UUPFC Fitness and Health Blog

Expert knowledge and advice on fitness, training and nutrition.

How To Reduce The Risk Of Injury

Being injured can be a very frustrating time for a physically active person. As mentioned on my previous post: “Should I exercise / train if I’m injured?” There are plenty of steps you can take to speed up recovery. In this post I will discuss actions you can take to prevent the risk of injury. Fitness Levels Improving and/or maintaining fitness levels would be a good start. By working consistently towards a high level of fitness you are working on a number of factors that will help reduce the risk of injury. For example, if cardio is neglected your physical state may not allow the level required to work at a higher level. If performance levels drop as a result of this not only are you reducing effectiveness of the training session but you will also run a greater risk of picking up an injury. More often than not (with muscular injuries) they occur due to other muscles around the associated area being weaker, neglected, under or over active. A hamstring injury could occur due to your hamstrings being over active whilst a muscle such as your glutes could be underactive. This means that the hamstrings are being overloaded whilst the muscles which will assist in the particular movement are not being worked adequately. So it is important to also train associated muscles which will be worked in a particular movement. This minimises the risk of injury and the chance of experiencing over and under active muscles. Technique This is a very important factor, not only in terms of preventing injury but everything associated with exercise and fitness. Ensuring...

Should I Exercise / Train If I’m Injured

The answer is plain and simply NO! This is because you may not have been medically informed on the extent of your injury. After seeking medical advice you maybe in a position to then commence with some training. There are a variety of things you can do when you’re injured. However this is dependent on the injury and what you actually want to do and achieve.There are many types of injuries including: Sprains Strains Tears Fractures Dislocations And these can occur due to: Insufficient warm up and/or cool down Fatigue Under-active or overactive muscles. Collision / external contact After finding out the severity of the injury you can then take the appropriate steps towards your rehab and maintenance of current fitness levels. For muscular injuries REST should be undertaken for the first 48 hours post injury at least. This is to allow any damage done to the muscle to settle. Compressing it with an ice pack will help reduce swelling and any immediate pain within the initial stages of the injury. However, without a diagnosis you will not know the extent of the damage, so my advice would be to take a conservative approach and rest to prevent further damage. Allowing the muscle to rest will allow it to heal over time. Everyone heals at different timescales due to prior fitness levels, diet, age, injury management and severity of the injury (including complications and setbacks). So, it would be advisable to start engaging the muscle with light movement and exercise once you are pain free. This can be done by mobilizing the injured area with body weight exercises and...

The Complex

  The Complex ‘’A single piece of equipment, multiple body parts exercised – A complex. ‘’ Why use a complex? Exercise complexes allow you to use a single piece of equipment to work various body parts in multiple sets. Exercises can be programmed to flow fluently from oneto another andcan be changed accordingly to be adapted to the participant. You could; increase the number of reps per exercise, change the exercise, decrease the rest time in between exercises or sets, not have any rest at all, or you could simply just work against the clock. The possibilities are endless.  A great advantage of a complex is being able to do the workout effectively within a limited space. We like this method as it can be easily adapted and tailored to the user’s fitness levels and goals. Itcan be done with anything you can get your hands on in the gym from barbells, kettle bells, dumbbells and more. There are no laws, rules or regulations as to what can be used. There is an abundance of equipment in the gym, you just need to use your imagination! Compound Barbell Complex: Compound exercises are very important to any users no matter the goal, as these are the foundations of building a fit and strong body. Exercises such as squats, deadlifts and overhead press provide ‘’more bang for your buck’’ as appose to isolation exercises such as bicep curls and leg extensions. You will use more muscle groups within a single exercise if compound exercises are incorporated, not to mention the greater potential fat loss, lean muscle, mass gain and strength benefits...

Exercise For The 50+

Exercise For The 50+ In recent years there has been a sharp increase in the number of people over the age of 50 years old who exercise. Working with a large client base within this demographic myself, I see firsthand what positive effect physical exercise has on this age group. The importance that physical exercise has on the body cannot be stressed enough. However, the effects of physical fitness for the over 50’s varies slightly compared to its effects for those aged in there 20’s or 30’s. So what benefit can exercise have on the 50+…. They will still gain the usual benefits of exercise: Weight loss Increased physical fitness Increased muscle mass and more importantly, slowing down the rate of muscle mass reduction Postural Improvement Increased range of movement These benefits may be slower and could also be affected by current health. Over 50’s may also not necessarily be looking at fat loss as their common goal for exercise. They may also be looking for exercise to help them improve other aspects of their health: Flexibility Blood pressure, cholesterol, BMI Rehabilitation from injury General health and wellbeing From my own experience, not only can exercise bring positive effects on physical health but it can also provide positive social and mental effects with likeminded individuals, through group support and stress relief; and depending on the environment you are working with them in, it allows them to feel more comfortable and focused.   CJ Smith Co-Owner / head...