Jennifer Ellison-Brown: The concepts of fitness

first_img Physical fitness is the ability of the body to carry out everyday activities without excessive fatigue and with enough energy remaining for other tasks. This means that as well as performing our normal daily tasks, we can also perform additional physical activities, including sports. Being fit is central to our health and sense of well-being. If we are healthy and fit, then the physical, mental, and social aspects of our lives are working well. Fitness is critical to success in sports. Physical fitness consists of health-related fitness and sports performance-related fitness. Exercise refers to a subset of physical activity – planned, structured, repetitive movement of the body designed specifically to improve one’s health and to maintain physical fitness. Fitness depends on such physiological factors as the heart’s ability to pump blood and the size of muscle fibres. Only exercise will significantly improve fitness. The World Health Organization recommends that individuals include a moderate amount of exercise on most, preferably all, days of the week (Fit and Well, 6th Edition 2005). In order to have good health, we should eat sensibly, engage in regular physical activity, get the required rest and sleep, limit alcohol intake, resist smoking and other social drugs, and improve our ability to cope with stress. It is important to adapt a healthy lifestyle for us to maintain our health. The following health-related fitness components are important for the human body to work efficiently: – Cardiovascular endurance – the ability of the circulatory and respiratory systems to supply fuel and oxygen to the muscles. – Muscular strength – the ability to exert an external force or to lift a heavy weight. – Muscular endurance – the ability of the muscles to repeatedly exert themselves. – Flexibility – having a wide range of motion in the joints. – Body composition – having the relative percentage of muscle, fat, bone, and other tissues of which the body is composed. – The ability to cope with stress. Physical benefits Performance-related fitness This is the level of physical fitness necessary for the demands of regular sporting activity. We may be fit from a health-related perspective but not be fit for sports. Each sport activity makes its own particular demands on the body. To be successful in sports, it is important to have health-related fitness and also to be as fit as possible in the performance-related components below. – Explosive strength (power) – the ability to combine speed and force in one explosive act. – Speed – the ability to move all or parts of the body as quickly as possible. – Agility – the ability to change direction of the body at speed. – Coordination – the ability to carry out a series of movements smoothly and efficiently in response to your senses. – Balance – the ability to maintain equilibrium when stationary or moving. – Reaction time – the ability to respond to a stimulus quickly. – Timing – the ability to coincide movement in relation to external factors (to act at the right moment). Exercise helps your mental well-being, too. – It is stimulating and enjoyable. – It relieves tension and stress, which can cause high blood pressure and heart disease. – Relieves aggression. – Relieves boredom and provides a challenge. – It helps you sleep better, so you feel more rested. – Boosts self-esteem. All these benefits mean that exercise helps you to meet the demands of your environment more easily. In other words, it makes you fitter. You can work harder, feel less tired, and enjoy life more. The way to improve your fitness is through exercise. The more easily you are able to meet demands, the less likely you are to suffer stress, fall ill, or injure yourself. Exercise increases your social well-being, especially if it’s in the form of a sport. – Boosts confidence. – Helps you cope better with difficult people and situation. – You will meet people, make good friends. – Develops team work and cooperation.center_img Definition of fitness Benefits of exercise Social benefits Health-related fitness Exercise helps you to look good and feel good. – It burns up stored body fat, so your shape improves. – Gives superb muscle tone. – Strengthens back and abdomen. – Strengthens bones. – Keeps joints flexible to encourage efficiency. – Strengthens heart and lungs, so you won’t get tired easily. – It helps to prevent heart disease, high blood pressure, back pain, cancer. – Slows the ageing process. Mental benefitslast_img read more

