< 5 kΩ) was obtained by shaving the skin, and dirt was removed from the skin using alcohol swabs. The reference electrode was attached to the patella of the right knee. Myoelectrical signals were amplified with a bandwidth frequency ranging from 10 Hz to 500 Hz (gain: VL = 500; RF and VM = 1000), digitized on-line at a sampling frequency of 2 kHz using a computer, and stored for analysis with commercially available software (Acqknowledge 4.2 for MP Systems, Biopac Systems Inc., Goleta, USA). Due to the pressure of the thigh on the dynamometer chair, the Biceps Femoris EMG signal quality was impaired (e.g. numerous artefacts, problems with electrodes) and therefore not analyzed.
Your heart rate refers to how many beats per minute (BPM) your heart is pumping, and when it comes to working out, knowing your heart rate can help determine if you’re working at the right intensity. You have your resting heart rate, which is how fast your heart is beating when you’re doing nothing (the best way to measure this is to take your pulse first thing in the morning). Generally speaking, this gets lower as you get more fit because your heart doesn’t have to work as hard to pump out blood (although if you have a naturally low resting heart rate thanks to genetics, it may not get much lower, and that’s totally fine, says Lefkowith). According to the American Heart Association, the average is 60-100 BPM. You also have your maximum heart rate, which is the hardest your heart can work efficiently.
"Consider this: Dr. Kenneth Cooper (author of Aerobics, The New Aerobics, Aerobics for Women), the U.S. Air Force Cardiologist who coined the term 'aerobics" (meaning a form of exercise) and has promoted their use for over 25 years, now admits that he was wrong! According to Dr. Cooper, further research has shown that there is no correlation between aerobic endurance performance and health, longevity, or protection against heart disease. He will admit, however, that such activities do carry with them a great risk of injury. Further, he admits that gross-overuse activities such as running are damaging to the body." – Ken Hutchins, SuperSlow Exercise Guild
Findings indicated that exercise is beneficial for reducing pain and improving function in individuals with RCIS. The effects of exercise might be augmented with implementation of manual therapy. In addition, supervised exercise might not be more effective than a home exercise program. Many articles had methodologic concerns and provided limited descriptions of specific exercises, which made comparing types of exercise among studies difficult. Based on the results, Kuhn generated a physical therapy protocol using evidence-based exercise that could be used by clinicians treating individuals with impingement syndrome. This evidence-based protocol can serve as the criterion standard to reduce variables in future cohort and comparative studies to help find better treatments for patients with this disorder.
^ 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 Internet may be your favorite way to waste time, but it also offers a wealth of resources for home and/or traveling exercisers. Not all content is created equal on the World Wide Web but, if you know where to look, you can find almost everything you need to know about exercise: How to set up a home gym, create your own exercise program, and learn the basics of cardio, strength training and how to get in shape with exercise.


Ideally, a workout regimen will involve all three of these exercise types, as they each offer different benefits to the body. Focusing on a single exercise type may leave a lot to be desired in other areas that do not benefit from that singular exercise. Take, for example, stretching after a cardiovascular workout session versus stretching completely separately from a cardiovascular workout section. In the former example, stretching offers the maximum benefit to the body's joints and muscles because they have already been warmed up by the cardiovascular exercise, and will stretch further than they otherwise would. In the latter example, the joints and muscles being stretched will not reach their maximum flexibility potential. As such, by using these exercise types together, one can ensure that they are approaching physical fitness from a holistic and balanced perspective.

When stress is chronically induced, as in NFO and OTS, two specific mechanisms could occur: first, when corticosteroid levels are chronically too high, a hypersensitivity of the receptors will occur, this can lead to a disinhibition of CRHproducing neurons, which in turn will lead to an intensified release of ACTH (as seen in the second exercise bout in the NFO athletes). When the chronic stress situation continues and glucocorticoid receptors are chronically activated (which occurs in post-traumatic stress disorder17 and depression),25 a blunted ACTH response to CRH will occur.28


