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All one wants to do is to lay on the couch. From the couch - to the old folks home
to the morgue. So, I shall begin simple stretching, exercise and look at your notes."
Connie Newell, RN

You are not going from the couch to the old folks home to the morgue, because
you exercise. You can avoid that end, because you are educated about your
fitness. You know how much more vital and alive you are when you exercise.

Your path is healthier, because you practice a regular fitness program.
Your path is one of choice and responsibility for your health, not the default path
to the couch by way of Burger King.
Your path is more fun, because you have the energy and stamina to participate in
the activities you enjoy.
Your path makes you strong, because you want the great quality of life strength brings you.

Every day you take a different fork in the path, when you exercise. You know that it
is easy to unconsciously go from the couch - to the old folks home - to the morgue. Just
look around you at all the people doing that.

You know better. You put what you know into practice, so you are strong and healthy.
You workout. You exercise. You engage in your favorite sports and activities.
You choose a better path.

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Golfers who freeze up during a crucial putt may have more than nerves to blame. They may have a case of the "yips"--a sudden onset of muscle tremors or immobility that researchers say appears to have both physical and psychological causes.
While the "yips" phenomenon in golf has been studied for more than a decade, investigators are still puzzling over what triggers the problem. Bad form is an unlikely suspect since the yips most commonly strike serious golfers with admirable handicaps. Instead, researchers have speculated that the yips arise from a neuromuscular injury that can be aggravated by anxiety on the green.


Golfers' putting woes involve the mind and body

January 09, 2001
NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Golfers who freeze up during a crucial putt may have more than nerves to blame. They may have a case of the "yips"--a sudden onset of muscle tremors or immobility that researchers say appears to have both physical and psychological causes.
While the "yips" phenomenon in golf has been studied for more than a decade, investigators are still puzzling over what triggers the problem. Bad form is an unlikely suspect since the yips most commonly strike serious golfers with admirable handicaps. Instead, researchers have speculated that the yips arise from a neuromuscular injury that can be aggravated by anxiety on the green.

But new research by investigators at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, suggests that both anxiety and physical injury--and most often a combination of the two--trigger yips episodes. The study authors report their findings in the December issue of Sports Medicine.
In questioning more than 1,000 tournament golf players, Dr. Aynsley M. Smith and colleagues found that about half of the golfers suffered bouts of the yips. The investigators also found that while muscle and nerve deterioration was likely at the root of many yips cases, other golfers had episodes in stressful situations, such as during tricky putts or when playing against a certain adversary.
"None of us are convinced that anxiety is the sole cause in all yippers," Smith told Reuters Health. However, she said, anxiety may cause muscle and nerve symptoms in some golfers. For others, stress just exacerbates physical problems caused by constant use and abnormal positioning of certain muscles. Similar effects are seen among musicians, dentists and other people who routinely hold abnormal postures.
"It tends to affect the muscles you earn your living with," Smith said.
For golfers, some signs of the yips include a sudden inability to make short putts and having trouble swinging a club back or bringing it forward. According to Smith, golfers who have anxiety-induced yips may benefit from relaxation and stress-reduction techniques such as yoga. And golfers may be able to prevent the physical triggers of the yips by learning more than one grip on the club, stretching between holes, and using other forms of exercise to keep their muscles limber.

The Future Of Fitness: Trends For 2001

January 16, 2001
The future of fitness is taking a turn –- for the better! Better, bigger, faster and more dramatic, that is! Take a walk through any fitness club and you’ll see a whole new style of fitness classes and programs.
Why the change? I believe that people are looking for a more thorough, holistic approach to wellness. Instead of being concerned about just building bigger muscles and getting slimmer waistlines, today’s fitness buffs want more. They want to feel good too -- inside and out. They want their exercise to help them with everyday activities such as lifting children or putting away heavy groceries. They want to be able to do their weekend sports with more strength, skill and confidence.
In addition, fitness is reaching a greater audience. Seniors, pregnant women, people with injuries or health conditions and those who are overweight are all looking to get fit and make a change.
To meet the demands for total well-being for all ages, fitness levels and conditions, we’re seeing new trends. Some of the activities have been around for a while, but instead of just being in the elite clubs, they are more mainstream –- allowing a greater variety of people to participate.
What’s cropping up?
Group Athletic Conditioning
   Tae Bo
   Sports conditioning
   PUMP (group weight lifting)
These challenging group activities have an athletic slant that emphasize a combination of strength, balance, endurance, and coordination –- all gained in a social atmosphere.
Ethnic Dance
   Belly dancing
These dance classes have been around for a long time, but they have traditionally been found only in dance studios where the focus was on skill. Today, these classes are offered in fitness clubs with a new twist. They combine aerobic exercise and skill; social connection and rhythm; freedom of movement and inner focus.
Outdoor Pursuits
   Beach running
   Ropes courses
   Track workouts
   Rock climbing
   Sport-specific training
Not all fitness clubs are confined to the indoor gym anymore. Many are taking their classes outdoors. There are plenty of ways to combine the pleasure of the outdoors with the challenge of exercise. These activities are a great way to train your body while working amidst the elements and soaking in the beauty of nature. If you want to improve your condition for a particular sport such as skiing, this is an excellent approach.
Mind/body connection
   Tai Chi
   Martial arts
Need to slow down? Try a mental discipline that enhances physical strength and inner focus. They refresh the spirit and rejuvenate the body. These classes encourage listening to your body and working at your own pace to reduce stress, increase flexibility, strength and coordination.
Yoga for the mind, spinning for the heart, hiking for the spirit and belly dancing for the community -- exercise in 2001 builds the person’s whole being. It’s not just for fitness anymore!

