Clean COVID-19 Virus & Germs

People with horrible coughs, fevers and trouble breathing aren’t driving the coronavirus pandemic. It’s people with mild symptoms or no symptoms at all who are responsible for the majority of new COVID-19 cases, according to research published earlier this week. 

People who work in essential jobs have an especially high chance of being exposed to SARS-CoV-2, the technical name for the virus that causes COVID-19, and bringing it home. Since it’s so hard to tell who’s carrying the virus before symptoms show, essential workers’ families, partners, and roommates are at an increased risk of being exposed in shared spaces, where it can 

Virus Treatment & Prevention

// Since the beginning of the year, search interest in COVID-19 has continued to climb around the world. Right now the disease is the largest topic people are looking for globally, surpassing even some of the most common and consistent queries we see in Search.

As this public health crisis has evolved into a pandemic, information needs are continuing to change, differing from region to region. When COVID-19 was declared a public health emergency by the World Health Organization (WHO) in late January, we launched an SOS Alert with resources and safety information from the WHO, along with the latest news. The alert has launched in 25 languages across dozens of countries, and people in more than 50 countries can access localized public health guidance from health authorities. 

Right now in the U.S., people seeking out urgent care, hospitals and other medical services in Search or Maps will see an alert reminding them of the CDC’s recommendation that symptomatic individuals call ahead in order to avoid overwhelming health systems and increasing the risk of exposure.

Connecting people with COVID-19 information and resources.

The Teletrogy Shoes Laundry Bag

As much as you try to push it off, laundry day is inevitable. A lot of people prioritize their clothes and bedding as part of their main loads. But when you realize how often your sneakers get washed, it may not be as often as you’d like to admit.

The thing is, you don’t have to compromise your time to get a thorough clean out of your favorite sneakers. The Teletrogy Shoes Laundry Bag takes care of that for you. It’s legit a washing machine laundry bag for your dirtiest kicks. Toss your shoes in the bag and over 10,000 fibers will buff your shoes to new life.

These shoe bags are special. You get two laundry bags in one order, and you can use them for each individual shoe. After tossing the shoe laundry bags (with your shoes in them of course) in with the rest of your load, you can go about your day.

Shop: Teletrogy Shoes Laundry Bag, $42.99

5 Exercises to Get You Started…

No matter what kind of exercise you choose, we applaud you for getting out there and doing it. And you’ll feel the benefits almost immediately: You’ll be a little bit more energised, less stressed, and more confident than you were before your workout.

Keep it Basic & Simple


The new coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2, which causes the coronavirus infectious disease COVID-19, as named by the World Health Organization, is disrupting life as usual and is exacting a visible human and economic toll. IDEA members and fitness professionals across the globe can continue promoting health and minimize business disruption with common-sense precautions and attention to public health developments. This advisory contains information on what we currently know about the virus, suggested preventive measures and resource links to stay updated.

What You Should Know

COVID-19 comes from the coronavirus family, which includes the common cold. COVID-19 appears to be an animal coronavirus, unseen before in humans, that first appeared in Wuhan City, China, and is spreading globally through human-to-human transmission. Fitness pros can remind others that the best defense against viruses, in addition to specific preventive measures, is to maintain a healthy overall lifestyle that includes regular physical activity.

The good news—so far—is that sweat cannot transmit the virus, and there’s a lower risk of picking up coronavirus at a gym or health club than at a church service, according to David Thomas, MD, MPH, professor of medicine and director of the Division of Infectious Diseases at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine (The New York Times, March 8, 2020). Furthermore, as of this article’s publication date, experts have not determined precise transmission, infection or mortality rates for this new illness.

Preventive Measures

Since no vaccine exists to protect against COVID-19, public health experts recommend the following personal preventive measures:

  • Wash hands frequently. Wash hands thoroughly and often, either with soap and water for 20 seconds or with a 60% alcohol-based rub, to kill any viruses on your hands. Hand dryers alone are not effective at killing COVID-19. For effective hand-washing practices, check out this video.
  • Avoid touching your face. Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth with unwashed hands, as any virus on hands from a touched surface can enter the body through the eyes, nose or mouth, according to current information.
  • Maintain social distance. Keep a distance of at least 3 feet between you and apparently healthy persons and stay 6 feet away if a person is coughing or sneezing (WHO 2020).
  • Limit contact. Avoid close contact with people who are sick. If you’re sick with respiratory symptoms like a fever, runny nose and/or cough, stay home. Seek medical advice if your condition worsens with a high fever and/or difficulty breathing.
  • Cough into an elbow or a tissue. Cover coughs with a tissue or cough into an elbow. Dispose of tissues immediately in a covered bin and wash hands with warm, soapy water. Wash clothing into which you cough. It is unknown how long the virus can live on hard and soft surfaces. According to the WHO, coronaviruses may survive on surfaces for a few hours or up to several days. The best way to ensure that surfaces you touch are germ-free is to clean them with a disinfectant.

