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3 posts tagged with exercise by rongorongo.
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Just don't do it!

"At Stanford University two sales representatives from Nike were watching the athletics team practise. Part of their job was to gather feedback from the company's sponsored runners about which shoes they preferred. Unfortunately, it was proving difficult that day as the runners all seemed to prefer... nothing" - from Christopher McDougall's forthcoming book "Born to Run" which looks at the story the growth of the $20 billion running shoe industry. Starting form Bill Bowerman's Cortez in 1972 onwards runners have seen a steady flow of innovations to improve performance and reduce injury rates. Only it would appear they may not work. By way of contrast the book includes coverage of the Mexican Tarahumara tribe who run ultramarathons with shoes made from car tyres on their feet.
posted by rongorongo on Apr 20, 2009 - 38 comments

5BX: When wishing is not good enough

Bill Orban developed the "Five Basic Exercises" or 5BX program for the Royal Canadian Air force in the late 50s. Apart from the primary aim of getting people into shape it was designed to be simple to perform, to work on all the body, to require nothing in terms of special equipment or large spaces, to accommodate enough progression to cater for reformed couch potato and budding athlete alike and to fit into a time slot of 11 minutes including warm up. [Women, for whatever reason, were prescribed 10 exercises in 12 minutes with XBX]. The book of the exercises was translated into 13 languages and sold 23 million copies around the world before falling into obscurity in the 80s. [more inside]
posted by rongorongo on Mar 25, 2009 - 34 comments

Exercise and the Placebo Effect

Cleaning hotel rooms is a strenuous business. However, when Alia Crum and Ellen Langer talked to 84 maids, most were under the impression that they did not get enough exercise. Furthermore, when they were measured for tests such as BMI and blood pressure, their results were typical of couch potatoes. The researchers let half the group in on the knowledge that they were getting more than enough of a daily workout and kept the rest in the dark. After a month results showed the former group were healthier on every single one of the objective health measurements tested - despite claiming to have been doing no more exercise or to have changed their diet. The study raises the possibility that mindset alone can influence our metabolism. Christopher Shea in the New York Times and Ben Goldacre in The Guardian have articles discussing the original paper.
posted by rongorongo on Aug 25, 2008 - 48 comments

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