Steroids

sport injury steroids performance enhancing drug

What’s up ? This is THE stephane ANDRE. With my training, I’m interested in biomechanics to avoid injuries. I read « Sport Medicine Media Guide » and I learned some good stuff.

We regularly read in news articles, the use of anabolic steroids or performance enhancing drugs by elite athlete. But you should know that these dangerous drugs are more and more used by children in college, high-school and middle school.

What

sport injury steroids performance enhancing drug

Anabolic steroids are synthetic derivatives of testosterone. Testosterone is a male sex hormone. Steroids help to create new proteins to increase the size and strength of muscles. The body is already doing this process naturally but steroids increase the activity of this normal process. Find performance enhancing drugs in communities, gyms or internet is easy.

Steroids are consumed orally or by injection. Anabolic steroids in themselves aren’t effective. However, when they’re used at the same time with a strength training, they increase the strength in an impressive way.

Side effects

sport injury steroids performance enhancing drug side effect acne

sport injury steroids performance enhancing drug side effect acne

sport injury steroids performance enhancing drug side effect acne

Performance enhancing drugs allow an athlete to have bigger and more powerful muscles, but users may have deadly health problems. Performance enhancing drugs have several side effects that continue to work even after you stop using them. Users are also more likely to have risky behaviors such as having unsafe sex or taking illegal drugs.

Symptoms of use of anabolic steroids are :

  • Acne (often severe) visible on the face and back

  • Severe mood change such as extreme aggression or suicidal behavior

  • Premature balding, breast enlargement (gynecomastia), irreversible shrinking of testicles in boys.

  • Deeper voice, shrinking breast and clitoral enlargement in girls

  • Dangerous enlargement of the heart that can increase bad cholesterol and blood pressure.

  • Irreversible liver damage

  • In children, premature closure of the growth plates, stopping normal growth of bones.

sport injury steroids performance enhancing drug side effect gynecomastia

sport injury steroids performance enhancing drug side effect gynecomastia

sport injury steroids performance enhancing drug side effect gynecomastia

A reason to take anabolic steroids

Anabolic steroids may be advisable for people who have lost testicular function like men with a testicular tumor. They’re also advised in some type of anemia to stimulate the bone morrow.

Prevent

The true is the problems of performance enhancing drugs aren’t solely related to elite athletes. Children are also exposed to this every day. Ask kids what they know about these drugs. Ask them if they know anyone in their school class who uses these drugs. Ask them if they know the dangers of these drugs. If you think that your children or children in your family might be experiencing these drugs, talk to your doctor.

It’s also important to talk to coaches and ask them if leagues or schools require annual physical exams for athletes. A physical examination by a doctor can detect the use of performance enhancing drugs in athletes (doping test). Ask coaches if any of their athletes have experienced performance enhancing drugs.

Stats

As many as four 4 American children and teens are using performance enhancing drugs such as anabolic steroids.

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-Steph

P.S. If you’re in Miami and you like Caribbean food, go to my cousin’s bistro to eat Haitian food, click here .

Exercise To Avoid Overhead Shoulder Press Pain

shoulder pain

What’s up ? This is THE stephane ANDRE. I watched an Athlean-X’s video  and I learned some good stuff.

I have a little pain when I do dumbbell press  or overhead shoulder press, maybe you have that pain too ? As I want to avoid having surgery like the majority of professional athletes, I tried to find out if I could find an alternative exercise to work the same muscles without pain.

This shoulder pain during this exercise is a real problem, because it’s a movement that is so advised to do to develop shoulders that the majority of people continue to do despite the pain. The longer a person continues to do this exercise with the pain and the more the person, several years later, will need to do a surgery to the damaged shoulder. It’s sad because people keep doing this exercise because they don’t know (like me at the beginning) that there are alternative exercises.

Pain

For me, I felt the pain at the starting position, it means with a dumbbell in each hand, dumbbells at the level of my ears or a little above my shoulders and my elbow at the outside. It was impossible for me to keep this position for more than 5 seconds and after a few reps, I felt less pain. A few months later, I changed the starting position. I started with my arms outstretched but the pain was still there. The feeling of pain is really bizarre because sometimes, I felt that my shoulders could be dislocated with heavyweight.

Solution

barbell corner press

The idea is to do this exercise with the elbows forward because the pain is due to instability of the rotator cuff. In fact, this pain appears on the weakest shoulder.

