Health Benefits of Spinning and How To Do It Right

spinning22

 

spin13These Spin tips will keep you sweating, smiling and secure knowing you’re doing it right.

spinning12

First, here’s a little history on how Spinning was first created. Back in the ’90’s medical anchor, Ileana Bravo and I interviewed the founder of something people in Miami were talking about called “Spinning.”  We produced a health segment for NBC Miami and interviewed the Founder of it.  His name was Johnny G.

spinning2

The TODAY SHOW picked up the Miami story and spinning spun off nationwide. Johnny G. wanted other people to be able to reach their champion within from anywhere the same way he desired to after being sidelined in a car accident.

spinning4

The founder, Johnny G’s full name is Johnny Goldberg. He was a champion endurance bicycle racer. His passion to create a different type of indoor bike was ignited after he was hit by a car while training on his bike outdoors at night.

spinning6

Following that accident, Johnny G. spent ten years developing the right type of indoor cycle that would feel like his real road bike.

spin1

The Spinner® bike officially launched in NYC in 1993 and was offered at Crunch Gyms.

spinning1

 

Here’s what it looks like.

spinning5

spin35

 

spin37

spin60

Spinning is still hotter than ever because of all of the above and more.

spin39

 

spin34

Print

Now you know why it’s so popular with men and women. Here’s how to do it right.

spinning13

Proper set-up and form helps you avoid injury and maximize all those health perks.

spinning21

Everyone can benefit from a few expert tips. Numero Uno:  Warm up.

Best Warm Up Moves Before a Spinning Bike Class

by Brian Willett

Warm-up moves can help you burn more calories, reduce risk of injury, and improve your performance on the bike. Of course, certain warm-up moves will be more effective than others, so choosing well is important.

Quadriceps Moves

Your quadriceps — the large group of four muscles on the front of your thighs — drives the motion of spinning workouts, providing power to move the pedals. You can get your quadriceps ready for spinning with body-weight squats, light pedaling and the standing quadriceps stretch. To perform that stretch, stand with one hand leaning on a wall for support, and the other hand holding your foot to your buttocks so you are standing on one leg. Be sure to flex your knee completely when performing the standing quadriceps stretch to ensure you are fully stretching the muscle.

Hamstrings Moves

Your hamstrings are located on the back of your upper leg, and like the quadriceps, they are involved in every pedal stroke when spinning. An easy way to get your hamstrings ready for spinning is to bend over and touch your toes. You can also sit down and perform a sit-and-reach motion. According to a study from the February 2005 edition of the “Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research,” performing static stretches rather than dynamic moves is preferable for improving flexibility.

Back Moves

Your back muscles have to work hard to maintain proper posterior chain alignment and prevent you from slouching over when you ride. Thus, it’s important that you warm up your back muscles to prepare them for that work. You can stretch your back muscles in several ways, such as by lying on your back and pulling your knees to your chest, or doing the cat-cow stretch.

Shoulder Moves

Although your shoulders don’t push the pedals, they do help support your upper body while you ride and assist in steering. Moves such as jumping jacks, arm circles, and extending your arms behind your back as far as you can will help you get your shoulders loose and ready for your spinning class.

Calf Moves

The muscles of your calves are small, but they can produce a lot of power when cycling. Both squats and jumping jacks can help warm up your calves, but you may also wish to perform calf stretches while leaning against a wall. To do so, put both hands on a wall and lean into the wall, with one leg bent at the knee and one extended fully back.

 

spinning11

Now that you’re warmed up, I spoke with expert Spin Instructor, Julie Insogna.

Now that you’re warmed up, I spoke with Spin Instructor, Julie Insogna about your next move:

QUESTION:

FIRST, TELL US WHEN AND WHY YOU GOT INTERESTED IN SPINNING?

JULIE INSOGNA:

QUESTION:

WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF SPINNING?

JULIE INSOGNA:

QUESTION:

WHAT’S THE FIRST THING SOMEONE SHOULD DO WHEN ENTERING A SPIN CLASS?

JULIE INSOGNA:

QUESTION:

WHAT’S THE SECOND THING THEY NEED TO DO?

JULIE INSOGNA:

QUESTION:

THIRD?
JULIE INSOGNA:

QUESTION:

ANYTHING ELSE SPINNERS NEED TO KNOW?

JULIE INSOGNA:

QUESTION:

WHERE CAN PEOPLE TAKE YOUR CLASS OR FIND OUT MORE ABOUT IT?

 

Thanks, Julie!  

More Great Spin Tips by Deb Cheslow:

What to Wear in Spin Class

spin3When you first start spin, you might want to wear padded cycle shorts as the saddle takes some getting used to.

spin5

Most spin classes have bikes with pedals that accommodate people in sneakers in addition to one or two types of cycle clips that attach to cycling shoes.

spin6

When we first started spin, we wore sneakers for a couple months before making the commitment to buy the shoes. In hindsight, we would have purchased those “spin shoes” much sooner, as you have so much more leverage and less wiggling when you’re clipped into the spin pedals. It also puts much less stress on your shins and toes!

