The Lenda Murray Legacy

Lenda Murray was  a professional bodybuilding champion who changed the sport forever. Her record breaking wins and the physique she presented left an enduring impact. Lenda became prominent at a time when the aesthetics of the sport were shifting. Women were no longer afraid to add size and present a stronger looking physique. The structure of Lenda’s body became the standard in which most female bodybuilders today are judged. Wide back, hour glass figure,  and developed lower body are areas female bodybuilders focus on. Today she still has a presence in fitness training and advising new athletes. Lenda runs her own business Operation Boot Camp, is a physical fitness trainer, and serves as a NPC promoter.  Lenda besides winning multiple sports titles has gained recognition in sports awards for excellence. Among bodybuilding fans she is an essential favorite and quickly recognizable. Other than appearing on a bodybuilding stage Lenda was on Geraldo, Jerry Springer, ESPN, and other daytime talk shows. Lenda was prevalent in magazines such as Muscle and Fitness, Women’s Physique World, Sports Illustrated, and even glamour magazines such as Vanity Fair .  Looking back at her long athletic career it becomes clear to see why she was so popular.

       Lenda when she first started out did not even have an  in depth understanding of bodybuilding. She was born in Detroit, Michigan in 1962. Her participation in athletics started at the age of 15. From there a simple past time became a passion. When she attended Henry Ford High School she was both a track and field athlete as well as a cheerleader. While attending Western Michigan University Lenda majored in political science with the intention of becoming a lawyer. She did continue to engage in cheerleading. Lenda Murray did do cheerleading for the Michigan Panthers in the 1980s. She was also invited to try out for cheerleading for the Dallas Cowboys. It was suggested to her that she needed to slim down a little. Her genetics would not allow that and Lenda gradually left cheerleading. Her true calling came when she met Ron Love. Lenda was going to Power House Gym in Highland Park. He suggested that Lenda compete in bodybuilding competitions. From 1984 onward, Lenda would embark on a monumental journey. Just after a year of training she entered the  Ms. Michigan  Championships in 1985. She placed fourth in her first competition. Lenda was at first hesitant about the sport saying ” I thought bodybuilders were weird.” The stated further ” they would sleep, eat, stay inside, eat egg whites, chicken, and brown rice all day.”

Lenda to her own admission said ” If she had made the team ( cheerleader for the Dallas Cowboys) she probably would not have been a bodybuilder.” Lenda’s family was not supportive of her decision initially.  Her father did not even come to her first competition. Both her parents did not understand why she wanted to do this. Lenda explained her parents reaction as “have you lost your mind?”Eventually they came around to accepting their daughter’s choice and came to competitions. They became proud that she was winning and becoming notable in bodybuilding circles. Gradually, she was becoming a force to be reckoned with. She came in first place in 1988 NPC Michigan, 1985 NPC Eastern Michigan, 1989 NPC Junior Nationals, and the 1989 IFBB North America Championships. Every contest she competed in she was always in the top three. There was only onetime she placed lower than that and it was in her first competition. There is a reason for this and it had to do with the type of physique she built.

       Lenda Murray when competing was 153 lbs standing at 5ft 5 in. The phsyique she built was a new archetype that female bodybuilders have been emulating since 1990. It was a much larger musculature, but not enormous. It was balanced, but not the sleeker physiques of the female bodybuilders of the 1980s. Her latissimus dorsi muscles were very developed creating a wide back and a small waist in comparison. This created an hour glass figure of a more athletic variety. Her torso had the classic v taper which accentuated the female figure. There was a balance between her upper and lower body. Neither was too over developed. From 1984 to 2004 Lenda built her body to the standard female bodybuilder model. When she began her career she looked like the more sleeker bodybuilders that were common on stage.

     The shift was when she added more size for her first Ms. Olympia contest. She added more size while balancing her physique. Judging was going to more strict on a professional stage, so some strategy had to be utilized. Lenda’s training involved are large portion of lower body exercises. Squats, lunges, and barbell rows Lenda did extensively. Lenda said they did not benefit just her hamstrings and glutes, but her core. She claims they also improved her posture and a stronger core meant a better  work out. She added low cardio training to her regimen. She did not want to do too much, because it could effect her physique in unintended ways. He diet and supplements were also essential. Lenda Murray would take omega 3,  a daily multivitamin, and meal replacements. These meal replacements were health bars and basic protein powders. Lenda reveals that the flavor added in the meal replacement allowed her to consume food the would otherwise be flavorless. Training as one can see to build such a body is a very scientific as well as trial and error process. Lenda did have competitors she admired which included Cory Everson, Carla Dunlap, and even a future rival Bev Francis. Carla Dunlap as Lenda articulated opened doors for African American women in the sport. Lenda Murray was quoted “Cory’s physique was muscular yet beautiful” and “Bev Francis stepped outside the box challenging our image of women.” The reason she had admiration for these women is that they were pioneers who were changing the boundaries and paradigms in regards to the athletic female body. What Lenda did was to combine various elements of aesthetics of these competitors and present it on her physique. The size of Bev Francis, the shape of Cory Everson, and the balance of Carla Dunlap Lenda Murray was able to capture in her multiple Olympia appearances.

Lenda’s workout routine involved training five days a week. The fascinating aspect of this is that she would focus on one body part. The first day was devoted to her chest and the following would be her legs. Day three and four were devoted to biceps and calves. Back, shoulders, and triceps would be exercised in the remaining days. Lenda Murray loved doing weight that allowed 12 to 15 repetitions. Between weight lifting and cardio her time in the gym would normally be about an hour and 15 minutes.She would also work out later in the afternoon for a fe more hours.  Using her inspirations as guides on how she wanted to look, it was not surprise that she won her  first Olympia.

            The 1990 Ms.Olympia saw Lenda Murray defeat Bev Francis.This was her first one and she was able to beat a veteran. Bev Francis at one point was attempting to meet the demands of the judges and downsized her physique. The second place result made her change her mind and she decided to present a much larger physique. Lenda who was influenced by Francis also decided to add some improvements in her physique for the 1991 Ms.Olympia.

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1990 Ms.Olympia
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1991 Ms.Olympia

The 1991 contest Bev Francis was formidable having an even larger size than before. Lenda had the edge in terms of having the better developed lower body. Both their posing routines were well choreographed. When it came down to the actual look Lenda won, because she balanced size between the upper and lower body. Francis put more emphasis on size while putting less attention on symmetry and conditioning. Both competitors changed the sport forever and women that day were not longer afraid to be as muscular as possible. Lenda would go on to win more Olympia titles, but more rivals would appear on stage. Laura Creavalle who was 3rd palce in 1991 would provide a challenge to Murray in the 1992 Ms. Olympia. Creavalle had more experience and had been on the Olympia stage since 1988. Lenda once exposed in an interview “Laura challenged me with her great condition and her mouth. Lenda explained that “she was good at getting inside your head.” Under the smiles on stage, there seems to be psychological games that competitors do to get at their rivals. It is not just a physical game, but a psychological one.

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Laura would be Lenda’s main rival from 1992 to 1995. During these years it was common to see her follow behind Lenda Murray in contest rankings. Although there was rivalry between these two there was not seething animosity. This was a friendly rivalry born out of the love of competition. Lenda had to continually adjust to keep Laura at bay. Mainly this involved adding more size to her upper body to still rival Laura. Lenda Murray was once again able to win more Olympia titles. There then came a competitor in 1996 that dethroned Lenda Murray. Lenda has stated that Kim Chizevsky ” was a rock on stage completely unmovable.” Lenda Murray believed she was unbeatable.

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Lenda Murray reigning champion of the Ms.Olympia title( 1990-1995 ).

