Health briefs: July 2

July 2, 2013 

Advanced exercise class offered in Palmetto

PALMETTO -- Fitness trainer Eric Wilds teaches an exercise regimen called Breath and Body at the Palmetto Arts Center and now he's taking it up a notch with a new advanced class called Pure Strength.

Wilds developed Breath and Body to teach people how to connect their movements with the rhythm of their breath. The practice is similar to utilizing the breath in yoga or Pilates but Wilds' class is a workout using props such as medicine balls.

Focusing on the breath and what body part is being engaged results in more effective movement, said Wilds.

"They do it more slowly instead of flailing around," said Wilds.

"When you are focusing on what the body is doing, the dynamic that takes place is that it is amplifying the effect (of the exercise)," he said.

Pure Strength will be more formatted than the Breath and Body classes with a series of lifts, squats and dead lifts. Like the original class, it also will focus on improving posture.

The Palmetto Art Center is at 907 Fifth St. W., Palmetto. Cost of classes for Pure Strength or Breath and Body is $10 for drop-ins or $50 monthly. For information about class times, visit or call 941-518-2109.

Exercise for cancer patients offered July 10

SARASOTA -- Cancer patients and their caregivers can learn how to find their personal exercise style to promote healing at "Moving Into Wellness," a talk by fitness instructor Gail Condrick from 1 to 2 p.m. July 10 at the Center for Building Hope, 5481 Communications Parkway.

Condrick teaches NIA, a creative mind-body exercise that borrows from disciplines such as yoga and tai chi. She will give a short demonstration of NIA.

Her method of helping people to determine what exercise they are most likely to enjoy is asking them questions that reveal whether they are "yangs" or "yins."

"What I'm looking for is to ask people to be conscious and aware of what is their personal style," said Condrick.

Do you love to run? Then you're a yang, who probably enjoys more hard-charging workouts. Can't imagine wanting to run? You could be a yin but that doesn't mean you have to give up and sit on the couch. Gentler exercise such as yoga might be a good pick.

"Through movement we find health and unless you are healing from a broken bone, you can move," said Condrick.

The presentation is free but RSVPs are requested. Call 941-921-5539.

Relaxation techniques taught at Doctors Hospital

SARASOTA -- Registered nurse and mental health counselor Karen Kelley will teach techniques for relaxation that strengthen the immune system, from 3 to 4 p.m. July 3 at Doctors Hospital in Sarasota,.

Her talk, "Letting Go of Stress," is part of the hospital's cancer-education series.

Kelley will lead participants in short segments of various ways to foster deep relaxation such as simple stretches, deep breathing, self-massage and progressive muscle relaxation. The exercises can be done on mats or in a chair.

"They can try it right there in class to see which ones they think they are most likely to do again," said Kelley.

Doctors Hospital is at 741 Bee Ridge Road. The class will be held in the educational classroom near the cafeteria.

For information or to register, call 941-921-5539.

Wellness series begins July 10

SARASOTA -- Nutrition educators and fitness trainers at Sarasota Memorial Hospital's HealthSquare outreach program want to make learning about a healthy diet and exercise more fun. Their six-week "Wellness Show and Tell" series begins from 9 to 10 a.m. July 10 at Westfield Sarasota Square Mall, 8201 S. Tamiami Trail.

The first class is called "Greens and Gluts," focusing on diets that are more plant-based and exercises that target the buttock muscles.

The series continues at the same timeWednesdays through Aug. 14 with sessions that include "Fats and Abs" and "Bones and Backs."

"Each lecture shows some exercises they can do on their own for a particular body part and we are trying to match up a nutritional topic," said Mackenzie Jones, supervisor of HealthSquare.

Audience participation will be part of the fun, said Jones. Similar classes at HealthSquare have attracted people from Bradenton to Venice, she said.

The classes are free. To register, visit call 941-302-4271 or email

Susan Hemmingway, Herald health correspondent, can be reached at

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