Category Archives: Learning

Looking for a Low-Impact Workout? Try Battle Rope Training

by on July 28, 2014

by Christopher Nash, PJCC Personal Trainer

Kevin, a fit software engineer, wanted to pursue cardio training. However, the 50-year old was concerned that running would be hard on his already-bad knees, the collateral damage of a 30-year love for soccer. He had also had a hip replaced the previous year. When Kevin asked me about cardio alternatives to running, I shared several workout options, including a little-known fitness routine called Battle Ropes.

Originally developed for specific sports such as football and martial arts, Battle Rope training is a highly effective, back-to-basics type of conditioning that is “roping in” fans with its new twist to standard workouts. The rope is used as a tool that manipulates the user’s body weight while providing a safe and very intense low-impact workout. Using a thick, sturdy rope approximately 50 feet in length, the constant whipping motion helps tone muscles while increasing endurance and upper-body strength. Done correctly, a Battle Rope workout:

    • Burns calories and tones muscle
    • Simultaneous combines core, cardio and strength training
    • Cultivates flexibility, posture correction, and stamina

As I coached Kevin through typical battle rope movements, he noticed that within ten short minutes he was sweating. A lot. His feet weren’t even moving and yet his entire body was fully engaged, every muscle feeling as if he’d just ran five miles on the treadmill. After a 30-minute workout, he said, “I’ve never felt my body work this way, like every muscle was hit.” He was delighted to find an effective solution to his fitness limitations.

Battle Rope Training, along with other types of new body weight manipulation workout tools, revolves around scientific facts that are changing the way the fitness industry perceive fitness training. Physical limitations need not exclude exercise. Talk to a fitness instructor and share any concerns you may have. With the right tools, coaching, and guidance, you can meet and even exceed your fitness needs.

Don’t Let Go Of Hope

by on July 24, 2014

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As the violence in Israel and Gaza continues to escalate and claims more victims, the pain I feel is palpable.

My heart aches for the IDF soldiers killed in action, and for the Israeli civilians who suffer an endless torrent of rockets fired at their homes and their children. My heart aches as well for the innocent civilians of Gaza who are killed or wounded, caught as they are in a deepening web of warfare. My guess is that many of you feel this same way. My guess is, too, that the majority of Israelis and Palestinians share the common wish that their children grow up to thrive in the sunshine, without fear of rocket and mortar fire. At the very least, I need to believe that.

And yet, I and so many others are falling into a malaise of hopelessness. In the words of Israeli author David Grossman, it is a malaise that submits that “anyone who still hopes, who still believes in the possibility of peace, is at best naïve or a deluded dreamer…”

Still, hope is not just a powerful necessity; it is our best – perhaps only – weapon. We who watch the unfolding of violence from a distance, no matter our politics, need to hang on to hope with every ounce of our strength. We need to nurture the hope that peace will come – that sooner or later politicians and military leaders will realize that peace is the only way. We must believe that peace will break forth seeded by vision, courage, and the will to create a new, affirmative reality in the Middle East.

If we are to hold-onto-for-dear-life this dream of peace, as I believe we must, we might begin with ourselves. Let us not just hope for peace, but become peace. We can learn to speak to each other authentically and kindly; we can act toward others, especially those difficult people in our lives, with kindness and concord. We can, as Jewish tradition instructs us, “seek peace and pursue it.”

And in the meantime, we can hope and pray for peace in Israel and Gaza, and all the places across the globe where mistrust, hate, and violence have taken root.

Let peace fill the earth as waters fill the sea.

Monkey See, Monkey Do — How Behavioral Modeling Influences Health

by on July 1, 2014

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My 2-year-old granddaughter seemed to welcome her newborn baby sister with bland indifference. I observed her as she played with her blocks and other toys and did not appear to be perturbed by the presence of a new member in her family. After she had dinner, I was surprised when she set out deliberately for the couch, wrapped her mother’s pillow around her lap, lifted her shirt, and clutched her bear to her chest. It was dinner time for her bear! While it was fun to watch her precise imitation of breast feeding, it made me stop and wonder how we as adults subconsciously follow patterns of behavior that may not reach our cognitive awareness. Continue reading

Welcoming The Shadow: Dealing With Negative Self Talk

by on June 25, 2014

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“When we were one or two years old we had what we might visualize as a 360-degree personality. Energy radiated out from all parts of our psyche… But one day we noticed that our parents didn’t like certain parts of that ball of energy that we were. They said things like, “Can’t you be still?” or “It isn’t nice to try and kill your brother.” Behind us we have an invisible bag, and the part of us that our parents don’t appreciate we, to keep our parents love, put in the bag. By the time we go to school the bag is quite large. Then our teachers have their say: “Good children don’t get angry over such little things.” So we take our anger and put it in the bag. By high school it is our peers whose opinion we value sufficiently to stuff more parts Continue reading

