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The Importance of Plyometric Training.

Plyometric-benefits

Plyometrics is the name for a type of exercise that is designed to increase intensity or explosive power in certain muscle groups. This kind of training is used to increase the power of a boxer’s punch or the force of a basketball player’s jump. Plyometric training is different from traditional strength training exercise because it is performed quickly and explosively.

It increases muscle power by capitalizing on the lengthening and the shortening of the muscle cycles. This kind of training usually starts with a rapid stretch of a muscle or eccentric phase followed by a rapid shortening of the same muscle or the concentric phase. Burpies, clap push ups, jumping ropes, and jumping jacks are types of plyometric exercises.

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Several studies suggest that plyometrics can greatly improve athletic performance in terms of vertical jumps, long jumps, sprinting, cycling, basketball, kickboxing, and many more. It appears that even one or two types of plyometric training completed one to three times a week may improve motor performance within six to 12 week. In addition to this, three sets of 10 plyometric push ups may also increase upper body strength.

Despite the benefits of plyometric training, many fitness specialists are often cautious in recommending this kind of fitness regimen because of the high risk of injury. However, the development of injury can be reduced by performing warm-ups and following safety precautions. Landing from toes to heel from a vertical jump, avoiding cement surfaces, and using well-cushioned footwear are important things that should be remembered while engaging in plyometrics. Because of the injuries that can be developed in this kind of training, individuals who want to engage in it are advised to work with a physical fitness trainer.

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Exercise

Going to the Gym for the First Time? Here Are 4 Things You Need to Know

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You’ve been thinking about it for quite some time now. You know you need to get your butt to the gym and start working out. You know you’ve gotten yourself out of shape and an hour or so in the gym three or four days a week sure wouldn’t hurt.

Ok, so you’ve finally done it. You went down to the local fitness club and spent 2 weeks pay on a one year membership. You even went to the local K-Mart and got yourself some new exercise outfits. Now you’re ready to go and get in shape. But before you do, there are a few things you should keep in mind to make your time in the gym productive, enjoyable and most of all, injury free.

WARM UP FIRST:

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This is very important to not only get your blood flowing but to minimize the risk of injury. some good warm up methods include walking on the treadmill for 10-15 minutes starting out at a slower pace then working up to a more brisk pace halfway through.

Perform 10 minutes or so of stretching exercises such as toe touches, hurdlers stretches, twisting at the waist and reaching your arms out fully in every direction. before you do any exercises that involve using weights (biceps curls for example) do one set with half (50%) of the weight you’ll be using to prepare the muscles, tendons and ligaments performing the exercise to better handle the heavier weight.

START OUT EASY:

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When you first get to the gym and you are ready to hit the weights, select an amount of weight at first that seems almost too light but still provides some resistance for each exercise. Remember that proper form, posture and technique are far more important than how much weight you are using. Also, you must give your connective tissue (tendons and ligaments) time to strengthen in order to help prevent injury from the heavier weights you’ll be using later. You can always increase the weight as you go when you can do so without compromising proper form, posture and technique.

When you first get on the treadmill, stationary bike, stair climber or elliptical machine, remember that your heart probably isn’t going to be in the kind of shape to go all out and for this reason you should take it at a slower pace for a while. Each week, pick up the pace and the length of time spent on these machines a little at a time. This will give your heart time to build up to faster paces and longer periods. Remember, your heart is a muscle and like any other muscle, it needs time to adjust to the stresses placed on it during exercise.

 

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Exercise

Flexibility Training: Stretching Our Way to Better Health

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Individuals who want to stay fit and healthy have been incorporating physical activities like cardiovascular training and weightlifting into their fitness routines, almost making exercise the center of their lifestyle. These people are often in a hurry to improve their physique or level of physical fitness that they have forgotten the importance of flexibility training. This kind of training is probably one of the most underrated and undervalued component of conditioning and physical fitness.