Man Utd v Arsenal: free bets offer for West London Sport readers

first_imgIt’s one of the the games of the season as Manchester United take on Arsenal at Old Trafford, with Paddy Power getting involved with a new free bets offer for West London Sport readers.The jovial Irish characters have announced they will refund losing bets should Man Utd striker Robin Van Persie score the last goal of the game in the clash at Old Trafford, plus will offer £100 to all new customers to spend on the game! – Click here to take advantage of this offer!There’s certainly plenty going on at Paddy Power Towers these days, as the popular bookmaker looks to set itself apart from the competition by offering money-back specials on the main sporting events of the day, and there’s certainly not much bigger than Manchester Utd v Arsenal from the Premier League.With a bumper weekend fixture list there certainly something for everyone as sports fans are given a treat with a whole host of top quality action – read more details hereNot only can customers take advantage of the latest money-back offers, but there are also plenty of opportunities to watch sport live streaming online through the Paddy Power website.Users can take in a variety of football matches across a number of different leagues, including Bundesliga, Serie A and La Liga, as the firm looks to offer its customers a unique experience.Those wishing to bet in running, (betting on the event whilst the event is going on) can use the ‘in play’ service provided by Paddy Power, which means you can bet whilst actually watching the game through the website.Mobile and smart devices users are looked after generously, with the Paddy Power  website available to use through an app on iphone, ipad, android and other mobile devices, giving customers the option to ‘bet on the move’ – there really is no excuse for missing out on that all important bet.There’s plenty going on in the world of horse racing at the moment with AP McCoy reaching the landmark of 4000 career wins, and of course, Paddy Power has all your bases covered.Every race from all the daily UK racemeets is covered, together with a live stream of the race itself supplied by RacingUK.The Autumn rugby internationals continue as England face Argentina at Twickenham, as Stuart Lancaster looks to build on victory against Argentina, while Wales play their first game of the campaign, as they take on the might of South Africa in Cardiff.The Irish are set for a brutal encounter with Tonga in Dublin, while for purists and neutrals it doesn’t get much bigger than France v New Zealand in the evening kick-off.Tennis fans are not left out with the ATP Tour World Finals reaching their climax at the London O2, as Novak Djokovic looks to end the season on a high, despite Rafael Nadal doing enough to claim the number one spot.Whatever your sport of choice, now is a great opportunity to take advantage with Paddy Power and their £250 free bet offer, exclusive to West London Sport visitors.last_img read more

Have Snakes Lost Their Legs?