Lenda met her match in terms of size, symmetry, and conditioning on the Olympia stage. She would face her twice in 1996 and 1997. Around that that time she decided to retire from the sport. Six wins was not a terrible record, but it seems she was used to being a winner. These two losses may have been a motivation for her decision. Lenda had already made an immense impression. Female bodybuilder everywhere were attempting to imitate her look.

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Lenda Murray could not stay away for too long. She made a comeback in 2002 winning the Ms.Olympia again. The following she won it once more. The year 2004 saw the rise of Iris Kyle . Lenda never considered her a real threat and that is why this loss was shocking. Iris would go on to break Lenda’s record just like Lenda did with Cory Everson’s. Lenda Murray’s thoughts on Iris Kyle have not been the most polite. Lenda once stated that Kyle “sacrificed  her look as a woman.” This criticism is thrown at female bodybuilders for not being “feminine enough.”Lenda even in her post competition years seemed to still be critical. These comments and criticisms seem odd because their bodies were very similar. Her comments suggested that Iris Kyle was not feminine enough and did not represent the sport well . These may seem like closed minded or hateful comments, but it seems they are coming from an athlete who was angry she was dethroned. It is unclear whether they both have reconciled. Lenda did interview her for Muscular Development.

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The irony about this opinion of Murray’s is that she contributed to this evolution. Doubtless about one believes the proper look for a woman is, no one can say women are terrible at bodybuilding. Lenda Murray was able to balance various elements of bodybuilding aesthetics giving athletes a model to work from. Iris Kyle was the logical next step in the evolution of the muscular female form. To add more humor to this Lenda said “if you can go toe to toe with Dexter Jackson there’s a problem.” This was again in reference to Iris Kyle and her appearance. Again, Iris could not compete with Dexter seeing as he is over the 200 pound mark. Also, there are many men Lenda and Iris could dominate physically due to their strength. Lenda is known for her blunt opinions, but they should not be taken as vicious attacks. It is just a difference in bodybuilding aesthetics and the role the Ms.Olympia should play.

          Lenda Murray became an icon not only because of her athletic performance, but her numerous appearances in magazines and being a major subject in Bill Dobbins photographs. She was very photogenic and fans enjoyed these productions. Lenda Murray has stated that she did enjoy doing photo sessions with Bill Dobbins the most. Being a very attractive woman helped get her on covers and gain notoriety. The girls from Detroit was able to travel the world and have a contract with the Wieder Corporation. Fitness publications would have her photos in foreign language editions as well.

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Lenda revealed that when she started the sport, even her friends were not entirely supportive. When she started appearing in magazines and becoming notable they were more accepting. She did photo shoots with GeneX9, SweetMuscle, and Shemuscle. Lenda was ubiquitous in various fitness magazines. All this attention Lenda was receiving was something new to her. She described herself as an introverted personality, but one would not have guessed seeing her on stage. Lenda has spoken in interviews of this period of being another golden age of female bodybuilding. The Ms.Olympia was broadcast on ESPN and Lenda even did color commentary for contests on the network between 1993 and 1996.

 What Lenda liked most in her own words was “being the best in the world at something was incredibly satisfying .” Lenda Murray has siad that athletes need to be also concerned about the business aspect of the sport. One of the things that helped her was that she was selective about how her image was presented. This means also trying new things. During her first retirement, Lenda attempting to tryout to be a wrestler for the WWF. That was in 1997 that she auditioned for it. Lenda was quoted : “it was brutal.” She eventually lost interest, but said it was a great opportunity. This would have been amazing to see Lenda wrestle. Lenda has trained wrestlers before including Triple H, Ric Flair, and Stephanie Mcmahon . Lenda Murray trained many athletes and average gym goers. She even opened one called Fitness Burn, which was in operation from 1999 to 2005. She clearly made her mark in media appearances.

         Lenda Murray has become a role model to many athletes. Lenda believes that ” when you become a monumental success, people tend to follow or listen.” Lenda Murray was always conscious how she conducted her self say : ” being a female bodybuilder carries a level of stigma and I did my best to smash any negative stereotypes.” Lenda has spoken out against the unfair double standards in which women in the sport are judged. Sexism is obvious, but few talk about the covert racism. Lenda said that “racism was apparent when she won her first Olympia.” She did not get on the cover of Flex until 1993.  They argument was that African Americans on cover of magazines do not sell well. The executives at the Weider Corporation had no evidence to support this claim. Many times Lenda Murray had to demand things that white athletes were automatically given. Lenda Murray had in her own way broke racial and gender barriers in the sport. Lenda’s view of the sport is aso long as women continue to show up to compete female bodybuilding will never die. She has praised that women now have more options to compete in multiple divisions including fitness, physique, figure, bikini, and bodybuilding.

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Lenda Murray holds and promotes contests find out more here :Lenda Murray Bodybuilding.Also visit her Facebook :Lenda Murray
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What Lenda does these days is train athletes, promote her shows, run her own business, and keep the sport alive. 

She does her part and continues to hold the Lenda Murray Bodybuilding, Fitness, and Bikini Championships at  Norfolk  State University. Lenda continues to make a name for herself as a promoter in the sport. The IFBB seems to either ignore women’s divisions or wants them eliminated. When it was announced that the Ms.Olympia was ending in 2014, quickly a successor contest took its place. The Wings of Strength Rising Phoenix World Championships replaced the Ms.Olympia and Lenda Murray had involvement serving as an emcee for the event.She really loves the sport and wants it to be shared with a new generation of athletes. They now strive to create the model of body she pioneered in the 1990s. For her dedication and involvement she has won  several awards and honors. Lenda Murray was inducted into the IFBB Hall of Fame in 2010. She also became a member of the National Fitness Hall of Fame . One of the highest honors she received was from the International Sports Hall of Fame.  Her recognition is a significant one for the International Sports Hall of Fame. Some claim that bodybuilding is not a real sport, but Lenda has proved that wrong. Lenda Murray’s feats and exploits will certainly be an important part of sports history.

 

 

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The Lenda Murray Legacy

Does Muscle Weigh More Than Fat?

A common fitness and biology myth is that muscle weighs more than fat. This is incorrect when examined from two different elements of exercise science. It should be understood that weight and mass are two different concepts. These terms are used interchangeably, but obviously do not have the same definition. Once these terms are understood it can help contribute to the understanding why muscle cannot weigh more than fat. Another factor that effects body composition is metabolism. Besides that the endocrine system plays a role and the hormones it produces. When engaging in a consistent exercise regimen, lean body mass can increase depending on genetic body type. Fat tissue will decrease, but it will appear as if weight has gone up. This can be easily explained by scientific concepts.

      Mass can be defined as ” the fundamental property which measures the amount of matter contained within an object.” One of the properties of an object with mass is to resist being moved. Objects with mass tend to resist a change in speed or direction. This phenomenon of physics is known as intertia. This explains why when a person runs at high speeds it is difficult for a person to change direction immediately. Weight can be defined as ” the total force exerted on a body due to gravitation.” Objects attract one another by gravitation, which is a fundamental force of the universe. To prevent confusion , science has used the units similar for weight on Earth and mass. Dayana Cadeau when competing weighed 150 lbs( 68.03 kg). If she were to be on a space ship her mass would not disappear from her body. She would be weightless, due to the face gravitation is not acting on her body. Gravitation is proportional to the mass and declines with distance.

 The Earth’s gravitational force is acting on her body. The only way to break free from it is to achieve escape velocity. Force is measured in newtons (N). Mass is measured in kilograms (Kg). When people use the phrase ” I want to lose weight” it should be I want to reduce the total mass of fat composition on my body. That would be more precise that losing weight, because the only way that would happen is if the Earth’s gravitation cease to exist. These concepts are the basics of classical physics. Newtonian mechanics falls under this branch. Physics mostly attempts to understand matter  and its relation to the universe. Understanding these definitions of mass and weight  explain why muscles weighing more than fat is not scientifically sound.

