How Physical Fitness May Promote School Success

akickboxingChildren who are physically fit absorb and retain new information more effectively than children who are out of shape, a new study finds, raising timely questions about the wisdom of slashing physical education programs at schools.

Parents and exercise scientists (who, not infrequently, are the same people) have known for a long time that physical activity helps young people to settle and pay attention in school or at home, with salutary effects on academic performance. A representative study, presented in May at the American College of Sports Medicine, found that fourth- and fifth-grade students who ran around and otherwise exercised vigorously for at least 10 minutes before a math test scored higher than children who had sat quietly before the exam.

More generally, in a large-scale study of almost 12,000 Nebraska schoolchildren published in August in The Journal of Pediatrics, researchers compiled each child’s physical fitness, as measured by a timed run, body mass index and academic achievement in English and math, based on the state’s standardized test scores. Better fitness proved to be linked to significantly higher achievement scores, while, interestingly, body size had almost no role. Students who were overweight but relatively fit had higher test scores than lighter, less-fit children.

To date, however, no study specifically had examined whether and in what ways physical fitness might affect how children learn. So researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign recently stepped into that breach, recruiting a group of local 9- and 10-year-old boys and girls, testing their aerobic fitness on a treadmill, and then asking 24 of the most fit and 24 of the least fit to come into the exercise physiology lab and work on some difficult memorization tasks.

Learning is, of course, a complex process, involving not only the taking in and storing of new information in the form of memories, a process known as encoding, but also recalling that information later. Information that cannot be recalled has not really been learned.

Earlier studies of children’s learning styles have shown that most learn more readily if they are tested on material while they are in the process of learning it. In effect, if they are quizzed while memorizing, they remember more easily. Straight memorization, without intermittent reinforcement during the process, is tougher, although it is also how most children study.

In this case, the researchers opted to use both approaches to learning, by providing their young volunteers with iPads onto which several maps of imaginary lands had been loaded. The maps were demarcated into regions, each with a four-letter name. During one learning session, the children were shown these names in place for six seconds. The names then appeared on the map in their correct position six additional times while children stared at and tried to memorize them.

In a separate learning session, region names appeared on a different map in their proper location, then moved to the margins of the map. The children were asked to tap on a name and match it with the correct region, providing in-session testing as they memorized.

A day later, all of the children returned to the lab and were asked to correctly label the various maps’ regions.

The results, published last week in PLoS One, show that, over all, the children performed similarly when they were asked to recall names for the map when their memorization was reinforced by testing.

But when the recall involved the more difficult type of learning — memorizing without intermittent testing — the children who were in better aerobic condition significantly outperformed the less-fit group, remembering about 40 percent of the regions’ names accurately, compared with barely 25 percent accuracy for the out-of-shape kids.

This finding suggests that “higher levels of fitness have their greatest impact in the most challenging situations” that children face intellectually, the study’s authors write. The more difficult something is to learn, the more physical fitness may aid children in learning it.

Of course, this study did not focus specifically on the kind of active exercise typical of recess, but on longer-term, overall physical fitness in young children. But in doing so, it subtly reinforces the importance of recess and similar physical activity programs in schools, its authors believe.

If children are to develop and maintain the kind of aerobic fitness that amplifies their ability to learn, said co-author Charles Hillman, a professor of kinesiology at the University of Illinois and a fellow at the university’s Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology, they should engage in “at least an hour a day” of vigorous physical activity. Schools, where children spend so many of their waking hours, provide the most logical and logistically plausible place for them to get such exercise, he said.

Or as he and his co-authors dryly note in the study: “Reducing or eliminating physical education in schools, as is often done in tight financial times, may not be the best way to ensure educational success among our young people.”

Great Exercises for Older Caregivers

Fitness 4Adults over 50 who are caring for aging parents are not like other fitness clients of similar age.

For starters, caregivers tend to be less healthy. A study by the insurance company MetLife noted that “adult children 50+ who work and provide care to a parent are more likely to have fair or poor health than those who do not provide care to their parents” (MetLife 2011). Another study showed that 17% of caregivers felt their health had gotten worse as a result of their caregiving responsibilities (Feinberg et al. 2011).

