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Cheerleading is a Sport and Just as Much a Workout as Football

cheerleading

The impending autumn means one thing and one thing only for many people – the kickoff of football season. Millions will sit on bleachers and couches to watch the football players play their sport, cheering on their athleticism and strength.

But what about the dedicated athletes on the sidelines? Few people recognize it, and it’s been a point of contention for years, but the cheerleaders supporting the team are working just as hard as the players on the field.

“Football has historically been viewed as a very ‘manly sport,’” remarked our guest editor Dempsey Marks, a fitness expert and yoga trainer who founded DepmseyFit.com, about what separates football and cheerleading in people’s minds. “The sport itself is associated with toughness, pain, and even violence. And primarily football is played by men. [The sport] glorifies aggressive behavior, which society associates with men and masculinity.”

“Cheerleading has evolved from simple movements and cheers to a highly athletic undertaking, which requires strength, coordination, agility, and skill,” she added.
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4 Things Bob Greene Does Before Every Outdoor Summer Workout

summer run

By Bob Greene for TheBestLife.com

Planning on taking your workout outdoors this summer? Great idea! I’ve always been a big fan of exercising outdoors. The changing scenery can be stimulating, the breezes are refreshing and being out in nature is mood boosting.

But before you head outside, make sure to take the proper precautions so you don’t get burned. Here are four things I do before every outdoor workout:

Plan ahead. If I know it’s going to be a particularly hot or humid day, I plan my workouts for early morning or early evening. That way, I can avoid being outside during the warmest part of the day—between 10 am and 4 pm. If you can only exercise during these times you have a few options:

  • Do something in the shade, like a hike or bike ride on a tree-lined route.


Hot Fitness Trends for Summer 2014: 6 Props Your Workout is Missing

You know that feeling when you’re caught between wanting to do your regular thing and the desire to try something new? If so, Shape Magazine’s 15 upcoming fitness trends are perfect for you. Most of these trends take something we know and love and combine it with something a little different. For example, the fitness class “Groove” has all the elements of a dance-based workout, but instead of doing the same intricate movements as everyone else, you’re invited to move however the music makes you.

This fitness with a twist trend carries over to fitness props too. A lot of classes are using ho-hum props in new ways or using brand new props to fill a void. Here are 5 we can’t wait to try:

ugi ball The Ugi Ball
A relative newcomer to the fitness world, the Ugi ball is used as a kind of blend between a medicine ball and a physio ball, and is a great tool for a full-body workout. It’s used as part of a 30-minute routine combining strength, cardio, and core training.


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Wacky and Wild Exercise Equipment that Has Come and (Luckily) Gone

There are good ideas in fitness—things like interval training and kettlebells—and then there are… interesting ideas. Gadgets, fitness styles, and overall trends that seem a little strange from the start. Maybe the advertising was bad, maybe the spokesperson didn’t do a great job conveying the goal of the product, maybe the idea just seemed totally bogus. Yet, somehow these wacky trends caught on, at least for a while.

Here’s a look back at a few silly trends that have come and gone in past years and decades. (Aka, more reasons to be glad straightforward workouts like indoor cycling and cross fit are popular today!)

shake

The Shake Weight
More than two million Shake Weights were sold its first year on the market, though I will never understand the appeal of it. It looks like a spoof on exercise equipment, rather than a good idea. (No wonder “Saturday Night Live” had so much fun covering it!) Hilarious.


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Real 2014 Olympians Share their Cross-Training Workouts

We’re not just talking Olympic-style lifting…we’re talking what real Olympians actually do for their cross-training workouts. When not on the ice or hitting the slopes, these fierce females stay in top shape with some of their favorite activities like dance, yoga, and biking.

We also learned some fun facts about each athlete: Can you guess who’s fluent in German and which lady loves her Xbox?

 

Ashley Wagner - Women’s Figure Skating

Ashley stays graceful, strong, and lean with her routine of dance and yoga.

2014 Winter Olympic Games - Season 2014

Cross Training:  Dance, yoga, hiking and swimming in both the pool and ocean

Fun Fact:  She’s fluent in German. Guten tag!


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