first_imgDr. Jerry Bergman has taught biology, genetics, chemistry, biochemistry, anthropology, geology, and microbiology for over 40 years at several colleges and universities including Bowling Green State University, Medical College of Ohio where he was a research associate in experimental pathology, and The University of Toledo. He is a graduate of the Medical College of Ohio, Wayne State University in Detroit, the University of Toledo, and Bowling Green State University. He has over 1,300 publications in 12 languages and 40 books and monographs. His books and textbooks that include chapters that he authored are in over 1,500 college libraries in 27 countries. So far over 80,000 copies of the 40 books and monographs that he has authored or co-authored are in print. For more articles by Dr Bergman, see his Author Profile.(Visited 291 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0 Did scientists find a snake losing its legs, or did they find a new kind of animal?by Jerry Bergman, PhD I responded to the issue of snake legs on September 1,[1] but the issue came up again as a result of a new fossil discovery. The most obvious concern related to the question of evolution is to keep in mind that loss of some structure—no matter what the structure—is not evolution. Darwin’s theory requires the gain of new structures, or modification of existing organs. Many paleontologists assume evolution when analyzing fossils, and thus interpret the evidence from a Darwinian worldview. For example, instead of letting the evidence speak for itself, the authors stated that these “new fossils help answer longstanding questions on the origins of snakes, such as how they lost their limbs and evolved their highly specialized skulls.”[2]The authors of The Conversation article just quoted – Michael Caldwell, Professor of Vertebrate Paleontology at the University of Alberta, and Alessandro Palci, Research Associate in Evolutionary Biology at Flinders University – should have known better. A paper in Nature in 2006 by Apesteguía and Zaher made some of the same mistakes.[3] All four scientists need to take their evolutionary glasses off and explore other viable possibilities and interpretations for the fossil without jumping to conclusions.Unasked QuestionsOne question the paleontologists should be asking is, in view of the number of examples they have found that appear to be similar, “Is this creature just another new reptile variety not related to snakes?”  From my reading of the literature in this area, this possibility has never been considered by the workers in the field. If I am wrong, I hope a reader can fill this gap in my knowledge!Another question involves other body parts of these creatures. The reference above notes that the new find also requires not only evidence of the loss of four legs, but also evidence of how they “evolved their highly specialized skulls.” In other words, the skulls of the claimed snake finds were very different from modern snake skulls. And that’s not all that’s different in this fossil. The paleontologists should consider whether they are looking at a previously-unknown extinct animal that had legs, a snake-like body, and a very un-snake-like head, plus several other very un-snake-like traits. These animals have major anatomical differences from modern snakes and other reptiles. How did those evolve? The paper in Science Advances says,their ancestral lizard-like skull condition include greatly increased gape size, increased skull kinesis, loss of temporal bones, and expansion of the attachment sites for the jaw adductor musculature. This highly modified skull creates difficulties in identifying homologies with other squamates, resulting in problems reconstructing phylogeny and in understanding the evolutionary acquisition and assembly of the snake skull and elongate body.[4]Looking at the EvidenceThe new fossil consists of what is described as a “beautifully preserved skull of an ancient snake with rear limbs.” Judging from the illustration in Science Advances, which described it as “largely uncrushed fossils,” I would describe them as crushed fossil fragments, although not as greatly damaged as other examples. They were embedded in rock that had to be carefully removed from the matrix and assembled. Fossils embedded in rock are virtually always distorted due to the temperature changes that cause expansion and contraction of the rock matrix, especially rock near the Earth’s surface. That is the case in most of the fossils described as precursors of modern snakes.Although assigned to the genus Najash, the authors admit that this assignment is tentative:The new specimens exhibit a similar overall morphology that permits their assignation to the genus Najash; however, pending a full taxonomic review and assessment of the morphological diversity and disparity, the snakes from the LBPA [La Buitrera Palaeontological Area] are here conservatively assigned to Najash.The name assigned to the species is Najash rionegrina – a term after the Biblical snake with legs from Nahash (Hebrew for ‘snake’), and the Río Negro Province in Argentina, where the fossils were discovered.The 2006 Nature article that analyzed another limbed-snake fossil, concluded that ithas commonly been thought that snakes underwent progressive loss of their limbs by gradual diminution of their use. However, recent developmental and paleontological discoveries suggest a more complex scenario of limb reduction, still poorly documented in the fossil record.[5]True ConfessionsTwo points are worth noting about this new fossil. The first is that the find does not support the once-orthodox idea of gradual limb loss. To accept the evolutionary theory of snakes, they have to revise the “commonly thought” scenario of gradual limb loss, but exactly how they would revise it they don’t say. Notice how they admitted that evolution from a quadrupedal organism to one lacking legs is “still poorly documented in the fossil record.” The 2006 Nature paper stated the problem as follows: “understanding the earliest steps toward the acquisition of these remarkable adaptations is hampered by the very limited fossil record of early snakes.”[6]Another area where the 2019 report contradicts the formerly orthodox view is, instead of a watery origin of snakes, this find supports the “hypothesis of a terrestrial rather than marine origin of snakes.”[7] The research on new find likewise concluded that Najash was a “terrestrial snake living in a desert, not an aquatic snake living in the ocean.”[8]Another problem with the original 2006 paper echoed in the 2019 paper concerns preservation of the fossil. “Unfortunately, that first description of Najash relied on a very fragmentary skull. Scholars of snake evolution were left to guess at what the head of these ancient animals might have looked like.”[9] This contrasts with the 2006 find which was originally described as “an almost complete… 3D preserved snake skull.” But, as just quoted in 2019, it was actually “a very fragmentary skull.” These adjectives are obviously subjective, but they are closer to being almost arbitrary, due to the lack of any mathematical standard on which to base their subjective descriptions. Subjectivity is common when reading the paleontological literature. As one report admitted:A long-standing hypothesis is that snakes evolved from a blind, burrowing lizard ancestor. A group of small, worm-like, small-mouthed burrowing snakes, known as scolecophidians have long been considered to be the most primitive living snakes.[10]This certainly does not describe the 2019 find.The Genesis SerpentThe genus name of the 2019 find, “Najash,” recalls the Biblical story of the Garden of Eden where sin entered into the world. Genesis suggests that “the serpent” lost its legs as punishment for deceiving the woman. It’s not clear this was a judgment on all snakes. it could be true but, if so, the only difference between the pre-Fall serpent and the post-Fall serpent would involve its legs. Before and after the curse, it was the same animal, with only one difference: namely, the lack of legs, requiring a different mode of locomotion. The reptiles described in these papers we’re considering, however, display many major differences between their putative ancestors, as well as between the fossils and modern snakes.SummaryA theory of snake evolution requires the gain of—and major alteration of—numerous structures. Loss of legs is devolution, not evolution. This new fossil needs to be examined from the standpoint that it could be an extinct reptile not related to modern snakes. It is evidently not a transitional form between a non-snake and a modern snake.  The 2006 Nature report concluded that, according to their description of the find, thenew Najash specimens reveal a mosaic of primitive lizard-like features such as a large triradiate jugal and absence of the crista circumfenestralis, derived snake features such as the absence of the postorbital, as well as intermediate conditions such as a vertically oriented quadrate.[11]Enough evidence exists in the reports of this find to question the evolutionary interpretation. The “snake-lost-its-legs” assumption comes from wearing evolution glasses that filter out other possibilities. A fresh look at the evidence is warranted, using the evidence alone. This fossil may represent some unique, but extinct, reptile – not a creature on its way to evolving into something else. There are plenty of extinct reptiles: pterosaurs, ichthyosaurs, and all the dinosaurs. Finding another one should not be surprising.References[1] Bergman, Jerry, 2019: “Snake ‘Vestigial Legs’ Debunked,” Creation-Evolution Headlines, September 1.[2] Caldwell and Palci, 2019: “Extraordinary skull fossil reveals secrets of snake evolution.” The Conversation, November 20. [Emphasis added.][3]  Apesteguía, Sebastián and Hussam Zaher, 2006: “A Cretaceous terrestrial snake with robust hindlimbs and a sacrum,” Nature, 440: 1037-1040.[4] Garberoglio, Fernando F.; et al., 2019: “New skulls and skeletons of the Cretaceous legged snake Najash, and the evolution of the modern snake body plan,” Science Advances, 5(11): 1-8,  November 20.[5] Apesteguía and Zaher, 2006, Ref. 3, p. 1037.[6] Ibid.[7] Ibid.[8] Caldwell, Michael and Alessandro Palci, 2019. “Beautifully Preserved Skull of ‘Biblical Snake’ with Hind Legs Discovered,” Live Science, December 6.[9] Ibid.[10] Ibid.[11] Apesteguía and Zaher, 2006, Ref. 3, p. 1037. [Emphasis added.]last_img read more