The MetLife study estimates that 10 million adults over the age of 50 are caring for their parents. They’re taking care of “instrumental” activities such as grocery shopping, transportation and finances, and they’re helping out with basic activities of daily living such as dressing, bathing and feeding. When all the additional support (housework, paperwork, errands) is factored in, the “opportunity costs” can be exorbitant—particularly when viewed in terms of the caregivers’ loss of leisure and personal time.

All of this exposes adult caregivers to declining health, chronic diseases and depression, the MetLife study reported. Fitness professionals who understand the unique needs of older caregiver clients will be better able to provide targeted, appropriate services.

GREAT EXERCISES FOR OLDER CAREGIVERS

These five exercises are recommended by Pamela Hernandez, ACSM CPT and ACE health coach:

Bird dog. Bird dog strengthens your abs and lower back and your gluteal muscles while improving your balance. Start on your mat in an all-fours position. Extend one arm forward with fingertips reaching for the wall in front of you, while extending the opposite leg with the heel reaching for the wall behind you. Draw your bellybutton in toward your spine to help engage the transversus abdominis (the deep muscle band that runs around your midsection). Hold for 5 seconds, then repeat with the opposite arm and leg. Repeat the exercise 5 times on each side.
Stability ball roll-out. This works not only your stabilizing transversus abdominis but also the latissimus dorsi. Start on your mat in a kneeling position with a stability ball as close as possible in front of you. Place your hands on the ball in prayer position, close to your body. Roll the ball out in front of you while keeping your hips locked into position, with your body forming a straight line from knee to shoulder. Stop when the ball is under your forearms, and hold the position for 10 seconds. Then reverse the movement without bending your hips. Repeat 5 times.
Superman. Superman targets the glutes, hamstrings and lower back. Lie facedown on your mat with your arms stretched out straight in front of you. Squeeze your glutes and your lower-back muscles to lift your knees and chest off the mat, like Superman taking off. Hold for 5 seconds, then lower yourself back to the mat in a slow, controlled motion. Think of lengthening your body rather than lifting it up high. Repeat the exercise 5 times.
Plank. The plank builds strength in the core muscles, including the abs, and improves stability. Kneel on your mat. Lean forward to rest your elbows and forearms on the mat, with elbows directly below the shoulders. Tighten everywhere your belt touches, then lift your knees. Hold the knees below the hips, or lengthen fully into a long-leg plank. Hold for 20 seconds, then release for 10 seconds. Repeat several times.
Windshield wiper. This exercise works the obliques and helps with mobility and flexibility in the lower back. Lie on your back with feet off the floor and knees over hips, bent at a 90-degree angle. Place your arms in a “T” at shoulder height, with palms facing the ground. Rotate your knees to the left, keeping your right shoulder pinned to the ground. Go only as far as you can without the right shoulder coming up. Repeat on the right side, keeping the left shoulder down. Repeat the exercise 5 times on each side.

Designing Your Own Home Gym For Fitness And Health

Fitness 2Who says you need to go out and sign up for a gym membership to get fit? With the current array of fitness equipment specially designed for home gym use, there is really no excuse not to get up and get healthy. Besides, if you’re thinking about putting up a home gym, you probably are determined to follow a regular fitness regimen. But how do you start designing your fitness gym at home?

Here are a few tips on designing a home fitness gym to meet your special needs and goals:

Budget
More than anything, your budget is what will define the look, size and quality of your home fitness equipment. Shop around for something you like or the kind of gym equipment that will suit the fitness regimen you intend to follow. Don’t buy a stair stepper if a treadmill is all you need.

While you’re at it, shop for quality home gym equipment. Remember that where quality is concerned, price figures a lot in the equation. Most of the best home gym equipment are priced steeply because they offer top quality. Oftentimes, what you get is what you pay for, so make sure you don’t give in to impulse buying. Top quality gym equipment will last for years so don’t expect the same reliability with cheap gym sets.

Put your money where your need is. Don’t buy home fitness equipment that costs $2000 if a $200 set will do. With so many home gym equipment choices available, you’re sure to find one that will fit your fitness goals and budget perfectly.

Usage
Consider how many people in your home will be using your fitness equipment. If you’re the only one, then you have free rein in terms of size, style and features that fit your body type and fitness program. If there are other people in the household who will be using your home gym equipment, consider programming features and adequate size that can accommodate different users with different fitness goals.

