Fitness News

FitNews November 2008


Dear Colleague,

In this issue of Fit News we review two very different new titles from Human Kinetics.

The Outdoor Athlete is intended for those hardy souls who continue to practice their outdoor pursuits year round and appear to welcome the challenge posed by Winter conditions.

I Golf, therefore I am Nuts…. is a tongue in cheek look at the world of golf. This altogether more sedate activity is fraught with equally challenging elements, most of which seem largely self inflicted if this hugely entertaining book is to be believed.

We also take our regular look at relevant issues concerned with fitness and would welcome contributions from you either in the form of articles or comments.

Dates your Diary is an opportunity for you to publicise your event, whether it is a conference, exhibition, landmark anniversary etc. Just send us details and we will do our best to include them not just in Fit News but also in our other online newsletters.

In FitNews this month…

  • Featured product
  • £350m skiing resort gets go-ahead from ministers
  • Scientists find secret of perfect golf swing
  • A look at the lighter side of Golf
  • Gobbling food ‘doubles the chances of being overweight’
  • Fitness industry professionals to have their say
  • Dates for your Diary 

  • Featured product
    Outdoor activities such as Mountain Biking, Skiing and Climbing burn calories and build fitness all year round and the onset of Winter only serves to heighten the challenge.Wilderness fitness trainer Doug Schurman, believes outdoor enthusiasts should maximize performance, enjoyment and safety by undertaking a specific training regime tailored to meet the differing demands of their favourite pursuits.

    He and his wife, Courtenay, have teamed up to produce The Outdoor Athlete in order to provide just such training advice across a wide range of sporting activities.

    According to Doug Schurman strength training, so often overlooked in favour of endurance training, provides the basis for the safe pursuit of challenging outdoor activities.

    “Strength training is crucial to success in outdoor pursuits because appropriate training gives you power, strength, force and the ability to withstand both the predictable and unforeseen challenges,”

    He maintains “It also helps the body adapt to overload to prevent injuries, provides muscle balance, improves performance and enhances body composition.”

    Strength training gets the outdoor enthusiast ready for any and all overloads that might happen during their activities.
    Starting into an outdoor activity too quickly without allowing enough time to adapt to overload, leaves athletes susceptible to injury from trying to absorb stresses that are too great.

    Strength training also significantly improves performance with both outdoor and everyday activity.
    For example a trail runner with fantastic cardio- respiratory endurance might feel well prepared to tackle a challenging backpacking trip. However until he gets his legs used to moving uphill over uneven terrain with added weight, he might struggle with even a relatively short hike.

    It also enhances body composition by increasing lean muscle mass and improving calorie-burning metabolic functions.
    Instead of relying on the time on the watch or number on the scale, athletes should pay attention to what their body is saying about energy levels, task performance and a change in clothing size or inches lost.

    The Outdoor Athlete offers workouts and programmes for 17 activities, including hiking, trail running, rock climbing, off-road biking and skiing.

    The book also includes nutritional considerations for each activity and information on environmental factors affecting participation and training.

    View an extract from the book

    PRICE: £10.99 (14.85 Euros)

    Read more about the book…

    £350m skiing resort gets go-ahead from ministers


    Following long awaited government final approval, the UK is to get the world’s first indoor winter sports resort. Work will now commence on the 350 acre, £350 million SnOasis development sited in a disused quarry near Ipswich, Suffolk.

    As well as housing Europe’s largest indoor ski slope, SnOasis has been specifically designed to become the country’s first centre of excellence for winter sports athletes.

    Fourteen different sports disciplines will be brought together and provided with training facilities to match, if not surpass, the best in the world.

    In addition to boasting the largest indoor ski slope in Europe, the UK’s only 400 metre ice skating track, cross country skiing circuit, dedicated rollerblading track and 100 metre long bobsleigh push start, it will offer a range of other activities designed to match the needs of the entire family.

    These will include a 100 metre long nursery slope, luge run, 16 metre high ice climbing wall, bobsleigh fun ride, leisure ice rink, swimming pool, fitness gym, rock climbing wall, rowing, windsurfing, sailing, canoeing, fishing and a host of other fun activities in the dedicated entertainment dome.

