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An Interview with Lynda Huey

We recently had the pleasure of talking with Lynda Huey, MS, founder of Huey’s Athletic Network and CompletePT in Los Angeles.

She has been an avid user of our products for decades.  Lynda Huey pioneered the use of water training with both professional athletes and Olympians back in the 1980’s and is a wealth of knowledge related to water rehabilitation and training. She has authored six books on water exercise and rehab, and we currently sell both The Complete Waterpower Workout Book as well as Lynda Huey’s Waterpower Workout DVD if you’re interested in learning more about her teaching style.

In this interview, we asked Lynda to expand upon her experience with water training.

1). Tell us a little bit about your background in water training?

I was a track athlete and often swam and biked if I had an injury, but that didn’t quite do the job. I broke my foot, and when the cast came off I was still limping, so I started teaching myself to walk without a limp in a swimming pool. Then I started running, and that crossed over so that when I was able to get back to the track, I didn’t feel uncoordinated in my running as I had after swimming and biking. In addition, I started helping my teammates and other friends on the USA Olympic T&F team and soon everyone was calling me if they got hurt.

 2). What are some amazing success stories that you’ve been a part of involving water training?

My first huge success story was sprinter Jeannette Bolden in 1983. She had a stress fracture in her foot and couldn’t train so we used a stretchy band with a waistband around her waist and had her sprint in place to keep her fitness. She did strictly pool training with me for a month before the 1984 Olympic Games, came out of the pool and got a silver in the 100M and gold in the 4 x 100M relay. That taught us sprinters could stay in world-class shape even without running on land.

Florence Griffith Joyner strained her hamstring prior to the 1987 Rome World Championships. I gave her the same sprints she would have had on the track, but running on a tether in chest-deep water the same length of time she would have been sprinting. She ran her personal best 300M the day she stepped back onto the track. In Rome, she got three silvers, but the following year in the 1988 Seoul Olympics, she got three golds (100M, 200M, 4 x 100M relay) and a silver in the 4 x 400M relay.

Wilt Chamberlain had knee surgery in 1994. He couldn’t do other forms of training after his surgery, so he came to the pool religiously every day until he could play racquetball and paddle tennis again.

A popular LA TV reporter tore her meniscus on the job and scheduled a surgery. She came to our pool to shoot a segment on water rehab and I invited my co-author on three books, orthopedic surgeon Robert Klapper, MD, to participate. He told her to get in the pool and if she didn’t feel better in six weeks, she could have the surgery. But she ended up canceling the surgery, because her knee felt fine. The fibrocartilage of the meniscus had mended from a “blister” to a “callus,” as Dr. Klapper likes to say. The callus doesn’t look normal on an MRI, but it doesn’t hurt and she never needed surgery.

3). Tell us about your Aquatic Rehab Online Course and how you’ve leveraged technology to reach people in different countries around the world?

In 2014, I shot video once a month as I trained my staff on the nuances of my aquatic therapy exercises. Next came the editing into the various segments: Deep-Water Intervals, Stretches, Deep-Water Exercises, Kicking Series, Impact Exercises, Lower Body Exercises, Upper Body Exercises, Cervical Techniques, Distraction Techniques, Advanced Exercises and Sports, and Teaching Tips and Progression Principles.

In 2015, I launched the course at the International Aquatic Fitness Conference (IAFC) at Innisbrook, Florida. As soon as a student signs up, he or she has immediate access to the course which is 10 full-length videos, 2 shorts videos, over 100 exercises in the 300-page textbook that they can either save on their computers – or as most of my students do, print out and put into a binder for easy access. I have to say that the color photos are dazzling, both above and below water, using the same sports fitness model I’ve used in three books, LaReine Chabut. Each exercise indicates what it’s “Good For” or “Not For” to provide proper guidance in planning.

To date I’ve had over 100 students sign up from 16 countries and there have been over 30 graduates. Students progress at their own pace in their own time of convenience. Some students haven’t yet started; others do a few lessons at a time; and others race right through it in a few weeks. This is the best part of my job satisfaction: knowing people all over the world are learning my water rehab techniques and applying them to their own students. I personally mentor each student, answering their homework assignments they turn in, clarifying details I can see weren’t quite mastered, nudging them along to the next lesson. All the while, I enjoy hearing their stories of learning the exercises and how it worked with various students, clients, and patients. Yes, there’s a version for physical therapists. CECs are given from AEA, CEUs from ATRI and the CA Physical Therapy Association.

4). What were some of the early misconceptions people had about water exercise?

The same misconceptions they have today, unfortunately. It’s NOT just for little old ladies in shower caps, although that’s a strong part of the audience for it. It’s for everyone, all the way up to the world’s best athletes.

Interested in Learning More About Lynda Huey’s Water Training Techniques?

If you’re interested in learning more about Lynda’s water training style feel free to browse through a PDF she authored which goes into the depth about the power and versatility of water training. Should you be interested in any of the NZ Manufacturing products that Lynda uses, feel free to reach out to our team today by phone at 800-886-6621 or through our online contact form.