Flexibility training increases the the body’s range of motion. With flexibility, a person’s athletic performance is enhanced, with the risk of acquiring injuries greatly reduced. Stretching also speeds up metabolism. These benefits are achieved by improving blood flow into the different internal organs and muscles. Flexibility training helps lengthen the muscle fibers, facilitate ease of movement, while improving muscle recovery and strength. Flexibility training may also reduce muscle soreness, lower back pain, improve coordination and posture, and ease stress and anxiety in one’s life. In addition to these health benefits, various medical studies suggest that regular stretching enables the body’s internal organs to function properly because of improved blood flow.

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However, the benefits of flexibility can only be enjoyed if proper training is done. Individuals who fail to perform proper flexibility training may develop injuries and hamper their workout goals. People who want to engage in flexibility training should include the following:

Before stretching, individuals should remember to perform warm-up exercises. These exercises may loosen up the muscle, improve blood flow, and prepare them for flexibility training.
Do not bounce (ballistic stretching) when performing static stretches. Medical experts suggest that ballistic stretching may cause immediate and residual pain. In the long run, it may lead to serious muscle damage.
Try to hold for at least 15-30 seconds to achieve long term flexibility benefits.
Perform flexibility and cool down exercises after workout to return the muscles to their resting stage.
Stretch gradually. Stretch only to the point where mild muscle tension is felt. If there is pain, then you might be doing it wrong. Move into each pose gradually and exhale while doing it.

 

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ExerciseFitness

5 Components of Physical Fitness You Should Know

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Physical fitness is the ability to function effectively throughout your workday, perform your usual other activities and still have enough energy left over to handle any extra stresses or emergencies which may arise.

The components of physical fitness are:

* Cardiorespiratory (CR) endurance – the efficiency with which the body delivers oxygen and nutrients needed for muscular activity and transports waste products from the cells.

* Muscular strength – the greatest amount of force a muscle or muscle group can exert in a single effort.

* Muscular endurance – the ability of a muscle or muscle group to perform repeated movements with a sub-maximal force for extended periods of times.

* Flexibility – the ability to move the joints or any group of joints through an entire, normal range of motion.

* Body composition – the percentage of body fat a person has in comparison to his or her total body mass.

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Improving the first three components of fitness listed above will have a positive impact on body composition and will result in less fat. Excessive body fat detracts from the other fitness components, reduces performance, detracts from appearance, and negatively affects your health.

Factors such as speed, agility, muscle power, eye-hand coordination, and eye-foot coordination are classified as components of “motor” fitness. These factors most affect your athletic ability. Appropriate training can improve these factors within the limits of your potential. A sensible weight loss and fitness program seeks to improve or maintain all the components of physical and motor fitness through sound, progressive, mission specific physical training.

 

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ExerciseFitness

Easiest Ways to Deal with Muscle Cramps.

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Muscle cramps are temporary contractions of the muscles and they usually appear during physical effort. The sensation is similar to the one you have when you feel a strong, involuntary tightening of the muscle group that you can’t control any more. There are many causes which bring about cramps, but they happen most often because of insufficient warming up before training.

Good and correct warming up has two stages: the general one (cardio), for increasing the body temperature (running, cycling, etc.) and the specific one, during which the main joints and groups of muscles which will be involved in training are warmed up. It is enough not to give, from different reasons (rush, superficiality, ignorance), the necessary time or importance to one of these stages, and cramps can become a current phenomenon.

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As important as warming up is the relaxation stage after the training. This has, like warming up, two stages: a dynamic one (aerobic) and a static one (stretching). It is meant to ‘calm down’ the body and to eliminate the muscular tension and the catabolic products resulted from the training. Lack of relaxation can slow down the process of recovery of the body, having often as result cramps during the next training and sometimes even during repose.