Location
If you’re serious about getting fit, then you need to make room for your home gym equipment. Depending on the size of the fitness equipment you’re bringing in, make sure there’s enough room for you to move while doing your exercises. A spare room in the house, your family den, even your basement should have enough space. Just make sure it’s an area of the house that is conducive to exercise.

Be inspired
A blank wall may not be much of a motivation when you’re performing your fitness regimen. Design a room that makes you feel energized. Paint the walls if you can, change the wallpaper or simply hang out a big mirror so you can watch your progress.

Try to keep stuff away from the room that distracts you from your fitness routine. If TV makes you feel lazy, don’t put it in the same room. On the other hand, if it helps keep you moving while you’re being entertained, then integrate it into your home gym design.

Clone a gym
If you’ve been to a fitness gym before, you might have noticed certain elements and arrangements that you liked. If you find a certain design attractive or effective, you can take a few things from that and integrate it into your home gym. It could be as simple as gym equipment arrangement or design elements in the gym itself.

Take note of the placement of the gym equipment and see why it’s effective in terms of the continuance in a fitness regimen. Observe how spaces between equipment are used and how color inspires gym users to work harder. Making your home gym feel like a professional gym can do wonders in motivating you to exercise.

Designing your home gym
To maximize the space in your home, design a floor plan. This lets you budget your space and provide the best placement for your home gym equipment. Place the taller and bulkier gym equipment next to the walls and arrange smaller equipment around it or near the middle of the room.

When it comes to space allocation for your home gym, here are some approximate room space assignments you might need for different fitness equipment:

Stationary bicycle 10 sq. ft.
Treadmill 30 sq. ft.
Rowing machine 20 to 25 sq. ft.
Ski machine at least 20 sq. ft.
Stair climbers at least 10 sq. ft.
Single-station gym equipment at least 30 sq. ft.
Multi-station gym equipment at least 50 sq. ft.

A home gym offers a lot of things that health clubs cannot privacy, convenience and a comfortable place that has less distractions. When designing a home gym for your fitness routine, always keep in mind your needs and goals. If your home gym can meet these requirements, you’ll always look forward to an inspiring workout and live a healthier life.

Amazing Core Fitness Says Exercise Will Bring You A Slimmer Body

Fitness 1With a report out today that says 60% of the people who live in Plymouth are overweight and a prediction the rest of the country will have the same problem, Amazing Core Fitness wants people to know that obesity can be tackled through exercise.

In America the current rate of adult obesity is 35%, it shows just like Plymouth in the UK, America has a serious obesity problem but exercise can win the battle. of the. With over 35% of adults in America suffering from obesity, it shows that Amazing Core Fitness, the company behind the resistance loop bands want people to understand that you can lose weight through exercise by simply exercising in your own home 30 minutes a day.

Amazing Core Fitness want men and women to take obesity seriously, they want people to understand that obesity is a serious issue and it can damage your health and even shorten your life, and this is why the popular health company wants to get the message out there, exercise, exercise at home for at least 30 minutes a day and fight obesity.

Amazing Core Resistance wants the American public to take notice, they want people to start exercising at home and lose weight, and you can do that by using the Amazing Core Fitness Resistance Loop Bands.

By exercising at home with the resistance loop bands, you can get a full body workout and start losing that weight, instead of dragging yourself off to the gym you can exercise at home

The Amazing Core Fitness Resistance Loop Bands are priced just $19.99 and will allow you to have an amazing workout, the health company are so confident in their product, they offer a full money back guarantee.

Have a look below and see why Obesity is a serious issue.

Overweight and obese individuals are at increased risk for many diseases and health chronic conditions, including the following:

Hypertension (high blood pressure)
Osteoarthritis (a degeneration of cartilage and its underlying bone within a joint)
Dyslipidemia (for example, high total cholesterol or high levels of triglycerides)
Type 2 diabetes
Heart disease
Stroke
Gallbladder disease
Sleep apnea and respiratory problems
Some cancers (pancreas, kidney, prostate, endometrial, breast, and colon)

Fitness Center The Center for Good Body and Health

Fitness 3Maintaining a physically fit body is vital to being healthy. Fitness centers can help us to keep in shape. In a fitness center, one would find a lot of equipment in which he can physically exercise to gain fitness and health.

