Thursday, May 15, 2014

May Link Round-up - Stretching, Working Harder by Working Smarter and Vitamins

Welcome to another edition of: Things I Read That I Want to Share

Smart Ways to Go Harder

11 Ways to Make an Exercise Harder
For most exercises adding weight is the way to make it harder, but for some exercises there are other ways that are appropriate. These different suggestions can be used to add variety, increase the specificity of a workout or address a specific deficit.

Some highlights for HEMA:
#11 suggests a basic way to make exercises more specific to our needs, such as standing cable presses and rows to mimic the body position of strikes and pulling back to parry. These kinds of exercises should be in a program alongside the foundation exercises like squats.
#10 addresses the need for single leg training and for stability in the same, since when fighting we normally only get to push off one leg at a time, and frequently we are trying to do something else at the same time, such as attacking or parrying.
#5 matters greatly for extended postures like longpoint.


The 5 Most Common Errors Athletes Make with Yoga
15 Static Stretching Mistakes
Stretching obviously has it's benefits. Unfortunately, too many people are unaware of the proper way to incorporate stretching into their program. People tend to think that more is better, when what we really need is the correct amount mobility + stability. Stretching programs may be done before exercise, involve stretching muscles that don't need to be stretched and similar errors. These two articles do a good job of summarizing many relevant points about a stretching program.

In short: If you are not sure, don't stretch it.


Why Vitamins May Be Bad for Your Workout
I am a skeptic when it comes to supplements. The reality is that good eating is sufficient, and actually superior to supplements. Eating a lot of vegetables and fruits, eating a variety of such and an otherwise sensible diet is well demonstrated to produce good outcomes. The primary exception to this is for individuals who have a known deficiency of a particular nutrient, usually the result of some disease process. But the meme that most people are deficient in something or another just isn't true.

This blog is not just about physical conditioning for fighting, it's also about general Health & Wellness. I have a Bachelor's in Exercise and Health Sciences and I generally want people to be healthier and smarter about their health.


Increase specificity or decrease stability.
Be thoughtful about stretching.
Eat your veggies.


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