Updating This Site With A New Theme

Over the next few weeks I’m hoping to update this site with a new theme. If you’ve been keeping an eye on this site you’ll notice that it has been pretty bland for a while.

cleaningI’ve been extremely busy over the past few months and haven’t had much time to dedicate to my web properties. Hopefully that will change soon.

Spring is almost over, but I’m still going to refer to this as my spring cleaning!

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Does Stretching Really Help Your Jumping Ability?

usain boltIf you’ve been an athlete for any length of time, you probably know that being able to jump higher is an important part of your success. This is especially true in sports like basketball and football. If you can out jump your opponent, you’ll win the battle for a rebound 99% of the time.

With that said, there are many theories out there relating to the methods to improve your vertical jump. Some rely on weird gimmicks that do little to improve your jumping ability.

One of the simplest way to leap higher is to warm up. That’s right…warm up! Part of what determines your ability to jump is your flexibility. Being flexible allows the elasticity of your muscles to increase which in turn creates more elastic force. This force is used to propel you off the floor.

Here is a super easy warm up you can try:

In addition, increasing the blood flow to your muscles during a quick warm up will improve your body’s ability to generate force through sheer strength. You’ll find that after about 10 minutes of light warm ups you’ll be able to jump about 2 inches higher than you were before warming up.

Make sure that you are doing practice jumps during this warm up period. If you are just jogging around the gym or field you won’t see as much of a benefit. You need to force your body to start getting used to jumping in order for it to perform at an optimal level.

It may surprise you to learn that stretching before a game is actually detrimental to your performance. Studies have shown that stretching actually causes a weakening of the muscle fibers, thus reducing your ability to jump.

This does not mean that you should stop stretching. What it means is that you should stretch after you finish your game. It’s still important to maintain your flexibility. Being flexible will decrease the risk of injury by allowing your joints and muscles to better absorb impacts and avoid potential sprains.

I hope this information has helped you. Thanks for reading.

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Dental Training In The United States

dentistIf you’re planning to go to dental school, you may want to think about the amount of time you are going to spend in training. This is true for any medical profession.

The way that dental school works is that you start by working your way through a 4 year program similar to medical school. The first year and into the second is focused on heavy course work that will require you to spend a great deal of time in the classroom.

You should think about whether you want to work in a practice or a hospital. I was fortunate to find a dentist in the ann arbor area of michigan that allowed me to jump right into the practice scene.

The first year will be a rude awakening for many of you who are not used to working hard and spending long hours in the  library. You can end up taking nearly 100 credit hours during your first year of schools.

The second year is much the same. However, there is a fairly large increase in the amount of lab work you will be doing. This is most often described as the hardest year of dental school. You will be taking a large number of classes that are heavily science and medically oriented. Classes like microbiology and pathology will test your ability to remember complex concepts while also balancing the numerous other responsibilities you have.

Between your second and third years you will end up taking the national boards. The boards basically test you on knowledge that you learned during your first two years. You will spend quite a bit of time studying for this exam which can be a major pain in the jaw…get it!?

The third year is probably the best for most students. The reason for that is that you get to actually work with patients on a regular basis. Some schools have programs that allow students to act as dentists for locals in whatever city the schools is located in. The amount of time spent in class will go down quite a bit during this year. It will be a great break from the monotony and boredom of lectures.

Most of your fourth year will be spent treating patients and finishing out clinical requirements. This can take up a great deal of your time, but at least you won’t be spending much time in the classroom.

You’ll need to keep in mind the financial requirements for dental school. You’ll be there for 4 years, so make sure that you can get by for that long without much of an income.

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