How to Set Up Your Bike

Spin class bikes are not beach cruisers. You don’t want your knees crumpled; you don’t even want them at a 90-degree angle.

spin10

You want your knees to be slightly extended but not so much that you can’t put full pressure on the down stroke of your pedal.

 

SPIN105

spin7

Most spin enthusiasts also bring their bike handles up higher than they would a road or mountain bike to accommodate running out of the saddle (we’ll get to this in a minute).

SPIN90

And, make sure that you’re not reaching dramatically to those handlebars when you’re seated on the bike.

SPIN102

spin11

Everything is adjustable and this is where it’s most important that your spin instructor get you dialed in.

SPIN200

Spin is All About Tension and Tempo

Your spin instructor expects you to keep tempo with the song so that everyone in the class is on the correct “leg” for certain activities.

spin8

Tension knobs on the bike will take you from no tension to “drag” (where you begin to feel tension or “the road” as they call it) and subsequent turns up from there make the ride increasingly “steep.”

SPIN100

While no beginner in spin class is expected to keep high tempo AND tension like the advanced riders are accustomed to, you want to work your way into higher tension as it burns more fat and enhances your cardio workout.

Initially, though, just focus on the tempo, right, left, right left, right left, march!

spinning13

About Jogging, Sprinting and Running Out of the Saddle in Spin Class

 

spin14

Spin usually requires seated climbs and runs as well as “running out of the saddle” where you’re actually jogging or sprinting while standing above the saddle of the bike.

spin36

For beginners, the runs out of the saddle can be too demanding.

DON’T LET PEER PRESSURE CONVINCE YOU TO RUN WHEN YOU’RE NOT READY TO.

spinning9

Most spin enthusiasts have been doing this a long time, BUT they started right where you are starting. When you try to run out of the saddle at the same amount of time or distance these “regulars” are accustomed to, you can hurt yourself.

spin33

Swallow your pride and stay in the saddle, keeping tempo and increasing your tension slightly until you feel you can take on a jog initially for a few given seconds. Build up from there!

When you begin to run out of the saddle, do NOT lean your body weight (or your elbows!) on your handlebars.

SPIN92

This puts too much torque on your knees and can damage them. Rest your hands lightly on the handlebars and focus on sitting back, above the saddle, so the strong leg muscles of your quads and hamstrings are doing the work.

spin14

Your spin class instructor will take you on intermittent (and imaginary, of course) hills, downhills and road runs.

spin32

At times, he or she will ask you to do intervals where you sit in the saddle for a number of counts, then run above the saddle for the same number of counts – and sometimes, these counts can be just 2 or 4!

Remember the rules during intervals (or “jumps”) – if you’re not ready, sit your butt down and just keep pedaling.

spin101

If you are ready, try a few, making sure you don’t lean on the handlebars.

spin37

About “Hill Climbing” in Spin Class

Sitting on the saddle and pedaling in spin class does not necessarily mean you’re resting or “recovering.”

In fact, riding “in the saddle” with solid tension will burn more calories than sprinting.

 

A good spin instructor will methodically increase tension as you ride in the saddle, effectively making you feel like you’re pedaling up an increasingly steep hill.

SPIN100

In these situations, you want to protect your knees once again by sitting as far back on the saddle as you can.

spin35

By doing so, you’re  taking the pressure of the climb off your knees and re-depositing it where it belongs – in the strong muscles of your rear end. (And last time we checked, most people didn’t need to do much toning of their knee caps.)

Beware These Spin Instructor Indiscretions …

If your spin class instructor suddenly changes counts or actions, consider that a red flag – your instructor should give you full and fair warning in advance as to what’s coming up at least a few counts down the road.

As an example, we have a great (certified) spin instructor who’s been teaching for years. As one song ends and the other begins, he might say, “This is an interval run in the saddle and out of the saddle with 30 seconds up, and 30 seconds’ recovery in between.”

Then, as the song plays, he will be adding comments such as, “Next round is just 20 seconds up, same recovery.”  It’s enough to keep you informed and keep you hanging on knowing that the NEXT song will be a completely different action!

Some spin instructors will also make the error of doing extreme activities for too long. (Personally, we think this is an ego thing where they’re more concerned with looking better than the rest of the class riders than actually guiding the riders and watching the riders for signs of fatigue.)

As an example, we’ve been in classes with spin instructors who sprint (at least double-time to the beat of the song) out of the saddle for the entirety of the song. If it’s a short song around 2 minutes, and if the spin instructor offers optional breaks to sit down during the course of the song, that’s OK.

If, however, they insist on everyone in the class sprinting for a long duration, even the most advanced riders will have difficulty maintaining proper form.

