By Thomas King, MSc, CSCS, CSEP-CEP

Ever wonder what’s going on in the world of strength and conditioning? Well, look no further! In this post, we look into some of the trends and interesting research tidbits for all you nerds out there. For those eager to learn more, I have included references for all of the points at the bottom of this post. Without further delay, here we go!

Strength Training Recommended Even During “Elderly” Years

In their most recent position statement, the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA) gives a whole-hearted endorsement to exercising in old age. We’re not talking about some light walking and 5-pound plastic-coated dumbbells either, the NSCA recommends performing repetitions at 70-85% of 1 repetition maximum and including high velocity power exercises to help reduce age induced sarcopenia (Muscle Loss). [1]

Not Your Traditional Way of Getting Cardio

Think pole dancing classes are just a joke? Turns out these classes are serious exercise. In a study conducted by researches from the University of Western Australia, participants taking part in a 60-minute class were found to achieve an average heart rate of 131 beats per minute, not quite a stroll in the park! [2]

Foam Rolling May Not be Good at Rolling Away Muscle Soreness

Feeling particularly sore from your last workout and want to do some foam rolling? Maybe try a different recovery strategy, as new research from Salem State University shows that foam rolling does not significantly reduce perceived muscle soreness. The foam rolling did help recovery from agility-type exercise though, so for you multi-directional athletes out there (i.e., soccer, hockey, ultimate frisbee), take notice. [3]

Get a Spotter, Lift More!

Want to go for a new bench press personal record? Then make sure you use a spotter, and not for the most conventional reason (e.g. safety!). A team of researchers from the United Kingdom found that the presence of a spotter increased both the total reps a participant could perform and the weight they could lift. [4]

Exergaming, Another Way to Get Your Cardio

Not only is pole dancing a workout, but it turns out, so is exergaming. Exergaming is an emerging exercise system that mixes traditional video games with physical activity and it can certainly produce some results. In a study comparing exergaming to traditional treadmill walking, exergaming was found to produce higher peak heart rates and oxygen consumption. [5]

photo credit: gamercize Gamercize GZ Sport in Action via photopin (license)

I hope you found some of these points interesting, I know I did! Stay turned as the goal for us at JKC is to turn this into a regular feature on the JKC blog.

~Thomas 💪

References

[1] Fragala, M.S., Cadore, E.L., Dorgo, S., Izquierdo, M., Kraemer, W.J., Peterson, M.D., Ryan, E. D. (2019). Resistance training for older adults: Position statement form the National Strength and Conditioning Association. Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, 33(8), 2019-2052.

[2] Nicholas, J.C., McDonald, K. A., Peeling, P., Jackson, B., Dimmock, J.A., Alderson, J.A., Donnelly, C.J., (2019). Pole dancing for fitness: The physiological and metabolic demand of a 60 minute class. Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, 33(10), 2704-2710.

[3] D’Amico, A.P., Gilles, J. (2019) Influence of foam rolling on recovery form exercise-induced muscle damage. Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, 33(9), 2443-2452.

[4] Sheridan, A. Marchant, D.C., Williams, E.L., Jones, H.S., Hewitt, P.A., Sparkes, A. (2019). Presence of spotters improves bench press performance: A deception study. Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, 33(7), 1755-1761.

[5] Tietjen, A.M.J., Devereux, G.R. (2019). Physical demands of exergaming in healthy young adults. Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, 33(7). 1978-1986.

I joined JKC because I wanted to better care for my physical health, but didn’t really know how, or where, to begin.  Seeking help from a trainer seemed like a wise choice, and I had heard great things about the staff at JKC. Anyone who knows me knows that I hate exercising.  So, I’ve only ever tried sticking with a gym routine twice in my life.  Each experience consisted of me wandering around, not knowing what to do, and settling for an elliptical machine or something else that seemed comfortable and non-threatening.  Each session was the same, and I felt like I was wasting my time.

Each session at JKC, however, is specifically crafted for me.  I don’t have to think about what to do, because I’m told what to do.  I don’t have to worry about how to do things properly, because I’m shown (sometimes multiple times!) how to accomplish each task.  I don’t have to be concerned about slipping into a comfortable routine, because Jon and Thomas won’t let that happen.

I have never previously seen the passion and level of care that Jon and Thomas bring to everyone who works out at JKC. Their knowledge, insight and skills are extraordinary, and they work with everyone individually to ensure the best possible results. The attention to detail and to every person’s specific requirements and goals, and the incredible, constant encouragement they provide, is, in my opinion, what truly distinguishes JKC from any other program in which I’ve participated. I am extremely pleased with the progress I’ve achieved thus far, and it’s largely attributable to Jon and Thomas and the approach they take to training and working with people.

I saw an article in Men’s Journal that quoted Jon in about 2018 while traveling and was impressed that someone in St. John’s made that international magazine.  Jon spoke about an exercise called the Farmer’s Walk and I started working that into my routine at the YMCA. I tore that article out of the magazine and kept it, meaning to make contact, but got busy. Then I had lunch with an old friend Bruce Dyke. I hadn’t seen Bruce for a while and I remarked that he looked super healthy and fit. He told me about his, and his son Cas’, experience at JKC and then I remembered the Men’s Journal article! No coincidences!

The experience is unique on many levels – great people, camaraderie, passion, purpose, and dedication. Jon and Thomas are attentive, precise and understanding.  Their teaching has unlocked a new perspective for me with what our bodies are capable of. I still appreciate the YMCA, wonderful place, but I can’t imagine working out without Jon and Thomas now.

log overhead press

I had tried JKC based on the recommendation of a parent of one of my students. I originally started by attending Saturday drop in classes. I was hooked. I decided to join full time when I I had taken a year off from teaching and it was the best thing I have done for myself.

First and foremost the trainers at JKC are extremely knowledgeable. I feel like they are as dedicated to my success as I am. The workouts are tailored to me, my skills and my goals. This is important. Jon and Thomas truly want the best for their clients no matter what level of fitness they are starting from. I also like being able to book a session at a time that suits my schedule. This also helps keep me accountable. Once the session is booked I am not likely to cancel!

I’ve been weight training on and off for years but never really had a specific goal or target in mind so routinely stalled out, plateaued or stopped training all together. Before I joined JKC I was definitely in a fitness slump and needed something to motivate me and get me back on track. I did a bit of digging online, looking at various personal training options and gyms around town but JKC seemed like the best option by far. I’ve tried big box gyms and other personal trainers in the past but none of them have had the perfect combination of goal specific fitness programming, welcoming and supportive environment, and the knowledge and passion to back it all up that you’ll find at JKC. Jon and Thomas are great to work with, they know how to motivate you if you’re having an off day and are well versed in all the different ways to make your muscles burn! I also have noticed some major improvements in my deadlifts since I started with JKC and was really happy with the result.

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