24

A very well thought out question. First, the technical term for holding your breath is called the Valsalva maneuver. In the world of weight lifting it has a distinct purpose: to increase the body's ability to protect the spine under heavy load. The Valsalva maneuver does not work alone. There's a pretty fair treatment of the subject on a Rebock Crossfit ...


20

Unfortunately this is a landmine... You never know how the other person is going to take it, and more often than not it is not well received. I know of people lifting much longer than I, and when they mentioned something to someone else about technique, the recipient of the constructive criticism got very angry. Here is the problem: you are not affiliated ...


19

I'm sorry, but the selected answer for this question is terribly ill-informed. It doesn't even answer the OP's question of which muscles are actually utilized for each of these activities. Common myth #1: The pushup is merely an exercise for muscular endurance. Common myth #2: The bench press is far superior to the pushup for building muscle, mainly due to ...


17

Not knowing your age, fitness level and type of amputation, I'll just recommend you some exercises that don't really depend on those factors. Swimming As a swimmer with relatively poor leg technique I can assure you, you can swim perfectly fine without legs. Technically speaking you should even float easier, due to the reduced average density of your body, ...


15

The Furman Institute of Running and Scientific Training (FIRST) put out a good book called Run Less Run Faster. You can find a lot of information contained in the book at the original article in Runner's World. Basically, the FIRST program outlines 3 types of training runs. The three FIRST workouts are a long run, a tempo run, and a speed workout that are ...


15

Bruised shins and knees are probably more of a sign of good technique than bad technique. For most deadlifters, scraping is the big nuissance, and it's when you start altering your form to avoid the scraping that you start getting into problems. Perfect form could lead to a bit of bruising, but the bruising shouldn't be too severe, because you shouldn't be ...


15

Don't "Stretch" Doing static stretches before working out is not good. It cools you down and relaxes you, which is the opposite of what you want while you're exerting yourself. What's worse is that by stretching your muscles, you decrease the amount of force that your muscles can exert, and make yourself vulnerable to injuries like muscle pulls. Static ...


14

It's all about presentation really. Before I officially became a personal trainer I started out randomly helping people at the gym. Out of the hundreds I've given advice to only a handful took it negatively and even then we just didn't see eye to eye and life goes on. First thing is to weigh how helpful your advice against the fact that you are going to ...


14

The problem is, I am not that fat to remove fat from other part of my body Don't worry about that. Your body knows itself better than you do, and it is very good at what it does. If it needs to burn fat for energy, it won't deprive an area of essential fats when it could go across the street to an area with an abundance of fat. That's probably a bad analogy,...


14

The basics of getting abs Abs come from low body fat and large core muscles. Ultimately weight doesn't matter, though checking your weight can help with achieving the low body fat. To get abs, you need to first need to cut enough fat that your muscle tone becomes visible. This is best achieved through the combination of healthy, disciplined, and goal-...


12

I'm a right leg above knee amputee. I lost it 8 years ago and went from 135 to 242 pounds. Finally I told myself I could do anything with one leg. A year later and I am down to 142 pounds. I never had a chance to go swimming even though that would be the best for my joints. All I did and still do is weight lift and cardio. As for the cardio, all I do is pick ...


12

I've been to the FIRST running camp (two years when I was in high school). They do have a lot of good information; however, I have anecdotal experience that will help you in particular with the half marathon or marathon. I would avoid any sorts of interval or short speedwork stuff. Weldon Johnson (co-founder of Letsrun) dropped his 10,000m time to 28:06 ...


12

First, congrats on your progress. I bet you look much better than before, and your looks will continue to improve while you lose more weight. Getting abs to show though, is rather hard. In fact, surprisingly hard. As a comparison, I am 176cm also. I got my weight down to 68kg before all abs started showing when contracting them. In order for me (and you) ...


11

Here's my exercise routine: Wake up after a good nights rest Walk myself into the kitchen and cook a healthy breakfast Pack a healthy lunch to eat while at work Hit the gym/dojo on the way home from work Eat a healthy dinner and don't snack too much before going to bed Get to bed early enough to get a good night's rest Success! Notice that my exercise "...


11

Mehdi's article is good, but there are some subtle things that are not emphasized in that article which are spelled out in great detail in Rippetoe's Starting Strength book. If you are experiencing scraped up shins, the following tips will help. The bar wants to travel in a straight line perpendicular to the ground. If you have the bar too far out in ...