“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.
Check your company's stock plan for the allowed methods and procedures. Once you do give notice to exercise with payment as required under your stock plan, it is unlikely that you can then change your decision to exercise or the exercise method, at least for tax purposes. This is illustrated by the case of Walter v. Commissioner, decided by the US Tax Court (TC Memo 2007-2, January 3, 2007). The employee attempted to change his original exercise instructions from a same-day sale to a cash exercise/hold. The Tax Court did not let him, holding that he had beneficial ownership of the stock when he initially exercised the options following the conditions under his stock plan.
This is an extremely high-skill movement, and is one of two Olympic Weightlifting events. HOW TO DO IT: Start with the bar on the ground with your feet hip-width apart. With your hands wide on the bar, keep a big chest as you deadlift the weight off the ground (similar to the beginning of the clean). Pull from the floor with your arms in a locked position. Then, drive your hips and pull the bar as high as possible. As you receive the bar overhead, drop down as quickly as possible and lock your arms into place in a squat position with the bar overhead. MUSCLES USED: Glutes, quads, hamstrings, calves, traps, core, shoulders and back.
You’re also extremely adaptable, so it’s a great time to explore, play, and learn new physical skills. “Younger people can handle new elements in their workouts every few weeks,” says Anderson, who trains teen athletes as well as octogenarians. Strong bones and muscles, fewer injuries, quick recovery, and naturally high levels of anabolic hormones allow you to make faster progress than at any other point in your life.

Gentle stretching and progressive loading of the Achilles' tendon is necessary to successfully treat Achilles tendinopathy.  Some studies indicate that eccentric loading of the tendon is favorable to other types of exercise.  The Alfredson protocol is a method that is used to progressively load your injured Achilles' tendon to treat the tendinopathy.

Doonya describes itself as “your at-home solution for fun dance-fitness!” Bring the energy and dance of Bollywood straight to your living room with this cardio workout. With loads of energy, Doonya co-founders Kajal Desai and Priya Pandya give you a taste of their high-powered dance routines with this four-minute video that’ll leave you sweating in no time. You’ll definitely need some coordination to complete this routine, but it’s great for beginners.
This is the first review to have focused on exercise as an add-on strategy in the treatment of MDD. Our findings corroborate some previous observations that were based on few studies and which were difficult to generalize.41,51,73,92,93 Given the results of the present article, it seems that exercise might be an effective strategy to enhance the antidepressant effect of medication treatments. Moreover, we hypothesize that the main role of exercise on treatment-resistant depression is in inducing neurogenesis by increasing BDNF expression, as was demonstrated by several recent studies.
Inappropriate exercise can do more harm than good, with the definition of “inappropriate” varying according to the individual. For many activities, especially running and cycling, there are significant injuries that occur with poorly regimented exercise schedules. Injuries from accidents also remain a major concern,[85] whereas the effects of increased exposure to air pollution seem only a minor concern.[86][87]
If you thought two-day free shipping and all access to “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel” were the highlights of your Amazon Prime account, you are going to be pleasantly surprised at this other fit feature. Not only can order your yoga pants and earbuds on Amazon Prime, you can actually use it to squeeze in a bit of cardio or stretching anywhere you happen to be.
Here's how to do a perfect push-up: From a face-down position, place your hands slightly wider than shoulder-width apart. Place your toes or knees on the floor, and try to create a perfect diagonal with your body, from the shoulders to the knees or feet. Keep the glutes [rear-end muscles] and abdominals engaged. Then lower and lift your body by bending and straightening your elbows, keeping your torso stable throughout.
These leisurely pursuits have their place, but there’s no substitute for the intensity of intervals and strength training or plyometrics. “When you reduce your intensity, athletic performance declines,” he says. “Cardiovascular fitness and other physiological metrics drop off.” Bone density suffers, too — particularly in women. In short, when you stop pushing yourself, you’ll become less fit, less healthy.
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.
You might not be responsible for delivering the certificates of the swapped shares to your employer. Many stock option plans permit you to exercise with shares you already own, through a process called "attestation." You complete an affidavit of ownership and submit it with proof of stock ownership (such as a copy of stock certificates or recent brokerage statements).
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
Congratulations on your decision to make yourself a priority and commit to a regular workout routine. The addition of physical fitness into your life requires hard work, but yields great rewards. Now, which method should you choose? With the vast choice of fitness workout options available today, it can be overwhelming to know which one is right for you.