You, Too, Could Live to 100 -- Or at Least 80
   Attitude. Centenarians tend to be an optimistic group. They rarely consider their age a limitation. They have dealt well with the stresses in their lives. And they take advantage of new opportunities.
   Genetics. Most people can live to age 85 if they take good care of themselves. But if most members of your family are living into their 60s and 70s, an alarm bell should go off. Disease prevention and screening, along with good health practices, can help you make up for at least some of the genetic differences between you and centenarians.
   Exercise. After age 30, we lose about 1/3 pound of muscle every year -- muscle that's replaced by fat. Through exercise, especially resistance training such as weight-lifting, you can regain muscle mass while reducing your risk of heart disease, improving your mental ability, and markedly enhancing your sense of well-being.
   Investigate new challenges. Keep your mind active with new activities to exercise different parts of your brain. Learn a new language, learn to play an instrument, write your autobiography, volunteer. Such activities develop new connections between different parts of the brain, strengthening it and preventing any deficits from showing up in everyday functioning.
   Nutrition. Keeping calorie intake under control is critical to slowing the aging process. For most people, simply cutting back on unnecessary calories a little every day -- especially sweets and other carbohydrates -- can make a big difference in weight loss. Perls also recommends taking daily supplements of vitamin E (400-800 units) and selenium (100-200 milligrams), both of which have been shown to be potent antioxidant substances that combat cell damage from so-called free radicals, thus helping to prevent cancer, stroke, and heart disease.
   Get rid of stress -- and don't smoke. Both cut years from your life and are responsible for a lot of illness.
We all can learn to manage stress better, adds Silver. Meditation, progressive muscle relaxation, creative visualization, and exercise are all great stress reducers.
For her, the answer is listening to audiobooks during the drive home. "It's always fiction, something that takes me to another world. Then I'm immediately out of the daily problems, the stresses, and off somewhere else. It clears my head of all my worries for a time," she tells WebMD. "What's really important is taking time every day to do something you really, really enjoy, something that empties your mind of all the stuff that's producing stress in your life."
Also, building a support network is important. Many centenarians lead "intergenerational lives," she says. Many never married. "When they don't have family around, they surround themselves with lots of other friends of all ages. They have personalities that draw people in. They're gregarious."
Silver is heartened by the fact that so many centenarians had excellent thinking ability:. "It very much counters all the myths and common thinking, that by the time you get to be 100, you'll be demented.
"It's true that exercising your brain is just as or more important than exercising your body," she says. "Whether you retain your thinking abilities predicts whether you're going to be able to remain independent -- much more than your physical condition. People can often compensate for physical disabilities with various devices and assistance, but if you don't have mental acuity, it's much more difficult."
Also, there's such a thing as "centenarian humor," says Silver, which boosts immunity plus keeps things in perspective. "As one 105-year-old said, 'The best thing about living to 105 is, there's no peer pressure. You don't have any peers left.'"

