Personal Trainer in Kuala Lumpur (KL), Cyberjaya, Putrajaya, PJ, KLCC, TTDI, Damansara

28 June 2010

I am Now a Certified Sports Massuer

Remember that I was saying I was up for something that I've not done before last month? and I will be out of Malaysia every weekend. Well, that something that I've not done, is done for as I received an email last week from the Singapore Sports Council informing me that I've successfully passed my Sports Massage course. And as mentioned on the title, I'm now a Certified Sports Masseur.


The 6 weekend course was a great one as I learned so much new things from the trainer of the course who is a Sports Rehabilitation Specialist with the Singapore Sports Council, assisted by one Senior Physiotherapist and two senior sports masseur. And of course, a short exposure to the Singapore fitness industry shows how much our country are actually lacking behind in terms of promoting fitness and healthy lifestyle by our government.

Singapore Sports Council Sports Massage Course Batch of May 2010

Out of the 22 students, only 6 of them including me are people working in the fitness industry (PT, GFI and Sports Trainer of a soccer team), 1 national Singapore athlete and the rest are fitness enthusiast who wants to learn something new that are not related to their profession at all. Talk about diversity? Hmm ...

We were also given task to massage Singapore national athletes as part of our training. I was given one Netball player from the national junior team, and one Weightlifter who is training for the next Commonwealth game. Feedback from them? "It's good and relaxing" said the Netballer. While the weightlifter actually added me on Facebook and thanked me for loosening his tight back and managed to improve on his Snatch training the next day. I really hope they are honest with me :-)

Massage therapy anyone?

25 June 2010

My Thoughts on The Biggest Loser Reality Show - Updated

** Update on 25/6/2010 **
Apparently what we saw as reality show on television wasn't exactly reality. See what was reported by CBSNewsOnline at Youtube on 18th June 2010.



** Original post on 19 April 2010 **
I saw on the official Biggest Loser Asia facebook group that audition for season 2 is coming soon. To be honest, I did have the thought of asking some of my obese friends to join the audition back in the debut season although I've personally not watched more than 10 episodes of Biggest Loser USA. And yes, I did NOT watch a single episode of Biggest Loser Asia, in fact I can't even remember what was their airing time and day on Astro. I only saw the the winner's photo as people were talking about him over the internet. And I personally think that he looked sick.

Before and After - Biggest Loser Asia Season 1 winner

The reason is simple. I'm disgusted with what was and still being portrayed on television about losing weight. It gives a wrong impression of what we as fitness professionals do for our clients. And reality show isn't exactly reality, at all !

In reality, we do not train up to 4-5 hours per day, what more for people who before being in the show, were sedentary. What we see on television is not even half of what actually happened in the training center. If we were looking at American College of Sports Medicine's guidelines of losing weight safely, It is not safe to be losing 10-25 pounds per week. I would say what we see on television is more of a one time quick fix plan to lose weight rather than adapting a healthy lifestyle.

It's also pretty outdated way in my opinion to just track their weight lost progress. The overall of body composition should have been looked into rather than just weight. You see, our body weight are made up of our body organs, bones, muscles and fat mass. In general health and fitness, we usually look into muscle mass and fat mass for measurement purpose. When you start exercising, don't get panic if you see that your weight never drop on the scale, or perhaps it might even increase. Reason is simple, muscle mass are heavier than fat mass. You lose the fat, and put on muscles, which means there might be no changes on the scale or even heavier. Look at the mirror and see changes in your own body instead. Better still if you can buy the bio-electrical impedance machine (not the most accurate, but it's fine for general guidelines and tracking) and check on your body composition.

But again, all those mentioned above is only based on my judgment from watching less than 10 episodes of Biggest Loser USA. None the less, the show serves as a good motivational tool for people, even for a trainer like myself - when I see Bob Harper and Jillian Michael being so fit in the show.

Bob Harper and Jillian Michael - Trainers of Biggest Loser USA.

23 June 2010

Questions in regards to Squat - Updated !

** Update on 23/6/2010 **
I came across this article (8 Stupid Myths about Squatting) by world renowned strength coach, Charles Poliquin. Look what he has to say about Squats are bad for knees on Myths #2 .