Choose clothes that suit your activity. In general, wear clothes that won’t restrict your movement or blood flow. For some forms of exercise, like biking, you might want to wear form-fitting clothes, but they still shouldn’t be too tight. Looser workout clothes are better for strength training, brisk walking, and sports such as basketball or soccer.[35]
Squat between putting away dishes. During repetitive physical activities such as putting away dishes or loading the dishwasher, throw in squat, lunge, or other repetitive exercise between each repetition. This way, you'll naturally end up doing repetitions of exercises that need to be performed in repetition. putting each dish away or in the dishwasher.

A typical Pilates class usually lasts around 45 minutes to an hour. You need a fitness mat, water bottle and towel and comfortable clothing. Sometimes other gear such as balls, straps and Pilates-specific equipment is used. While available in most studios offering Pilates classes, these items may also be purchased if desired for home use. Like yoga, you will most likely be barefoot during workouts.
Strength (or “weight”) training exercises build muscle. One’s body naturally grows muscle until the age of 25. As we age, our body progressively loses muscle— unless you make an effort to maintain or build it. Strength is good for everyone, regardless of gender or age and helps in everyday activities. Muscle mass can significantly decrease your chances of obesity, diabetes, cancer, and osteoporosis. Gender does not affect one’s ability to grow muscle, but men can develop more muscle mass than women because men naturally have a higher percentage of lean muscle. Women, you will not turn into the Incredible Hulk by strength training — I say this because many women don’t do strength training out of a fear of getting “big.” I wish it were that easy!

Pilates is a fitness method that was developed by Joseph Pilates in Germany during World War I. Originally intended to help rehabilitate injured soldiers, Pilates broadened his method to help people of all walks of life, including police officers and dancers, to strengthen their bodies. His method stressed the use of the mind to control the muscles and was often used to help heal and build strength in individuals who were recovering from injuries.
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]
An opposite arm to leg crunch will tone the abs and improves posture by strengthening the back. Duhamel says to “lay down flat on your back raise your right arm above your head and then lift the left leg up. While the leg is lifting, you lift the right arm and reach the hand to meet the outer corner of the left foot.” Be sure to focus on finding that rotation and do not let the foot or hand touch the ground. Do this move on each side for 30 seconds per side.
How to: Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, bend your knees, and bend forward at the hips. Engage your abs without hunching your back. Hold weights beneath your shoulders, keeping your hands shoulder-width apart. Bend your elbows and lift both hands toward the sides of your body. Pause, then slowly lower your hands to the starting position. Can perform with a bar or dumbbells.
To try it, choose a medium-heavy weight (50 percent to 70 percent of your one-rep-max, or 1RM, if you know it). Lift it with as much velocity as you can muster, then lower it with control. For instance, if you are bench pressing, the push up will feel almost as though you are punching the weight up into the ceiling. Once you have completed the lift, slowly lower the weight to your chest. You can apply this technique using a variety of implements, including dumbbells, barbells, weight machines, elastic bands, and body weight, he explains.
During the time to exhaustion tests, all perceptual and physiological measurements increased over time. The increase in heart rate is similar to a previous study using the same exercise on a different ergometer [18]. Furthermore, these authors demonstrated that the respiratory system is not a limiting factor for this exercise. Despite we did not measure the maximum heart rate of our subjects via a typical whole-body incremental test (e.g. cycling), it is clear that a heart rate of ~ 130 beats/min is faraway of the maximum heart rate capacity of our subjects. Therefore, taking all together, these results confirm that high intensity OLDE performed until exhaustion is not limited by the cardiorespiratory system.

“Foam rolling is a form of massage (or trigger point release) that you can do to loosen tight muscles to help improve your mobility,” says Lefkowith. Using a foam roller helps smooth out “knots” in your fascia (the layer of connective tissue surrounding your muscles), which can get in the way of your range of motion. This is crucial for performing exercises with correct form and making sure the right muscle fibers are firing away. While you can stop, drop, and foam roll anytime, it’s often recommended to spend a few minutes with the foam roller before your workout to help get the juices flowing.