In other cases, you might see a spin instructor insist on short intervals with 2 beats in the saddle and 2 beats above the saddle for several minutes at a time. An extended session of “jumps” can cause any rider to break good form, thus putting the knees at risk.

Again, if it begins to feel too much for you or a particular session of activity (jumps or sprints or hill climbing) is forcing you out of maintaining correct posture and form, SIT DOWN!

spinning4

Then, as you try different classes with different instructors, you will begin to see which instructors are actually the best teachers. Even as they push you and do advanced work, they are still watching their riders to ensure safety and fun.

This brings another point to mind: Only take spin classes where the instructor is situated to watch the riders during the class. He or she will either be riding with the group and facing a mirror, or the spin instructor can position the bike to face the riders. It’s important that the gym provide this aspect in the spin class.

Music Can Be Key

Every spin instructor has a different style and collection of music. If you don’t like the style or can’t stand the music, move on. Because spin is built on the tempo of the songs, when you like what you’re hearing, you’re better able to keep the pace.

When you’re in a spin class with an instructor you enjoy and music that’s more to your liking, you’ll find the hour zips by. (Honest!)

Stick With It!

When you’re a beginner, try not to quit and leave the spin class (though no one will call you names if you do). Just sit down in the saddle, take the tension down, and continue to peddle through the end of the class if you can.

You’ll be prouder of yourself for enduring, and you can push yourself in the next class to stay up and in the class activity another few moments. Give yourself permission to build into this activity and you’ll find that you enjoy it more each time.

spin17

ccf22

 

I also spoke with an expert from the Cleveland Clinic about spinning’s health benefits.

 

Don’t forget to bring water to spin class. There’s a holder for it on bike.

water3

Recommended Links:  

“7 THINGS YOU’RE DOING WRONG IN SPIN CLASS”
https://www.wellandgood.com/good-sweat/7-things-youre-doing-wrong-in-spin-class-and-how-to-fix-them/

 

Johnny G. himself has an instruction video and  Spinning Instructor Certification info at:
http://spinning.com/johnny-g-live/

spinning7

Thanks Johnny G. for keeping us sweating and smiling.

 

You can find a variety of Spin Shoes & Shorts on Amazon at:
https://www.amazon.com

 

Now you know why…

 

spinning20

And why you should too!

One thing I forgot to mention is you will absolutely loathe your first spinning class. It will be hard. You will ache. You may walk out of a class early. You might exclaim, “Never again!” But, as with anything worthwhile, if you commit to it, the rewards are worth it.

spinning22

Your physical and mental endurance will keep getting stronger as you look back on that first day and laugh in disbelief because classes go real fast for you now.

spin2

“Unleash the champion within.” ~Johnny G

dietsoda31

blog contact:  maria.dorfner@yahoo.com

BE SURE TO TUNE IN TO GOOD MORNING AMERICA NEXT WEDNESDAY WHEN THE ARTIST OF MY FAVORITE SPINNING SONG RIGHT NOW WILL PERFORM: . LIVE. Only on 💃

gmalogo

 

 

 

Study: Teens Teased About Weight More Likely To Become Obese Adults

If you think teasing your teen about their weight is helping them, think again. You may be doing more harm.  Harm that can last well into their adulthood having them turn to more food for comfort.

eating

 

Being a teen can be a challenging time for many children and for teens who are overweight or obese, the challenges can be even greater.

obeseteen4

A recent study shows that teens who are teased about their weight are more likely to become obese adults.

obeseteen12

Researchers asked nearly 2,000 school aged children about whether they had been teased by other children, or family members, about their weight.

obesityteens31

When they followed up with these children 15 years later, they found that those who answered ‘yes’ were more likely to be obese adults, struggle with body image and develop unhealthy eating behaviors.

obese18

Leslie Heinberg, PhD, of Cleveland Clinic did not take part in the study, but says the results are a good indication that problems with weight-based teasing need to be addressed early on.

obeseteen3

“”One of the primary ways people cope with this bad experience is by eating – they fall back into comfort eating; they fall into disordered eating behaviors,”” says Dr. Heinberg. “

obeseteen42

“What this study shows, is some of the dieting behavior they utilize can be really unhealthy,”” says Dr. Heinberg.

obeseteen8

Dr. Heinberg says one of the most interesting findings was that girls who were teased about their weight by family members, rather than peers, had the most problems as adults dealing with weight control and emotional distress.

obeseteen2

“”Peers or family members, they might tease, or give somebody a hard time about their weight – maybe not with malicious intent – maybe they think, ‘oh, this will be good. It will motivate them to lose weight, it will motivate them to eat in a healthy manner,’ however, it’s actually more likely to derail them,”” says Dr. Heinberg.

obesity1
Dr. Heinberg says home needs to be a place where children feel safe from teasing.

teens2

“The first goal is to make home a healthy and safe environment in which teens aren’’t feeling victimized about their weight, and giving them at least a safe spot at home where they don’’t have those experiences,” she says.

