Friday, September 19, 2014

Ten Gym Mistakes Beginners Make

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Guilty of one these "beginner" mistakes? Hold your head up! All US Sports Online Strength and Conditioning Program exercises have full exercise descriptions, with videos and feedback to adjust weights, sets, reps, and even the entire program, so you reduce the risks of incorrect form, execution or ending up like these guys below. -Nate

  • Ten Gym Mistakes Beginners Make
    And How To Avoid Them
    Originally featured in: Men's Fitness
    Being new at the gym is awkward enough, but starting a workout program without knowing what you're doing is far worse. In our attempt to impart enlightenment for the weight-room initiate, we present 10 common mistakes you should know about -- immediately.
    Using incorrect form while bench pressing (dumbbell or barbell):
    Regardless of whom you see doing it at the gym, don't pick your feet up from the floor when you bench. Some people tell you to keep your feet up so you don't arch your back during the movement. But if you have to arch your back, you're benching way beyond your abilities. Switch to a lighter weight to ensure that your feet are always solidly planted. This will keep you from toppling off the bench and injuring yourself or others.
    Holding your breath:
    This may seem ridiculously obvious, but remember to breathe when you lift. Sometimes, when an activity is new, you concentrate so much on doing it correctly that you forget to let your body do its natural things, like breathing. The breathing pattern for lifting is to exhale on the positive phase (pushing or pulling the weight) and inhale on the negative (lowering the weight). Holding your breath can raise your blood pressure and, if you hold it long enough, cause fainting.
    Not using collars:
    Always use collars on the bars when you're working without a spotter. Everybody has a weaker side of the body, and this weakness is exaggerated in the initial phases of weight training. During a lift, the bar may begin to lean imperceptibly toward the weaker side of the body. As it tilts, the plates slide downward until they suddenly spill off the bar and the opposite side drops in a quick seesaw action-- accompanied by a loud clanging of iron. You're left standing or lying red-faced, not physically hurt, perhaps, but definitely diminished in the pectoral pecking order. Use collars.
    Fearing that you'll get too big:
    Don't ever say this in the gym, or you'll instantly be branded a gymbecile. The reality is that few people put on as much muscle as they want; most settle for a physique better than the one they started with, but hardly the one they idealize. Remember: A pound of muscle is approximately the size of a baseball, while a pound of fat is about the size of a softball. In other words, you can add plenty of lean muscle before your biceps burst through your shirt sleeves.
    Spotting incorrectly:
    Hang around a gym long enough and, sooner or later, you'll either be asked to spot or need one yourself. If you suspect you're going to need a spot, ask for it. Gym rats are always more than willing, and it's much better to ask quietly for a spot than to scream loudly for help once you're in trouble. If you're asked to spot a guy who's benching 500 pounds and you know you couldn't roll that, much less lift it, be honest and say so. To fail as a spotter and endanger someone is unforgivable.
    Trying to spot reduce:
    There's no such thing. If you have a belly, wearing a plastic suit or some sort of gizmo around your stomach as you exercise won't transform your legendary flab into equally fabulous abs. Neither will doing 20,000 crunches a day. The only way to develop and see your abs is to exercise and watch your diet. You can have the strongest abs in the world, but if they're swathed in fat, no one will ever see them.
    Starting too heavy:
    Resist the temptation to lift as much as you can the first few times in the gym, even if the smaller guy next to you is lifting more. While your muscles may be able to lift the weight, your connective tissues probably aren't ready for it. Go for high reps the first few times and gradually work your way heavier, especially in pushing exercises such as the bench press and any of the shoulder exercises.
    There's no sense in building stronger muscles without corresponding strength in the connective tissue to avoid injury. And there's no sense in trying to outlift that smaller guy if you shorten your limbs in the process.
    Playing a personal stereo too loudly:
    Wearing a personal stereo is a good idea if you don't like the music in the gym. We all know music picks up spirit and energy, but remember to keep it low. Headphones regularly emit more than 100 dBA. Sustained exposure to sounds over 85 dBA can cause temporary damage or permanent hearing loss. If you can't hear somebody speaking to you in a normal voice, turn it down. No sense becoming buff and deaf.
    Not drinking enough water:
    Your blood is 85 percent water, your brain 75 percent and your muscles 70 percent. Drink lots of it. If a muscle is dehydrated by 3 percent, it loses 10 percent of its contractile strength. Drink before you're thirsty. By the time you're conscious of thirst, you're already partially dehydrated, which can adversely affect stamina and concentration. To keep from becoming a stumbling, mumbling gym zombie, drink water. It's even calorie-free.
    Wearing a weight belt:
    Don't wear a weight belt when you're just starting out. The weight you use shouldn't be so heavy that you need a belt to lift it (if you have back problems, see a doctor before starting). Wearing a belt can cause you to develop poor lifting habits, such as not consciously tightening your abs as you lift. If you have to wear a belt, remember to loosen it between sets. A tight belt can raise blood pressure and cause ulcer-like symptoms, such as heartburn or abdominal pain. Remember, the belt is designed to help support the lower back, not act as a girdle.
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Thursday, September 18, 2014