This exercise has no official name and has a lot of variation but the best known name is barbell corner press. You need to use a barbell and put it in a corner of the gym. If you do this at home, I advise you to put a blanket in the corner of the wall to not damage the wall. Put a plate of 10kg (22lbs) or 20kg (45lbs) on the opposite side :

  • Lift the barbell with your 2 hands with a squat position to protect your back. Stand up with your torso leaning forward, your back straight, one leg forward and your hands almost on your torso with your elbows forward.

  • Press straight up overhead and exhale

  • Back to the start position and inhale

You can also do this exercise with one hand. Barbell corner press is an alternative exercise to dumbbell press or overhead shoulder press to continue developing your shoulders without pain and without sacrificing your shoulders.

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-Steph

Angled Leg Press

angled leg press anatomy

I read a Frederic Delavier’s book « Strength Training Anatomy » and I learned good stuff.

Warning : Using leg press with heavy weight may cause a displacement in the sacroiliac joint, which can lead to contracture.

sacroiliac joint

angled leg press

Installed in the machine with your back on the back pad and your feet a little apart :

  • Inhale and unlock security. Bend your legs as much as possible to have your thighs on the sides of your ribcage.

  • Back to the starting position and exhale at the end of the movement.

The feet’s position allows you to target certain muscles :

  • Feet low on the plate work primary quadriceps

  • Feet high on the plate work primary glutes and hamstrings.

  • Feet apart on the plate work primary adductors.

angled leg press feet position

Note

This exercise is good for people with back problems and who can’t do squat. Attention, it’s necessary not to take off the glutes of the back pad.

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-Steph

Deadlift Correctly (Part 2)

deadlift

I you didn’t read the Part 1, click here

I read an Nerd Fitness article  and I learned good stuff.

Setup

As you know, there are several versions of deadlift that can match your training goals or your body type but the conventional deadlift is great for starting to learn the basics.

Attention : It’s important to do 1-2 sets warm-up with the barbell without weights. As with squat, this warm-up allows you to prepare joints and muscles.

  • Adds weights and uses collars for safety

    If you’re a beginner, only use 2-26-4.6kg (5-10lbs) plates to make easy to adjust the weights on the barbell. When you have better understood the movement and how your body reacts you can use plates of 20kg (45lbs).

  • Stand with your feet at the width of your hips

    The spacing of your feet is about 20-30cm (8-12 inches) and your toes are slightly outside about 5-10 degrees.

  • Look at the ground

    Place your feet under the barbell so that the barbell almost touches your ankles. The barbell must be on the node of your laces

  • Without moving the barbell or your hips

    Lean forward to take the barbell. Your legs are slightly bent. Your hands should be slightly outside your legs without touching them.

  • Hold the barbell

    Move your hips down so your shins touch the barbell. Stop moving your hips when your shins touch the barbell. Squeeze your torso and keep your back straight to have your back in a neutral position.

  • Your back in a neutral position

    Your back shouldn’t be rounded or hyper extends. If you feel like you don’t have your back in a neutral position, don’t hesitate to ask a friend or a gym’s member to make a video of you with a smartphone while you’re doing deadlift. This will allow you to correct your technique.

    In addition to your spine, uses the upper back’s muscles to help to lift your chest up (swagger).

    Your shoulders should be slightly in front of the barbell and your arms should be straight and perpendicular to the ground.

As each person has unique body, the person next to you will have a different starting position than you and this is normal. Think about it : if a person has long arms, will this person have exactly the same position as a person with short arms ? No.

Deadlift

deadlift movement

  • Ready to lift

    Be focus and squeeze all your body’s muscles

  • Deep breathing

    Take a deep breath and keep your chest up with all your body squeezed ant put all the weight on your heels and on the ball of your feet.

    Imagine driving your feet through the ground.

Here are the important points in this part of the movement :

  1. All the weight must be on your heels and on the ball of your feet. During the movement, you should be able to move your toes.

  2. Your whole body moves slowly at the same speed. Your butt shouldn’t get up faster than your torso.

  3. Be focused on directing your torso and putting the weight on your heels.

  4. Your arms should stay straight during the movement. Your arms only serve to hold the barbell, not pull it.

  5. The barbell stay in contact with all your body. The barbell is a few millimeters from your legs while your lift it. Powerlifters put socks on their shins and chalk or baby powder on their thighs to avoid cuts and scratches The barbell’s trajectory during the movement is a vertical straight line.

  6. Squeeze your glutes. When the barbell goes over your knees, squeeze your glutes to move your hips forward.

  7. When you stand, open your chest as if you’re proud (like a king/queen). Keep your spine in a neutral position (straight back) and all your body tight.

To lower the barbell

As with lifting the barbell, all your body needs to move at the same time.

Your body is always contracted, unlocks your hips and knees and lower the barbell by controlling the movement slowly.

