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Old 11-28-2006, 01:25 PM   #1
Sarena Kopciel
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I am new to CF but saw a whole lot of posts earlier about Curves. I respect what ppl say about its value totally. I read also why the single gender stuff....Well, actually near where I live there is a guys only "Curves" type place called "Cuts." That's the whole truth.
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Old 11-28-2006, 01:41 PM   #2
Mike ODonnell
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No matter what a place is called, functional full body movements using free weights is optimal for increasing your strength and fat loss. Machines are not the answer in my book. Curves may be a good first step for people...but they will soon need something more as the body will condition to that stimulus and stop making maximum progress in a short amount of time.

oh yeah...Welcome too!

(Message edited by mike_od on November 28, 2006)
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Old 11-28-2006, 05:27 PM   #3
Sarena Kopciel
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Thanks for the input. Never in my life would I think of joining somewhere that you sit on your a** and let the machine do the work!
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Old 11-28-2006, 05:34 PM   #4
Brad Davis
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At this point, I'm thinking that machine-based workouts are worse than useless. Consider what happened to my buddy recently. He did a machine-based bodybuilding workout for about 4 years and looks like he's in good shape. He's very strong at the EXACT movements that he was doing. He started trying the CFWU, but he could only do a couple of dips because he hadn't been doing those. After the 2nd or 3rd day of the CFWU, he pulled a muscle in his chest and has been out for about 3 weeks now. His machine-based workouts have undoubtedly left him with weak links scattered among his strong muscles.

Granted, there is some speculation involved, but I think this anecdote is one of the best arguments FOR programs like CF that I've personally witnessed.
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Old 11-28-2006, 05:49 PM   #5
Sarena Kopciel
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Hey I only recently started but am sold!
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Old 11-28-2006, 06:45 PM   #6
Mike ODonnell
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What's the use of "building" a "body" if you can't use it? Machines weaken your stabilizers and you are only as strong as your weakest muscle (in a 3 plane functional movement situation)
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Old 11-28-2006, 07:10 PM   #7
Becca Borawski
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To play devil's advocate -- what about the people who go to Curves who would not otherwise be working out at all? I think for a lot of those women it's the choice between Curves or nothing, not Curves vs. CrossFit/whatever.
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Old 11-28-2006, 09:41 PM   #8
Yael Grauer
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I agree, it's better than nothing. I visited one about a year ago and I thought it'd be great for older overweight ladies who never get any exercise at all, are on a fixed income and therefore can't afford to hire Mike for training, and feel uncomfortable in traditional gyms. The music is not ridiculously loud, there aren't a lot of guys around trying to "help" you with the machines, or Barbie types attacking you with calipers. The price is pretty good ($29/mo plus a sign-up fee), and you don't have to manage weight stacks because it's based on the hydraulic system (push/pull), and you only spend 30 seconds on each machine (a voice even tells you when it's time to move and when its time to check your pulse). Between the machines there are little mats where you are supposed to do little exercises or run in place.

Supposedly the faster you go the harder it is, the more weight the machines respond to, or something.

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.
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Old 11-29-2006, 03:26 AM   #9
Thomas Grippo
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I agree. For those who would otherwise do nothing Curves/Cuts fill a void. I like to categorize them into "OK", "Better" and "Best" forms of resistance.
Tubeing = ok
Isometric* = ok
Isokinetic**(Curves) = ok
Isotonic/Selectorized/Machine-Based = better
Oly or DB Ground-Based Compound/
Funtional(explosive) = best
*static movement is good for developing static movement and not dynamic movement.
**concentric/concentric and no eccentric component which is critical to strength gain.

At the same time I wouldn't put a db/oly bar in some people's hands because they're "motorically challenged" and a machine fixed path/rom is more conducive to their ability.
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Old 11-29-2006, 06:21 AM   #10
Mike ODonnell
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"Curves may be a good first step for people...but they will soon need something more as the body will condition to that stimulus and stop making maximum progress in a short amount of time. "

repeated from above....never said it wasn't useful at some begining level....and who said I was expensive?? Ha...actually why I do group classes at about $10 a class...so anyone can afford it! Curves has a "social" atmosphere to it to provide consistency....but I doubt the workout is much harder than going for a walk with a pair of 2lb dumbbells for 30min....oh wait, someone already figured that out:

"Curves for Women circuit training gyms are among the stickiest fads in recent fitness history. But how much exercise does the workout really provide? An adequate but unspectacular amount, according to a small study conducted by university researchers on behalf of the American Council on Exercise (ACE). The typical workout burned off about as many calories as in half a Krispy Kreme."
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn...2005Mar14.html
(link safe for everyone...except Curves employees)

Plus since we all know that weight loss is health...and is 85%+ nutrition...I can not vouch for what kind of nutritional advice they dish out to people.

Again, it fills the need for consistency of doing something for people...but really is not considered the best option for losing weight. If anything it can serve as a first step to get people interested in their health and fitness...but they need to progress to more after a few months.
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