Cramps may also appear because of electrolytic misbalance, which can result from massively losing electrolytes through abundant perspiration. Recovering hydro-electrolytic balance is a priority and it can be realized through balanced and varied nourishment, rich in vegetables and fruit and completed periodically with nutritional supplements, poly-minerals and poly-vitamins.

When muscular cramps appear during training, the first thing you must do is stop the effort which produced the cramps. Massaging the affected zone is a good idea. This will intensify blood circulation in that group of muscles and will remove faster the catabolic products resulted from the training.

 

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ExerciseHealthy Living

How to Lose Weight with an Exercise Bike Program.

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Your pants are a bit tight, you can’t seem to stop eating junk, and you’re tired all of the time. It’s time to get healthy and lose weight. Combined with a more sensible diet, an exercise bike can help you achieve the results you want.

Ugh, the Diet.

So many people go wrong here. Forget fad diets, forget starvation. Slow and steady wins the race. Try changing one thing about your diet. Limit yourself to one soda a day. Stop skipping meals. If you always clean your plate, start leaving one or two bites. A total change in diet is work. If you go for a radical change, you are setting yourself up for failure. You’ll be surprised how well small changes work.

The Right Bike Determines Your Success

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This is a critically important part. There are literally hundreds of exercise bikes available. You have to be honest with yourself to discover the one that will work best for you. If you talk yourself into some fantasy world where your exercise plan is going to work this time even though there’s nothing different, you’re going to be disappointed. If you think ahead, you will buy the right bike for your needs. You will end up with a successful long-term exercise routine.

Think back to your last exercise routine attempt. Why did you stop? Did you suffer an injury? Did you get bored? Was it just too hard to do every day? Was it hard to find the time? Answer these questions truthfully. If you don’t figure out where you went wrong, you won’t be able to come up with a solution.

Avoiding and Working Through Injuries

If an injury caused you to stop working out, how did you sustain your injury? Becoming physically fit is supposed to help you prevent injuries, not cause them. There is an exercise bike for someone who has been injured working out. It’s called a recumbent exercise bike. It’s the kind found in a lot of health clubs. It has a large, bucket seat, and you sit back and low to the ground. It is perfect for people beginning a new exercise routine. It’s also very good for back problems as it forces you to keep good posture. It puts no pressure on your joints, and you can keep working out even if you have minor injuries.

Overcoming Boredom

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Did you get bored the last time you tried to workout on a regular basis? If you did, you are likely to get bored again. With exercise bikes, the solution is usually a bike with several different levels and riding programs. You can get bikes with different difficulty levels. This means that when it becomes too easy for you to pedal, you simply move up to the next level instead of having to ride longer (which just isn’t likely to happen for the person who is easily bored). You can also get different programs. Programs give you variety and goals. They make you pedal harder, simulate conquering hills, and even sprinting for short periods.

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ExerciseFitness

Benefits of Boxing Training for Fitness

Boxers-Workout

You may improve your health and have a physically fit body by getting into boxing training fitness programs. This is the best way for you to have a stronger body and gain confidence. Boxing workouts can help you to be at your best fighting form as well.

Many people see positive results from boxing trainings. You may build stronger and more defined arms and legs. These programs and classes also help you to gain a sense of inner strength and emotional balance.

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Boxing training classes got across to the mainstream of physical fitness training a few years back. They have seen the benefits on the cardiovascular and toning of the muscles by these boxing training workouts. Tae bo work out videos also popularized these boxing and kickboxing exercises.

Cardio boxing training classes and the innovative variations of the sparring jabs, power punches, defense, and fitness has all blends of aerobics exercises. You will learn the proper execution of the punch and kick combinations for a more intensive workout that can help you become stronger and more confident.

The combinations you perform on the blocks, jabs, and kicks are executed to an imagined opponent. You may see classes where participants throw punches and kicks on the air. You will also find training camps that have quality equipment such as punching bags and you may also have the option of getting a partner that has padded hands.