HIV Awareness: HIV Testing Day is June 27

by on June 3, 2014

HIV-625My twin daughters were born in August of 1981, just two months after a publication from the CDC reported the first cases of a rare lung infection that eventually led to what became known as the AIDS epidemic. Because they were very premature, my newborn daughters required numerous blood transfusions from Irwin Memorial Blood Bank in San Francisco. One daughter received over 40 different transfusions. In 1985, the FDA approved the first blood test to detect HIV antibodies in the blood, and blood banks began their first screening of their blood supply. It was shortly thereafter that my wife and I received a letter from the Continue reading

Summer Fun Safety Tips

by on May 27, 2014

smiley-pool-girl-625by Seth Hazen, PJCC Aquatics Manager

Here are my top 5 tips for both keeping safe in the sun and at the pool.

With summer fast approaching this is a great time to start preparing for fun in the sun!

SUN SAFETY
1. The sun’s UV rays are strongest from 10:00 am – 4:00 pm during the day. Make sure if you are out in the sun during this time period you take frequent breaks to relax in the shade and allow your skin a break from direct sunlight. If you don’t have access to shade, don’t be caught without a shirt! Even blocking the rays with a shirt will give you a much needed Continue reading

For Children, Learning Is Just A Day At The Beach

by on May 20, 2014

child-beach-625by Lisa Elliott, ECE Program Coordinator

A Foundation of Preschool Learning: Water, Sand, Clay, Paint, and Blocks

In a society of over-scheduled kids, the expectation of building your scholastic resume early, and so on, childrens’ play time can seem like a waste of time. What are they accomplishing? How will this add to their academic success? What are they learning? Turns out, they are learning a lot! Continue reading

Moby Dick: A Legendary Tale Of Poor Workplace Safety

by on May 6, 2014

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Captain Ahab is on a mission to avenge the loss of his leg.  Over the course of a year, his crew hunts sperm whales and harvests the oil in huge barrels in the hold of his ship Pequod.  The ship travels all over the world and finally ends up in the equator in the Pacific Ocean, Moby Dick’s home area.  Despite many bad omens, including breaking of navigation instruments and a typhoon, Ahab is determined to pursue the great white whale.  Moby Dick eventually attacks the Pequod, and even while the ship is sinking, Ahab tries to throw his harpoon at the whale.  Instead, the harpoon rope strangles Ahab and leads to his drowning.  All of the crew die except the Ishmael, the narrator.   In short, Ahab and his crew suffered workplace injuries.

Let’s see what we can learn from this story in terms of workplace safety.  These are the elements of worker safety to explore:
1.  The environment
2.  The worker
3.  Extenuating circumstances Continue reading

Doggy Diets: Foods To Avoid & Biscuit Recipe

by on May 2, 2014

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These days our pets have it pretty good.  They have their own restaurants, beauty parlors, play dates, and hotels!  But as much time as we devote to them, sometimes we don’t put enough thought into their food choices. We think we are showing love for them by letting them eat certain human foods when many of those foods may cause them harm. Being aware of the types of foods that aren’t good for our canine will help to keep them fit and healthy.

To make sure Fido is eating right, the ASPCA recommends avoiding the  following foods in your dogs diet:

  • Avocado (persin can be toxic)
  • Alcohol
  • Macadamia Nuts (as few as 6 nuts can be fatal)
  • Grapes and raisins (can cause kidney failure)
  • Yeast dough (can rise and swell in the dogs abdomen)
  • Raw Eggs (can cause food poisoning or skin problems)
  • Raw Meat and Fish (food poisoning)
  • Candy and Gum (the ingredient Xylitol can make your dog sick)
  • Onions, chives and garlic (can cause anemia)
  • Coffee, tea, or caffeine (dogs can get caffeine poisoning)
  • Milk and other dairy products (too much can cause diarrhea)
  • Salt (large amounts)
  • Chocolate
  • Human medicines should also be avoided unless prescribed by your veterinarian

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Passover Fun Facts

by on April 12, 2014

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Are you hungry for facts and stories about Passover? Here is some interesting information you might enjoy and ponder.

The Burning Bush
We learn in the Passover story that Moses experiences a holy moment with God when he notices a burning bush in the desert. Many historians and scientists indicate that in ancient times, desert brush would catch on fire, spontaneously, quite regularly. This miracle of the burning bush was most likely not that fact that it was burning, but that it was burning without being consumed. This strikes me as a good lesson about the power of observation – sometimes things that seem quite ordinary, are in fact, anything but, and offer us extraordinary opportunities for holiness, and in Moses’ case, finding our destiny.

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