6 Workout Tips
That'll Save Your Shape This Winter

As temperatures tumble and daylight dwindles, you might be tempted to grab the remote and hunker down on the couch 'til spring. Trouble is, a few months of indoor inactivity will translate into less energy, mushier muscles and a wider waistline.
Staying in shape when it's cold outside may take a little more effort and a dash more creativity than other times of the year, but it's worth it. Stick with your winter workouts and -- trust us -- you'll be a lot happier when the sweaters come off and the bathing suits go on. Below we give you six great strategies to keep yourself moving while the bears and squirrels are snoozing.
Window-shop for fitness. Like to walk, but hate the cold? Hate the treadmill even more? Hundreds of shopping centers across the country cater to walking groups who do brisk indoor strolls before doors officially open for business. You burn four to eight calories per minute whether you walk indoors or out. Of course there's an added bonus -- you get a head start on pursuing the merchandise. Check with your local mall management for details on their walking clubs and services.
Go from spud to stud. Instead of vegging out while watching Who Wants to Be a Millionaire, walk on your treadmill, do some step aerobics, jump rope or jog in place. Any movement, even if it's simply doing push-ups during the commercials, is worth something. You can also turn your TV into an exercise machine by popping in a workout video instead of cartoons. (No you can't just watch the video. You actually have to do it.)
Workout with class. Check out some group classes even if you don't do them when the weather is warmer. If the basics like spinning, low impact and step don't appeal to you, consider giving more offbeat offerings like candlelight stretch, circus aerobics and yogaerobics a try. You don't have to join an expensive gym to find a group class. Many adult education programs at community centers, universities and hospitals offer classes at low or no cost.
Give yourself a lift. When it's cold outside, you probably move around less than at other times of the year. That's one of the reasons you tend to gain weight during the winter, and that's also why it's even more important to keep up your weight training routine. Doing a weight workout that involves the major muscle groups of your chest, back, legs, abs and arms not only burns about eight calories a minute, it also builds and maintains metabolism boosting muscle. No need to get fancy either; all you need is your body weight and a few dumbbells for an at-home weight workout.
Summericise your workouts,/b>. Take a break from the cold and dream of warmer days. YMCA and YWCAs and health clubs offer swim lessons, aquacise classes, aqua running, aqua stepping and lap swimming. Water sports place less strain on your joints and give you the opportunity to tone up for summer. Some sample calorie counts: A basic crawl stroke burns between 8 to 12 calories per minute and a typical 45-minute aqua running session burns about 400 calories.
If you can't beat it, enjoy it. Sure you can stay cooped up until the ice thaws, but you can also embrace the cold weather by taking up a winter sport. If sliding down a mountain with your feet strapped to two planks isn't your idea of a good time, there are other cold weather activities to consider. How about ice-skating, sledding, winter hiking and cross-country skiing? They all burn between six and ten calories per minute.
Persevere. Don't waste what you have started this year. You
may have slipped in your resolution to exercise, but you made
a start. Keep going. Persevere.

What can you learn from those times that you have slipped
that will help your persevere and rise again?
§ Did you buy into an excuse?
§ Was exercise too low a priority?
§ Did you forget your real, deeply-felt reasons for exercising?
§ Was it too inconvenient?

When you learn from the times you fall down, you can design a
better, more appropriate exercise program for yourself.

§ What do you need to do to overcome your excuses?
§ How can you make exercise a higher priority in your life?
§ Have you identified what your deeply-felt reasons are for
§ What have you done to make exercise as convenient as
possible for yourself?

Use the times you fall off the wagon to leverage your rise to
fitness glory. Experience the glory in your exercise program.

Find your glory and rise to the occasion of exercise. Persevere.
Keep up the effort. Progress, not perfection. Make the necessary
adjustments. Get up. Rise to the occasion. Turn it around. This
is the greatest day to exercise. All you have to do is exercise
today. Surprise yourself and everybody else. Persist. Strive.
Endure. Be determined to get up and do it again.

Exercise Made Easy audio tapes help you persevere, by making
it easy. You get immediate energy for exercise. The exercise
program fuses the benefits of exercise, such as energy, with your
thoughts with the physical sensations during exercise. It sets up
a mind-body positive feedback loop that drives you to exercise.

Be a winner today. Fight the battle against your excuses.
Understand that you may have to fight that battle over and
over again, until you finally "get it".

Be a winner today. Exercise, even though you say you don't
have time. Eliminate that thought. You do have time for
everything that you decide is important enough. Yes, there
are days when other things take priority over fitness. Yes,
there are at least 3 days a week when you can find 20
minutes for aerobic exercise.

Be a winner today. Fight the battle against laziness. There
is a time to relax and recuperate, just don't relax and recuperate
all the time. Get up and get started with some activity. Do
stretches. Do a warm up exercise. Go easy on yourself until
you get your energy up for more strenuous exercise.

Be a winner today. Fight the battle against "all or nothing"
thinking about fitness. Add a little more activity into your life
by taking the stairs, walking a little farther and a little faster.

Be a winner today. Fight the battle of being too serious. Make
your fitness fun, what ever that means for you. Add a favorite
sport to your life or find one, even if you think you are not
athletic. Add happy, snappy music to your activity. Begin to
think of fitness in terms of play.

Be a winner today. Fight the battle with enthusiasm. Give
thanks for being alive to fight the battle. Fight the battle so
you stay alive and have a great quality of life.

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