Soaring Hawks Rake The Nets, 113-102

first_imgATLANTA (AP) — Paul Millsap played like one of the league’s best players. Now, he’ll wait to see if he’s picked for his second straight All-Star game.Millsap had 28 points and 15 rebounds, five other Atlanta players scored in double figures, and the Hawks stretched their franchise-record winning streak to 17 games in a row with a 113-102 victory over the Brooklyn Nets on Jan. 28.“Paul was aggressive,” said teammate Al Horford, who also had a double-double with 20 points and 12 rebounds. “When he plays like that, we’re tough to beat.”Atlanta (38-8) has won 31 of 33 and leads the Eastern Conference by a commanding seven games. This was a bit tougher than expected against the struggling Nets, who kept it close most of the way.The Hawks pulled away in the final quarter, leading by as many as 15. Millsap finished off Brooklyn’s last run with a 3-pointer from the corner with 2:34 remaining, pushing Atlanta to a 109-98 edge.Millsap, who was more of a role player in Utah, had taken a lead since signing with the Hawks. He earned his first All-Star appearance a year ago and is expected to be among at least three Atlanta players getting in when the East reserves are announced Jan. 29. Horford and Jeff Teague are favored to get in, and Kyle Korver could make it as well.“We’ve definitely got a lot of guys who are deserving,” Millsap said. “It’s going to be tough if one of those guys doesn’t make it.”Joe Johnson led the Nets with 26 points. It wasn’t enough to prevent Brooklyn’s 11th loss in 13 games.“That’s why they’ve won 17 in a row: they’ve produced every night consistently and their defense had been consistent every night,” Nets coach Lionel Hollins said. “We had some stuff that gave them trouble, but they kept scoring and we couldn’t stop them.”Korver had 17 points for the Hawks, connecting on five 3-pointers and having another taken away with a video review showed he shot after a foul was committed on a teammate. Teague and Dennis Schroder had 13 apiece, while DeMarre Carroll added 12. Atlanta outrebounded the Nets 45-35.Brook Lopez scored 18 for Brooklyn off the bench, and Jarrett Jack chipped in with 14 points and 13 assists.The Hawks got off to a sloppy start, committing six turnovers in the first 7 minutes. But they seized control before the break, closing the second quarter on a 21-9 run that sent them to the locker room with their biggest lead of the half, 64-53.Atlanta has built a double-digit lead in every game during its winning streak, and improved to 33-1 this season when up by at least 10 points.Amazingly, the Hawks have already matched their win total for all of last season, when they slipped into the playoffs as the No. 8 seed with a 38-44 record.And it’s not even the All-Star break.“We’re trying to grow and improve,” said coach Mike Budenholzer, who will lead the East in New York. “We want to keep our mindset there, just play each night, go out there and compete. That’s been good for us so far.”Hawks to 17th straight win, 113-102 over Nets(PAUL NEWBERRY, AP Sports Writer)TweetPinShare0 Shareslast_img read more