If there exists a Fountain of Youth, exercise is it. The evidence, of course, is vast, with a multitude of studies highlighting the remarkable, life-enhancing benefits of staying fit. Whether your goal is to live to be 100, run a marathon, reduce your waistline, or just get the most from daily life, functional fitness is the foundation for active and dynamic living and the best quality of life you can have.
The Great Courses: Physiology and Fitness - Course No. 1960 (Dean Hodgkin)
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Genre: eLearning / Education lectures: Science, Physiology
And the good news: Even a small amount of regular exercise can make a substantial difference. In fact, you can extend your life, increase your energy, and reduce your chances of acquiring a long list of medical conditions by getting as little as 15 minutes of exercise a day.
But even with knowledge of the benefits of staying fit and a desire to enjoy them, the world of fitness is not easy to navigate. In this era of multiple fitness fads, media-promoted health "gurus,"and an avalanche of exercise products and approaches, reaching your fitness goals can be challenging.
How do you find the right fitness program for yourself-one that is both scientifically sound and also appropriate for your own needs and goals?
If you already exercise but you're not reaching your fitness goals, how do you get the best long-term results from your fitness work?
Moreover, how do you succeed in staying motivated, setting and meeting goals, and fitting exercise into an already busy schedule?
In Physiology and Fitness, international fitness expert Dean Hodgkin delivers inspiring and effective answers to these questions and more, showing you a new, scientifically based way to reach your own optimum fitness and to keep it for life. Physiology and Fitness presents a groundbreaking approach to fitness education that brings together scientific knowledge with results-driven practice in a wholly integrated system, allowing you to enjoy the rich vitality and health that prime fitness offers-whatever your age or current fitness level.
Experience the Extraordinary Rewards of Optimum Fitness
In 24 visually detailed lectures that include interactive demonstrations, as well as twelve 30-minute home-workout videos, Hodgkin takes you on a fascinating, eye-opening tour of your anatomy and physiology, showing you how your body functions and maintains itself and how all of its processes respond to exercise.
In Physiology and Fitness, you'll learn in detail what happens inside your body when you work out and how to use that knowledge to feel your physical best and reach results such as
high and consistent energy for work, home life, and recreation;
a well-toned and flexible body;
a healthy body weight;
improved psychological well-being;
reduced stress and minimization of its physical effects;
improved physical agility, coordination, and balance;
reduced risk of heart disease, high blood pressure, osteoporosis, low back pain, and numerous other conditions; and
extension of the prime of your life and youthful activity.
This course provides a comprehensive fitness resource, whether you're new to exercise, you work out regularly, or you're an advanced fitness enthusiast.
Master the Science behind Exercise
In Physiology and Fitness, you'll investigate the fundamental health-related components of fitness, comprising cardiovascular capability, muscular strength and endurance, flexibility, and body composition. Using vivid diagrams and animations, Hodgkin leads you on a compelling discovery of the science involved, including these vital subjects:
The cardiovascular system: Study the miraculous mechanism of your heart and vascular network, how and why exercise strengthens your heart, and the role of cardio work in all phases of fitness training.
The muscular system: Discover the complex system of your muscles (the matrix of all physical movement), their individual functions, and how resistance training works to strengthen and tone your body.
Spinal engineering: Learn about the anatomy of your spine, spinal motion, and the important principles of "core strength,"with a focus on ways to target the spine-related muscles in exercises that promote back health.
The science of stretching: Learn about the vital role of stretching and flexibility in long-term health and longevity, and practice three types of stretching techniques for improving your range of motion, posture, and ability to relax.
The authentic laws of weight loss: By grasping the physiology of calorie burning, the laws of cardio and resistance training, and the principles of weight loss and maintenance, you'll be better prepared to realistically achieve your optimal body composition.
Countering the aging process: Learn astonishing facts about aging, how numerous conditions we associate with getting older are actually the result of inactivity, and how exercise dramatically slows and can even reverse the effects of aging.
Workouts for Maximum Results
Following the 24 core lectures, the final section of the course presents 12 workout videos, each one finely honed to maximize your training time as you put your knowledge into practice. Featuring female and male models who are learning these routines for the first time, these 12 videos emphasize workouts that involve equipment-and those you can perform without it. In addition, the equipment used in these exercises is probably equipment you already have lying around, is inexpensive and easy to find, or (in most cases) can be improvised. Workouts include these types:
Body weight workout: Using only the weight of your body against gravity, you can do this sequence anywhere, anytime, working all areas of your body in 13 highly efficient exercises for functional fitness.