      There is the consideration of space used on the human body . Matter takes up space and the body is matter. Muscle is much more dense compared to fat. Muscle can take as much as four -fifths of space. This also relates to size of a person. A taller and larger person has the ability to sustain more total mass, because the skeleton would be larger compared to a smaller person. This also explains why a people of the same height and weight may wear different clothing sizes. It depends on the amount of body fat percentage and how it is distributed on the body. There also is a consideration in density. Density describes the mass per unit volume. It appears that muscle in a single unit may have more density if compared in a same size unit to fat. The average density of fat is 0.9 g/ml compared to 1.1 g/ml of muscle. Muscle can in liter form be 1.6 kg (2.3 lbs)compared to 9 kg (1.98 lbs). This does not mean a muscular person will weigh more than a fat person. These averages vary depending on if the person is extremely lean or morbidly obese. A kilogram  of muscle will still be equal to a kilogram  of fat.

It is clear here who would weigh more. The muscular person will not have more mass compared to the fatter person. 

This can be deceiving, but it does not automatically the muscular person would weigh more. That also explains why the body mass index is not entirely accurate measure of healthy weight. A short muscular person could be inaccurate placed in the obese range simply because their mass in not in that height bracket.

         When discussing fat and muscle there is the consideration of metabolism. The endocrine system and hormones also play a role in this process. Estrogen and testosterone function differently. Muscle has the ability to burn seven to ten calories daily per pound. Fat can only achieve two to three calories daily per pound. Testosterone has an anabolic effect on the muscular system allowing for greater muscular hypertrophy. Men produce more, which explains why it is easier for them to lose weight and gain muscle. Women do produce testosterone, in lower levels and estrogen increases body fat. Even the most muscular woman still carries close to 8% body fat. Muscle still can be a great burner of  calories. Getting engaged in a strength training regimen can help burn at least for to six calories a day. It is possible under a consistent exercise regimen to gain at least five pounds of  muscle mass in three months depending on morphic body type. This requires consistent use of the muscles through exercise to increase net caloric effect. It is plausible that in a span of months( under a training regimen) this can amount to 30 calories per day. The basal metabolic rate describes the calories you burn during rest. Oddly enough, this amounts to 75% of the calories you burn in a day. It is good for one’s health to keep body fat low and remain active. Heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and cancers are associated with weight related problems.Understanding metabolism and how it works with hormones can help prevent such ailments.

         Muscle can make you gain mass and increase weight. This is lean body mass, but it is not harmful. Weight that is gained through excessive eating, gland or hormonal abnormalities, or being too sedentary can be hazardous to health. Diet is essential to any training regimen. Weigh loss can be effective with diet, but with exercise it will be permanent. This reveals that different forms of training can produce varied results. If one wants to merely lose fat, without lean body mass gain, it can be done.

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Losing mass in terms of fat is demonstrated here.
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Here is a demonstration of gaining muscle mass in exchange for fat.

What this comes down to is what method is used and what are the particular fitness goals. This is the difference between exercise to gain weight ( muscle mass) and exercise to lose ( fat tissue). Strength training is emphasized when trying to gain or make weight. Majors muscle groups have to be exercised including arms, legs, chest, and abdomen. This includes working each muscle group in an exercise session. Besides training rest is also pivotal. The body needs time to repair the muscle tissue that will be rebuilt into a stronger muscle. Losing fat tissue rather than gaining muscle mass has another technique. It has been common to either emphasize aerobics or cardiovascular exercise a method. However, recently it seems that solely doing these exercises may not be enough to be effective. Using both weight training and some cardiovascular exercise has been found to be more efficient.The increase in lean body mass does not mean a person failed in their fitness goal.

       Muscles based on what is known about exercise physiology and physics cannot weigh more than fat. Weight being the function of gravitation explains this. The term that should be accurately employed is mass. Density also is another concept that gets used interchangeably  with these terms. There are numerous fitness myths that are spread around. This one tends to be another common one. Limited knowledge could sabotage some individuals. A woman seeking to reduce body fat may try strength training and be alarmed at what the scale indicates. It is not showing that you gained fat tissue, but lean body mass. They may quit a method that is effective without realizing it . Full comprehension between the definitions of mass and weight can help end the confusion. Weight and mass are not the same entity.

Further Reading

Kent, Linda. “A Pound of Fat Vs. a Pound of Muscle.” LIVESTRONG.COM. Leaf Group, 21 Apr. 2015. Web. 28 Dec. 2016. <http://www.livestrong.com/article/438693-a-pound-of-fat-vs-a-pound-of-muscle/&gt;.

Sheldon, Lyenne. “Can Gaining Muscle Make You Gain Weight?” LIVESTRONG.COM. Leaf Group, 13 May 2015. Web. 28 Dec. 2016. <http://www.livestrong.com/article/392136-can-gaining-muscle-make-you-gain-weight/&gt;.

Barnes-Svarney. The Science Reference Desk. New York : The Stonesong press, 1995.

Does Muscle Weigh More Than Fat?

The Shake Weight

The Shake Weight is a dumbbell with the ability to oscillate. The claim by the company that produces the product is that it has the ability to give more of a work out than a traditional weight. This exercise device was created by Ben Kunz for the company FitnessIQ. There have been many contraptions and machines that are for exercise, but many of them do not work. Then there are products that are minimally effective compared to traditional methods. The reason these products sell well is that advertisements are persuasive and the public has a lack of knowledge about exercise or the human body. Gullibility and a fast solution explains why exercise equipment  such as this sells well. When examined in a scientific manner the shake weight is not effective. There are also some of the common pseudoscientic convictions in regards to female body and fitness. This was originally marketed as a female exercise product, but later release a “male” version. The difference between the female and male version is weight. The female shake weight is 2.5 lbs and the male version is 5 lbs. Again, it seems the frailty myth is presented in a subtle manner. There is no reason that the women’s weight should just be 2.5 lbs. Five pounds is no so immense that women could not handle it. That is about the equivalent of a bag of flour. Anyone who cooks realizes these bags are not that heavy. FitnessIQ claims that the shake weight can tone biceps, shoulders, and triceps. The official comment of the company is ” The product’s technology has been scientifically proven to increase muscle activity more effectively than similar size dumbbells or push-ups.” A general understanding of exercise physiology disproves the effectiveness of the Shake Weight.

         The Shake Weight was introduced to the market in 2009. During its first year being available it sold 2 million units. The following years it reached 4.5 million sales.The Shake Weight is commonly found at Walmart and Walgreens. This exercise product since being introduced has made its way into popular culture. The motions it induces and the way in which it is held has suggested sexual innuendos. Parodies and spoofs have appeared on the Daily Show, South Park, and Saturday Night Live . These references could have increased sales. Exposure is important to the success of a product. The commercials and infomercials are known for their exaggerated claims of effectiveness. They state the Shake Weight can burn calories five times faster than normal weights.  This is simply not biologically possible. Working out with regular weights would require more energy, if done at a longer period of time. The Shake Weight recommends that an individual only exercise for six minutes. They claim six minutes with the product can be more effective than a 32 minute work out. This does not prove to be accurate when testing it in terms of exercise science, physiology, and biology.

          The Shake Weight functions on a series of vibrations. There are spring loaded weights at both ends. The vibrations are designed to “tone ” muscles in a six minute work out. There is a problem with the marketing terminology. The term “tone” is not a real biological process. The fact is toning is building a small amount of muscle. This term is directed at women rather than men, because society still thinks muscles and strength are for men only. The term toning is used to not scare average women away from fitness or ones who are closed minded about muscular women.