If you’re wondering about wearing a face mask, public health experts advise that it’s not currently recommended for the general public in the United States. For more information about masks, go here.

Based on best public health practices, include the following:

  • Actively encourage sick staff and/or members to stay home. Make announcements and hang posters about staying home when sick and about following cough and sneeze etiquette.
  • Instruct staff and members to clean their hands frequently. Provide hand sanitizer with a minimum of 60% alcohol at the entrance and throughout the facility. Encourage frequent use.
  • Advise staff and members on hygienic use and disposal of tissues. Provide tissues and no-touch disposal receptacles in easily visible and accessible places.
  • Provide disposable disinfectant cleaning wipes near all commonly used surfaces. Include instructions to wipe down surfaces before and after use with a disinfectant that is at least 70% alcohol. Wiping surfaces clean can reduce germs, but only disinfectant that is at least 70% alcohol kills germs. Products with EPA-approved claims against viral pathogens are listed here.
  • Avoid hands-on contact with clients. Avoid handshakes or other close-contact greetings.

How Exercise Can Help Your Recovery From Breast Cancer — Beyond Basics Physical Therapy

Fiona McMahon PT, DPT Have you noticed it yet? Everything is pink. Pink cups, pink pens, pink stickers, pink ribbons, pink everything. The flood of pink that happens every October and reminds us it is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. If you are someone you love has or has had breast cancer, chances are you don’t […]

via How Exercise Can Help Your Recovery From Breast Cancer — Beyond Basics Physical Therapy

Home Fitness Consumer Goods

Bowflex System Spurs Revolution in Home Fitness

Consumer Goods

NASA Technology

The commercials were once ubiquitous, and the machines soon appeared in spare rooms and garages across the country. The Bowflex Revolution was a phenomenon of the 2000s—an exercise system that promised to bring the total gym experience into the home—and it continues to sell well today. But it might not exist if not for NASA.

In the 1990s, inventor Paul Francis had an idea for a weight-lifting system that didn’t use weights.

“I was always interested in fitness, and I thought, ‘What if I could build a portable home gym?’” he says.

Instead of relying on a series of dumbbells or stacks of cast-iron plates to provide the resistance the user works against, he had experimented with metal springs that would strain to retain their shape when pulled. But those failed faster than he wanted—after just around 10,000 cycles. Undeterred, he sought out an alternative material and came across an elastomer compound, which he enhanced and fashioned into spiral-shaped torsional springs of various dimensions.

In the fall of 1996, Francis was reading a newspaper at the coffee shop beside his office in Kansas City when he came across an item about the great lengths one astronaut had gone to in attempt to retain muscle and bone mass and density while in orbit in the Russian Mir space station. Upon return to Earth, she was able to walk but was still wobbly from muscle and bone atrophy.

By then, NASA was well aware that prolonged weightlessness causes muscle and bone loss. What wasn’t clear was how to address the problem. Stationary bikes and treadmills, outfitted with bungee cord to strap the user down, weren’t doing the trick. And weights, of course, are useless where there is no gravity. The problem was made more urgent by the construction of the International Space Station, which was expected to begin soon and house long-term crews.

Francis thought his springs, which he had dubbed SpiraFlex and had configured into round plates that could be stacked to increase resistance, might be the answer. He managed to find the direct phone number for the chief of the Medical Operations Branch at Johnson Space Center. Soon he was on his way to Houston with a series of prototypes.

Liking what they saw, Johnson engineers asked him to contract through commercial partner Lockheed Martin and get to work on an astronaut exercise system.

Technology Transfer

“A lot of the intellectual property and innovation goes back to that project and NASA funding,” Francis says, adding that the work, carried out over about 18 months, also included extensive testing for performance and durability. “It enabled us to take a prototype technology and turn it into a technology that met the specifications that would be required for not only NASA hardware, but also a commercial piece of equipment.”