NATIONAL LAMPOON'S VACATION, Anthony Michael Hall, Chevy Chase, Beverly D'Angelo, Dana Barron, 1983

For parents who are concerned about their teen’s weight, Dr. Heinberg says it’s best to bring in a professional.

obeseteen40

She recommends having a conversation with the child’s pediatrician before they’re seen.

Doctor Giuseppe Morino measures Mirco Conti, a ten-year-old boy, at the "Bambin Gesu" paediatric hospital in Rome

They can tell you what a healthy weight is and develop appropriate strategies for addressing it.

obeseteens50

 

OBESITY MAY BE PREVENTED BY:

PHYSICAL ACTIVITY

fit20

GOOD NUTRITION
(AVOID SODA, FAST FOOD, PROCESSED FOODS AND JUNK FOOD)

fruits

Teen Nutrition Meal Ideas at: http://www.stack.com/a/teenage-meal-plan

teens5

teens3

LESS SCREEN TIME

fit91

MORE SLEEP

sleepingbeauty2

sleep2

Stay healthy!

maria.dorfner@yahoo.com

teens

SOURCE: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0091743517301433

MEDIA:

Access CCNS Video, Soundbites and B-Roll

Cleveland Clinic Newsroom
Video download password: CLEclinic1921
Username: dailyvosots
Password: dailyvosotsftp
Username: CCNews
Password: CCNews1
Pathfire: If you’re using the web browser, click on the ‘Provider Directory’ and look for the ‘Cleveland Clinic’ tab. Use the ‘Video News Feed Locator’ if you’re getting Pathfire via satellite.
*Also, now available using app.extremereach.com – select the ‘Cleveland Clinic’ destination to view the files. If you need assistance, contact videonetwork@extremereach.com
ccf22

How To Keep Kids Fit Brooklyn Style

fit1

When I was a kid all we needed to stay fit is a stoop and a ball.

fit4

Lucky for us we had a few more things, like a rope to play tug-of-war.

fit16

And touch football in the streets was popular.

fit6

And we loved jumping rope.

fit11

Or playing with hula hoops.

fit60

Girls also played softball & boys were in little leagues. My team was The Monkeys. What?

fit7

We all held hands & sang Ring Around the Rosy and London Bridge Is Falling Down.

Children playing in the park

And there was the horse shoe toss game.

fit80.jpg

In gym class one kid spotted another one for sit-ups.

Kids doing sit ups

And we did jumping jacks.  Not in boots.  Must have forgotten gym clothes. Happens.

fit101

Another after school favorite activity –rollerskating.

fit35

We didn’t even wear helmets.  And our skates looked more like this.

fit36

We played basketball in the streets.  Darn cars got in our way. We’d make them wait.

fit8

We also loved stickball.  We usually fashioned one out of an old broom.

fit2

We jumped over fire hydrants. Sometimes, all them on the block. One. After. Another.

846-02794520

And used chalk for hop scotch and other creative games that kept us moving.

fit3

Somebody’s Mom always kept an eye to make sure we didn’t get hit by a car.

fit5

As if they could do anything but scream. They never bugged us dinner.

fit43

Then, we heard some serious yelling to get inside.  NOW!

fit42

Then, it was back to playing outdoors. One kid had a pool. Two words. Marco. POLO!

fit21

We also walked around the neighborhood a lot.  No need to make a play date.

fit23

We played Hide n’ Go Seek or “Tag, you’re it!” and ran around laughing a lot.

fit19

Sometimes, our destination was nearby Dyker Heights Park so we could ride swings.

fit13

As our Dads played Bocci (like outdoor bowling for grown Italian men) there…

fit57

We sauntered to the adjacent golf course & got in trouble chasing & collecting golf balls.

fit50

Kids run REAL fast when men waving golf clubs chase them.  What a workout!

fit55

We also played handball after getting chased off the golf course.

fithandball56

Or rode our bikes.

bikeriding2

We were always moving.

runfree2

 

Even while indoors, we played games that had us moving, like TWISTER.

fit70

Or we danced to records imitating dancers on American Bandstand and Soul Train.

fit99

 

It all meant we burned off enough energy to  STOP EVERYTHING for Mr. Softie.

fit40

Then, kids sprinted downstairs or upstairs for money. There was also Danny,

fit41

Danny, the ice cream man. But, we weren’t obese because we weren’t sedentary.

kidwithipad

No iPADS, no iPHONES, no sitting on the couch all day for us.  When school was done, we were outside playing and didn’t go back inside until weheard the screams for dinner.

Since we got out of school at 3 p.m. and dinner wasn’t usually until 7 p.m. we got a full
4-hours of physical activity and that didn’t include gym class at school.

Kids today look more like this.

fit91

Or this when they get home from school.

fit90

A study recently published in Experimental Physiology examined the effects of prolonged sitting (three continuous hours) on girls ages 9 to 12.