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It is dubious that a serious woman athlete would even use this device. Looking at its five and two pound versions its clear that this does not build muscle. It uses high repetitions at lower weight. Immense weight with fewer repetitions promotes growth in muscle. Women are normally discouraged from lifting heavy, but this is a mistake. Smaller weights will not produce effective results. The weights have to be heavy enough to provide at least some resistance. Smaller weights at two pounds or less will not be helpful in building strength or burning fat. Lighter weights could possibly be better for muscular endurance, but larger ones at lower repetitions are better for strength.

 The Shake Weight would only be effective for a person who has not had training or exercise prior physical activity. At best they would see modest or minimal gains. A person who weight trains regularly would not see dramatic gains in terms of musculature. The woman who is either a weightlifter, crossfit competitor, or bodybuilder will not see improvements in performance from the Shake Weight. The average woman considering her exercise and strength levels are lower may see some improvement, but not as effective as free weights. Part of the public relations slogan is that the Shake Weight “allows you to exercise without leaving your sofa.”

   Exercise takes effort and consistency. These two values are something people have lost living in modernized society. The desire for results with limited or no effort is what the American public in particular likes the most. That is why there are consumers that are drawn to this product, that clearly does not produce the effects it claims. There are some who even think that it has the ability to burn fat right off the arms of the body. The American Council on Exercise has stated that the Shake Weight does not provide necessary stimulus to the arms. The 2 1/2 pound weight is too light to be effective the council discovered. The added five pounds may not make much of a difference either. Muscle has the ability to burn fat and this device is not inducing the level of muscular hypertrophy to make that possible. This becomes even more humorous as this is also marketed to men. The image that is constantly used in advertisements for exercise equipment usually features a very muscular man. It is clear that the man or woman in question did not develop that upper body through the Shake Weight.

  It is not possible to just burn off fat in a single area of the body. It does not work like a heat seeking missile. Building muscle or losing weight requires a specific diet or certain strength training exercises  bicep curls, tricep extensions, and push ups. These activities should be enough to reduce weight. At this point, an observer should realize that there would be no need for the difference in weight for the product. There are women who could handle the five pound version. Calling it the “male version” is an attempt to market it as something intense and add a machismo to a device seen as feminine. Fitness advertising wants to tap into that male machismo, thinking the product can transform the male buyer into an Adonis like figure. This fantasy is shattered, because there are women out there who are lifting more than 5 lbs.

Weightlifting - Olympics: Day 7

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It is also recommended at the very least an individual should try to strength train three times a week. The difference in weight size is based on the notion of the frailty myth. It states that women’s bodies are not strong enough for physical activity. There are still myths that women should not train heavy, because they will get injured. Injury only happens when exercises are not done correctly or a person over trains. There should be consideration in the difference in tendon size, which may make women more susceptible to joint injuries. Women can handle a five pound weight whether it vibrating or not. You certainly do not need to be He-Man to use the five pound version. There is no such thing as men’s muscles and women’s muscles, because at the cellular level they do not differ. The design is awkward and the manner in which it is held. One problem is that users of this device did not go through the full range of motion when using it. The only way to see improvement is to challenge the muscle by adding more weight. Exercising for just six minutes will not produce effective results.

           The defenders of this product say that it can at least improve muscular endurance. This requires an increase in training frequency. That means adding more training sessions to your regimen. Simultaneously, training volume should be gradually increased. The number of sets and repetitions must increase for the body to adapt. Static contractions are also useful. This requires doing a full set of an exercise, then holding the in a fully contracted position. This should be done till the individual can no longer hold it. The Shake Weight cannot do any of these tasks. None of these exercises listed would be compatible with the Shake Weight.

The vibrations are not as powerful as straining against the weight of actual iron. Even if there were no vibrations the Shake Weight would be not even be useful for static contraction. There would have to be added weight to the device, but then it would just be a regular weight. Muscular endurance will not be attained through the use of the Shake Weight product.

       If one were to switch a person who exercises with weights and have them use the Shake Weight, they would lose strength. A woman who regularly exercises and then uses this device solely with see a dramatic reversal. Women could lose muscle in just a month, who are already at a higher fitness level. The advertisements use the term “dynamic inertia” to describe the process of the vibration movements. Anyone with a basic understanding of physics would realize inertia can occur during any form of exercise. Matter can continue in an existing state or follow a path of uniform motion until effected by another force. This is the definition of inertia. Dynamics is merely the analysis of forces and torques which is considered a branch of applied mathematics. Adding this term just glorifies the item being sold, making the consumer think it is doing something incredible.This why the knowledge of science, physiology, and anatomy are important. It prevents individuals from making poor decisions. If you are a person attempting to add mass this exercise equipment would not perform as well as free weights. A woman for example already trained would see a loss in results. Muscle atrophy only occurs when one stops an exercise regimen or ceases to challenge the muscles being worked.

         The American Council on Exercise did conduct a study. The alleged study that Fitness QI did never was peer reviewed in an academic journal or produced by an exercise physiologist or scientist. The study done by the University of Wisconsin by exercise scientists . They wanted to see the amount of muscle activation versus a traditional weight compared to the Shake Weight. The volunteers of the study were between the ages of 18 to 30, which included men and women. They continued to use the five pound for men and the two and a half pound versions for women. Electrodes were then placed on the biceps, triceps, deltoids, and pectoralis muscles.  The utilization of electromyography allowed the intensity of the work out to be recorded. The result was fascinating. The findings by Dr.  John Porcari and Dr. Jennah Hackbarth  were not what one would have expected. Muscle activity was greater 88% in the biceps, 65% greater in the triceps, 50% greater in the chest, and 59% greater in the chest. It would appear that the bicep curls, chest fly, tricep extensions, and shoulder presses are less efficient. This is not true. The physical fitness level of the individuals in the study was not recorded. They may have seen results only because they were at the very low spectrum of physical fitness. The study also found that it worked mostly the triceps rather than the entire arms or upper body.

 The thinner or non-exercising subject would probably benefit from the Shake Weight more than a physically fit woman. 

When conducting an experiment one should be careful when considering factors that effect results. The physical fitness level of the subjects is essential to the results. These individuals of the study were of course healthy, but not at a high spectrum pf physical fitness. There was a 66 % EMG increase, but this was not the increase that infomercials have said claiming a 300% increase. The vibrations from the Shake Weight may not even be safe. They work muscles, but could be causing unnecessary soreness.

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The results as shown in the graph are misleading. For a person who does no physical activity anything would induce improvement. Two or five pound weights are simply not heavy enough to cause significant muscular hypertrophy. Subjects of this study did not expect the device to be as exerting. The ratings for perceived exertion were higher for the Shake Weight than it was for traditional weights.

        After explaining the physiological and anatomical basis for the Shake Weight one reaches a conclusion. It is not a useful piece of exercise equipment. This will not target the arms and upper body, but forces the triceps to do more work. Muscle activation was limited in the biceps. The level of resistance is so minimal that a physically fit person would not see any gains in lean body tissue. This would give only diminutive improvements to a person who has never done exercise at all. There are limited benefits to the exercise movement. There are very few times when a shaking exercise is useful, compared to push-ups, sit-ups, and weight lifting. The Shake Weight is something that is a combination of false advertising and hyper-consumerist culture. There are some goals that cannot be achieved by simple short cuts. That means effort, which many people do not want to do. The reason this sells so well is due to the public’s ignorance, lack of consumer advocacy, and the manipulation of human psychology. If statements sound credible enough people will accept it even though it may be mendacious. As long as the consumer knows about basic exercise science, they can make better decisions. The Shake Weight is a product that a consumer should not buy.