If you unlocks your knees first, you’ll do weird movements that will force you to round your lower back.

deadlift low back rounded

Keep your body contracted until the barbell touches the ground. The majority of deadlift injuries appear during the descends of the barbell. People are so pleased to have lifted a heavy weight that they relax their bodies and lower the barbell with poor technique. It’s important to control movement with your contracted body throughout exercise.

Note

In deadlift the most risky moment is the eccentric part (descending the barbell). This is the part that will give you the most DOMS (delayed onset muscle soreness).

That’s why several personal trainers advise their athletes to throw the barbell on the ground, especially for athletes who must be at 100 % for a competition in a few days.

Share this article if you think it can help someone you know. Thank you.

-Steph

How to Do Back Extension

back extension

I read a Frederic Delavier’s book « Strength Training Anatomy » and I learned good stuff.

Installed in the bench with your ankles blocked. The axis of the bending is done with the coxofemoral joint and the pubis is outside of the bench :

  • Your torso bent and you make an extension to the horizontal by raising your head

  • Then, you make a hyper extension (you accentuate the lumbar arch). Be careful, this hyper extension is to be done with caution to avoid injuries.

This exercise mainly works with all the spinal erectors muscles of the spine (iliocostalis lumborum, iliocostalis thoracis, longissimus thoracis, intertranversarii laterales lumborum), quadratus lumborum and a little bit the glutes and hamstrings (except the short head of the femoral biceps).

A complete flexion of the torso makes it possible to stretch the whole sacro-lumbar. By immobilizing the pelvis, what means that the axis of flexion is at the front of the body, effort is targeted on the sacro-lumbar muscles but less intensely because of the decrease in amplitude of the movement and increasing the power of the lever.

For even better muscle work, you can maintain alignement for a few seconds at the end of extension.

For beginners, there is a incline bench recommended for ease of movement execution.

back extension incline bench

Variants

  • By making back extension with a stick on your shoulders, you immobilize the part of the top, which makes it possible to target the effort on the lower part of the spine’s muscles.

    back extension stick

  • There is a machine that specifically targets work on the sacro-lumbar of the spinal muscle (the machine I use).

    machine back extension

  • To increase the intensity of the exercise, you can make the movement with a weight plate held behind your neck or tight against your torso.

Share this article if you think it can help someone you know. Thank you.

-Steph

How To Do Stiff-Legged Deadlifts

stiff legged deadlifts

I read a Frederic Delavier’s book « Strength Training Anatomy » and I learned good stuff.

Podcast :

Standing with your feet slightly apart. The barbell is on the floor in front of you :

  • Inhale, bend your torso forward with your back arched. If you can keep your legs straight or slightly bent.

  • Take the barbell with a pronated grip and straighten your body with your back rigid (your back is not more arched than the starting position). It’s at the hips level that the tilt occurs. Exhale at the end of the movement.

  • Returns to the starting position without the barbell touch the floor and do it again.

To avoid to have injuries, keep your back straight, it’s important.

This exercise works all the spinal erectors, it’s the muscles that run along each side of your spine. These are the muscles that allow you to straighten your spine.

When you straighten your torso, during the tilt forward of your hips, this exercise works the gluteus maximus and hamstrings (except the thigh biceps short head).

This exercise stretches the back of your thighs when you return to the starting position.

It’s possible to raise your feet compared to to the barbell (with a plate weight or a step) so that the exercise is more effective.

Note

This exercise can be used as a stretching movement for hamstring with light weights.

The heavier the weight and the greater the gluteus will work compared to the hamstrings to straighten your hips.

Share this article if you think it can help someone you know. Thank you.

-Steph

Find The Gym For Your Goals (Part2)

find a gym diffrent type

I read a Nerd Fitness article  and I learned good stuff.

If you didn’t read the part 1, click here 

Type de gyms

different type gym

You noticed there are several categories of gyms. That’s why you have to take your time to think about a gym that fits your needs.

Fitness center franchise

In the best known franchises, you will have cheap membership. It’s cheap but you have few amenities, some type of trainings are forbidden, free weight section is limited and often the staff has no experience.

Health clubs/Sport clubs/YMCA

Clubs look like franchises but they have a better service. There is more amenities, towel service, child care, pool, tennis court. Membership can reach $100, some type of training can be prohibited and free weight’s section limited.

Note : Franchises and clubs can be convenient if you travel a lot because with their membership, you can train in different cities.

Locally owned gyms

These gyms have a better equipement, a free weight’s section bigger and a better quality staff than franchises and health clubs. Membership is around $25-50 and it’s real that amenites are less good than health clubs.

