The Fitness Fixer
The Fitness Fixer

Fixing Fitness Myths

"The public has an insatiable curiosity to know everything, except which is worth knowing." - Oscar Wild

April 1 seems to be a day to notice, more than usual, if things in the news are not facts but April Fool. On other days, urban legends and other stories are still popular, sometimes more popular than what is really going on.

The observation that the Earth is flat seemed obviously true at one time until we had more information. It used to be a taught as a medical fact that the cause of epilepsy was masturbation. When I was in school, one of my medical books stated that you don't need to eat calcium since you can "get all you need from your bones." It is true that you pull calcium from your bones when you don't eat enough, although with unhealthy results.

The post Forensic Science told of two crime-science myths, often still taught in forensic books and popularized in television shows, which were never true. Following are more posts hoping to replace myth with information, so that you can get stronger and do more, without the injuries or restrictions in activity that are part of many fitness or injury rehab practices.

Feet and Ankles

Myth - You need tight shoes for support. Fact - tight shoes can deform toes and prevent healthy muscle use:
Are Your Shoes Too Tight?
and Healthy Toe Stretches.

Myth - All ankle stretches prevent sprains. Fact - Some may enhance predisposition to ankle sprains:
Unhealthy Yoga Ankles.

Myth - Following an ankle sprain, bracing must be continuous since no exercise can restore the area. Here is another way -
How To Treat Ankle Sprains and Prevent Them
No More Ankle Sprains Part II.

Dispelling Myths of Orthotics Use

Myth - Only orthotics can place your arches in neutral position. Fact - your own muscles can often do the same:
Arch Support Is Not From Shoes
Which Shoes Help Exercise, Fall Prevention, and Ankles?

Dispelling Aging Myths - That respiratory function only declines with age:

Do Breathing Exercises Work?

Dispelling Aging Myths - That you only get weaker with aging:

Getting Stronger is for Everyone
What I Learned at the Aging Conference
Better Balance by Christmas
Conference on Aging Dec 2, 2006 in Midtown New York.

Dispelling Nutrition for Exercise Myths:

That weight gain with aging is primarily lower metabolism: Metabolism - How to Lose Weight and Save Money

or that Healthy eating is difficult or expensive:
What Medical Students Told Me About Nutrition.
Myth that you must eat much protein to get muscles:
Get Muscles for Christmas

Myth that acid prevention drugs are harmless:
Stomach Acid Drugs May Increase Osteoporosis and Hip Fractures

Myth that food marked "Health Food" means it has to be healthy:
Is Your Health Food Unhealthy
and Exercise Common Sense Discipline - Turn Down Halloween Junk Food

and the myth that it's healthy for children to eat junk food:
A Little Good Exercise, a Lot of Bad Food - Overweight Still No Mystery.

Myths that only gyms and weights can improve your strength:

How to get natural exercise is in Rocky IV and Healthier Exercise,
Getting Stronger Without a Gym
Exercising With A Friend - Partner Leg Press
Don't Confuse Exercise With Real Fitness
Healthy Toe Stretches
Quick and Fun Arm and Body Strengthener
and Quick and Easy Strength and Balance Exercise.

More to come for smart, fun, healthier ways to get exercise.

Photo by Zesmerelda

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About the Author


Dr. Bookspan is an award-winning scientist whose goal is to make exercise easier and healthier.