In this podcast I interview leaders in the field of exercise prescription. I talk to prominent researchers who investigate how exercise can improve different aspects of quality of life in different populations and clinical groups. Our conversations cover several topics. For example, we discuss what type of exercise is the best to improve brain health and reduce age related cognitive decline or how can we use exercise to ensure an optimal development in children and mobility and quality of life in people with neurological and neurodegenerative clinical conditions.
Exercise to reduce body fat and metabolic risk with Dr. Robert Ross
In this episode, we talked with Dr. Robert Ross, who is a Professor in the School of Kinesiology at Queen’s University (Canada). His research is focused on the development and testing of lifestyle-based interventions designed to manage obesity and related health risks. We speak with him about the use of exercise to reduce body weight and cardiometabolic risk factors such as abdominal fat and insulin resistance. We start by discussing the different types of fat in our body and why they pose different risk to our health. We then discuss the evidence that supports the use of exercise alone, or in combination with caloric restriction diet, as intervention to manage overweight and obesity. We talk about the parameters of exercise that can drive a positive change and discuss whether some types of exercise could be more effective than others. We also discuss why exercise, even if it does not lead to weight loss is still beneficial. Lots of useful information in this conversation. During our talk Dr. Ross mentions a website that allows you to estimate your cardiorespiratory fitness. Give it a try: https://www.worldfitnesslevel.org/#/
Exercise to combat addictions with Dr. Ana Abrantes
In this episode, we talk with Dr. Ana Abrantes, who is a Professor of Psychiatry and Human Behavior at Brown University. Her research is focused on the development and testing of novel interventions for decreasing relapse risk among individuals with alcohol and other drug abuse problems. She also conducts research in the area of physical activity promotion for individuals with substance abuse and mental health disorders. We speak with her about how exercise can help in the management of different types of addictions. We start by trying to understand addictions and how we diagnose them clinically. We discuss the evidence that supports the use of exercise as an intervention to manage different addictions. We talk about what types of addictions could be more susceptible to benefit from exercise, the potential mechanisms underlying the positive effect, and whether some types of exercise could be more effective than others. You can follow Dr. Ana Abrantes on twitter at @ana_m_abrantes
Exercising in the space with Dr. Lori Ploutz-Snyder
In this episode we spoke with Dr. Lori Ploutz-snyder about how to exercise during spaceflight missions. Dr. Ploutz-snyder is a professor of Movement Science and the Dean of the University of Michigan School of Kinesiology. Previously, she was the Lead Scientist for the Exercise Physiology and Countermeasures Project at the NASA Johnson Space Center in Houston. Her research focuses on studying how to counteract the negative effects of unloading on muscle and bone physiology that occur during spaceflights and how to use this information to create countermeasures to protect the well-being of astronauts. During our conversation we talk about how and why our bodies change during spaceflights, how long these changes last after space missions and if some of these changes can be irreversible. We talk about using exercise as a countermeasure to maintain the health of crew members during these long-term missions and the main challenges that we encounter when we need to design training interventions for people while they are in the space. This and much more in a fascinating conversation that I hope you will enjoy. Dr. Ploutz-snyder's research can be followed at https://www.kines.umich.edu/directory/lori-ploutz-snyder.
Physical activity and exercise after concussion in children and adolescents with Dr. Isabelle Gagnon
In this episode, I talked to Dr. Isabelle Gagnon, who is an Associate Professor in the School of Physical and Occupation Therapy at McGill University, in Montreal, Canada. She is an expert in the study of concussion in children and adolescents and, the use of exercise as a potential intervention to reduce post-concussion symptoms. We start this episode talking about how frequent concussions are, how it is diagnosed, and the most common signs and symptoms. We also talk about why, in some cases, post-concussion symptoms are persistent and are difficult to get rid of including the psychological component of this type of event. We discuss if exercise can be used as a rehabilitation tool, how early can exercise be introduced after the concussion and if it really matters at all. This episode is interesting because it shows the bad and the good of exercise. Concussions tend to happen during exercise, symptoms post-concussion can be triggered with exercise, but we can potentially use exercise to reduce the persistent symptoms of concussion in some individuals. You can follow Isabelle's work at: https://www.mcgill.ca/spot/isabelle-gagnon
High intensity interval training with Dr. Martin Gibala
In this episode I talked to Dr. Martin Gibala, who is a Professor in the department of Kinesiology at McMaster University in Ontario (Canada). He is a world renown scientist who has done pioneering work to understand the physiological effects of interval training in general and, more specifically, high intensity interval training (HIIT). HIIT is a very time efficient type of training that is characterized by short bouts of high intensity exercise combined with short periods of complete rest or active recovery. We start talking about how time efficient really this type of training is. We also talk about recent studies showing that, even very short sessions of HIIT involving only three bouts of exercise of 20 seconds, can trigger very strong physiological adaptations. We discuss the mechanisms behind HIIT and whether this type of exercise could be a viable alternative to more traditional types of training. Dr. Gibala is the author of the book: The one minute workout. You can follow his research at https://martingibala.com or on twitter https://twitter.com/gibalam.
Exercise in autism spectrum disorder with David Geslak
Autism is one of the fastest-growing diagnosed developmental disabilities in the world. In this episode, I interviewed David Geslak. David is an American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) Certified Exercise Physiologist and the founder of Exercise Connection, a great initiative that aims to create exercise tools and programs to engage and improve the lives of those with autism. David also created the Autism Exercise Specialist Certificate (AESC), a program sponsored by the ACSM, to educate those interested in using exercise for people with autism. Our conversation is precisely about exercise in this population. We start talking about how David started to work in this field and how exercise can help these individuals. We talk about the use of different types of exercise, the importance of creating a relationship, a connection, with the person with autism, the use of visual cues, the impact of medications and many more other things. I hope you enjoy this episode as much as I did. Learn more about David and Exercise Connection at http://www.exerciseconnection.com.