Each subculture uses its terminology to describe its way of living. It is the same for health and fitness. Some years ago, extreme fitness enthusiasts would only have understood the logic of complaining about the HIIT in your WOD at the local box. We now know that CrossFit is a high-intensity interval training program. WOD stands for Workout of the Day.
You’ve likely heard of certain terms in the fitness industry, whether you’re new or an old hand at it. These are the most common fitness terms, along with brief explanations of their science.
10 Fitness Terminologies
Burning is often used to describe the sensation of fatigue caused by muscle accumulations of metabolic waste. Acidosis refers to a change in blood pH, specifically elevated levels of lactic acids and hydrogen ions. This is usually caused by moderate-to-high-intensity exercise. A burning sensation in the muscle characterizes acidosis. It is also an indication that the body needs to rest for the necessary time to eliminate metabolic waste from working muscles and replenish nutrients.
Cardiorespiratory, or cardiorespiratory exercise, is an acronym that stands for cardiorespiratory exercise. It refers to any exercise that raises the heart rate to pump oxygen and nutrients to the muscles. Cardiorespiratory benefits are most often associated with exercise on stationary bikes, treadmills, and elliptical runners. However, any exercise that raises your heart rate can have cardiorespiratory benefits. Cardiorespiratory exercises can include circuit training using free weights and performing an AMRAP (as many as possible of a specific circuit quickly).
This is one of the most overused and popular fitness terms in recent years. There are many fitness classes, programs and equipment that can provide core training benefits. The muscles in the middle of the body are known as the “core”, which includes the six-pack and the muscles that make up the stomach. It is more efficient to view the body’s core as the centre for gravity and not a specific set of muscles. Let’s consider how our bodies function during upright movements such as walking, lifting objects off the ground, or moving them around. We must also consider the fact that any muscle attached to the spine, pelvis, or rib cage can influence movement around the body’s centre of gravity.
High-intensity Interval Training (HIIT),
Previous blogs have been written about the many benefits of HIIT. Because it’s often used to describe exercise done at maximum intensity, this term made it to the list. It is important to keep in mind that intensity can vary from one person to another. For example, some low-intensity exercise may be deemed high, while others may find it too boring.
Walking for just a few minutes per day could be considered high intensity for those with a history of a chronic medical condition limiting their ability to exercise.
Metabolic conditioning, which is similar to HIIT and HIIT, refers to high-intensity exercise that causes muscle soreness or out of breath. This is why the term metabolic conditioning should be rescinded. Metabolism refers to the chemical process that a biological organism uses to produce energy for muscle contraction. This means that any exercise that requires muscle contraction (which itself requires energy) can be considered metabolic conditioning. After reading this post, standing up requires that your metabolism fuels your muscles. It is better to describe the effort required to complete the activity (low-intensity to moderate intensity, high-intensity to maximal intensity).
The term “general mode of exercise” is often used to refer to yoga and Pilates. They are performed with bodyweight, except for Pilates programs that use equipment like a barrel or reformer and require concentration to perform challenging movements. It is important to remember that any movement must be done with conscious effort, no matter how simple or complex. Any physical activity that requires learning and executing movement patterns, regardless of how simple, should be considered mind-body.
Popular consumer-oriented fitness programs claim to be based on the science of muscle confusion. This term is simply a marketing term that describes the physiological effect of periodization. Periodization is a way of organizing exercise programs with alternating levels of intensity. Soviet Union sports scientists developed the concept of periodization. They recognized that high-intensity exercise (high-stress) should be followed with a period of low-intensity exercise (low stress). This allows the body to recover fully from the workouts and allows for physiological adaptations to take place.
Plyometrics is a shorthand for plyometrics. The aetiology behind the term ‘plyo’ is that pleio is a prefix for “more” while metric refers to length. Therefore, plyometrics means “more length”. This refers to the physiological effect of the involved muscles during jump training (the main application for the lower body) or explosive movements like medicine ball throws (often used in upper-body, plyometric training).
Soviet scientists were the first to develop plyometric training. They originally called it “shock training” due to the high force exerted on the tissue. To achieve maximum force output, it is important to only do a few repetitions at once. Programs that require participants to perform more than six quick movements (i.e. jumps or explosive lifts) can increase injury risk by applying too much force to the tissue.
Tabata is a name for a variety of classes and programs that are designed to improve your fitness. Dr Izumi Tabata, a Japanese exercise scientist, conducted research twenty years ago to find ways to increase aerobic capacity through short, intense intervals of high-intensity exercise. The researchers found that cycling at 170% aerobic capacity for 20 seconds with a short recovery interval of 10 seconds and a work interval lasting 20 seconds was highly effective in increasing aerobic capacity. This process was repeated until exhaustion. Dr Tabata’s study was published in 1997. Since then, the name of Dr Tabata has been used to refer to a protocol for high-intensity interval training that consists of 20-second work intervals followed by 10-second recovery intervals. This is eight cycles total.
Most people will answer the question “tone up and get fit” when asked about their fitness goals. The technical term tone is shorthand for tonus. It is used to describe a condition of muscle contraction that is normal in functioning muscles. A muscle will become semi-contracted if it is used repeatedly in strength training exercises. This gives the muscle the defined appearance that we are accustomed to from exercise.