Dumbbell workout: A great approach for toning your physique, this weight training workout uses a range of dumbbell exercises that target alternating muscle groups in your arms, shoulders, legs, chest, and abdominal areas.
Step interval workout: With a simple step board platform, this workout combines cardio and strength training in a comprehensive range of exercises to burn calories, improve balance, and tone your body.
Balance board workout: This particular workout is highly effective for developing and improving your agility, balance, and core strength-and also involves 20% more muscle fibers than you'd use during a flat-surface workout.
A Thorough and Comprehensive Body of Knowledge
Highlighting his presentation with cutting-edge research from many sources, your instructor incorporates not only hands-on demonstrations of key points but video commentary from leading health experts, including Professor Steven Novella on the myths of fitness and aging, Professor Robert Sapolsky on stress reduction and exercise, and Professor Jason Satterfield on the link between exercise and a healthy mind.
A provocative and engrossing speaker, Hodgkin packs his lectures with surprising and enlightening information about fitness and the body, including these diverse topics:
The vital effects of exercise on your respiration, joints, and bones
Practical and effective ways to overcome barriers to exercise
How to stay active in the workplace, and how to integrate exercise into numerous daily activities
Proper and safe ways to exercise and to protect yourself from injury
How fitness training positively affects mood, well-being, and self-esteem
The remarkable benefits of balance training, water exercise, and exercise during pregnancy
How inactivity and sedentary living pose very real risks to your health
The astounding benefits of walking, for both overall health and weight loss
An Unprecedented Opportunity in Fitness Training
No other fitness program you will find offers this integrated body of materials and flexibility as a learning system. You can use the filmed workouts directly,
each one carefully constructed to make the most effective use of your exercise time. Or you can use the course material, demonstrations, and accompanying video glossary to build on the workouts, shaping your own fitness program to your personal preferences and modifying it over time as your needs change. With nearly two hours of DVD extra features such as
a comprehensive video glossary,
video FAQs, and a 3-D model highlighting the body's major muscle groups
Physiology and Fitness is a vibrant and engaging way, one you won't find anywhere else, to learn about health and fitness.
In this course, Hodgkin delivers an unmistakable message: Your ability to enjoy the best of life, day by day, year by year, is intimately related to your physical resources and the care of your body. Physiology and Fitness offers you nothing less than the chance to change the course of your own health and vitality-to build a strong, energized, and vital body, and to know the pleasure and freedom of optimum fitness for life.
Available Exclusively on Video
Because of the highly visual nature of the subject matter, this course is available only on video. It features interactive demonstrations, twelve 30-minute workout videos, a comprehensive video glossary, video FAQs, hundreds of images, graphics, and animations, and 3-D models highlighting the body's muscular, skeletal, and circulatory systems to enhance your learning and effective practice.
Course Lecture Titles:
1 Components of Fitness
Begin by considering the life-enhancing value of fitness and the remarkable statistics showing its wide range of benefits for your physical and mental health. In approaching the specifics of exercise, you'll investigate the health-related components of fitness, including cardiovascular health, muscular endurance and strength, flexibility, and body composition.
2 How Fit Are You?
Measuring the core elements of your own fitness is an important step in designing and managing an exercise program. Here, learn about the principal methods of fitness testing and how to set benchmarks to monitor your own progress. Guided by filmed demonstrations, perform your own at-home tests covering the areas of fitness you learned about in the first lecture.
3 Overcome the Barriers to Exercise
This lecture looks in depth at potential obstacles encountered in exercise. Examine the logistical and psychological challenges in designing a fitness program and how to overcome them. Explore the elements of motivation and effective approaches to setting fitness goals. Also, learn some of the many ways you can integrate exercise into your daily routine.
4 Your Heart in Action
Here, investigate the fabulous mechanism of your own heart, the system of blood flow through the body, and exactly why the heart becomes stronger through exercise. Learn about the primary cardiovascular workouts-including continuous training, interval training, and cross training-and their effects on your quality of life.
5 The Fitness of Breathing
In exploring the respiratory system, study the processes of breathing and lung function and the ways in which exercise benefits all maladies of the lungs. Then practice a group of breathing exercises from different traditions, noting how they improve cardiac function, decrease stress, and aid both physical and mental health.
