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Fitness for Life - FAQs

GENERAL: What is the difference between cardiorespiratory endurance and aerobic capacity?

The Institute of Medicine (2012), in its report titled Physical Fitness and Health Outcomes in Youth, recommended the term cardiorespiratory endurance for use in assessing health-related fitness with youth. Consistent with that report, Corbin and colleagues (2014, p. 28) noted the following: Cardiorespiratory endurance is the recommended term for the fitness component frequently described as cardiovascular fitness, aerobic fitness, cardiorespiratory fitness, or cardiovascular endurance. Numerous terms are used to describe the component of fitness associated with functioning of the cardiovascular, respiratory, and muscular systems. However, there are subtle differences in meaning and interpretation among these different terms. For field measures,...

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GENERAL: When is the best time to do stretching exercises to improve flexibility?

The ability of your joints to move the way that they’re supposed to move is called flexibility. Long muscles and tendons allow you to have good flexibility. Stretching, using the types of static stretches and PNF stretches described in the text, is the best way to stretch muscles and tendons and improve flexibility. The best time to do your stretching is when the muscles are warm. Many experts recommend that you do your stretching program after you have done a general warm-up or, even better, after you have been exercising for at least 10 minutes. Warm muscles stretch more easily...

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GENERAL: Why do you need physical activity?

There are many reasons we need physical activity, including these: It is good for your health. Physical activity helps prevent health conditions such as heart disease, diabetes, and cancer. It helps build the bones and can help prevent back problems and injury. It helps you look your best by building muscle and maintaining a healthy level of fat in the body. It helps you enjoy life and have fun. It can be a good way to meet other people and to work with others.

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GENERAL: Why does the textbook sometimes use FITT and other times use FIT?

The acronym FITT is used to help you remember the formula for how much physical activity you need to perform to build fitness and health. The F stands for frequency. The I stands for intensity. The first T stands for time. The final T stands for type of activity or exercise. Once you decide which type of activity you plan to do (such as moderate lifestyle activity, active aerobics, active sports and recreation, flexibility exercises, or muscle fitness exercises) you need only use FIT because the type of activity has already been determined (one of the five types listed in...

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GENERAL: You sometimes use the word exercise and sometimes use physical activity. Aren’t these two the same thing?

The terms exercise and physical activity have very similar meanings. However, experts now agree that physical activity is a term that has a much broader meaning than the word exercise. Physical activity includes many types of activity, such as exercise, sports, dance, recreational activities, and lifestyle activities. Exercise is one type of physical activity that is primarily used to build physical fitness. For example, muscle fitness exercises are referred to as exercises because they are designed especially for building muscle fitness. These and other exercises (such as flexibility exercises) are types of physical activity but are also considered exercise. Sports...

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