The end product for NASA was the Interim Resistive Exercise Device (IRED), which used stacks of the elastomer spring disks, now known as FlexPacks, arranged in two cylinders that produced up to 300 pounds of resistance. A 16-week ground test showed exercising with the IRED produced the same results as using free weights.

In 2000, the device was launched with the first long-duration crew to stay on the space station, where rotating teams of astronauts would use it for the next decade.

Astronaut Leroy Chiao, who spent more than six months aboard the space station in 2004 and ’05, during which he became an avid IRED user, has publicly credited the device for the fact that he scored higher on all of his post-flight strength tests than he had before leaving for the station.

But Francis was just getting started. By the time the IRED made it to the space station, he had changed the name of his company to SpiraFlex Inc. and begun approaching fitness companies.


Francis licensed SpiraFlex technology to Schwinn Cycling and Fitness Inc. and helped the company design a strength training machine, which it released in 2000 as the centerpiece to an international group fitness program for health clubs called the Resistance Performance Program (RiPP) (Spinoff 2001).

The following year, though, Nautilus Group—which had begun as Bowflex of America Inc.—purchased Schwinn Fitness, and RiPP was discontinued. A few years later, when Nautilus was looking for an alternative to its rod-based Bowflex home gym, the company didn’t have to look far.

“I came along and presented my SpiraFlex technology and mechanical system, as well as a number of home gym configurations that incorporated the technology, and they developed the Revolution based on a combination of them,” Francis says, noting that he holds patents not only for the SpiraFlex technology at the heart of the system but for all the machine’s inner workings and many configurations.

The Bowflex Revolution, Nautilus’ most successful home gym, was launched in 2005.

“The biggest advantage of resistance-based workout equipment is that it enables the machine to be lightweight, take up less space, and be quiet.”— Gregg Wilson, Nautilus

“The biggest advantage of resistance-based workout equipment is that it enables the machine to be lightweight, take up less space, and be quiet,” says Gregg Wilson, director of product line management at Nautilus, which is now based in Vancouver, Washington. For example, he says, while the Revolution only weighs about 220 pounds, its leg press station can provide up to 600 pounds of resistance “and a range of power unheard of in a regular home gym.”

Resistive equipment also eliminates the momentum free weights generate during lifting, which can be hard on joints and also allow the user to “cheat a bit” on the upswing, as Wilson puts it.

He notes that SpiraFlex offers an additional advantage over other resistance-based equipment, including the original Bowflex line, which relies on “power rods” that the user bends, and others that use springs or elastic bands. “Rod-based gyms are great, but the resistance is progressive, meaning that, as you move through the range of motion, it gets harder,” Wilson explains.

FlexPacks, on the other hand, provide “linear resistance,” meaning the effective “weight” stays the same from the start of each stroke to the end. “Working out on the Revolution feels more like true free weights, but without the dangerous inertia, and helps the user maintain better and more controlled form,” Wilson says.

That quality, together with an innovative configuration, allows the Revolution to recreate the commercial gym experience with more than 100 aerobic and strength-training exercises.

“The Revolution has been our best gym, offering the most exercises and keeping people fit and strong for over 12 years,” Wilson says.

Meanwhile, Francis has retained rights to his SpiraFlex techology and founded another company, OYO Fitness, to leverage the technology even further toward convenience and portability with a line of devices that weigh only two pounds but enable dozens of exercises (Spinoff 2018). And there’s more to come.

“We have a line of new products we’ll be introducing in all sizes, shapes, and price points,” he says, adding that the company is also developing group exercise plans based on its products for health clubs, corporate wellness programs, and senior living facilities.

Francis notes that these commercial fitness devices that have benefited tens of thousands of users to date were enabled by the development work with NASA to keep astronauts in shape on the space station. “The funding from NASA enabled us to take the technology to the next level of development and commercialization, so SpiraFlex was greatly improved due to the NASA project.

Life’s Monuments 2019

Approaching one of Life’s Monuments is exciting. Some meet the journey with anxiety, disdain, apprehension, and negativity.

Others choose an ambitious approach imbuing excitement, celebration, and inclusiveness; even to those who would rather not be along for the ride.

The latter say, “This is fun,” much to the dismay of everyone else on the journey.

When someone isn’t there or has passed away they just are not there. It is a shame for all of the fun filled travellers to find that in their careless festivities they failed to care for one of their helpful friends or family members.

The loss and void that is left by the death of someone they turned to for an occasional important need is unable to be filled.

A loss such as this will turn a fun ambitious traveller into an anxious journeyman.

As the new Year approaches be thankful for yourself, friends & family.