Weightlifting club/barbell club/crossfit

It’s a room with bumper plates, dumbbells, barbells and pullup bar. With the membership, you have a coach and classes, that’s why it’s expensive. These gyms are open at certain hours during the day. These gyms have their own workout program, you can’t do your own workout program.

College/university gyms

it’s cheap and you need to paid upfront in full.

You can have a discount « alumini » memberships if you go to the college or university that you attended. If you don’t live near of you old college/university, some gyms offer memberships to family members of alumini or staff, local « senior » memberships or event just local resident memberships. What is great with this type of gym is you can have acces to their full facilty (pool, racquet courts, classes, etc).

Test drive the gym

test drive

The next step is to look for gyms in your city now that you know differtent types of gyms.

Do a test in gyms to see if the equipement meets your needs. Some gyms offer pass for 1-2 weeks. During the test phase, go train the same days that you plan to train after signing the contract.

Imagine that you find the perfect gym, you sign the contract and eveydays you train, it’s war. The gym is full of people and you can’t use equipement. This is a situation to avoid.

Here is what is important to see during the test phase :

  • Is there enough equipment for everyone or you have to fight to have a bench ?

  • Does the equipment work well ?

  • What is the gym’s atmosphere ?

  • Is it clean ?

  • If you go befoire school/work, is there enough shower available or you have to wait ?

You can read gym’s reviews on internet by searching with Google or DuckDuckGo. Attention, on internet people prefer to complain than to do compliments so be careful. For me the best thing to do is talk to gym members to know what is positive and negative.

Contracts

contract

A lot of people don’t want to have a membership gym because one of their friend had a bad experience to stop a gym’s membership. This for this reason it’s important to take your time to read the contract and understand clauses.

Here things to look at in a contract :

  • A membership termination clause because for exemple, you move or you lose you job. This is rare but sometimes you can stop a membership if you live near the gym. Usually there is a fee named «  early termination fee » (that’s what I have).

  • The possibility when you’re on vacation ou you have to work for several weeks in another city to freeze your membership.

  • If the gym goes bankrupt, what happens to members ?

  • Membership renewal is automatic ?

You know salespersons work with commission so if a sales person make you a promise, make sure that this promise is in writing. Taking the contract at home is the thing I advise you to read it quietly and understand clauses.

If you feel that the salesperson put pression on you or that you don’t feel comfortable for another reason, leave the gym.

Note : There are states that has specific laws. For exemple, you can cancel the contract only 2 days after signed it. It would be a shame if you signed this type of contract without being aware of this clause. This is why it’s important to take the contract at home to read it quietly.

Here different membership’s fees :

  • Activation fee

    You pay these fees when you’re a new member. You pay these fees once.

  • Monthly cost

    it’s a fee you pay every month

  • Maintenance fee

You pay these fees per year. Attention, some gyms have a special clause that says : « We don’t have this kind of fee now but later, it’s possible to add these fees without telling you ». Be sure to know this clause if it is in your contract.

When I enrolled in my gym, there was an offer for people who applied for registration on internet. Look at gym’s website to know offers but also ask always to salesperson if there are discounts.

In gyms, there is often a membership’s range of price. You need to negotiate, don’t hesitate. Don’t forget that the more you take the more expensive membership, the more the salesperson will have a larger commission. If the salesperson tell you : « No », it doesn’t matter, you tried to get the best price.

By negotiating, somethimes you can register in a gym for the first time without paying the activation fees. To do it, you need to talk to the person who has permission to do this. Sometimes they can call you 1-2 days after to offer you an exceptional offer.

You can also have a nice offer by paying an annual membership up front. Look at the price difference.

Also you can have offers with you health insurance. It’s always with a limited number of gym but look if you have this option.

Stay focus

stay focus

The difference between a workout at home and a workout in a gym is that in a workout in a gym, you can really make your potential evolve to the maximum.

For exemple, if you do a barbell’s workout, you will have always heavy weight plates to go to the next level. It’s the same thing for dumbbells. You need heavier, it’s here. No need to worry about buying new.

Of course, there are negative pointst to enroll a gym. You have to move there (bike, bus, car, etc), you to wait if you go during busy hours, the cost and do your workout around unkown people.

I repeat, you can train at home to be healthy or gain strength with a bodyweight workout program. You can buy a set of dumbbell, barbell, kettelbell or a sandbag. You can do sprints or walk (like my father) outside with any weather and it’s free.

For me the gym, it’s an important moment of my day. It’s the moment where I’m focus on myself and the society’s pressure no longer exists.

Share this article if you think it can help someone you know. Thank you.

-Steph