Monthly Archives: November 2016

What is Zinc?

You will have heard of this mineral before, whether it been on a bottle in the chemist, or on a forum telling you that it has super powers! But here we are going to break down for you what this micronutrient is and it’s daily functions.


Zinc has many functions in the body. These are:

– Bone formation

– Repair of muscle tissue

– Energy production

– Enzyme activity

– Immunity

– Wound healing

– Maintaining thyroid levels Read More

The origin of Interval Training

Dreaded interval training. This is a real marmite training system that people will love and hate for their own reasons. Many will love because they feel like they are getting more ‘bang for their buck’. And many will hate because it hurts too much! But where did this training system come from?


Interval Training was formalised in the 1930’sby German coach Woldemar Gerschler and involves 2 phases, one of high intensity and one of lower intensity or active recovery. Active recovery interval training is more commonly used within the fitness industry. There are a number of ways to vary the intensity of interval training: Read More

What is Magnesium?

Magnesium is a well-commercialised micronutrient that the body utilises. Magnesium has a strong influences bone formation, is a component of many enzymes within the body and is also important in the role of protein synthesis.


The RDA for magnesium is 310 to 320mg for women and 200 to 420mg for men. Magnesium is not normally considered when discussing nutritional considerations for women and men but a recent position statement by the America College of Sports Medicine has included magnesium as an important mineral when considering the impact it can have upon athletic performance. Read More

5 Tips for creating a fitness Black Friday sale!

You have heard of Black Friday! You have seen the crowds of people queuing up outside the stores. You have watched the videos of hoards of people creating a scene at a local supermarket. Black Friday is upon us. So as a business owner you may have been playing with the idea of creating a sale to jump on board the hype. And if done correctly, why shouldn’t you! Sales are there to be made!


Why should I have a sale? Well… why shouldn’t you? Are you scared of making profit? Especially with this time of the year been known throughout the fitness industry to be pretty quiet, a sale could actually help you throughout the cold months leading up to the January boom. Read More

What is Hypercholesterolaemia?

Hypercholesterolaemia is the presence of high levels of cholesterol in the blood, and is a form of hyperlipidaemia (elevated lipid levels in the blood).


Cholesterol is not water soluble, and is therefore transported in the blood attached to lipoproteins. Low density lipoprotein (LDL) are the major carriers of cholesterol. Elevated lipoprotein levels in the blood may be the result of diet, heredity, as well as the presence of other conditions, such as diabetes and obesity. If hypercholesterolaemia is hereditary (also known as familial hypercholesterolaemia), there is often a family history of early-onset atherosclerosis (thickening of the artery walls). Read More

What to expect from a new generation of personal trainers

You have decided to make the change and finally get fit. However you want guidance to ensure that your precious hours in the gym aren’t wasted on exercises performed incorrectly and without the correct intensity applied to them. So you look to hire a personal trainer to help you. But what should you be expecting form your personal trainer?


As a tutor who teaches the new age of personal trainers, I thought that I would share with you an insight into what it takes to become a fully qualified personal trainer. I will also highlight areas of interest that I feel will benefit yourself when making the right choice of personal trainer to suit you. Read More

Effects of training on cardiovascular tissue

When following a training programme your cardiovascular system is going to adapt to the required stimulus. Aerobic training has been shown to increase the size of the ventricles, which allows the heart to pump more blood to the body. Resistance training thickens the myocardial wall; thus when the muscles of the heart contract, more blood is pushed through the arteries compressed by the contractions.


The thickening (or hypertrophy) is reversible and non-pathological. If the stress on the body through resistance training is volume overload, the sarcomeres in the ventricle must lengthen rather than thicken, dilating the ventricle (expanding the heart) and thus allowing a greater volume of blood to the heart. This process of thickening of the ventricular wall is called eccentric hypertrophy. Read More

Guidelines for training with lower back pain

The lower back, or trunk, has a functional muscular anatomy, frequently referred to as the core that is important to performance. Likewise, nearby musculature can have a strong influence on proper lower back function. Thus, it is not uncommon to have hypomobility (not much movement) in one segment of the lower back.


For example, the hamstring, even though it may be considered a lower extremity muscle group, can cause excessive forward flexion of the lumbar region due to the posterior pull on the pelvis. This is something I myself suffered with at one time, which resulted in excruciating pain when running. After many trips to the physician, it ended up in constant stretching and mobility exercises to help lengthen the hamstring muscle to stop the pulling on the pelvis. Read More

What is a muscle spindle?

As the name implies, the muscle spindle is a spindle shaped sensory organ, meaning that it is thicker in the middle and tapered at either end. It is a stretch receptor that is widely dispersed throughout most skeletal muscles. Our muscle spindles work as a mechanism in order to help protect a muscle from over stretching, causing a stretch reflex to happen as and when necessary.  


Muscle spindles are specialised to sense changes in muscle length, particularly when the muscle changes length rapidly. Each muscle spindle is enclosed within a capsule and lies parallel to extrafusal fibers (ordinary skeletal muscle fibers). The muscle spindle contains specialised muscle fibers called intrafusal fibers. These intrafusal fibers have contractile proteins at each end ( actin and myosin) and a central region that is wrapped by sensory nerve endings. Because the intrafusal fibers of the muscle spindle lie parallel to the extrafusal muscle fibers, a stretching force applied to the muscle will stretch both the intrafusal and extrafusal muscle fibers. This will cause a sensory discharge from the muscle spindle that is carried towards the spinal cord. This then leads to a motor response, activation of the muscle that was initially stretched. This is known as a stretch reflex. Read More

What is a Scoliosis and how to treat clients

Scoliosis is often congenital, and the severity varies a lot between people. Most of the time training approaches for clients with scoliosis are based on preventing additional injuries. Scoliosis is a three-dimensional condition involving spinal changes in different planes, and it can consist of one curve in the coronal plane (C shape) or two curves in the coronal plane (S shape) and a possible torsional curve. Physical exercises, if correctly done, can prevent a worsening of the curve.


The aims of exercising clients with a scoliosis are as follows:

– Correction of the scoliotic posture

– Improved mobility of the whole spine

– Increased length of the musculature of the whole body Read More