6 You Can Reduce Stress
Exercise offers one of the most effective defenses against stress. First, look at the root causes of stress, its debilitating symptoms, and specific self-help tactics to counter it, including relaxation techniques, meditation, and even laughing. Conclude with a series of targeted physical exercises to release stress from all areas of the body.
7 Fitness and Pregnancy
Contrary to common myths, intelligent exercise provides numerous benefits during pregnancy. Study how exercise affects the changes taking place in a pregnant woman's body. See how the core principles of exercise apply during pregnancy and learn specific recommendations for prenatal exercise and for returning to normal fitness afterward.
8 Refuel, Recover, and Reenergize
Proper physical recovery, both after exercise and between workouts, is essential to achieving fitness goals. Learn about the physiology of fatigue and rest and the fundamentals of refueling, including carbohydrate, protein, and fluid intake. Then, study physical recovery after exercise, highlighting water therapy, stretching, myofascial release, and self-massage techniques.
9 Thinking-The Brain-Body Connection
This lecture explores the significant effects of physical activity on brain function and psychological health. Investigate the capacity of exercise to build your self-esteem, elevate your mood, and improve your cognitive function and sleep habits. Also, explore the use of mental imagery to boost your physical performance and deepen your well-being.
10 Healthy Joints for Life
Now discover the body's incredible system of joints and the role of the joints in human mobility. Study the structure and function of all the major joints and why exercise is crucial for their health and longevity. Consider the various forms of joint problems and specific ways to overcome them.
11 Protecting Yourself from Injury
Injury in exercise can be minimized or avoided completely with a clear knowledge of its potential. Begin by tracking how injuries heal, then review common activity-related injuries and their remedies. After that, study the psychological factors in injury, approaches to pain management, and how to calibrate your fitness program to avoid injury.
12 The Amazing Benefits of Balance
This lecture explores balance training as a prime preventive tool for health. Investigate the processes involved in balance and the role of balance in all physical activity. Practice a spectrum of exercises to improve your posture, coordination, reaction speed, strength, and flexibility. Also, learn about advanced techniques for improving your sports performance.
13 Fueling Fitness
Every biological process requires energy. Understanding energy production, therefore, gives you far-reaching insight into exercise. Study the body's three basic fuels (carbohydrates, protein, and fat), the three systems of energy production in the body, and, in practice, how to train these energy systems to get the fitness results you're after.
14 Why Everyone Should Exercise in Water
For many people of all fitness levels, the pool is becoming the new gym. Here, immerse yourself in the numerous benefits of water-based workouts, delving into fluid dynamics as they affect exercise. Study a range of tips for your pool workout and learn about variations such as water-based yoga, Pilates, and Tai Chi.
15 The Secret Life of Muscles
Physical strength and endurance-as well as movement itself-rest on the body's complex system of muscles. Study the basics of muscle construction and action and the muscular movements in all the key joints. Learn in detail about resistance training and how to construct dynamic workouts around your own fitness goals.
16 Strong to the Bone
Discover the living structure of the skeleton, the surprising construction and variety of the bones, and how bone health plays a critical role in the quality of your later life. Then, see how resistance training increases bone density, and review the many training options that can delay or even reverse bone deterioration and osteoporosis.
17 Getting Your Back on Track
The engineering marvel of the spine provides support for your entire body. Study the anatomy of the spine, spinal motion, and the concept of "core strength"-the action of the spine-related muscles working together. In filmed demonstrations, target the core muscles in exercise, laying the foundation for a healthy back for life.
18 21st-Century Yoga
Drawing on a 3,000-year-old tradition, consider the many proven health benefits of "fitness yoga," which aims to enhance muscular balance and strength, develop flexibility, and improve skeletal posture and lung capacity. In this lecture, demystify the complexities of yoga. Here, you'll practice a sequence of three basic poses and discover how to link them as a routine.
19 Walk Your Way to Fitness
This lecture highlights the remarkable and underappreciated rewards of walking. Track the research documenting the numerous health parameters affected by walking, including its cardiovascular, weight loss, and disease-reduction benefits. Learn the physiology of walking motion, key principles for walking workouts, and three walking techniques you can use to improve your health and fitness.
20 The Amazing Benefits of Stretching
As one of the core health-related components of fitness, flexibility plays a fundamental role in your quality of life and longevity. Using filmed demonstrations, learn three kinds of stretching techniques (as well as guidelines for your own stretching program) to enhance your range of motion and physical relaxation, reduce risk of injury, and improve posture.