Taylor Leads Bowie State But Virginia State Claims Three-Set Volleyball Victory

ETTRICK, Va. – Freshman Valerie Taylor (Walkersville, Md.) recorded a team-high five kills and junior Yaje Ngundam (Bowie, Md.) added three kills to go along with a team-best seven digs to lead Bowie State University but host Virginia State University claimed a three-set victory, winning by scores of 25-19, 25-12 and 25-18) on Thursday evening.

Bowie State sophomore Amy Harvey (Laurel, Md.) setup her teammates eight times while junior Alexis Fisher (Chesapeake Beach, Md.) and sophomores Alicia Grant (Edgewood, Md.) and Brooke Archer-Simpson (Bowie, Md.) added a pair of kills each for the Lady Bulldogs. Freshman Kyerra Martin (Washington, D.C.) recorded a career-best three service aces in the loss. 

Virginia State (4-3, 2-2 CIAA, 1-0 North) was led by Dierdre Carter, who had a match-high 13 kills and added two service aces, five digs and one block assist. Four other Trojans contributed four kills apiece in the sweep. The VSU duo of Miranda Bass and Diamond Simpson tallied match-high double-digit assists with 14 and 10 respectively while Imani Wood led both teams on defense, picking up a match-high 11 digs.

In terms of team stats, Bowie State ended the night with an attack percentage of -.044 compared to .207 for Virginia State. In total, the BSU Lady Bulldogs had 15 kills on 68 attacks and VSU’s Trojans accounted for 33 kills on 82 attacks.

Bowie State (1-8, 1-3 CIAA, 0-1 North) returns to action on Saturday (Sept. 20th) when it takes on Goldey-Beacom and Felician in a non-conference tri-match beginning at 2 pm on the Felician College campus. The Lady Bulldogs will play their home opener on Sunday (Sept. 21st), hosting the Hawks of Chowan University. Match time is 1 pm in BSU’s Leonidas S. James Complex (A.C. Jordan Arena).

Volleyball Box Score
Bowie State vs Virginia State
(Sep 18, 2014 at Ettrick, Va.)
1  GRANT,Alicia  11 -.273 2.0 
5  HARVEY,Amy  .500 1.0 
8  NGUNDAM,Yaje  22 -.273 3.0 
10 MARTIN,Kyerra  -.200 4.0 
11 ARCHERSIMPSON,Brooke .000 3.0 
15 TAYLOR,Valarie  .833 6.5 
2  MARTINEZ,Marissa  .000 0.0 
3  JONES,Bobbie  .000 0.5 
12 FISHER,Alexis  11 .091 3.0 
 Totals 15 18 68 -.044 11 13 28 23.0 
Set TA Pct Sideout Pct 
24 -.042 7-27  25% 
16 -.312 6-25  23% 
28 .107 12-24  50% 
     25-76  32% 
Bowie State  (0) 19 12 18   1-8, 1-4 CIAA  
Virginia State  (3) 25 25 25   4-3, 2-2 CIAA  
1  WOOD,Imani  10 -.200 11 3.0 
2  MANSEL,Miindia  .500 4.5 
3  CARTER,Dierdre  13 25 .440 15.5 
4  DARGAN,Brookie  11 .182 5.0 
11 BASS,Miranda  .000 14 2.0 
15 SMALL,Brianna  .600 4.0 
5  ROBERSON,Grand  -.111 1.0 
6  HAZOU,Adriana  -.500 7.0 
7  WILLIAMS,Brianna  .000 0.0 
8  SIMPSON,Diamond  -.500 10 1.0 
18 PULLEN,Alexsys  .375 5.0 
 Totals 33 16 82 .207 29 13 31 48.0 
Set TA Pct Sideout Pct 
13 31 .161 6-19  31% 
19 .211 6-12  50% 
11 32 .250 12-18  66% 
     24-49  48% 
   Site: Ettrick, Va. (Daniel Gymnasium)
Date: Sep 18, 2014 Attend: 93 Time: 1:30
Referees: Jerry Farrior, Quentin Hill 
Tie scores 
Lead changes