One group was asked to sit still, either watching a movie or playing video games for three hours, while another group exercised lightly at the beginning of each hour before sitting again.

At the end of the experiment, researchers found the group that sat still for the entire three hours experienced a major decrease in vascular function.

That 33 percent decrease in function means  the leg arteries were no longer working as well as they should.  In adults, this very thing—over time—has been linked to increased risk of developing heart disease. 

The bottom line is kids suffer from being sedentary just like adults.

When it comes to kid’s fitness it doesn’t cost much to keep them active. So take a note of all the things we did to stay fit while we were kids in Brooklyn to spark a few ideas.

A stick from an old broom, Spaulding ball, hula hoop, a jump rope, a handball, a waffle bat & ball, chalk, radio, roller skates, a rope for tug-of-war, TWISTER game, softball, basketball net, basketball, horseshoe toss –are all things still available and cheap.

Socializing in real life is just as important for kids as it is for adults.

Some of the things we did didn’t cost a penny.  Jumping jacks, dancing, running, walking, swimming and jumping hydrants were all free.  Limit gadget and TV viewing.  Encourage creativity when it comes to keeping them moving while having fun, even while indoors.

fit92

Healthy kids are happy kids that will grow up with healthy habits.

fit20

Stay healthy!

maria.dorfner@yahoo.com

healthy3

Why You Need To Protect Eyeballs From Sun

centralpark3

 

Most of us think to pack the sunscreen when heading outdoors into the sun, but we might not always remember to grab a pair of shades.

 

sunglasses

According to Reecha Kampani, M.D., an ophthalmologist at Cleveland Clinic, putting on sunglasses is more than a fashion statement.

summerondock

She says protecting eyes from UV rays is just as important as protecting skin.

“”UV protection is good for all kinds of structures of the eye, like the eyelids, the cornea, conjunctiva, the lenses and retina tissue itself,”” says Dr. Kampani. “”You can get damage and changes of the eye with exposure to UV light, so protection is very important.””

Dr. Kampani says it is actually possible to get a sunburn on the eyelids and while rare, if exposed to too much UV light, the cornea, which is the clear tissue over the eye, can get a thermal burn, which can be very painful.

sleepingbeauty1

“Long-term exposure to UV light can lead to the formation of cataracts or macular degeneration.”

Dr. Kampani recommends wearing sunglasses and a wide-brimmed hat even on moderately sunny or overcast days, to make sure eyes are protected.

Wrap-around sunglasses are best if heading out in the sun all day, as they can keep light from coming in through the top and the sides of the glasses.

madmen2

The good news is that people don’’t have to spend a fortune to keep their eyes protected.

carlsbad7

Dr. Kampani says buying discounted sunglasses is fine, but it’’s a good idea to replace inexpensive glasses yearly.

mariawalking5

“”If you’’re buying lenses that are at more discounted places, that’’s fine,” said Dr. Kampani. “A lot of times they still do have full protection, but you have to keep in mind that it could be something that’s more temporary, like a spray-on coating, that won’t last as long.””

It’’s also a good idea to keep in mind that artificial UV light, like the kind that is found in tanning beds, is just as bad for the eyes as it is for the skin.

Remember, when you’re outdoors or out in the field as we say in TV, wear sunglasses OR a hat to protect your eyeballs.

0716111843_0002


Stay healthy!

swim

 

maria.dorfner@yahoo.com

healthwealth

logonewsmd

logo2

 

MEDIA:

Access CCNS Video for Soundbites and B-Roll Video:

Cleveland Clinic Newsroom
Video download password: CLEclinic1921
Username: dailyvosots
Password: dailyvosotsftp
Username: CCNews
Password: CCNews1

Pathfire: If you’re using the web browser, click on the ‘Provider Directory’ and look for the ‘Cleveland Clinic’ tab. Use the ‘Video News Feed Locator’ if you’re getting Pathfire via satellite.
*Also, now available using app.extremereach.com – select the ‘Cleveland Clinic’ destination to view the files. If you need assistance, contact videonetwork@extremereach.com

ccf22

Maria Dorfner is the founder of NewsMD Communications, specializing in health and wellness since 1993.  She began working in media in 1983 on the Today Show at NBC in New York City as a p/t fill-in for co-host, Bryant Gumbel’s assistant while she was still in college. She also worked part-time in Barnes & Noble bookstore at Pace University (she worked at Barnes and Noble Fifth Avenue during all of high school) and part-time as a sales associate in Sak’s Fifth Avenue. She is an English major with national honors and Political Science minor. She served in NYC’s Intercollegiate Model City Council, having been selected by her Political Science Professor to join honor pre-law students on the council with actual council members to represent NYC on the council.