21 Stay Active-Defy the Aging Process
Explore the nature of aging in all of the body's systems and the extraordinary capacity of exercise to slow and even reverse the biological clock. Target relevant exercises for cardio fitness, strength/endurance, flexibility, balance, and motor skills. Also, establish an exercise blueprint for each decade of your life.
22 Sitting Disease
As the flip side of physical activity, prolonged sitting poses real hazards for your health. Study the physiological effects of sedentary living and the risks and loss of functionality that result. Learn a four-prong system to improve your future health by introducing more activity at work, at home, and while flying and driving.
23 Exercise for Weight Loss
Beyond aesthetic matters, weight management is a fundamental issue for health and longevity. This lecture explores exercise as a dynamic tool for weight loss, showing you how and why it works. Learn about exercise programs and approaches for weight-loss training and the factors involved in successfully maintaining your new weight.
24 Mobilizers and Stabilizers-Managing Your Abs
The perfectly flat stomach remains the most popular aesthetic indictor of fitness. In understanding this key area, uncover the structure of the "mobilizer" and "stabilizer" muscles and their unique functions. Practice a series of moving and isometric exercises to tone them, serving both to look your best and build a strong core.
25 Body Weight Workout
This first workout uses only the weight of your body against gravity, providing a whole body workout you can do anywhere, with no cost and no special equipment. Emphasizing everyday movements for functional fitness, this lecture shows you 13 core floor and standing exercises that target all areas of the body.
26 Medicine Ball Workout
Prized by athletes since ancient times, the medicine ball is an ideal exercise tool to develop power for personal fitness and sports performance. Here, perform a complete top-to-toe workout with the ball, targeting flexion, extension, rotation movements, and muscle groups including your shoulder girdle, triceps, abdominals, and core muscles.
27 Step and Interval Workout
Using a simple step platform, this workout combines cardio and strength exercises that work your upper and lower body. Alternating one minute of cardio and one minute of strength work (with 30 seconds of rest in between), perform a comprehensive range of exercises to burn calories, improve balance, and tone your body.
28 Dumbbell Workout
Beyond its many remarkable health benefits, resistance training is the number one choice for changing or "sculpting" your physique. Using the principle of your muscles' adaptation to work against resistance, practice a series of eight dumbbell exercises, targeting alternating muscle groups in your arms, shoulders, legs, chest, and abdominal areas.
29 Combat Workout
Using no equipment, this workout employs intense cardio combat movements and develops the skill-related elements of agility, balance, and coordination. Learn a series of defensive blocks as well as dynamic punches and powerful kicks, linking them together in sequences to burn calories and reshape your whole body.
30 Fitness Ball Workout
Challenging you to work against an unstable surface, this large, inflatable ball is a versatile tool for achieving whole-body strength and alignment. Practice a range of exercises in different positions with the ball, working muscle groups including the gluteals, hamstrings, quadriceps, inner thighs, back muscles, and rotator cuffs.
31 Balance Board Workout
Exercising with a balance board challenges your body's joint receptors that control movement and balance, as well as recruits 20% more muscle fibers than a flat-surface workout. Learn 13 key exercises using the board, in a total-body workout for toning, balance, and core strength.
32 Kettlebell Workout
First used by the Russian military in the 18th century, the kettlebell allows for swinging movements and working with momentum, stimulating a different muscular response from other resistance tools. Practice an eight-exercise workout, using the kettlebell to build your cardio fitness, endurance, core strength, posture, and coordination.
33 Plyometrics Workout
Also known as "jump training," plyometrics uses the principle of increasing muscular power by stretching muscles before contracting them. In this time-efficient, intensive workout, focus on six jump-based exercises, dynamically working both your legs and upper torso, burning calories and toning all of the major muscles in your body.
34 Resistance Band Workout
The resistance band, an elastic tube with handles on either end, is an ingenious exercise tool, allowing you to do a full muscular strength workout at home or while traveling. Using the band's resistance in various positions, work a range of muscle groups in your arms, chest, back, shoulders, and legs.
35 Training Bar Workout
Weighted and roughly three feet long, the training bar is a convenient home-use tool for building muscular strength and endurance. Practice a spectrum of exercises that will work and tone numerous muscle groups, develop your arms and legs, and integrate strength in your upper and lower body.
36 Stretching Routine
This concluding workout is designed as both a daily flexibility routine and as a sequence you can use at the end of any of the other workouts. After reviewing the core principles of flexibility training, you'll practice a pleasurable and invigorating group of static stretches that will release all the areas of your body.
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