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Exercise and Fitness

History of exercise

09/28/2007

Question:

What is the hidtory of exercise?

Answer:

According to Wikipedia, both the term and the exercise method were developed by Kenneth H. Cooper, M.D., an exercise physiologist of the U.S. Air Force. Dr. Cooper, an avowed exercise enthusiast, was personally and professionally puzzled about why some people with excellent muscular strength were still prone to poor performance at tasks such as long-distance running, swimming, and bicycling. He began measuring systematic human performance using a bicycle ergometer, and began measuring sustained performance in terms of the ability to utilize oxygen.

His groundbreaking book, Aerobics, was published in 1968, and included scientific exercise programs using running, walking, swimming and bicycling. The book came at a fortuitous historical moment, when increasing weakness and inactivity in the general population was causing a perceived need for increased exercise. It became a best seller.

Cooper's data provided the scientific baseline for almost all modern aerobics programs, most of which are based on oxygen-consumption equivalency.

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Response by:

Rachael   Dotson, BS Rachael Dotson, BS
Program Manager
Certified Johnny G Spinning Instructor
Fitness Center at CARE\Crawley
University of Cincinnati