Upon graduation, Maria was hired full-time at NBC. Three years later, she helped launch their cable station, CNBC out of Ft. Lee, NJ.  She produced three talk show pilots that were successfully nationally syndicated with a Who’s Who in medicine, media, politics and entertainment as guests. She conducted research, fact-checked, wrote questions, pre-interview guests in the green room and produced segments and shows from concept to completion.  She was director of research for Ailes Communications, a political consulting firm and production company run by the departed, Mr. Ailes who went on to become president of CNBC and later chairman of Fox News Channel.

“I never saw the negative side of Roger. Yes, he was tough. Yes, he’d fire someone on the spot, but he was nothing but respectful of me and other female colleagues. He was a media genius and I was fortunate to learn from him. Anyone that says otherwise didn’t know him. It was a different time then. Women, including myself didn’t dress like we were going to a nightclub to tell the news. We were professional. Ever notice the first women to shout sexual harassment look like they’re either doing a push-up bra or pantyhose commercial while anchoring? They’ll defend themselves by saying they should be able to dress however they want and not expect anyone to treat them differently.  Really?   I don’t expect my male colleagues to come to work bare chested with suspenders. And then sue me if I make a comment.  It’s ridiculous. I think a bit of common sense and professionalism in order.”

In 1993, Maria created 7 half-hour original health series for CNBC. They included Healthcare Consumers, Healthy Living, Lifestyles and Longevity and others.
She co-anchored them for 3 years before joining NBC Miami as their medical and special projects producer. She then relocated to North Carolina and launched her own production company, while producing 21st Century Medicine documentary series for Discovery Health, weekly JAMA Reports for networks and medical segment for iTV. She traveled to Stockholm, Spain, Paris, London and all over the U.S. conducting interviews and filming segments.

She won a Media Recognition Award from the American Heart Association for national series Heart Smart, an Outstanding Achievement Award from the March of Dimes, a Medical Reporting Scholarship from the American Medical Association, a Freddie Award for Excellence in Medical Reporting, an Advanced Writing Scholarship from NBC News, an Outstanding Leadership Abilities Award from Pace University, a Commitment to the Advancement of Women in Media Award from her alma mater, Pace University.

She mentors journalism students and is the author of PRESSure: Break Into Broadcasting, Healthy Within and a little cookbook she created for her family to preserve family recipes called, Health, Heart & Humor In An Italian-American Kitchen.   Her books are available at Barnes and Noble and Amazon. She has worked with a Who’s Who in Medical and Health, trained PR departments, trained people wanting to work on-camera, and created a newsroom from scratch for MedPage Today and others, trained associate producers on Good Morning America to be producers, and in 2000 launched the Cleveland Clinic News Service (CCNS).

This is her blog.

“I’m blessed with amazing health all my life;  doctors ask what I do.”

~Maria Dorfner

contact:  maria.dorfner@yahoo.com

Why Spinning Is Hot & How To Do It Well

spinning22

 

spin13These Spin tips will keep you sweating, smiling and secure knowing you’re doing it right.

spinning12

First, here’s a little history on how Spinning was first created. Back in the ’90’s medical anchor, Ileana Bravo and I interviewed the founder of something people in Miami were talking about called “Spinning.”  We produced a health segment for NBC Miami and interviewed the Founder of it.  His name was Johnny G.

spinning2

The TODAY SHOW picked up the Miami story and spinning spun off nationwide. Johnny G. wanted other people to be able to reach their champion within from anywhere the same way he desired to after being sidelined in a car accident.

spinning4

The founder, Johnny G’s full name is Johnny Goldberg. He was a champion endurance bicycle racer. His passion to create a different type of indoor bike was ignited after he was hit by a car while training on his bike outdoors at night.

spinning6

Following that accident, Johnny G. spent ten years developing the right type of indoor cycle that would feel like his real road bike.

spin1

The Spinner® bike officially launched in NYC in 1993 and was offered at Crunch Gyms.

spinning1

 

Here’s what the bike looks like.

spinning5

spin35

 

spin37

spin60

Spinning is still hotter than ever because of all of the above and more.

spin39

 

spin34

Print

Now you know why it’s so popular with men and women. Here’s how to do it right.

spinning13

Proper set-up and form helps you avoid injury and maximize all those health perks.

spinning21

Everyone can benefit from a few expert tips. Numero Uno:  Warm up.

Best Warm Up Moves Before Spinning

by Brian Willett

Warm-up moves can help you burn more calories, reduce risk of injury, and improve your performance on the bike. Of course, certain warm-up moves will be more effective than others, so choosing well is important.

Quadriceps Moves

Your quadriceps — the large group of four muscles on the front of your thighs — drives the motion of spinning workouts, providing power to move the pedals. You can get your quadriceps ready for spinning with body-weight squats, light pedaling and the standing quadriceps stretch. To perform that stretch, stand with one hand leaning on a wall for support, and the other hand holding your foot to your buttocks so you are standing on one leg. Be sure to flex your knee completely when performing the standing quadriceps stretch to ensure you are fully stretching the muscle.