You may also enjoy more benefits aside from the physical aspects of boxing trainings. Cardio kick boxing workouts allow you to burn out 350 to 500 calories in just an hour. It also helps maintaining the heart rate at 75 percent to 85 percent regular beat. This has been proven to be good and is the recommended range if you are exercising or into training.

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Arm Exercise To Give You Those Great Arms!

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The aim for beginners to weight training must be to lay the foundations for the intensive workouts that their bodies will eventually be subjected to. Obviously successful bodybuilding involves bringing together disparate elements such as nutrition and rest but choosing the right exercises is crucial. In this article we’ll outline the barbell exercises that will enable new bodybuilders to develop the general strength and body conditioning needed.

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Initially beginners should aim to complete two sets of ten to twelve reps but after a few weeks, when you have developed sufficient control and basic strength, experiment with one set of six to eight reps to failure. This will maximize your muscle growth and give you the impetus to move on to the next stage of development. Before long you’ll find the use of this single piece of equipment restricting, so later in this series of articles we’ll pull together a muscle boosting program that utilizes other equipment to take you to the intermediate level. In the meantime, get to work with these exercises in order to get used to working your muscles.

Biceps brachii – The Two muscles at the front upper arm that run from the elbow to the shoulders. The biceps is actually a smaller muscle then the triceps. It is on the front of the upper arms. There are two heads of the biceps muscle (hence the bi in biceps).

Beneath the biceps is the brachialis, a flat muscle group that runs about half way up the upper arm bone from the elbow joint. From the rear you can see the brachialis as a well-defined band of muscle between the triceps and biceps when a muscular bodybuilder flexes his/her arm.

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CardioExerciseFitnessWeight Loss

These Are the Best Exercises for Fat Loss

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One reason why targeted fat loss does not work is because muscle cells cannot use the fat contained in fat cells directly. Fat mass needs to be broken down before it can enter the bloodstream. This fat can come from anywhere in the body, and not just from the body part being exercised.

Additionally, doing sit-ups and crunches isn’t particularly effective for burning calories.

What Exercises Should You Do?

Regular, whole-body exercises will speed up your metabolism and burn calories and fat. Aerobic exercise (cardio) may also be effective at targeting visceral belly fat. Intensity plays a role as well. Moderate or high-intensity exercise can reduce belly fat mass, compared to low-intensity aerobic exercise or strength training.

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Additionally, you need to exercise often if you want to achieve significant results. For example, do moderate-intensity cardio for 30 minutes, five days a week, or high-intensity cardio for 20 minutes, three days a week.

The muscle changes that take place in response to exercise also promote fat loss. In other words, the more muscle mass you build, the fatter you will burn.

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ExerciseFitnessHealthy LivingMuscle buildingWeight Loss

Do Ab Exercises Actually Burn Belly Fat?

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Many people do ab exercises because they want to lose belly fat. However, the evidence suggests targeted ab exercises are not very effective.

Spot Reduction May Not Be Effective

The term “spot reduction” refers to the misconception that you can lose fat in one spot by exercising that part of your body. It’s true that spot-training exercises will make you “feel the burn” while muscles grow and strengthen. However, studies show they won’t help you get rid of belly fat.

One study followed 24 people who did ab exercises 5 days a week for 6 weeks. This training alone did not reduce subcutaneous belly fat. Another study tested the effects of a 27-day sit-up program. It found that neither fat cell size nor subcutaneous belly fat thickness decreased.

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This is not only true for the abdominal area. It applies to all areas of the body. For instance, one study asked participants to complete 12 weeks of resistance training, exercising only their non-dominant arm.

They measured subcutaneous fat before and after the program and found that participants lost fat throughout their bodies, not just in their trained arms.

Several other studies have shown similar results. Some studies seem to contradict the above results. One study tested whether spot reduction decreased subcutaneous arm fat. It found that exercise in a specific area of the arm reduced the fat in that area.

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