Below is a listing of the equipment and programs commonly found in fitness studios:

* Treadmill

This is a piece of sporting equipment that allows the user to run without actually moving a distance. The word treadmill is used to refer to a kind of mill which is run to grind grain.

The treadmill operates by the principle called belt system in which the top side of the belt runs to the rear so that the runner could run the same distance. Therefore, the speed of the mill can be measured or set since the rate of the belt equals the rate of the runner.

* Weight training

Weight training is under the strength training program designed to develop the size of skeletal muscles and physical strength. It uses the principle of gravity; the trainees force would be used to oppose the pull of the earth. This weight training makes use of different kinds of equipment to develop specific groups of muscles. Dumbbells, weighted bars or weight stacks are the most commonly used.

* Cycling

Cycling is commonly done by people who want to improve their cardiovascular health and fitness. In this view, cycling is particularly beneficial for those suffering from arthritis and for those who are not fitted to play rigid sports like running which require strength of the joints.

* Swimming

Swimming is a very good exercise to gain fitness and health. Swimming is also usually recommended for those who with disabilities or who want to rehabilitate after injuries.

* Racquetball

Racquetball is a sport game where racquets are used along with a hollow rubber ball. This can be played either in indoor or outdoor courts. Unlike other racquet sports like badminton and tennis, the usage of the floor, ceiling, and walls of the court is legal instead of out-of-bounds. Two players are involved in the game, although some variations of this game have three and four players.

* Aerobics

Aerobic classes usually include stepping patterns, done with music and signals directed by an instructor. Researches show that aerobic is one of the healthiest exercises. Aerobics, literally meaning “with oxygen”, helps the body to use consume the oxygen more efficiently by training the lungs and heart. This helps to reduce stress and to control weight.

* Basketball

While this very common sport is an indoor game, other variations have been popular as this sport can also be played outdoors.

* Yoga Yoga focuses on meditation. It is considered as a way to both spiritual and physiological mastery.

* Martial arts

Martial arts are structures of arranged traditions and practices of combat training. Martial arts today are not just being learned for combat purposes, but also for fitness and health, self-defense, mental discipline, self-cultivation, and character development.

* Physical therapy

Physical therapy deals in maximizing and identifying movement potential in promotion, treatment, prevention and rehabilitation. This includes services that are concerned with circumstances where function and movement are threatened by injury, disease, or aging.

Exercises and Workouts – The Best Strength Building Cardio Workouts

Strength training is another way of saying “increasing muscle strength.” Strength training works by the phenomenon known as the overload principle. If you want to build up more strength in your body but aren’t so keen to start an actual strength training workout session, perhaps you may be wondering what cardio exercises you can include […]

Yoga tips for weight loss: Five ways to slim down your tummy and thighs!

Yoga is considered as one of the the best and simplest ways for weight loss. The best thing about yoga is that it can be practised by people of any age as it is equally good for any age group. Even pregnant women are recommended to do Yoga because it can be healthful during the period as long as they take certain precautions.

Stress has been linked to many health problems including gaining weight. Yoga, which is believed to be a good stress buster, will not only help you stay in shape, but will also reduce your risk of getting certain diseases. Losing weight and staying fit can help boost a person’s self-esteem and decrease stress levels.

Below are a few yoga poses that will promote weight loss if one practices it regularly:

Bridge poseBridge pose (Chakrasan): This is a powerful yoga pose for flattening your tummy by toning and strengthening the abdominal muscles along with the hip flexors and spine.

Lie down on your back, bend your knees and keep your feet flat on the floor hip distance apart.
Move your hands alongside the body with the palms facing down and make sure that your fingertips are lightly touching the heels.
You can clasp your hands together and now lift your body in the upward. Hold this pose for 30 seconds to 1 minute.
Release and roll slowly back to the floor. Repeat 5 more times.

Cobra poseCobra pose (Bhujangasan): This yoga pose is usually done to firm the buttocks and tone the abs. It is also a great exercise for people with back aches.

Lie face down on the floor.
Place your hands under your shoulders, palms flat and fingers spread apart.
Stretch your legs with the tops of your feet flat on the floor.
Press your palms into the floor and lifting your head and chest upward.
Push back your shoulders while keeping your hips, legs and feet planted on the floor.

