Flexibility Experiment, Part 4: Q&A with Anne Tierney from Innovative Body Solutions

Published September 11, 2009 in Physical Performance - 4 Comments

I have been doing the Resistance Stretching exercises daily for one week now. This method of stretching took some getting used to and I had difficulties with some aspects of the exercises. Luckily, when I contacted Anne Tierney, a Resistance Stretching expert, she generously gave me input and advice. Anne uses and teaches a branch of Resistance Stretching called Ki-Hara, and together with Steven Sierra, she has trained numerous top athletes. Here are a few of my questions about Resistance Stretching answered by Anne:
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Bad Science by Ben Goldacre: You Must Read It

Published September 8, 2009 in Books - 4 Comments

Bad Science cover

Bad Science is essentially about what it says on the cover.  In it, Ben Goldacre, a Doctor and columnist for The Guardian, rails against the horrible misinterpretation of scientific studies often found in newspapers and TV-shows, makes fun of nutritionists and some of their silly claims and rants about misleading and unfounded health-scares, among other things. In all this, he is not just informative and thorough, but also very funny. Bad Science is a book that I could hardly put down, it was so interesting and so much fun to read.
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Mistaken Expectations, Wrong Predictions

Published September 6, 2009 in Psychology and Mind Hacks - 0 Comments

How do you decide what restaurant to go to, which movie to see, what pants to wear today? And what about big and important decisions like what career-path to choose, where to settle down and buy a house or whether to have kids or not? To some extent every decision we make is based on predictions. We imagine what an evening at one restaurant would be like versus an evening at a different one and make our desicion based on where we imagine we will have more fun, get better food and other criteria.

Interestingly, there are some systematic mistakes we tend to make when we imagine such future events and this can lead us to making bad decisions. Dan Gilbert is a psychology professor and the author of Stumbling on Happiness, a book that I am currently reading and might have to add to my list of recommended books soon. Watch the video below to see Dan Gilbert talk about how we make decisions and where we go wrong. The video is very much worth seeing, not just for it’s interesting content but also because of Gilbert’s wit and charismatic delivery.

If you enjoyed this and want more, you can watch another TED-talk by Dan Gilbert here (what makes us happy?) or visit his website.

Flexibility Experiment, Part 3: Method and Benchmarks

Published September 4, 2009 in Physical Performance - 1 Comments

(Total reading time: <3 minutes)

After illustrating my issues with common stretching exercises (they don’t work) in the first part of this series and introducing the new method I will experiment with (Resistance Stretching) in the second part, it is now time to lay out how I will test the new stretching method and how I will measure it’s effects (or lack thereof).
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Flexibility Experiment, Part 2: Introducing Resistance Stretching

Published September 3, 2009 in Physical Performance - 3 Comments

Photo by Sir_Robin12

(Total reading time: 5 minutes)

There are two names most widely associated with Resistance Stretching: Bob Cooley and Dara Torres. Bob Cooley is the guy who came up with the technique of Resistance Stretching and Dara Torres, the famed American Olympic swimmer, is arguably the one person who gave it the best PR. According to Torres, Resistance Stretching played an important role in her training and she claims it improved her swimming performance (see this interview). She has even said that Resistance Stretching was her “secret weapon”, implying that it played a very important part in her training.
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Flexibility Experiment, Part 1: The Problem with Stretching Exercises

Published September 1, 2009 in Physical Performance - 4 Comments

Photo by Piez

(Total reading time: 4 Minutes.)

I have practiced different styles of martial arts for most of my life and I’ve been a martial arts instructor since 2000. Part of the training regimen of every style I’ve ever practiced was stretching. In all these years of training, I have never become as flexible as I would like to be, so I decided to do a stretching experiment on myself and see if I can learn something new.

What you Expect vs. What you Get

A long, long time ago, when I first started stretching regularly, I knew practically nothing about it, but had certain expectations none the less. I imagined that stretching regularly would make me more and more flexible. Simple enough, right?
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Task-Managing Series, Part 1: Introduction to a Self-Experiment

Published August 29, 2009 in Self-Organization - 1 Comments

Usually, this is where I would write an introduction on how effective task-management is becoming more and more important in this information-age etc. etc. I hope you don’t mind if I get right to the point, instead.

Goal of the Experiment

I will test out a few different methods of task-management, centred around task-lists or to-do-lists. The objective is to find an optimal method for keeping track of all the relevant tasks in my life. With any kind of task-management, it’s important to find a good balance: A system that leads me to excessive micro-management and distracts me from the big picture is just as useless as one that keeps me focused only on the larger tasks, letting me forget the smaller, maybe mundane but nonetheless important tasks.
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