Hamstrings Moves

Your hamstrings are located on the back of your upper leg, and like the quadriceps, they are involved in every pedal stroke when spinning. An easy way to get your hamstrings ready for spinning is to bend over and touch your toes. You can also sit down and perform a sit-and-reach motion. According to a study from the February 2005 edition of the “Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research,” performing static stretches rather than dynamic moves is preferable for improving flexibility.

Back Moves

Your back muscles have to work hard to maintain proper posterior chain alignment and prevent you from slouching over when you ride. Thus, it’s important that you warm up your back muscles to prepare them for that work. You can stretch your back muscles in several ways, such as by lying on your back and pulling your knees to your chest, or doing the cat-cow stretch.

Shoulder Moves

Although your shoulders don’t push the pedals, they do help support your upper body while you ride and assist in steering. Moves such as jumping jacks, arm circles, and extending your arms behind your back as far as you can will help you get your shoulders loose and ready for your spinning class.

Calf Moves

The muscles of your calves are small, but they can produce a lot of power when cycling. Both squats and jumping jacks can help warm up your calves, but you may also wish to perform calf stretches while leaning against a wall. To do so, put both hands on a wall and lean into the wall, with one leg bent at the knee and one extended fully back.

 

spinning11

Now that you’re warmed up, I spoke with Spin Instructor Pro, Julie Insogna to get more tips:



FIRST, TELL US WHEN AND WHY YOU GOT INTERESTED IN SPINNING?

Thank you, Julie Insogna!

 

NEXT, MORE GREAT SPIN TIPS BY DEB CHESLOW:

What to Wear in Spin Class

spin3When you first start spin, you might want to wear padded cycle shorts as the saddle takes some getting used to.

spin5

Most spin classes have bikes with pedals that accommodate people in sneakers in addition to one or two types of cycle clips that attach to cycling shoes.

spin6

When we first started spin, we wore sneakers for a couple months before making the commitment to buy the shoes. In hindsight, we would have purchased those “spin shoes” much sooner, as you have so much more leverage and less wiggling when you’re clipped into the spin pedals. It also puts much less stress on your shins and toes!

How to Set Up Your Bike

Spin class bikes are not beach cruisers. You don’t want your knees crumpled; you don’t even want them at a 90-degree angle.

spin10

You want your knees to be slightly extended but not so much that you can’t put full pressure on the down stroke of your pedal.

 

SPIN105

spin7

Most spin enthusiasts also bring their bike handles up higher than they would a road or mountain bike to accommodate running out of the saddle (we’ll get to this in a minute).

SPIN90

And, make sure that you’re not reaching dramatically to those handlebars when you’re seated on the bike.

SPIN102

spin11

Everything is adjustable and this is where it’s most important that your spin instructor get you dialed in.

SPIN200

Spin is All About Tension and Tempo

Your spin instructor expects you to keep tempo with the song so that everyone in the class is on the correct “leg” for certain activities.

spin8

Tension knobs on the bike will take you from no tension to “drag” (where you begin to feel tension or “the road” as they call it) and subsequent turns up from there make the ride increasingly “steep.”

SPIN100

While no beginner in spin class is expected to keep high tempo AND tension like the advanced riders are accustomed to, you want to work your way into higher tension as it burns more fat and enhances your cardio workout.

Initially, though, just focus on the tempo, right, left, right left, right left, march!

spinning13

About Jogging, Sprinting and Running Out of the Saddle in Spin Class

 

spin14

Spin usually requires seated climbs and runs as well as “running out of the saddle” where you’re actually jogging or sprinting while standing above the saddle of the bike.

spin36

For beginners, the runs out of the saddle can be too demanding.

DON’T LET PEER PRESSURE CONVINCE YOU TO RUN WHEN YOU’RE NOT READY TO.

spinning9

Most spin enthusiasts have been doing this a long time, BUT they started right where you are starting. When you try to run out of the saddle at the same amount of time or distance these “regulars” are accustomed to, you can hurt yourself.

spin33

Swallow your pride and stay in the saddle, keeping tempo and increasing your tension slightly until you feel you can take on a jog initially for a few given seconds. Build up from there!

When you begin to run out of the saddle, do NOT lean your body weight (or your elbows!) on your handlebars.

SPIN92

This puts too much torque on your knees and can damage them. Rest your hands lightly on the handlebars and focus on sitting back, above the saddle, so the strong leg muscles of your quads and hamstrings are doing the work.

spin14

Your spin class instructor will take you on intermittent (and imaginary, of course) hills, downhills and road runs.

spin32

At times, he or she will ask you to do intervals where you sit in the saddle for a number of counts, then run above the saddle for the same number of counts – and sometimes, these counts can be just 2 or 4!