Further Reading

Hackbarth, Jenneh. “Does the Mega-selling Shake Weight Live Up to the Hype?” ACE Fitness. American Council on Exercise, 7 Oct. 2012. Web. 18 Dec. 2016. <https://www.acefitness.org/certifiednewsarticle/2000/does-the-mega-selling-shake-weight-live-up-to-the&gt;.

Agondoni, Laura. “Can You Get Muscles With the Shake Weight?” LIVESTRONG.COM. Leaf Group, 15 July 2015. Web. 18 Dec. 2016. <http://www.livestrong.com/article/492363-how-long-does-it-take-to-get-muscles-with-the-shake-weight/&gt;.

Wood, Heather. “Does the Shake Weight Take Fat off Your Arms?” LIVESTRONG.COM. Leaf Group, 15 Apr. 2011. Web. 18 Dec. 2016. <http://www.livestrong.com/article/421688-does-the-shake-weight-take-fat-off-your-arms/&gt;.

The Shake Weight

Wonder Woman Is No Longer an Honorary UN Ambassador

The iconic comic book character Wonder Woman is no longer an honorary UN ambassador. The fictional character’s selection did meet some condemnation. The reason it was done was to promote the empowerment of women and girls. UN members and external pressure wanted this revoked based on certain perspectives. They claimed they were concerned about the “over sexualized image,” which featured “a large breasted white woman of impossible proportions, scantily clad in a shimmery, thigh -baring body suit with an American flag motif and knee high boots.” They went on to explain that it was “not culturally encompassing or sensitive.” Hearing these statements demonstrates erroneous thinking. It is the type of  irrational thinking that comes from extreme third wave feminists and false social justice warriors. These two groups do not want to challenge injustice, but merely act as managers of current conditions. These people presenting themselves as advocates are nowhere to be found when people are in danger. At this point in history the United Nations has lost most of its credibility. UN failures and abuses in the  Democratic  Republic  of the Congo, South Sudan, Haiti, and the authorization of military action in Libya prove it should not lecture any nation on human rights. Iraq suffered under both UN and US sanctions, while North Korea  is  being put under sanctions. This honorary ambassador for the famous DC character could have been a positive development for the struggling supranational organization. Syria could be the breaking point for the world body. These criticisms of  Wonder Woman’s image display a level of ignorance about the character. The arguments for rejection can easily be discredited.

           The claim of the over sexualized image almost sounds like a religious fundamentalist argument. Wonder Woman is drawn as an attractive and athletic woman. Yet, some feel that the mere image of the woman’s body is sexual. There effort to prevent misogynistic convictions only reveals their sexist prejudice. To them a woman that is dressed in a certain way is just a sex object. Men are hardly ever judged on how they dress. These objections to the character’s costume expose an undated traditionalist view about women. Extreme third wave feminist make similar arguments, but in another context. They believe that presenting women in this image encourages a rape culture. This explains why feminists and the religious right collaborated in the attempt to ban pornography in the United States in the 1980s. The traditionalist claimed that it was obscene. Feminists stated it created rapists and hate for women. Both these statements are incorrect. Rape is the product of a society that thinks violence against women is normal, not lascivious materials . What is considered obscene or  crude to one person, may not be to the other. These two groups obviously do not believe in the freedom of speech.

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The case with the statement on Wonder Woman reveal a combination of these two schools of thoughts. They say her uniform is sexualized, but the only thing it does is reveal some parts of her body. It should be understood that DC comics is not pornography or sexualized. It has happened to the character in certain comics, but that is not her sole purpose. Wonder Woman does not fall into being a simple stock character or some random trope amusement. She is one of DC comics most recognizable characters, with plenty of fans around the world.  Wonder Woman costume is more tame compared to real life swim wear.

Wonder Woman has not appeared in a thong or nude in the comics. Microbikinis almost seem like no clothing at all.   When examining this objection it lacks cogency. While it is true, normally Wonder Woman appears in her thigh bearing suit, there are times in which her costume changes. At first she wore a shirt. This was during her first comic books in the 1940s. There were times in which she wore pants. The costume changes depending on the time or character designer. Writers and artists change the image of  a  comic book character various times.

         The belief that Wonder Woman’s design is impossible baffles the mind. Seeing as she is a cartoon character she can be drawn, which ever way an artist wants. If these UN members bother to do research, they would realize that Wonder Woman is not some unrealistic standard body. There is a habit to draw women unnaturally thin, but this has been avoided by DC artists. Wonder Woman has either appeared athletic and sleek or muscular. Being an amazon she has to look the part. She is a type of superhero that is a fighter trained in warrior combat. So it would make sense to show her body as if it was trained for rigorous physical activity.

Depending on the artists and writers of the comic, Wonder Woman can break the common model of slim woman. This allows the readers to at least believe that she could pull of the strength feats she does or fighting super villains. Wonder Woman’s design can either be extremely cartoon like or realistic model. Saying that her body proportions are impossible is wrong based on several reasons. The first reason one should remember is that it is a fictional character not meant to be a entirely realistic depiction. Another reason is that there are other mediums besides comic books encouraging body image disorders. The fashion and fitness industry do this as well. Fitness magazines emphasize weight loss and present the slim body for women as the image of health. Fad diets and equating a slender body with success. The fashion industry entourages models to starve themselves and they only design clothes for an ectomorphic body type. These critics have never spoken out about these more serious issues. The last point also is that Wonder Woman’s proportions resemble that of a female athlete. Many of them are more Wonder Woman like than the actual character!

Muscular thighs and a powerful looking upper body seems to be the model Wonder Woman is based upon. The women who train in what ever sport they choose to compete in create a body that is powerful and has implications about what a woman can achieve. The concept of the weaker sex is based around a pseudoscientific understanding of biology and physiology. The female body is seen as inferior or either frail. The muscular woman challenges this idea. This extends to a version of feminism that emphasizes women’s physical prowess as a means to challenge patriarchy. The fact that men are stronger than women has been used a justification to control women, becomes a ludicrous argument when women develop their strength. The image of the strong woman in this mode of thought can inspire young girls to grow up to be confident and independent women.William Moulton Marston Wonder Woman’s creator was a supporter of women’s rights. He has supported the women’s suffrage movement  and did not hold traditional views about gender roles. The character was not meant to be an empty vessel, but a symbol for women to liberate themselves. It surprising  that UN members are rejecting an image that shows a woman with one type of power. Although there are many types of power ( mental, financial, and constitutional) , physical power is still not consider acceptable for women. That statement about Wonder Woman’s “impossible proportions” just proves their objections are not out concern for women’s well being.

     The only legitimate argument that can be made to revoking the honorary ambassadorship is one of cultural sensitivity. This claim also has weak points. Wonder Woman is a white person who is trying to be presented in a campaign to empower girls and women globally. The majority of the world’s population is not white. This image almost seems like a painful reminder of the colonial past in which whiteness was presented as a standard of beauty and success in Africa, Asia, and Latin America. Adding to this is the fact her costume is the US flag in swimming suit form. What appears from this is a type of subtle cultural imperialism. The great part about fictional characters is that they can be changed. That means even their skin color. Marvel has done comics in which their former character are no longer white. Amadeus Cho is the new Incredible Hulk. Fans did not recat negatively to the change, because comics function on retrocative continuity. There is no reason why Wonder Woman can be either African, Asian, or South American.

This needs to be done to correct past mistakes. It is no secret that comics have had a tradition of racist caricature. African Americans were targets, but Asians, Mexicans, and other non-white groups were subject to prejudicial representation in popular media. It was common to see blackface and yellowface  caricature in Wonder Woman comics in the 1940s and 1950s. The only characters drawn in a normal form were the whites. This was the era of Jim Crow and Japanese internment. Even after the end of World War II, ant-Asian and anti-black racism was still prevalent. America’s refusal to grant African American equal rights and its wars in Korea as well as Vietnam demonstrated America’s desire to maintain a white supremacist system.