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Figure 1 Squat. Checkley9 Checkley E. A natural method of physical training. New York (NY): William C. Bryant & Co.; 1890. [Google Scholar] and Randell, reproduced with kind permission of Wellcome Library. Demonstrated by Barbara Mortimer Thomas.26 Wellcome Library [Internet]. Rodway H. Training for childbirth - and after (1940). 2015 Sep 24 [cited 2015 Oct 3]. Available from: http://wellcomelibrary.org/player/b16729006#?asi=0&ai=0. [Google Scholar]

If you ask most busy people why they don’t exercise, by far the most common reason is that that they “don’t have time.” The effort of putting on workout clothes, going to the gym and showering is simply too onerous to fit in. Even the idea of a boring home workout or a 30-minute exercise tape can feel like too much of a commitment when we’re late for work or for a date.

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.
Bettie Page Fitness is claiming to have created the first-ever "body-positive" fitness DVD, led by mind-body fitness expert Tori Rodriguez. The goal isn't to look like Page, but to embody the pin-up star's confidence, self-acceptance and strength. Each move in the 45-minute circuit-style strength and cardio workout is based on a photo of the Queen of Pinups, who was a fitness buff well before the idea of working out became popular. The total-body workout encourages viewers to challenge themselves while respecting their bodies' limits, with moves that emphasize the core strength, balance and posture that were hallmarks of Page's physique. Modifications and tips are offered to make the workout accessible and enjoyable for all levels.
Aerobic exercise induces short- and long-term effects on mood and emotional states by promoting positive affect, inhibiting negative affect, and decreasing the biological response to acute psychological stress.[45] Over the short-term, aerobic exercise functions as both an antidepressant and euphoriant,[46][47][48][49] whereas consistent exercise produces general improvements in mood and self-esteem.[50][51]
Around 1900, Tasmanian-born Australian professional reciter and theatrical producer Frederick Alexander developed a novel methodology to harmonize full-body functional movements. As a child, Alexander suffered respiratory ailments, leading to the initial purpose of developing the method – to normalize his personal voice function in order to materialize a stage performance dream. In 1902, Alexander established the Sydney Dramatic and Operatic Conservatorium and in 1904, moved to London to spread his teaching method. During the first years, Alexander focused on teaching ‘full chest breathing’ techniques mainly to stage artists and people with breathing pathologies.19 Staring J. Frederick Matthias Alexander 1869-1955. The Origins and History of the Alexander Technique. A medical historical analysis of F.M. Alexander’s life, work, technique, and writings. Nijmegen: Radboud Universiteit; 2005. [Google Scholar] However, he soon discovered that retrieving the natural ‘conscious control’ via mindful postures and movements resulted in benefits not only for the vocal health and performance but also the health and performance of the whole body and mind.20 Alexander FM. Man's supreme inheritance. London: Methuen; 1910. [Google Scholar] This holistic evolvement transformed the newly formed ‘Alexander Technique’ into a general remedy and preventative tool suitable for all populations. Alexander explained in his 1910 book ‘Man’s Supreme Inheritance:’20 Alexander FM. Man's supreme inheritance. London: Methuen; 1910. [Google Scholar]
How was it discovered that there is no such thing as an overall, general, cardiopulmonary fitness? Out of shape college kids were recruited for a study where they trained on a stationary bike for 90 days, but only one leg did the pedaling. Before they started training, their VO2max was tested, first using both legs, then only the left leg, and then just the right leg. (VO2max is a measurement of cardiopulmonary efficiency.) As you might imagine, all three results were the same. Then one leg was worked out for 90 days on the bicycle; the other leg got to continue to be a couch potato. At the end of the 90 days, you could tell by looking which leg had been exercised. Now for the revealing part. When VO2max was tested for the leg that had been trained, its VO2max improved as expected. But what do you think happened when the unexercised leg was tested? Do you think its VO2max also improved along with the other leg, or do your think there was no improvement. It's shocking how many personal trainers and exercise physiologists that I put this question to got it wrong. There was no improvement. Proving that cardiopulmonary efficiency is muscle specific. This means that when you get less winded, and your heart rate no longer rises as much after you've trained to do something, it's not your heart or lungs that accounted for the improvement, it's the muscles involved.
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