    Locally, a package of benefits costing £29 million will be put in place covering a wide range of projects including a new main line Railway Station linking to London Liverpool Street, a 50 acre ecological mitigation area, cycle tracks, the planting of 130,000 trees, plus an array of skills and training initiatives.

    By being deemed a ‘Super Site’ by the construction industry means this aspect alone will make it of international importance.

    Yet, despite the massive size of the project, it will still manage to generate 75% of its energy from low carbon and renewable technologies which puts it at the forefront of construction development – a fact which no doubt will be closely monitored by governments and developers around the world.

    The project is due for completion in 2011 when the new facility is expected to attract up to 650,000 visitors a year and create 3,500 jobs.

    Scientists find secret of perfect golf swing

    Tiger Woods

    Scientists believe they may have finally found the answer to the perfect golf swing. The key apparently is knowing at exactly what stage of the swing you should exert the maximum force. Use too much strength too early or too late and the aspiring golfer will see their handicap stubbornly linger in double figures. .

    Tiger Woods, who has won 87 tournaments in his 12- year career, is viewed by many commentators as the golfer with the most perfect swing. Using a complex mathematical equation, Professor Robin Sharp from the Department of Mechanical, Medical and Aerospace Engineering at the University of Surrey, has calculated which parts of the upper body should be used at what stage.

    Breaking with conventional thinking, his study suggests that the wrists are not as important as the way a golfer uses their arms. His research also concludes that height is not as advantageous as previously thought, with short people able to hit a ball almost as far as their taller competitors if they use the right technique.

    Previous studies have either suggested that maximum power should be used from the start of the backswing, or that a golfer builds up the power throughout the swing, using full force by the time they strike the ball. This latest study, however, published in the Proceedings of the Royal Society, suggests increasing the power of rotation – known as the torque – to a maximum shortly after starting the swing and maintaining this force until hitting the ball.

    Professor Sharp said: “Generating too much arm speed too soon causes an early release, with the club-head reaching its maximum speed before it arrives at the ball. “The optimal strategy consists of hitting first with the shoulders while holding back with arms and wrists and after some delay, hitting through with the arms. “At release, the timing of which depends on the combination of shoulder and arm actions employed, the wrists should hit through. “In the expert swings studied, control of the arms and not the wrists appears to be the priority.” Knowing exactly how long that “delay” should last is the crucial factor.

    Professor Sharp said under the model, being tall was not a huge advantage. “Dimensional reasoning shows that dramatic differences in performance between large and small players should not be expected on the basis of size alone,” he said. “A 21 per cent bigger player can be expected to have just a 10 per cent advantage in club-head speed.”

    Source: The Daily Telegraph

    Read the full article

    A look at the lighter side of Golf

    Fat of the land

    Finally, a book that delves into the warped and obsessive mind of today’s golfer. Whether your idea of golf is an occasional round with fellow duffers at the local municipal course or frequent forays to far- flung places in search of the perfect round, you’ll identify with this book like no other.

    Popular golf humorist George Fuller will have you laughing out loud as he makes light of the idiosyncrasies of otherwise sane people who are addicted to this holy, wholly frustrating game.

    Golfers of all ages and abilities can relate to the familiar situations described in the book and if they haven’t yet experienced all of them personally, they will do eventually.

    If your eyes light up every time you read about a new driver or putter, you receive Christmas cards from greenkeepers, you possess a collection of sweaters that would make Val Doonican blush or your children address you as ‘who are you’ then I Golf, Therefore I Am-Nuts! is for you.
    Read an excerpt

    “Congratulations! Every golfer should have this book and have a good old laugh! I love the style and laughed out loud on a flight as I was reading it. Everyone thought I was a lunatic! I love it!” Malcolm McDowell Actor and golf fanatic

    PRICE: £8.99 (12.15 Euros)

    Read more about the book

    Gobbling food ‘doubles the chances of being overweight’


    As with many old wives tales it seems that that there is more than a grain of truth in the advice to chew each mouthful of food thirty times before swallowing. According to new research, eating quickly and until you feel full triples the likelihood of suffering weight problems.