Drag Training: How Resistance Can Impact Swimming Performance

In the world of competitive swimming where tenths of a second can make a major difference, swimmers everywhere are trying to learn how they can gain an edge over the competition both physically and mentally. Achieving the race outcomes you want starts with immense preparation and focus. While you are probably already following a strong workout plan and recovering optimally, one additional way you could gain an edge is through implementing a strategic drag training regimen on a weekly basis. For swimmers, effective drag training can offer you a number of unique advantages.

Advantages of Drag Training

Increased Strength

Added resistance and drag makes swimming more difficult for all athletes. This increased difficulty forces swimmers’ bodies to have to respond and grow stronger – which allows for enhanced endurance abilities. While strength training outside the water is important for any serious swimmer, sport-specific resistance training is just as important as well. This type of training forces your body to adapt and become more comfortable with fatigue. Simulating fatigue better prepares your body for what races will feel like, so you can learn to better push through the pain.

A Stronger Mental Game

In the water, alone with your thoughts, swimming is as much a mental challenge as it is physical. Utilizing resistance and drag training in practice will help you be better prepared to handle the pain when things get tough during competition. Learning how to fight through and prosper in uncomfortable situations is crucial. Plus, when it comes to race time, swimming without resistance will feel much easier as you release those additional pounds of resistance. This is the very same rationale behind using tech suits only in races and shaving right beforehand; they’re popular techniques for good reason!

Utilize a Non-Intrusive Form of Drag Training

Researchers suggest that drag training is ideally suited for shorter, high intensity sets with ample rest to ensure that you maintain proper technique and form. When utilizing drag training in your training regimen, the last thing you want to do is choose an intrusive type of drag training that alters your form. This is where parachute resistance is ideal. At NZ Manufacturing, we have specifically engineered the DRAG BELT/TOW TETHER S109-STRECHCORDZ® to be designed in a way so that is does not interfere with kicks, flips, or stroke type. Our unique design can accommodate multiple chutes simultaneously while allowing for up to 80% of additional workload for elite swimmers. From elite triathletes to beginning competitive swimmers rehabbing, the DRAG BELT/TOW TETHER S109-STRECHCORDZ® is ideal for all types of athletes. Among other things, this swimming solution can be used for:

  • Endurance Swim Training
  • Resisted Water Walking
  • Running
  • Lunging
  • Water Fitness Classes

Reach Out to NZ Manufacturing For More Information

For high-quality resistance products of all types, look no further than NZ Manufacturing. We have been trusted by professional sports team and national organizations for more than 30 years. If you have any questions about our products and their uses, contact us today at 1-800-886-6621 or fill out our online contact form.

Autumn Reflections

Autumn, by definition, is the third season of the year when crops and fruits are gathered and leaves fall.

Autumn’s duration in the northern hemisphere lasts from September to November and from March to May in the southern hemisphere. Autumn may be a time of joy or excitement as we anticipate the holiday seasons and the events that will be spent with family and friends. Autumn may be a time of anxiousness or discouragement as we anticipate colder weather and fewer sunlit hours each day. Autumn may be a season of mixed emotions, as we express gratitude for all of the goodness in our lives, while simultaneously experiencing shame or regret for the things we were unable to accomplish thus far this year. One thing for certain is that autumn is a season of change. The transformations that take place in nature can mirror the internal transformations occurring within us as our seasons of life change. The physical changes of autumn create a perfect setting in which we can begin to change our thoughts and our choices about our health and our wellbeing.

Our motivation for making daily healthy choices is largely driven by our mental and emotional states.

We often become disconnected to our body’s needs, either because of stress, fear, exhaustion, misinformation, anger, regret, distractions, and/or grief. We consequently make choices that do not serve our physical, mental, or emotional health.

During autumn, we are invited to reflect on our current life circumstances and to refocus on our own health and fitness needs.

We are invited to reconnect with our bodies, minds, and hearts to determine if a change is in order in our lives. During autumn, we are invited to transform any negative beliefs about our health into positive affirmations and actions. Regardless of what we think we “should” be doing for our health, we are permitted to diffuse judgmental thoughts and tune into what our bodies are craving at this time of year or at this time of our lives. Perhaps this autumn is an energized season for you after a restful summer, and your body needs to be challenged with high intensity cardio routines or a new strength training regimen. Perhaps this autumn is a time during which your body needs a more restorative fitness routine, which may include relaxing walks outdoors or a meditation practice, due to recent stress, chaos, or grief in your daily life. When we recognize what our individual bodies need to be healthy, we can feel confident on our own fitness journey, despite what others may be doing on theirs.

Your strength is found in your ability to recognize and honor your body’s needs during changing circumstances. Each small step you take to creating a healthy lifestyle is a success.

You may change your workouts, change your food choices, or change your mindset. You may focus on yourself at a time when you feel bombarded by the needs of others. You may change and be open to change.  After all, change is a part of nature and brings new opportunities into your life. Socrates summed it up well when he said, “The secret of change is to focus your energy, not on fighting the old, but on building the new.” During autumn, we are invited to let go of old, destructive thoughts and create new, healthy beliefs and habits. NZ Manufacturing wishes you a beautiful autumn filled with successful moments, either big or small, in your fitness journey. Let us help you reach your goals during whichever season of life you are in.