Myth #2: Squats are bad for the knees. Not only are squats not bad for the knees, every legitimate research study on this subject has shown that squats improve knee stability and therefore help reduce the risk of injuries. The National Strength and Conditioning Association has published an excellent position paper on this subject with an extensive literature review, and data from the Canadian National Alpine Ski Team suggests that regular squatting reduces not only the rate of injuries but also the time it takes to recuperate from injuries that do occur.

When I was hired to work with the Canadian National Women’s Volleyball Team, I found all of them suffered from varying degrees of an overuse injury called patellar tendinitis, or jumper’s knee. I believed the problem was partially caused by a structural imbalance in the lower quadriceps muscle called the vastus medialis oblique (the teardrop-shaped muscle that inserts at the knee). To correct it, I had these athletes perform Petersen step-ups and then gradually progress into full squats. Only one athlete still had jumper’s knee after less than three months of proper training.

Providing you don’t relax or bounce in the bottom position of the squat, you’ve got nothing to worry about. When you relax, the knee joint opens up slightly, exposing the connective tissue to stress levels higher than their tensile strength. Does that mean you should never pause in the bottom position? No. It simply means that if you pause in the bottom position, you must keep the muscles under tension, holding the static (isometric) contraction. In other words, don’t relax at the bottom of the squat and allow your connective tissue to stretch out like a piece of saltwater taffy.

** Original post on 11 June 2010 **
I was warming up with full range of motion (ROM) body-weight squats, squatting as deep as I can with my knee extending beyond my toes. One trainer came over telling me that it's bad for my knees and it's not safe - I should be doing half squats and knees should be behind the toes instead. Knowing his background, I believe he's speaking from the input of a certain textbook.

So I explained my point to him that I opt for full ROM + knee extending beyond toes as I believe in getting full functional range of motion and with knees extending beyond the toes are part of natural human movements. While I also told him that he was not wrong to say it's bad for my knees.





According to Kreighbaum (1996) deep squats with knees extending beyond toes are absolutely fine. However there are 3 concerns to look into; (1) Speed of descent, (2) size of calves and thighs, (3) Strength of controlling muscles. Let's see what he has to say;

The primary danger to the knee occurs when the tissues of the calf and thigh press together altering the center of rotation back to the contact area creating a dislocation effect. The danger of knee injury in this situation may be prevented if either of the following factor are present:
  • center of gravity of the body system is kept forward of the altered center of rotation 
  • muscles of the thigh are strong enough to prevent the body from resting or bouncing on the calves.
Kreighbaum concludes the deep squat is of little danger to the knees unless these variables and factors are disregarded

The reason I told the trainer that he was not wrong is because it would be dangerous for me, IF I neglected the mentioned concerns by Kreighbaum. Noticed the IF ?

11 June 2010

Questions in regards to Squat

I was warming up with full range of motion (ROM) body-weight squats, squatting as deep as I can with my knee extending beyond my toes. One trainer came over telling me that it's bad for my knees and it's not safe - I should be doing half squats and knees should be behind the toes instead. Knowing his background, I believe he's speaking from the input of a certain textbook.

So I explained my point to him that I opt for full ROM + knee extending beyond toes as I believe in getting full functional range of motion and with knees extending beyond the toes are part of natural human movements. While I also told him that he was not wrong to say it's bad for my knees.





According to Kreighbaum (1996) deep squats with knees extending beyond toes are absolutely fine. However there are 3 concerns to look into; (1) Speed of descent, (2) size of calves and thighs, (3) Strength of controlling muscles. Let's see what he has to say;

The primary danger to the knee occurs when the tissues of the calf and thigh press together altering the center of rotation back to the contact area creating a dislocation effect. The danger of knee injury in this situation may be prevented if either of the following factor are present:
  • center of gravity of the body system is kept forward of the altered center of rotation 
  • muscles of the thigh are strong enough to prevent the body from resting or bouncing on the calves.
Kreighbaum concludes the deep squat is of little danger to the knees unless these variables and factors are disregarded

The reason I told the trainer that he was not wrong is because it would be dangerous for me, IF I neglected the mentioned concerns by Kreighbaum. Noticed the IF ?