 The Japanese a portrayed as small eyed, sneaky dwarfs. African Americans are shown as sub-human. These were the views shared by the majority of whites in the United States. 

The end of European colonial empires and the civil rights movement in the United States had a major impact on race  relations. Certain views were no longer acceptable. It had a positive effect on popular culture and comics, because more non-white superheroes were being created.  Wonder Woman has been used as a symbol for social justice whether its appearing on the cover of Ms. Magazine  or artistic renditions for a contemporary cause.

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An artistic rendition of Bree Newsome, who took down the Confederate flag form the South Carolina State House in 2015. It had been there since in 1961 and continues to be a symbol of division in hate.

Numerous fans produce art and share it online as a way to explain certain movements. This could range from anything to Black Lives Matter to women’s rights issues. Taking a recognizable popular culture figure helps explain what a cause is about. A popular symbol remains in the minds of  people longer than just mere ideas. Wonder Woman should not be regulated to just a frivolous part of entertainment.

   UN  member should reconsider their decision. If one examines the history of Wonder Woman she is a comic book character born out of the women’s rights movement. Using this cartoon character for a UN campaign to  empower women and girls would a positive development. This sudden reversal reveals what the organization is really about. The United Nations was never about creating world peace or even enforcing international law. It was about imposing order through the domination of the world’s most powerful nations . The UN has either authorized or allowed armed conflicts to start, which harms more women and children. It fails women on many levels and continues to make women’s rights as  low priority. There are a few programs for women’s causes, but these are under funded by peacekeeping missions. Although there was controversy regarding this event, one question remains. How come no one has nominated a real woman as an honorary ambassador? There are women who do amazing things everyday and making a difference in the world. May be this exposes a larger problem. The United Nations,just like most human societies is majority male dominated. Women must have an active part in the societies in which they live. While Wonder Woman is no longer going to be an honorary UN ambassador, she will always be a favorite among comic book fans.

Wonder Woman Is No Longer an Honorary UN Ambassador

Lift and Carry

Lift and carry refers to a fetish in which an individual is aroused by being hoisted in the arms of another person. This can overlap with other fetishes such as cratolagnia and sthenolagnia. This could be a rare fetish, but it is difficult to get actual statistics. It is almost impossible to say when this type of fetish even emerged. Relevant to the discussion of strong women it takes another fascinating turn. Their are men who love to have strong women lift them up. What could be a simple fetish could have gender relations implications. Compared to other fetishes this is not harmful or dangerous. There has to be some reason why certain men like the demonstration of a woman’s strength. Normally women such as bodybuilders and weightlifters participate in this activity.However, women who are just strong without training also participate. To many people’s surprise sometimes even a thin woman can lift a full grown man. What appears to be an exchange that seems humorous, sexual, or strange  may have more meaning.

          Like all things this lift and carry fetish has an origin. One theory is that it could stem from childhood. Young children are held by their mothers and it may be a memory of that. This is not an Oedipus complex, but simply enjoying human physical contact. Infants who do not have physical contact of some sort do develop emotional issues. Mothers teach their children basic emotional responses. At the early stage children learn to like physical contact with other people. This can explain the development of this fetish. Many people were carried by their mothers as children and never have this fetish. A more plausible cause could be an event in later childhood. When boys and girls play together in school on a playground, this could be the catalyst. Boys may not understand their feelings, but could like arm wrestling  or general horse play.

The boy may find this interaction fun and remember it. This could follow into adulthood. while youth experiences could mold our behavior, sometimes it could be discovered by accident. The internet has allowed people to access large amounts of information. It also exposes people to different people and activities. Video sites contain millions of clips, which do include lift and carry. Some men stumble on to these videos and cannot get enough. This discovery does not only happen in an internet setting; it happens between friends and intimate partners. A random act of a woman picking up a man could spark this fetish. He may not even know he likes it until it happens. The idea of asking a woman to lift them or even if they are capable seems unimaginable.

When people discover something they like it can become addictive. These women who randomly do this in the men who discover it, may not be athletes. They are just women who are strong. This leads to another reason why people develop this fetish. The image of a physically strong woman is appealing. It goes beyond simply looking strong, but actually being able to perform strength feats. A woman could be muscular, but not as strong as she looks.

A weightlifter would probably be stronger than a bodybuilder. The goals of both of these athletes are different. One wants to gain maximum muscular hypertrophy, the other is about strength. While men are captivated by the aesthetic appearance, some want to see women do strength feats. The prevalence of the female athlete and the wider exposure of  the muscular woman could be a catalyst for the lift and carry fetish. There is also another element to this that is not sexual in nature. There is a humorous feeling seeing a woman pick up a man like a baby. The comedic effect  comes even greater when the woman is smaller than the man.This could be related to memories of early childhood play. Another reason for the development of this fetish is the appearance of strong or muscular women on various media. Exposure to something new or interesting can generate curiosity. A person watching an women’s athletic event could like not only their performance, but the powerful bodies they have built. The first reaction may be shock, then wonder. This could happen when a young man watches the Olympics, tennis, weightlifting, or other sports.

The women have muscles, which attract attention. The men become even more fascinated to the point of liking women who are very muscular. The aesthetic becomes an arousing and attractive quality, which could have been fostered from television, film, or printed media.  Comic books and cartoons could be the first exposure men have to the idea of a muscular woman. This attraction and love grows to liking this particular look. Upon discovering this the individual wants to explore further. These are just a few possible origins for the fetish.

         There are men who merely like looking at muscular women, but never think about experiencing their physical prowess. There are men who are simply not convinced that a woman could be that powerful and seek to find out if it is true. Just like session wrestling, there are sessions for lift and carry. Most of the time session wrestling may have this included, but the emphasis is more on the wrestling.

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When a woman proves those muscles are not just for show the experience becomes thrilling. There are men who hide this fetish from their wives and girlfriends, out of fear of ostracism. They may go to certain websites to fulfill desired fantasies. It could be difficult to work up the courage to go to a session. When this happens the client either meets the session woman in a private place ( hotel or residence). Contacts are either made by websites or a listed travel schedule. Seeing as there is not a huge amount of  literature on the subject, it is hard to get a grasp on the thoughts and motivations of a client. Sara Lips a session wrestler has described several emotions that clients experience when she wrestles or does lift and carry. Clients sometimes like the feeling of being powerless. The idea of being physically dominated by a powerful woman excites them. This is a projection mostly of cratolagnia. The demonstration of strength feats causes sexual arousal. Then there are times in which the client enjoys the fact the woman struggles a bit to lift them. The idea behind this is that the client becomes a human dumbbell.

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There is also the aspect of the unexpected as Sara Lips reveals. Most women struggle to open jars or do a pull-up. These women pick up men like they are a one half pound bag. It is a phenomenon that men are not used to or see on a daily basis. There is also a dynamic of trust involved. The client has to have a level of trust that the woman will not drop him or injure them some how. What comes with this action is a feeling of security or safety. The other aspect to this is role play. This activity happens around a scenario that a client imagines. Submission appears as a constant theme and emotion. The client will not attempt resistance, but prefers to be dominated in physical contest. Submission is usually associated with session wrestling. With lift in carry the submission aspect appears in the sense the client hoisted in the air and cannot escape easily. It is about having the more powerful woman in control. Another part of the role play involves the concept of super heroine. This idea intrigues and entices the men who like physically strong women. The scenario reverses roles having a woman save a man. This fantasy of a super strong woman hero has come from comic books and graphic novels. It is no surprise that men who love women like this say their favorite superhero characters are Wonder Woman, Power Girl, and She-Hulk.

