The merits of rowing machines

Written by Ian Wide

One ofrepparttar fastest growing sports around is indoor rowing. Whether its for competitive reasons or fitness reasons or both,repparttar 140057 advantages of indoor rowing are clear. You are indoors. You probably havenít had to travel more than a few yards from one room of your house to another. Itís convenient, location wise and you can make it fit your lifestyle. It is a simple thing to schedule an impromptu 30-minute session on your rowing machine. The alternatives to home indoor rowing are obviously outdoor rowing and a trip down torepparttar 140058 local gym. The saving in time and effort owning your own machine is clear. If you are lucky enough to haverepparttar 140059 space in your dwelling for a rowing machine, then takerepparttar 140060 opportunity to exercise whenever you like.

The ideal location for your rowing machine is a room with plenty of ventilation, so you can getrepparttar 140061 big lungfuls of oxygen forrepparttar 140062 final push atrepparttar 140063 end of your rowing session. Also, a room that doubles as a home gym will need plenty of airing, especially after you have had a vigorous workout. An ideal room to house a rowing machine is an attic room with velux windows. Its out ofrepparttar 140064 way, sorepparttar 140065 machine doesnít impact on everyday life. Most machines are self-assembly so you can take it up there and assemble on site as it where. The machine is then out of way and you can enjoy your indoor row without distraction or interference from others.

Creatine: More than a sports nutrition supplement

Written by Will Brink

Copyright 2005 Internet Publications

Although creatine offers an array of benefits, most people think of it simply as a supplement that bodybuilders and other athletes use to gain strength and muscle mass. Nothing could be further fromrepparttar truth.

A substantial body of research has found that creatine may have a wide variety of uses. In fact, creatine is being studied as a supplement that may help with diseases affectingrepparttar 140032 neuromuscular system, such as muscular dystrophy (MD).

Recent studies suggest creatine may have therapeutic applications in aging populations for wasting syndromes, muscle atrophy, fatigue, gyrate atrophy, Parkinson's disease, Huntington's disease and other brain pathologies. Several studies have shown creatine can reduce cholesterol by up to 15% and it has been used to correct certain inborn errors of metabolism, such as in people born withoutrepparttar 140033 enzyme(s) responsible for making creatine.

Some studies have found that creatine may increase growth hormone production.

What is creatine?

Creatine is formed inrepparttar 140034 human body fromrepparttar 140035 amino acids methionine, glycine and arginine. The average person's body contains approximately 120 grams of creatine stored as creatine phosphate. Certain foods such as beef, herring and salmon, are fairly high in creatine.

However, a person would have to eat pounds of these foods daily to equal what can be obtained in one teaspoon of powdered creatine.

Creatine is directly related to adenosine triphosphate (ATP). ATP is formed inrepparttar 140036 powerhouses ofrepparttar 140037 cell,repparttar 140038 mitochondria. ATP is often referred to asrepparttar 140039 "universal energy molecule" used by every cell in our bodies. An increase in oxidative stress coupled with a cell's inability to produce essential energy molecules such as ATP, is a hallmark ofrepparttar 140040 aging cell and is found in many disease states.

Key factors in maintaining health arerepparttar 140041 ability to: (a) prevent mitochondrial damage to DNA caused by reactive oxygen species (ROS) and (b) preventrepparttar 140042 decline in ATP synthesis, which reduces whole body ATP levels. It would appear that maintaining antioxidant status (in particular intra-cellular glutathione) and ATP levels are essential in fightingrepparttar 140043 aging process.

It is interesting to note that many ofrepparttar 140044 most promising anti-aging nutrients such as CoQ10, NAD, acetyl-l-carnitine and lipoic acid are all taken to maintainrepparttar 140045 ability ofrepparttar 140046 mitochondria to produce high energy compounds such as ATP and reduce oxidative stress.

The ability of a cell to do work is directly related to its ATP status andrepparttar 140047 health ofrepparttar 140048 mitochondria. Heart tissue, neurons inrepparttar 140049 brain and other highly active tissues are very sensitive to this system. Even small changes in ATP can have profound effects onrepparttar 140050 tissues' ability to function properly.