Bow poseBow pose (Dhanurasan): This yoga pose may take more energy to do, but it really helps you burn fat and tone difficult parts of the body. Bow also helps relieve menstrual and constipation problems.

Lie down on your belly and reach your back with your hands to grab your feet as in bow pose.
Now, pull in your stomach and lift up your chest while squeezing your shoulders towards each other.
Your feet should be folded towards the hip region with the hands holding the toes.
Hold this pose for several breathes and then slowly release.

Seated forward bend poseSeated forward bend pose (Paschimottanasana): This is one of the simplest yoga exercises to reduce the unwanted fat surrounding your belly while keeping you fit and healthy.

Sit down on the floor with both your legs keeping straight in front of you.
Bend your head and body forward and try to touch your toes without bending your knees.
Try to touch your knees with your nose or forehead.
Exhale and holding out your breath, try to stay in this posture for a few seconds and then slowly return to your starting position.
Repeat this for 4-5 times.

Grinding poseGrinding Pose (Chakki Chalanasana): This is a very effective asana to reduce belly fat.

Sit comfortably on the floor with your legs spreading straight in front of you.
Make sure that both your legs touch each other.
Now, clasp both your hands together and move it in a circular motion without bending your knees. Do it 10 times in clockwise position and you may pause for a few seconds before doing it another 10 times in anti-clockwise position.
Now, release slowly.

Cold-Weather Sport

Ahh, winter! Shorter days. Frigid temperatures. Foul weather. What better time to be outdoors?

Winter sports can help you burn calories, increase your cardiovascular fitness, and strengthen muscles. Activities that are weight-bearing (like cross-country skiing or skating) help build stronger and denser bones.

Being outdoors and getting exercise are great for your mental health. Exercise boosts mood, and sunlight seems to help beat back the winter blues. So slap on some sunblock (yes, you’ll need it!) and go.

If you’re not a winter sports lover and need some convincing, there’s this: staying in shape during the winter gets you physically ready for springtime activities (and wardrobes).

 

What to Do?

Winter is a great time to experiment with new sports. The trick is to find one that matches your interests and natural abilities. If you like to walk, keep walking — on snowshoes. If you want to try an endurance sport, go for cross-country skiing. And snowboarding is just plain fun.

Alpine (downhill) skiing isn’t as hard as it used to be — shorter, lightweight, curved skis make any beginner feel like an Olympian. These newer skis — along with another type of equipment called skiboards, which are even shorter than skis — help you control your speed and body movements.

Consider testing the latest high-tech skis or snowboards. Check with your local sports shop or the rental places at ski mountains about demo programs.

You could also try sledding. Or, if you prefer ice to snow, think hockey or figure skating.

Runners can also train during the winter, although beware of wet or slippery roads. Or slip on a pair of snowshoes. One of the easiest sports around, snowshoeing can be excellent cold-weather cross-training for runners and cyclists — or anyone wanting to take a wintry walk in the woods. Snowshoes are smaller, lighter, and better than ever. If you want to try them out, you may be able to rent a pair for a day at many of the larger outdoor or sporting goods stores.

 

Classes and Basic Skills

Whatever sport you choose, don’t rely on a friend for instruction. You wouldn’t let an amateur perform brain surgery on you; why let one teach you to ski or skate? That’s what instructors are for — to help newcomers start out right. Instructors can give you advice about equipment, techniques, safety, and dealing with injuries if they do happen to you.

It’s tempting for an eager athlete to advance too quickly through learning the ropes. Resist the temptation. If you want to progress, invest your time in learning the basics thoroughly. Everything else you do as a skier, boarder, or skater will be built on these first skills.

 

Play It Safe

Play safely by figuring out what special equipment and safety gear you’ll need. Planning an afternoon of snowshoeing or cross-country skiing? Pack water, snacks, fruit, and extra socks. If you’re going out for a long time, keep your water bottle insulated from the cold so it doesn’t freeze.

Regardless of how you get down a snow-covered slope, always watch for obstacles such as rocks, tree branches, and other people.