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The psychology is also based in stress relief. Men of all backgrounds have been known to have a lift and carry fetish or s desire to participate in session wrestling. Men of immense power businessmen, lawyers, or even politicians could engage in this as a means of stress relief. The reason could be is it provides a place in which pressure can be reduced from daily life. The demands of family and work can cause distress and unfortunately men have few outlets for this. Ceding power temporarily can be similar to a brief vacation. Unfortunately, wives may not be so accepting or understanding of this fetish or fantasy which is why this is done in secret. Friends and colleagues may not either thinking it strange or inappropriate. Regardless of this, it can be fun for the man of power and authority. This is a basic explanation of what men feel during these lift and carry sessions. It still is ambiguous in regards to other psychological aspects.

          The often forgotten element of this lift and carry fetish is women. The writings or what little of them exist focus solely on the perspective of men. This is a problem, because it reduces women to passive objects. It is clear they are anything but passive. Obviously, these physically powerful make this possible. Women who  do this may also have a fetish. There is a myth that women do not have sexual desires and are passive receivers of male advances. Biologically that is inaccurate. Women have fetishes like men, however society does not condone women having sexual expression. This has changed since the sexual revolution and feminist movement. Relevant to this subject, it would be no surprise that women get enjoyment out men who are amazed by their strength.

  It is rare that women in their lives wield such absolute control. Most human societies are male dominated and women have less power. There has been improvements in terms of political and social rights, but men still hold the majority of the power. Here a powerful woman can be as strong as she wants to be and not be criticized for it. Muscular women face harsh comments or rude stares on a daily basis. Participating in activities gives them validation. There are plenty of fans to counter detractors. Physiologically, when women gain these athletic skills they get more confidence. Many women have stated that they have a more positive image of their bodies and are more confident in other areas of their lives. Besides this, it becomes fun. The fun comes in the fact these women can toss full grown men around like rag dolls. It reminds them of time when boys and girls could play with each other in a much more rough fashion. After puberty, this co-ed competition in sports cannot continue because of men’s gains in strength. Here, this is recaptured due to the fact most of the women are stronger or close enough in strength, than the men they wrestle.There are women who have enjoyment in the physical challenge of wrestling or lifting  a man.

Being athletes a competitive nature is common. Power whether physical or mental is an attractive quality. Women with these qualities are something unique. Society however, does not seem as accepting of these qualities in women. The strong woman can gain respect and open admiration in a safe space such as this. The idea of having power is something women want, but are often denied. Here they can demonstrate a form of power.The women who do lift and carry sessions also may like the fact they get to travel and meet different people from around the world. Women are often discouraged from doing anything adventurous, mainly for the sake of their safety. Life contains a level of risk that one cannot avoid and it is too short to be afraid to try something new. So these women take a path of the unknown. There is also another dimension, which involves the desire for physical contact. Just the act of holding another person creates a sense of emotional warmth . Women could experience this during these sessions, but men could as well. Women’s motivations are more complex. It may be that this experience is more empowering. The weaker sex stereotype is prevalent and constantly presented as truth. Here women can challenge that directly in a literal sense. Doing so women gain acceptance that they can be both strong and still feminine.

             Lift and carry has several different types of methods of picking up a person. There are piggy backs, fireman’s lift, the overhead lift, cradle carry, and over the shoulder lift. The piggy back lift is recognizable from a person’s childhood. It involves one person being on the back and shoulders of another. It is one of the easiest lift to perform. This type of lift has romantic overtones in some cases. Korean films and cartoons make reference to the piggy back ride as a romantic overture.This expands beyond Korean entertainment and appears in Western media as well.

 The fireman’s carry does not really require as much upper body strength as one might think. This involves using the pectoralis major muscles to slide an individual on to your shoulders. It is fast and efficient, which explains why this is preferred in firefighting and the military.However, the casualty drag has replaced it to reduce the risk of injury . This is more convenient for a smaller person trying to carry a large person. Women who are involved in physically demanding professions would find this helpful.

 The overhead lift is one of the most difficult lifts for women to do. This involves hoisting a person’s whole body in the air. The reason this lift is difficult is that involves a significant among of upper body strength. This means it incorporates the use of the trapezious, pectoralis major, pectoralis minor, deltoids, and latissimus dorsi. The skeleton also contributes with the use of the scapula and clavicle. Women have lower levels of upper body strength and lower bone mass. This makes the fact some women who can do this more impressive. Even the most muscular women have difficulty doing the overhead lift.

The over the shoulder (OTS) lift is rare, but not because it’s physically demanding. It can more uncomfortable for the person being carried and the one lifting. This involves shifting the weight of the person on one shoulder. The arm is worked more which means the triceps brachii, bicpes brachii, and brachioradalis will be utilized. The interesting aspect about this lift is that it is a trope in popular culture. This normally involves an antagonist taking a damsel in distress hostage. The trope can also be seen when a protagonist rescues victims. It has mostly men doing the carrying, but in other cases women do it as well.

 The cradle carry is more comfortable. The lifter can use both arms which give more mechanical advantage. The one being lifted also has the support of two arms so this does not put strain on them. This lift is also simple to perform, because it does not take many body movements.  It seems lifting a person is more complicated in action. There are a variety of lifts and carries. These are only the basic ones. There are others that could overlap with some wrestling moves.

There is one lift that seems like a pile diver, except the goal is not to drop someone on their head. It starts with the first phase of lift a person up, but not executing the hard drive down. It would be hard to argue that is this is part of lift and carry. The other shoulder carry seems to easier to grasp. The move has a person get on the shoulders of the person lifting, almost like parents do with their infants. The shoulder  carry for lack of a better term, is also infrequently performed. The reason is has to do with discomfort. The carrier would have more weight on their spine. The person lifted is more subject to pressure on their lower body in order to keep themselves up right. There are many categories of lift and carry, but there are also considerations of biomechanics.

        Lift and carry depends on certain biomechanical factors. The most important one is strength. The success depends on how strong the woman who lifts is and the weight of the person being lifted. A woman’s weight can also be a factor. If she weighs more than the person she is lifting it will be simple. If she has the ability to bench more than her body weight, then she should have no problem lifting many men.

Here Roberta Toth lifts a man of lower weight. When she tries the over weight man she cannot do it. There has been a myth that muscle weighs more than fat, but that is not the case. 

A man who is overweight or obese would be difficult for the strongest women to lift. Reaching the 285 lbs mark would be over many women’s maximum bench press. Then there is the factor of height. A short woman may not be at a disadvantage lifting a taller man. A woman lifting a taller man means she does not have to bend her back as much. That means reduced pressure on the spine. Starting position is important to the movements performed. A taller woman would have to use more of her spine and vertebrae to reach the person for the lift. cradle  carries would  would be a challenge for a woman who has shorter arms. The taller longer limbs  of a bigger woman provide more leverage. Women have smaller hands, which also make it a challenge holding a bigger person . Lifting is also effected by the legs and torso. Long legs and a long torso mean a sponger spine. This also means more load can be felt, when performing a deadlift for example.

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The torso refers to the trunk of the body. Short legs and long arms provide an advantage in deadlifting .

Other than the varied differences in leg and torso length their is the upper body. Women have narrower shoulders, which means less room to house muscle on the skeletal frame. Although women can build impressive upper bodies, male upper body strength is greater even  when the weight and height are the same. Narrower shoulders mean it would still be a challenge for even a muscular woman to slide a large man onto her shoulders. This obstacle can be overcome my using more power from the legs and lower body as a substitute. Essentially it is similar to how one should move boxes. Never bend with your back , use your knees. Women who do these sessions have figure out how to assess the dimensions  of subject and the most efficient way to carry them. Sometimes athletes state they have a maximum weight limit to lift, but this is very rare. Many want to see if they can lift the largest man as a personal challenge.

