My first experience with pull-ups was back in elementary school for the presidential fitness testing that we all had to go through. I remember seeing my classmates being able to perform numerous repetitions, and I remember how I felt when I couldn’t do any. When testing came around during my 6th-grade year, I could finally perform one pull-up! I felt on top of the world that day. Looking back at that testing, it seems like a simple task but intimidating at the same time. There’s a bar hanging off the wall, and all you have to do is pull yourself up high enough that your chin passes the bar; it all sounds so easy. But, for some, it’s just as big of a challenge as I went through. I want to help you be able to do your first pull-up, and for those of you who already can, I want to help you increase your proficiency with them. Once you can do them, the world can become your gym as you’ve added a new exercise to do regularly. Are you playing with the kids at a park? You can use the monkey bars to get a back workout in.
Building strength and muscle mass is a goal that many have (and these two attributes will typically go hand-in-hand), whether the person wants to be healthier, look better, help improve athletic performance, etc. These people all have similar goals of improving as much as they can. With new information about the importance of muscle mass and strength for overall health, starting your strength and muscle gain journey as soon as possible is of high importance. But where to begin? How do you navigate the process? There are so many resources on muscle gain and strength building, and it is easy to get lost in the noise. This blog will lay out tips to help you along this journey and give you a framework to draw a plan.
The running landscape has changed quite a bit as a result of the global pandemic. Running a marathon, even virtually, is perhaps one of the most challenging accomplishments that a person may embark on in their lifetime, requiring both physical and mental strength. During training and on race day, physical limitations are pushed to the brink via muscular and respiratory fatigue. Mental willpower is tested as oftentimes you keep going when everything else in your body is telling you to “stop.” Preparation is paramount for success in running a marathon, and though choosing a correct endurance plan and running group is important, there are other components that will help you run your next 26.2-mile journey with even greater success.
Although muscle cramping can happen any time of year for a variety reasons, I tend to notice increased complaints from my active and/or athletic populations during the throes of summer. Whether they are simply being more outdoorsy and recreational or training for an upcoming sport season or competition, muscle cramping seems to be more prevalent in hot weather. For those of you wondering about the “how” and “why,” below you’ll find a quick review but more importantly, some tips and pointers on what you can do to combat muscle cramping in hotter weather.
Editor’s Note: Today’s post is written by Jennifer Schachner, PT, DPT.
With summer officially here and the beautiful and unseasonably warm days we have had over the last months, many of us have probably been daydreaming about days spent at the beach, or we have already been splashing around and relaxing at a pool in our spare time. But did you know that for the 50 million Americans affected by arthritis in one of its many forms, being in water can be more than just summer-time fun? Here are the top three benefits of aquatic therapy. (more…)