Don’t head out onto the slopes or into remote country areas alone. Always go with a buddy and tell a friend what time you plan on returning. If you get in trouble and don’t show up when you are supposed to, your friend has your back

 

Before You Go

Take these precautions before you venture outside:

Dress in layers to protect yourself from frostbite and hypothermia. Layering allows you to put on or take off clothing as your body temperature changes. Wear clothes made of synthetic materials that keep moisture away from your skin. Avoid wearing cotton garments. You perspire while outdoors and cotton holds moisture next to the skin.

noserun

Always wear a hat. Wear gloves or mittens and insulated, waterproof boots.
Slather on the sunscreen and lip balm, even on cloudy days. UV rays reflect off the snow and can quickly give you a sunburn.
Sunglasses or goggles with tinted lenses not only protect your eyes, but also help you see dips and bumps in the snow on not-so-bright days.
Remove your earrings (especially steel posts) before you head outdoors. Metal posts make your ears feel colder.
Stay visible. Winter brings shorter days and sunshine can quickly fade in the afternoon. Runners should wear reflective clothing and carry a flashlight that swings while moving.

 

Check Your Equipment

Hockey players need a ton of protective equipment. Never take to the ice without shin guards, gloves, a helmet and mask, shoulder pads, elbow pads, and an athletic supporter.
Double-check that all your equipment — helmet, skis, skates, poles, sleds, whatever — is in good condition. Look for any broken straps or cracks in the material.
Use only skis and snowboards that have safety straps or ski brakes. The straps (sometimes called leashes) attach the ski or board to your leg to stop it from sliding away from you. Ski brakes trigger when the boot is released from the binding, stopping the ski from continuing down the slopes.
Beginning boarders might also check out snowboard pants that have extra padding on the knees and rear end.
Don’t chew gum or carry sharp objects in your pockets while skiing or skating.

Easy Office Exercises – Weapons in the battle against devolution

We know that being sedentary is harmful to our health—but working in an office may not give us a chance to move around as much as we would like. Along with several tips for workplace ergonomics, we offer simple, short exercises to get you up from your desk and moving in no time. Encourage your coworkers to join in!

Everyone’s familiar with the monkey-to-man evolution graphic, but what about the inverse? Sitting at a desk for hours on end can doom you to the chimplike workstation slouch. We need not lead a life of poor posture, though. Simple changes will have you walking taller in no time.

The price of doing business

Forward head posture, rounded shoulders, tight hip flexors and hamstrings, tired eyes, and frequent headaches. Sounds good … where do I sign up?

That’s probably the opposite of what you’re thinking. But you’ve already signed up if you work in an office and spend the majority of your day seated at a desk, staring at a computer monitor. A 2007 review of 25 studies found that sitting for more than half a workday, in concert with awkward postures, increases the likelihood of developing lower back pain and sciatica (pain along the sciatic nerve, which runs from the lower back down the legs).

A review of studies from 1996 to 2011 showed a consistent relationship between the number of hours people are seated throughout the day and mortality, as well as a connection to weight gain from childhood to adulthood. A Canadian study included in the review found a strong association between time spent sitting and mortality from cardiovascular disease and all causes. Basically, the longer people spend sitting, the worse their outcomes.

You’ve got to move it

There are ways to get up and move at work without altering your precious schedule:

Use a standing desk.
Schedule meetings to take place walking outdoors instead of in a boardroom.
Take phone calls on a headset so you get in the habit of standing and walking any time your phone rings.

Mom says sit up straight!

You can also easily improve your posture:

Adjust your computer monitor so the top line of text on the screen (not the top of the monitor) is at eye level.
Zoom in, increasing your computer’s display percentage so you don’t have to lean forward and crane your neck.
Tweak your keyboard height so you don’t have to shrug your shoulders and flex your wrists. Your wrists should be straight when your fingers are on the middle row of keys.

You can do these, no sweat

Ergonomic improvements and less sitting at your office will pay modest but almost immediate dividends; however, adding regular workstation exercises can make a world of difference. You may protest the potential for pie-plate sweat stains under your arms or how ridiculous you will look snapping off burpees at your desk. But the following exercises won’t make your co-workers believe you are a protein shake-drinking, rep-counting, card-carrying fitness cult member. Try these low-key, high-value exercises the next time you are feeling stressed and gnarled. For best results, complete every hour or two.