   Society judges harshly what it does not understand. What seems to be relatively harmless ( unless someone drops you) gets condemnation. There could be sexist overtones to this objection. Lift and carry could be seen as abnormal, because people still do not like the idea of a powerful woman either physically, mentally, or socially. Although it is seen as a simple fetish, it could be a desire for men and women to meet in an area on equal footing . Gender roles are not rigidly enforced and there is a level of playful fun. No one ostracizes a desire in this hidden   microcosm  . Saying this is abnormal lacks factual support. This does not even rank as a paraphilia  according to clinical psychologists. It hardly gets any examination or academic investigation in sports related circles. It is a unknown world that is filled with rumor or speculation. There is a meaning beyond simple sexual expression. This could be a metaphor for women’s rising power in certain societies.

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It can at times be praised or condemned. Then there are those traditionalists and reactionary figures that oppose any form of change or advancement. This is not a small phenomenon; thousands of  web sites have emerged that carter solely to this activity. This raises  more questions. If there are men with this fetish, how many women have it?   It has been seen as normal that a man carries a woman. It also seems more likely that a woman would have their fantasy fulfilled, because on average men are stronger. However, the woman who is an athlete, stronger than average, or muscular can certainly do strength feats. That is not to say, that they would not like their men doing lift and carry with them. As more women are willing to talk about these sessions, answers are found. there may never be an accurate number of how many men and women participate, but it is clear there are many.

Lift and Carry

Sarah Hayes

Sarah Hayes is an IFBB professional bodybuilder, coach,  and personal trainer.Since 2004 she has been training athletes and various clients. Formally she would train clients at her residence and gyms around Dallas, Texas. Sarah was born on a small farm in Minnesota in 1977. She attended Augusta College on a volleyball scholarship,  graduating with two degrees in   athletic training and exercise science. Her minor was in exercise management. After graduating in the year 2000 she moved to Oxford, Ohio. There she took a job as an assistant strength and conditioning coach. Sarah Hayes was involved in developing nine different programs for women’s teams. She also developed more for nine additional ones at the university. She attended graduate school at the University of Miami majoring in sports studies. Sarah Hayes work load became immense and she did not complete it. However, she did find a new opportunity at the University of Minnesota. There she trained both male and female sports teams. Sarah Hayes also started her own business Dynamic Fitness Consultants around that time.

sarah-hayes-467 It seemed only natural that Sarah would eventually gravitate to the sport of bodybuilding. Sarah competed at first in figure being convince by a friend in 2007. Sarah placed fourth in her figure contest. To her own admission ” After prejudging I realized that I’m not a figure girl.” Her first show was in the Gopher Bodybuilding Classic in her home state of Minnesota. Sarah then had to make a new strategy. She then hired a coach Keith Williams a bodybuilder himself, as her trainer. This time the goal was to take titles in the Ms. Minnesota. She was able to change her physique enough to enter the bodybuilding division of the natural Ms. Minnesota. Sarah won overall and was awarded pro status in the World Natural Bodybuilding Federation. Sarah Hayes turned it down, because she wanted to compete in the NPC instead. There were some setbacks. Sarah had to get shoulder surgery, but still trained. Her next moves involved her working her way to a professional. Sarah says of these early years: ” I was training to compete as an NPC figure competitor seeing as I wanted to do fitness modeling.” Her coach then told Sarah that fitness models are not female bodybuilders and fitness or figure were. This seems like a ludicrous statement, because the only element that separates them is aesthetics and levels of development.

This was some incorrect information Sarah was given, but she continued to figure out this new world of bodybuilding. Her body was too big for what the judges wanted in the figure division.

       Sarah attended the Arnold Classic in 2008 and many asked her if she was competing in bodybuilding. Sarah got discouraged, because she was aiming to still go to figure. Sarah’s hesitant behavior she revealed was based on the idea if she got bigger, she would lose her femininity. She overcame this ridiculous notion and in her own words ” I realized I could maintain my femininity, and  be a fitness model. ” Now that irrational fear was gone Sarah then competed in the The Minnesota Gopher Classic. She won the heavyweight and overall titles and now could compete at a national level.  Her best wins include the 2009 Lone Star Classic, 2009 Ronnie Coleman Classic, 2010 Branch Warren Bodybuilding, 2009 NPC Europa, 2012 Tampa Pro, and the 2009 Europa. Sarah Hayes made her Ms.Olympia debut in 2012.

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Sarah is 5 ‘5.5 ” and competes at 160 lbs. During the off season she can weigh as much as 178 lbs.  Sometimes she will compete at 164 lbs. Sarah once said that one of her best features was he backside and glutes.  As she stated in an interview ” I often get complimented on by back and butt. ” The reason she had built such an impressive feature is because her favorite exercises include luges, squats, and dumbbell shoulder presses.

 Sarah Hayes says what she loves most about the sport is that it challenges her physically and mentally. She as stated “to me it is an art.” Sarah attributes her success to her friends and family saying ” my friends and family are wonderful to me giving lots of support.” Many female bodybuilders do get reactions from the general public. Sarah reveals “I often get stared at when I’m in public, especially when I’m wearing sports clothes or dressy clothes that are fitted.” Sarah has iterated that it is mostly positive. This would not be surprising, because she presents a very impressive and beautiful physique. This has made her popular on female bodybuilder photography sites and sports wear modeling. She has appeared in  various photo shoots for Gene X9 and Dan Ray Photography.

 Sarah’s goal is not necessarily to win every contest, but in her words ” be an inspiration to all people.” Sarah  as she puts it ” wants to be a female bodybuilding icon, to which others look to seeing a very feminine woman with muscles, which is accepted and beautiful. “Sarah has inspirations of her own. These include athletes which are her personal favorites. Her favorite bodybuilders include Lisa Aukland, Iris Kyle, Betty Pariso, and Cathy Francois. Shilahe Brown another bodybuilder was helpful to Sarah in her posing practice and training. Chad Ray also provided coaching in guidance in her rise in the IFBB. Besides sports icons that give inspiration to Sarah, she also cites her mother, sister, and grandmother as her first role models.

         Being a professional athlete is time consuming. Sarah Hayes does find time for hobbies and friends. She loves attending Church and reading. What Sarah likes to read are fitness, bodybuilding, and nutrition magazines as well as books. Sarah also enjoys doing puzzles like word searches and word fill ins. She enjoys watching movies. Her favorites include Rocky  and The Terminator. Sarah Hayes also loves to travel, cook, and bake during her off season. She is a sports fanatic and enjoys attending sports events. She also participates in bowling, golfing, softball,  and has said “I enjoy  playing all sports.” Sarah has a love of athletic competition. She seems to be the gregarious type stating “I love to be social.” Sarah’s music of choice includes Hip-Hop, R&B, Rap, Rock and Roll and Christian music. A busy schedule that Sarah  has it needs to have some leisurely activity.

           Sarah Hayes has not made a competition appearance since 2012. The reason being is she was able to get a teaching position at the University of Southern California. Once again she relocated and began coaching. She has nor given up training nor announced that she has retired from the sport.

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There are still contests for female bodybuilders to compete in,even if they are shrinking. It was rumored at one time that Sarah Hayes may consider switching to the physique division. After all she did start out as a figure competitor. This should not be a disappointment to fans, because in reality physique is just lightweight bodybuilding. Sarah was fortunate enough to reach the Ms.Olympia stage while it was still in existence. The Wings of Strength Rising Phoenix  is the successor to the now defunct Ms.Olympia. This may be where fans will see Sarah Hayes next. If not, you can follow her on facebook and instagram ( Sarah Hayes ). Certainly it seems the bodybuilding scene has not seen the last of Sarah Hayes.

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