11

It sounds like you want to start incorporating muscle-ups and weighted pull-ups whenever possible. I don't think kipping pull-ups are really appropriate for a number of reasons, but if they float your boat (and you have a healthy, strong, flexible shoulder girdle), rock 'em. Upper-Body Pulling Power Power is not a common goal for upper body pulls, though ...


9

I used to have this problem with doing pull ups too but I realised that I straining my neck during the last few reps when you are trying to get your head over the bar. The neck strain can also happen if you jerk your body, or even grit your teeth in the struggle to get the chin past the bar. I guess the best prevention is to have better pull-up form. One ...


9

There are several ways to brake with ice skates: Snow plow: Bend your knees, Turn your heels outward Here's a video that shows what it looks like Here's a video that explains it in more detail One-legged snow plow: Turn one leg inwards, putting the skate obliquely to your body Slightly bend your ankle so the skate 'shaves' over the ice Here's a video ...


9

Proportion Arnold Schwarzenegger believed that the tricep should consist of 2/3rd the mass of the upper arm and the bicep consist of the remaining 1/3rd. Other bodybuilders may propose other proportions to achieve different aesthetics, but Arnold's record number of Mr. Olympia wins back in the days when mass was not the only name of the game has elevated ...


9

The core, is a group of muscles that include: Pelvic Floor muscles Transversus Abdomoninis Multifidus Internal and External Obliques Rectus Abdomonis Erector Spinae Longissimus Thoracis Diaphragm Long story short, engaging your core is to engage all of these muscles. Only engaging the abdominals will pull you forward. Probably a better way to think about ...


9

You do have the right basic concept that low weight exercises can help build smaller muscles. However, it does require a better understanding of kinesiology (exercise science) to know which small muscles need help, how often, and when. For example, lifters who focus on bench press and rows will have the major muscle groups exercised. However, the rotator ...


9

KL, Your pectoral has two portions and two muscle groups: the upper portion and the lower portion, the pec major and the pec minor. So to effectively target both portions and both muscles, here are two simple stretches that you should try: Corner stretch for the entire lower and upper chest and mainly the pec major This corner stretch to mainly target ...


8

I agree with Tony R, but I also add two other elements of focus: On the upward motion, I focus on driving first my elbows, then my shoulders back and as I reach the top I flex - squeeze as Tony R suggests. Also, this starts when arms are fully extended and requires a pause at full contraction. On the way down, I go very slowly and shift the focus to my lats ...


8

Relevance of front and overhead squats as warm-up for back squats Warm-up sets are meant to prepare the entire body for the heavy challenge of the work sets. They're not used to practice other lifts, or to be challenging in themselves. Warm-ups are there to increase flexibility and blood flow, and to practice impeccable form in preparation for the challenge ...


7

I have been an amputee since 1982. I don't think jumping or hopping is a great idea for regular exercising. Often times I was too lazy to use my crutches around the house and would hop on my left leg. I developed severe osteoarthritis in my good knee and recently had to have a total knee replacement. It is all good now and feels better than it has in years, ...


7

Berin brought up the gym's personal trainers, which presumably you are not - but if there are trainers around, why don't you casually ask them if the person is doing something wrong? Maybe they'll tell you it's correct (in which case you either learn something - or decide the trainers aren't very well trained :) Or maybe they'll agree that it's wrong, and ...


7

It's not always necessary to focus so diligently on "out-of-the-way" muscles, but for many athletes with prior injuries or non-athletes it is. More important than exercises like this is programming a lifting regimen that is well-balanced. Pushes like the bench press should be balanced with pulls like rows or pull-ups, squats should be complemented with ...


7

Welcome to the community! As you may know, the glutes are the largest and most powerful muscles in the human body. Some exercises, if performed with proper form, simply can't be done without major glute activation. Based on your complaints, here are a few of things I've identified that are standing in the way of you getting the results you want with your ...


7

Dropping weights is basically an acknowledgement that you either can't slowly lower the weights due to fatigue or that you want to avoid unnecessary risk of injury in slowly lowering them. It's only acceptable on a surface where this won't result in damage to the floor and weights, and it's more accepted with heavier weights and if you're clearly lifting to ...


6

These are exact words from Arnold Schwarzenegger in the July 2007 Muscle and Fitness: [...] you can build up to doing full-range-of-motion chins for many reps. Start with the lat pulldown machine. Over time, increase the weight until you're doing pulldowns with your equivalent bodyweight for about eight reps. Then, leave the machine and to free-hanging ...


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