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Sports Specific Exercise


The Greek physician Galen (AD 129 - 210) is generally accepted to be the originator of formalized exercise, he even pointed the way forward by stating,

"?movements which do not alter respiration are not called exercise".

Whilst he was chief physician to the Gladiators, Galen devised training drills to replicate movements from the arena, as seen in the 1960 film Spartacus. Galen's gladiator drills are now referred to as 'sports specific' training or sometimes the misleading term 'functional' training, that is, exercises consisting of movements that are specific to a particular sport. With practice we may get better at performing these exercises but to date there is no proof that this makes any difference to sporting performance or normal everyday function of the muscles specifically targeted.

'State-dependent learning' is a phenomenon in which the retrieval of newly acquired information is possible only if the subject is in the same environment and physical state as during the learning phase. That is, a skill learnt in one situation does not necessarily translate to another, for example, results gained from exercises designed to strengthen the 'core' muscles may not change their performance under competitive or even everyday circumstances that differ from those of the specific exercise. Therefore, if training routines are to be beneficial they must replicate the playing conditions as closely as possible.

In professional sport a large percentage of training is taken up by exercise in the belief it will develop strength, co-ordination and agility, but if these exercises are considered necessary for a given sport, why doesn't the athlete develop these skills by actually participating in their sport? If an athlete lacks the strength or agility considered essential for their game then either the perceived requirements are wrong (and this happens time and time again) and the exercises are a waste of time or the athlete is not performing their sport in a manner considered to be right. If the latter is the case then how can an athlete whose movement may be at fault be expected to be suddenly capable of performing the prescribed exercises correctly? If they do learn to perform the exercises 'correctly' can these new skills be transferred back to the sporting arena?

Sports scientist Dr Michael Yessis writes:

What Makes an Exercise Specific? For an exercise to be specific it must fulfill one or more of the following criteria:

1. The exercise must duplicate the exact movement witnessed ina certain segment of the sports skill.

2. The exercise must involve the same type of muscular contraction as used in the skill execution.

3. The special exercise must have the same range of motion as in the skill action.

So perhaps the best sport specific exercise program, by definition, is ... playing your sport?

Roy Palmer is a Teacher of The Alexander Technique and author of The Performance Paradox: Train Smarter to enhance performance and reduce injury. More information can be found at http://www.artofperformance.co.uk He works with sports people of all abilities to recognise and overcome performance-limiting habits.


MORE RESOURCES:

NPR (blog)

If Exercise Feels Like Work, Mindless Snacking May Follow
NPR (blog)
Then, Wansink observed what the participants ate at lunch. "The group that had framed their walk as exercise ended up taking 35 percent more chocolate pudding than the 'scenic' walk group," Wansink tells The Salt. And it wasn't even super-tasty stuff ...
Make Exercise Fun And You'll Eat Less Afterward, Cornell FindsForbes
Unwelcome Dieting News: Forcing Yourself to Exercise Will Make You Reach for ...Businessweek
Exercise is All in Your Mind, And Your Mind Can Ruin Your WorkoutJezebel

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TIME

Obesity: We're not overeating, we're under-exercising, study suggests
Los Angeles Times
A new study suggests that under-exercising, rather than overeating, may be at the heart of America's obesity epidemic. Researchers from Stanford University School of Medicine report a strong correlation between the rise in obesity and a striking drop ...
It's Lack of Exercise—Not Calories—That Make Us Fat, Study SaysTIME
What's more to blame for obesity: Lack of exercise or eating too much?CBS News
Lack of exercise, not diet, linked to rise in obesity, Stanford research showsStanford Medical Center Report
Medical News Today -myCentralOregon.com
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myfox8.com

'Missing' boy found in basement tells authorities of grueling forced exercise
myfox8.com
He told child welfare investigators in Michigan that he'd have to curl a 25-pound weight on each arm and do 5,000 revolutions on an exercise machine, and if he didn't finish in less than an hour, he'd have to do the routine again, according a petition ...

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Fox News

Jump to it: Missouri now has an official state exercise (with video)
Kansas City Star
Missourians, get your feet apart and your arms up in the air: Jumping jacks are now the state exercise. Gov. Jay Nixon signed House Bill 1603 into law Thursday morning. Henceforth (starting Aug. 28, to get technical) jumping jacks “shall be known as ...
Jumping jack to become Missouri's official state exerciseFox News
Introducing…The New Official Exercise Of Missouri!News One
Missouri names official state exercise: Jumping JacksKSN-TV

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Is exercise work or play? Weight gain or loss depends on your answer
Los Angeles Times
It's a common rookie mistake, but plenty of diet-and-exercise veterans make it, too: With an act of will, you muster yourself to the gym or the track, and you gut your way through an arduous workout. When you sit down to dinner or go to the break room ...



New York Daily News

Staying sedentary may be just as harmful as exercise is beneficial
New York Daily News
Six hours of sitting is as bad for you as one hour of exercise is good, researchers from the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center found. 'Avoiding sedentary behavior throughout the day may represent an important companion strategy to improve ...
Two Hours of Sedentary Behavior As Harmful As 20 Minutes of Exercise is ...BioNews Texas
Two hours of sitting cancels out 20 minutes of exerciseWTSP 10 News
Sitting too much may negate benefits of exerciseWauwatosa Now

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If Exercise Is Work, Mindless Snacking May Follow
North Country Public Radio
Then, Wansink observed what the participants ate at lunch. "The group that had framed their walk as exercise ended up taking 35 percent more chocolate pudding than the 'scenic' walk group," Wansink tells The Salt. And it wasn't even super-tasty stuff ...



Local exercise study needs participants
WBXH
Baton Rouge native Elmo Winters is passionate about exercise. You can find him at his YMCA gym several days a week. However, that wasn't always the case. Winters has a family history of diabetes and was at high risk of developing it himself. He's not ...



Combining aerobic, resistance exercise may be best for diabetes
Chicago Tribune (blog)
NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Exercise programs that combine aerobic exercise and resistance training may be better at helping people with diabetes control their blood sugar than either type of exercise alone, a new analysis of past studies says.

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Viewing exercise as fun means you'll eat less after, study finds
Boston Globe
Ever give yourself permission to eat a doughnut or candy bar after a particularly punishing workout? Indulging after exercise is a common phenomenon and a big reason why studies suggest people don't lose much weight from exercise alone. But there may ...


Google News


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