Of allrepparttar 140051 nutritional supplements available to us currently, creatine appears to berepparttar 140052 most effective for maintaining or raising ATP levels.

How does creatine work?

In a nutshell, creatine works to help generate energy. When ATP loses a phosphate molecule and becomes adenosine diphosphate (ADP), it must be converted back to ATP to produce energy. Creatine is stored inrepparttar 140053 human body as creatine phosphate (CP) also called phosphocreatine.

When ATP is depleted, it can be recharged by CP. That is, CP donates a phosphate molecule torepparttar 140054 ADP, making it ATP again. An increased pool of CP means faster and greater recharging of ATP, which means more work can be performed.

This is why creatine has been so successful for athletes. For short-duration explosive sports, such as sprinting, weight lifting and other anaerobic endeavors, ATP isrepparttar 140055 energy system used.

To date, research has shown that ingesting creatine can increaserepparttar 140056 total body pool of CP which leads to greater generation of energy for anaerobic forms of exercise, such as weight training and sprinting. Other effects of creatine may be increases in protein synthesis and increased cell hydration.

Creatine has had spotty results in affecting performance in endurance sports such as swimming, rowing and long distance running, with some studies showing no positive effects on performance in endurance athletes.

Whether or notrepparttar 140057 failure of creatine to improve performance in endurance athletes was due torepparttar 140058 nature ofrepparttar 140059 sport orrepparttar 140060 design ofrepparttar 140061 studies is still being debated.

Creatine can be found inrepparttar 140062 form of creatine monohydrate, creatine citrate, creatine phosphate, creatine-magnesium chelate and even liquid versions.

However,repparttar 140063 vast majority of research to date showing creatine to have positive effects on pathologies, muscle mass and performance usedrepparttar 140064 monohydrate form. Creatine monohydrate is over 90% absorbable. What follows is a review of some ofrepparttar 140065 more interesting and promising research studies with creatine.

Creatine and neuromuscular diseases

One ofrepparttar 140066 most promising areas of research with creatine is its effect on neuromuscular diseases such as MD. One study looked atrepparttar 140067 safety and efficacy of creatine monohydrate in various types of muscular dystrophies using a double blind, crossover trial.

Thirty-six patients (12 patients with facioscapulohumeral dystrophy, 10 patients with Becker dystrophy, eight patients with Duchenne dystrophy and six patients with sarcoglycan-deficient limb girdle muscular dystrophy) were randomized to receive creatine or placebo for eight weeks.

The researchers found there was a "mild but significant improvement" in muscle strength in all groups. The study also found a general improvement inrepparttar 140068 patients' daily-life activities as demonstrated by improved scores inrepparttar 140069 Medical Research Council scales andrepparttar 140070 Neuromuscular Symptom scale. Creatine was well tolerated throughoutrepparttar 140071 study period, according torepparttar 140072 researchers.1

Another group of researchers fed creatine monohydrate to people with neuromuscular disease at 10 grams per day for five days, then reducedrepparttar 140073 dose to 5 grams per day for five days.

The first study used 81 people and was followed by a single-blinded study of 21 people.

In both studies, body weight, handgrip, dorsiflexion and knee extensor strength were measured before and after treatment. The researchers found "Creatine administration increased all measured indices in both studies." Short-term creatine monohydrate increased high-intensity strength significantly in patients with neuromuscular disease.2

There have also been many clinical observations by physicians that creatine improvesrepparttar 140074 strength, functionality and symptomology of people with various diseases ofrepparttar 140075 neuromuscular system.

Creatine and neurological protection/brain injury

If there is one place creatine really shines, it's in protectingrepparttar 140076 brain from various forms of neurological injury and stress. A growing number of studies have found that creatine can protectrepparttar 140077 brain from neurotoxic agents, certain forms of injury and other insults.

Several in vitro studies found that neurons exposed to either glutamate or beta-amyloid (both highly toxic to neurons and involved in various neurological diseases) were protected when exposed to creatine.3 The researchers hypothesized that "? cells supplemented withrepparttar 140078 precursor creatine make more phosphocreatine (PCr) and create larger energy reserves with consequent neuroprotection against stressors."

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