MASTER CLASS: This medicine ball warmup will challenge you, and your trendy tech

The phrase “get off my lawn” is associated with an aging, out-of-touch man who longs for simpler times. Life has passed him by, and he goes about his daily routine with a general disdain for what society has become.

As much as I try to suppress this character within myself, it surfaces from time to time. This week, I’m feeling old when discussing the latest fitness trends.

The American College of Sports Medicine has listed wearable technology as the top trend for 2023 The college determines the designation through a global electronic survey sent to fitness professionals, experts and educators Now in its 17th year, ACSM’s Health & Fitness Trends was published a few days ago in the January/February issue of the ACSM Health & Fitness Journal.

This survey is the foremost authority on what’s popular in fitness today Other top-trending contenders included strength training with free weights, bodyweight training and programming for older adults. But wearable technology took the top spot for a third time, repeating its rankings from 2019 and 2020.

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This is where I have to suppress my inner Get Off My Lawn personality, as I’ve never found wearable technology particularly useful for achieving my own fitness goals. But billions of people do.

I can understand why capturing workout data is so appealing to them. Wearable technology keeps score, which is important for tracking universally accepted fitness principles such as progressive overload. Data from wearable devices is typically synced directly to a mobile app, allowing users to monitor historical progress and in-workout statistics.

And from an exercise adherence perspective, it’s important to measure performance while setting small, achievable goals along the way.

I have recommended wearable devices to clients. Remember when some data-driven exercisers took little notebooks to the gym? They will write down every set, every weight lifted and every minute of cardio performed. Data was important and I often showed them how wearable technology worked.

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At minimum, I saved them hundreds of dollars in notebooks and ink.

As far as wearable technology has come in the past decade, logging strength-training exercises is still really difficult. Manual work involved selecting an exercise, then inputting sets, reps and weights. I can’t imagine that changing anytime soon; But wearables can be very accurate at calculating overall energy expenditure, distance covered, steps taken and other key metrics.

This week’s exercise will challenge wearable technology algorithms as there are no steps and the body only moves from the waist up. Medicine ball good mornings are a great way to warm up the lower back and core in preparation for a strength-training routine.

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1. Select a medium-weight medicine ball and fully extend it from the chest with both hands and arms.

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2. Bend at the waist keeping the back flat.

3. The ball should almost touch the floor, but not quite.

4. Stand up slowly with your arms straight.

5. Slowly lower the torso until the ball touches the floor again.

Continue this pattern for two sets of eight repetitions.

Medicine Ball Good Morning Logging into an activity tracking device might require a little work, but I’m ready to try this year.

As we look forward to 2023, let’s commit to trying new things, embracing change, and even welcoming all the neighborhood kids with a “please use my lawn.”

Matt Parrott, director of business development and population health solutions for Quest Diagnostics, started this column on January 6, 2003, in Little Rock. He holds a doctorate in education (sports studies), a master’s in kinesiology and is certified by the American College of Sports Medicine.

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