Hello there, anyone for aerobic exercise?

The aerobic exercise popularised by Jane Fonda in the late 1970s and early 1980s?

You know, the aerobic craze that took millions of Americans to group exercise classes for the first time?

You wore tights, leotards and thongs to the aerobic class.

You did non-stop jumping, kicking and running, twirling your arms, doing high knee lifts and punching the sky to throbbing music....and sweated.....

You did it all with a vengeance!


The purpose was to rev up your heart beat and exercise your heart, to keep it in good shape.

And it was all about staying in shape as well.....

Sorry to tell you that this kind of aerobic exercise is now on the wane, rapidly fading off due to emergence of new and innovative classes and techniques, for instance:

1. Hybrid classes that work your body and mind

2. Calorie-burning workout classes with little stress on joints and muscles

3. Classes that alternate hard training with easy intervals

4. Relaxing Pilates/Yoga classes

For now, the popularity of this kind of aerobic exercise is sharply down from when it was the mainstay of fitness in America......

These statictics may tell you a thing or two about the sad, declining trend:

1. Less than half of the 300 gyms and health clubs surveyed by IDEA offered aerobic classes now. The survey concluded that the number of gyms offering aerobic classes would continue to decline

2. At its peak in the mid-80s, an estimated 17 million to 20 million Americans did aerobic exercise. But in 2005, there were only 5 million who did the exercise. The 2006's figure would show even a lesser number

Aerobic exercise instructors reckoned that this kind of aerobics exercise got lots of damages, especially when you engaged in high impact aerobic and did it for 6 or 7 times per week.

The hardest hit group was the instructors as they were pushing harder than anyone else and doing the exercise a dozen times per week......

However, apparently many who took this aerobic exercise were not spared the agony either......

They suffered from acute and overuse injuries due to high impact aerobic as their bodies weren't meant to withstand all those persistent pounding on their joints.....And most of them had problems with their backs, feet and hips.

However, you shouldn't blame it all on aerobics exercise for your problems. You would have problems from anything with persistent impact on your joints.

Take running or jogging or swimming.

If you do these exercises 6 or 7 times per week for more than 1 hour per session, you'll bound to stress your joints and muscles.

And for that matter, for any other exercises, if you're overdoing them, you'll bound to develop oversuse injuries and would encounter problems - muscle cramps, muscle pain, aches and pains in joints and tendons, swellings......

The correct way of doing exercise, any exercise, is to adhere to the motto - do it in moderation and with varieties.

Moderation, meaning:

-Do cardio exercises such as running, jogging, cycling or swimming 3-4 times per week, for 30 minutes per session

-Do strength training 2 -3 times per week, for 20 minutes per session

-Do stretching 3 - 4 times per week, for 10 - 20 minutes per session

How about varieties?

Yes, just mix and change a little to spice up your exercise routine. For example, you could:

-Choose to do running on Monday, swimming on Wednesday, cycling on Friday........

-Add appropriate weight increment and reduce the number of reps in strength training

-Exercise outdoor instead of always exercise indoor

-Switch to indoor treadmill running or walking when outside weather is terrible

-Liven up your exercise session with lively music instead of just exercise in dumb silence......

Hey, it's up to your "creative" imagination to come up with "sparkling" varieties.....

Would you say there's an end to Jane Fonda-type aerobics exercise?

Not necessary.

It depends on how you do the exercise.

I woud say if you do it moderately, you'd benefit more from it rather than having problems.....

Once in a while, I still go for this type of aerobic exercise.......

It's a great way to keep my heart pumping and in good shape......and I sweat a good hearty sweat!

Author's Bio: 

Cecelia Yap is a seasoned exerciser who walks the talk concerning exercise.

Her passion is exercise, fitness and eating right.

She shows you what works and what doesn't at her website .

Click here to know whether you're over-exercising or not and how to smartly prevent injuries .