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Old 11-29-2006, 12:18 PM   #11
Steven Low
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Thomas:

I would disagree that isometrics aren't good in building dynamic strength movements. Take, for example, exercises like planches and iron crosses. They sure as hell are going to give me increased strength to do more handstand pushups or weighted pullups respectively. They obviously aren't going to give you that CNS adaption and motor coordination strength that is a major component of strength in specific movements, but they WILL increase the strength of your muscles so that you can improve in similar muscle-using dynamic movements. People also hold heavy bench presses and other things near lockout to increase their strength in those particular positions which will help with dynamic movements.

Other than that though I would agree with you mainly.

And Mike made a solid post!
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Old 11-29-2006, 12:48 PM   #12
Becca Borawski
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Yael: "You're not allowed to spend more than 30 seconds on each machine, and only 2 circuits, three days a week, so there's only so much you can do. "

You can actually go as many circuits in a row as you want, two is the recommended number. And it's an unlimited membership, so you can go every day if you like. You are doing the exact same exercises in the exact same ratios every day though. Although I've seen some people go around the opposite direction in the circuit or skip around, if it's not crowded, to get a little variety.

A few years ago, before I discovered CrossFit, I went to Curves for a while. I knew absolutely nothing about strength & conditioning training, except that I wanted some. I didn't have a clue how to lift weights, use a machine, or anything. I'd been doing martial arts for years, but never any resistance training. I didn't really care about the "women only" thing at all, but liked the idea of resistance and cardio in a circuit and an efficient workout (Hmmm..).

It was my experience at Curves, that most women there aren't really working out terribly hard at all. Some of them came in normal street clothes and barely even looked like they broke a sweat. Other women seemed to have real goals and worked very hard. But overall it seemed a very Weight Watchers yo-yo-diet culture.

The quality of the gyms also really varies - some instructors get really involved and give people all sorts of ideas on what to do on the mats in between machines, take regular measurements, etc. Others never come out of the office and don't give much instruction on the machines either.

I think every woman at Curves would be better served doing CrossFit, modified to their needs and issues. The likelihood of convincing those women of that seems a tough prospect, though. Curves, like so many gyms, is an excellent place for people who SAY they want to change to attend and coast through.

That being said - I used to see some older women in there on a regular basis, and I always thought it was great that they were MOVING and taking an active role in their health, even if it wasn't the most optimal outlet. So it's not all bad or all good.

I outgrew Curves really quickly -- the hydraulic systems are only useful to a point and then they can be overpowered. Somewhere about the time where I slammed the military press machine into the wall behind me during a set I realized maybe I ought to look elsewhere. ;)
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Old 11-29-2006, 01:54 PM   #13
Lincoln Brigham
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The difference between Curves and Crossfit is the difference between wanting to own a gym membership and wanting to workout.
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Old 11-29-2006, 05:50 PM   #14
Mike ODonnell
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"And Mike made a solid post!"

Steven...why so surprised??? lol
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Old 11-29-2006, 08:32 PM   #15
Steven Low
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Haha, I was just exclaiming. I wasn't actually suprised. :-)
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Old 11-29-2006, 11:50 PM   #16
Erik Davis
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There are women who are intimidated by working out in a mainstream gym, much less doing the WOD. I mean, some of these people have never played a sport or lifted a weight in their life. And not everybody has the same fitness/lifestyle goals. There are people who are not willing to put any more effort into their fitness than 3x30 minutes a week of lame machines. Is there something wrong with that?

I think alot of you have a tendency (I know I do) to project yourself onto others when thinking about their decisions, particularly when they relate to something that you hold important. But if going to Curves makes middle-aged women happy, then that's all that matters.

Don't get me wrong though, I'd hate working out there. I'd probably just grab a fat lady and use her as a sled for GPP (just kidding :-)).
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Old 11-30-2006, 03:35 AM   #17
Sarena Kopciel
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I dont know for me I saw the new slogan for Equinox here in NYC, "It's not Fitness, It's LIFE." That kinda summarized it all for me! Curves has a place I guess for some.
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Old 12-07-2006, 03:05 AM   #18
Frank DiMeo
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After talking with my older sister, who goes to Curves, it seem that the resistance cannot be increased on the machines.
Does anyone know if that is true?
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Old 12-07-2006, 04:36 AM   #19
Mike ODonnell
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I believe they are hydrolic based equipment, (since I can not get in to verify) harder you push "supposedly" the harder the resistance. But since the whole franchise is like only a $20k buy in investment....I don't believe you get high quality machines....and at that low price it's why you see them everywhere too.
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Old 12-07-2006, 06:25 AM   #20
Becca Borawski
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Yeah, that's the theory - the harder you push the harder the resistance. But the truth of it is, if you're strong enough they're eventually no good because you'll be stronger than the resistance they offer.
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