Find a wall

Wall angels 1 set of 10 repetitions

Muscles worked: deltoids (all), abdominals

Muscles stretched: chest

Stand with feet hip-width apart roughly half a metre away from an empty wall.
Carefully lean back so your knees are bent and your back and head are flat against the wall.
Push your lower back into the wall by activating and squeezing your abdominal muscles, and maintain this position throughout the exercise.
Bring your arms up to shoulder height, with a 90-degree bend at your elbows.
The backs of your hands, elbows, and shoulders should maintain contact with the wall at all times.
Slowly slide your arms up the walls, reaching toward the ceiling as you straighten them overhead.

If at any point part of your arm, hand, or body starts to lift off the wall, pause there for a moment, take a breath, and slide your arms back down to starting position, at shoulder height.
Hip flexor lunge

On your feet

Hip flexor lunge 1 set of 5 per leg

Muscles worked: glutes, hamstrings, quadriceps

Muscles stretched: hip flexors, quadriceps, abdominals, tibiales anteriores

If you have good balance, you can do this exercise free form, but if you are a little wobbly, you may want to use a hand to hold on to your desk.
Stand with your back to your chair, roughly 1 metre in front of it.
Take your right foot and place it on the chair, laces down, so the bottom of your foot faces the ceiling.
While maintaining a tall upper body and leaning backward slightly, lightly push your hips forward while you relax your right knee and allow it to sink toward the ground until you feel a stretch in your quadriceps.
After a brief pause, stand up and resume starting position.

Quadraceps extensionsFrom your chair

Alternating quadriceps extensions 1 set of 20 repetitions

Muscles worked: quadriceps, tibiales anteriores

Muscles stretched: calves, hamstrings

Sit as tall as you can in your chair, feet flat on the floor, imagining a string running from the top of your head down to your tailbone.
Without shifting your weight to your right, and without lifting your upper leg, point the toe of your left leg back toward the knee as much as possible while straightening your left leg.
Your hip, knee, and ankle should all come close to being the same height when you have straightened your leg fully.
After a brief pause, lower your foot to the starting position.
Repeat the movement, alternating legs.

Bow and reach
While Standing

Bow and reach 1 set of 8 repetitions

Muscles worked: hamstrings, glutes, lower back, posterior deltoids, abdominals

Muscles stretched: hamstrings, lower back, latissimus dorsi

Begin with arms straight overhead, palms together. Stand as tall as you can be.
Inhale through your nose in this position, and then exhale through your mouth, pushing your hips back and folding forward at the hips (keeping the arms in the same overhead position) until you make a 90-degree angle at the waist.
Inhale through your nose in this position, and as you exhale, come back to starting position.

Ergo adjustments

Ergonomics is the science of fitting the job to the worker and the product to the user, according to the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety. The workplace is often the focal point of the study of ergonomics. After a workspace, and a worker’s interaction with the space, is observed, changes can be suggested that can improve posture and reduce strain from, for example, repetitive movements.

Exercise regularly to keep your heart healthy, live longer

Want to improve your heart health, and perhaps even live longer? Then exercise, for a new study suggests that regular physical activity can help reduce a person’s risk of death from cardiovascular disease.

The study revealed that even small amount of physical activities, including standing, are linked to a lower risk of cardiovascular disease, while more exercise leads to even greater reduction in risk of death from cardiovascular disease, a disease of the heart or blood vessels.

“The greatest benefit is to simply exercise, regardless of the intensity, while the danger is two-fold — to not exercise at all or to exercise intensely, without due preparation,” said Valentin Fuster, JACC Editor-in-Chief of American College of Cardiology in Washington, US.

Increasing the amount of moderate intensity exercise, a person engages in results in increased reductions in cardiovascular disease mortality, the finding revealed.

In this report, the researchers examined recent studies on the volume and intensity of aerobic exercise required for favourable cardiovascular health.

With the rise in participation in endurance races over the past three decades, they also addressed the question of whether or not there is an amount of exercise that increases cardiovascular disease risk.

“The available evidence should prompt clinicians to recommend strongly low and moderate exercise training for the majority of our patients,” said Michael Scott Emery, co-chair of the American College of Cardiology Sports and Exercise Cardiology Council.

“Equally important are initiatives to promote population health at large through physical activity across the life span, as it modulates behaviour from childhood into adult life,” he added.