 

In peace and good health,

 

Maureen Petrasko
President and CEO
NZ Manufacturing Inc.

Strength training for recovery and prevention of concussions

It is estimated that as many as 3.8 million concussions occur in the United States annually due to sports or recreational injuries. Concussions present a serious health risk to the public. Research continues to show how damage to the brain can cause long-lasting health implications if not properly addressed. Symptoms similar to Parkinson’s, along with memory and attention-deficit issues, are often seen amongst older athletes decades after their careers end. Thankfully, rules in sports are changing and the need for serious recovery measures after a concussion are becoming common knowledge.

The Best Form of Protection is Prevention

While athletic gear has come a long way within the last few decades to help reduce the risk of head trauma, there is still more that we can do to help improve the odds. One of the very best things one can do is focus on strengthening neck muscles and the trapezius muscle, which runs along the spine and back shoulder area. In fact, studies have shown that individuals with the strongest necks are the least likely to sustain a concussion in high school sports.

Target Muscles in a Variety of Planes of Motion

The neck can move in a variety of unique patterns rotationally and laterally, so it’s critical to target these muscles through multiple different angles and movement patterns. Resistance cords provide individuals with one great solution to achieve this effectively, in addition to providing a variety of other benefits such as increased flexibility, range of motion, and cell growth.

Two simple pieces of equipment from NZ Manufacturing can help with both prevention and recovery from concussions:

The HEADSET KIT M357-MEDICORDZ® gives individuals the ability to target neck muscles to increase strength and mobility through forward and lateral flexion, extension and rotation neck exercises; while, the HEAD STRAP KIT M351KT-MEDICORDZ® stretches both the upper back and neck muscles.

Recover Optimally

After taking the necessary time to rest initially after a concussion, strength training and rehabbing the muscles surrounding and supporting the head is essential to proper recovery. Research has shown that athletes who have had one concussion are 4 to 6 times more likely to sustain a second. With careful guidance from sports medicine doctors or physical therapists, the use of resistance cords can help increase blood flow to recovering areas to support a strong, healthy comeback from a concussion and reduce the likelihood of a second occurrence

NZ Manufacturing, which has been in business for over 30 years, creates some of the highest quality resistance exercise tools used by professional sports teams, hospitals, and national organizations to help individuals stay healthy and recover more optimally. We are more than happy to answer any questions you might have or provide you with any additional information you may need. Reach us by phone at 1-800-886-6621 or fill out our online contact form today!

The Benefits of Resistance Cords for Elder Care

As the human body ages, your ability to gain strength and recover quickly becomes increasingly difficult. At the same time, your strength and ability to recover becomes even more essential to living a healthy, independent lifestyle in the later decades of your life.

The body’s strength begins to decline around the age of 40, and by age 70, muscular strength can decline by an average of 30% according to research. Sarcopenia, or the reduction in muscular strength as we age, can be greatly reduced, if not fended off, through a smart exercise regime.

Resistance cords offer one great solution for combating this issue – in addition to numerous other obstacles the human body faces as it ages. Physical therapists commonly introduce resistance cords into their training regimens when working with seniors for a number of reasons.

Benefits of Resistance Cords for the Elderly

  1. Providing a comprehensive, full-body workout to target almost all your body’s major muscle groups
  2. Boosting stamina
  3. Increasing flexibility
  4. Enhancing your range of motion
  5. Improving strength
  6. Increasing bone density and reducing the risk of osteoporosis
  7. Increasing cellular growth and proliferation
  8. Bettering brain health, which can help avoid age-related dementia
  9. Improving balance
  10. Bettering body composition and muscle mass
  11. Bettering biomarkers such as blood lipids, blood pressure, and blood glucose levels
  12. Easing the symptoms of arthritis pain
  13. Improving cognitive performance
  14. Improving connective tissues in joints
  15. Enhancing coordination and agility
  16. Helping mitigate back pain

Resistance Cords Beneficial For All Age Groups

Whether you are just looking to grow your strength or rehab an injury, resistance cords are a smart solution for gyms, physical therapists, aquatic centers, chiropractors, and sports medicine doctors to offer to their clients. They don’t place too much pressure on the body’s joints and allow someone to achieve a full body workout across various levels of ability. Resistance cords are customizable to one’s strength needs and can offer increasing levels of intensity as one continues to improve and grow stronger. They allow elderly individuals to target multiple angles and train in the very same range of motion essential to moving about in their everyday lives.

NZ Manufacturing, which has been in business since 1985, offers a wide array of resistance cords suitable to the needs of seniors. Some of our best products such as the Turfcordz® with Handles and Safety Cord and the Pool Aqua Band S300-Strechcordz® may be a great way to start if you haven’t tried resistance cords yet.

If you are interested in learning anything more about the resistance cord products NZ Manufacturing offers, you can reach out to us via phone at 1-800-886-6621 or fill out our online contact form today. We’ve been helping athletes, trainers, physical therapists and individuals of all ages use resistance cords to boost their agility and bounce back more quickly from injuries.