    Nutritionists warn that eating meals too rapidly can fool the body into consuming more calories than it needs, because of the time it takes for feelings of fullness to travel from the stomach to the brain. Busy lifestyles and the growing trend to eat on the move or while concentrating on other things, such as television programmes, have been blamed for the growing obesity crisis.

    More than one quarter of British adults are now overweight or obese and that figure is predicted to grow dramatically over coming decades. Just under half of men, 46 per cent, and more than one third of women, 36 per cent, who took part in the study admitted that they ate meals quickly. The research also found that 51 per cent of men and 58 per cent of women said that they ate until they were full. Both factors independently raised the risk of becoming overweight to around twice that of people who ate slowly and finished before they felt full. Combined, they tripled the likelihood of becoming overweight. .

    The study, carried out by the University of Osaka, in Japan, and published on, the website of the British Medical Journal, looked at more than 3,000 Japanese men and women, aged between 30 and 69, over the course of three years. Volunteers were asked to fill in a detailed questionnaire about their eating habits. Professor Hiroyasu Iso, who led the team which carried out the study, said that the combination of eating until full and eating quickly appeared to have a “supra-additive” effect on the chances of becoming overweight.

    Source: Daily Telegraph

    Read the full article

    Fitness industry professionals to have their say

    Industry professionals at all levels are called upon to have their say in a major consultation being commissioned by Skills Active in partnership with the Register of Exercise Professionals and the Fitness Industry Association..

    During 2008 the structures which underpin education and development in exercise and fitness have been under review. This has involved extensive industry research with employers and those who work in the sector.

    This review will impact on every part of the fitness industry from the content of qualifications to the industry career structure and employment practice.

    The proposals up for comment are relevant to every part of the fitness industry from the content of qualifications to the industry career structure and employment practice.

    The Review stage has now been completed and has resulted in a series of proposals industry professionals are now being given their chance to comment on them.
    These proposals cover three main areas:

    • Future Structure of the Register of Exercise Professionals
    • Qualifications in Health and Fitness
    • Continuing Professional Development

    This is you opportunity to make your views known and help shape the future of professional fitness in the UK
    You can comment on as many parts of this consultation as you wish

    The deadline for submission is Friday 28 November 2008.

    Find out more

    Dates for your Diary

    BHFNC 8th Annual Conference
    Opening Doors to an Active Life: How to engage inactive communities19th November, 2008 East Midlands Conference Centre, Nottingham

    For more information

    International Coaching Conference
    Expert coaches – Expert Systems 18th – 20th November Twickenham Stadium, London

    Aimed at coaches working at the highest level in sport and system builders, working within components of the coaching system. A mixture of keynote speakers and workshops, including the formation of working groups, will make up the programme with plenty of opportunities to network with international colleagues and delegates from around the UK to share best practice and inform latest thinking.

    If you are attending the Conference, don’t forget to visit the Human Kinetics stand

    Further Information

    The NWHPAF’s Annual conference for 2008
    This year’s conference will focus on inspirational ideas, programmes, networks and partnerships and aims to stimulate information sharing, networking and learning.

    Thursday 27th November 2008 The Contemporary Urban Centre (CUC), Novas Scarman Building, 41 – 51 Greenland Street, Liverpool, L1 0BS

    For more information go to

    tenniscoachUK Annual Conference
    24th – 25th November Bisham Abbey National Sports Centre, Buckinghamshire,

    Limited availability remains for this event which features top class speakers such as Brett Hobden, Steve Green, Mike Walker and Mark Cox.
    Coaches can attend both days as resident or non- resident and can also choose to attend just one of the two days.

    Further Information

    The Annual Newsletter of the British Heart Foundation
    This informative newsletter is now available for download

    Get the Newsletter

    If you have a conference, seminar or event that you feel might be of interest to other FitNews readers please let us know and we’ll try and include details.

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