Remember the rules during intervals (or “jumps”) – if you’re not ready, sit your butt down and just keep pedaling.

spin101

If you are ready, try a few, making sure you don’t lean on the handlebars.

spin37

About “Hill Climbing” in Spin Class

Sitting on the saddle and pedaling in spin class does not necessarily mean you’re resting or “recovering.”

In fact, riding “in the saddle” with solid tension will burn more calories than sprinting.

 

A good spin instructor will methodically increase tension as you ride in the saddle, effectively making you feel like you’re pedaling up an increasingly steep hill.

SPIN100

In these situations, you want to protect your knees once again by sitting as far back on the saddle as you can.

spin35

By doing so, you’re  taking the pressure of the climb off your knees and re-depositing it where it belongs – in the strong muscles of your rear end. (And last time we checked, most people didn’t need to do much toning of their knee caps.)

Beware These Spin Instructor Indiscretions …

If your spin class instructor suddenly changes counts or actions, consider that a red flag – your instructor should give you full and fair warning in advance as to what’s coming up at least a few counts down the road.

As an example, we have a great (certified) spin instructor who’s been teaching for years. As one song ends and the other begins, he might say, “This is an interval run in the saddle and out of the saddle with 30 seconds up, and 30 seconds’ recovery in between.”

Then, as the song plays, he will be adding comments such as, “Next round is just 20 seconds up, same recovery.”  It’s enough to keep you informed and keep you hanging on knowing that the NEXT song will be a completely different action!

Some spin instructors will also make the error of doing extreme activities for too long. (Personally, we think this is an ego thing where they’re more concerned with looking better than the rest of the class riders than actually guiding the riders and watching the riders for signs of fatigue.)

As an example, we’ve been in classes with spin instructors who sprint (at least double-time to the beat of the song) out of the saddle for the entirety of the song. If it’s a short song around 2 minutes, and if the spin instructor offers optional breaks to sit down during the course of the song, that’s OK.

If, however, they insist on everyone in the class sprinting for a long duration, even the most advanced riders will have difficulty maintaining proper form.

In other cases, you might see a spin instructor insist on short intervals with 2 beats in the saddle and 2 beats above the saddle for several minutes at a time. An extended session of “jumps” can cause any rider to break good form, thus putting the knees at risk.

Again, if it begins to feel too much for you or a particular session of activity (jumps or sprints or hill climbing) is forcing you out of maintaining correct posture and form, SIT DOWN!

spinning4

Then, as you try different classes with different instructors, you will begin to see which instructors are actually the best teachers. Even as they push you and do advanced work, they are still watching their riders to ensure safety and fun.

This brings another point to mind: Only take spin classes where the instructor is situated to watch the riders during the class. He or she will either be riding with the group and facing a mirror, or the spin instructor can position the bike to face the riders. It’s important that the gym provide this aspect in the spin class.

Music Can Be Key

Every spin instructor has a different style and collection of music. If you don’t like the style or can’t stand the music, move on. Because spin is built on the tempo of the songs, when you like what you’re hearing, you’re better able to keep the pace.

When you’re in a spin class with an instructor you enjoy and music that’s more to your liking, you’ll find the hour zips by. (Honest!)

Stick With It!

When you’re a beginner, try not to quit and leave the spin class (though no one will call you names if you do). Just sit down in the saddle, take the tension down, and continue to peddle through the end of the class if you can.

You’ll be prouder of yourself for enduring, and you can push yourself in the next class to stay up and in the class activity another few moments. Give yourself permission to build into this activity and you’ll find that you enjoy it more each time.

Recommended Links:  

“7 THINGS YOU’RE DOING WRONG IN SPIN CLASS”
https://www.wellandgood.com/good-sweat/7-things-youre-doing-wrong-in-spin-class-and-how-to-fix-them/

 

Johnny G. himself has an instruction video and  Spinning Instructor Certification info at:
http://spinning.com/johnny-g-live/

spinning7

Thanks Johnny G. for keeping us sweating and smiling.

 

You can find a variety of Spin Shoes & Shorts on Amazon at:
https://www.amazon.com

 

Now you know why…

 

spinning20

And why you should too!

One thing I forgot to mention is you may loathe your first spinning class. It will be hard. You will ache. You may walk out of a class early. You might exclaim, “Never again!” But, as with anything worthwhile, as we’ve heard from Spinning Pro, Julie Insogna, Co-Owner of Prime Cycle in Hoboken, NJ — if you commit to it, the rewards are worth it.

spinning22

Your physical and mental endurance will keep getting stronger.

spin2

“Unleash the champion within.” ~Johnny G

 

Be sure to tune into Good Morning America next Wednesday when my the artist of my favorite Spinning tune will be performing LIVE!

dietsoda31

blog contact:  maria.dorfner@yahoo.com

Is It Okay To Drink From A Garden Hose?

 

gardenhose9Drinking out of the garden hose is something many of us did as kids to beat the heat.

gardenhose8.png

However, according to Dan Allan, M.D., of Cleveland Clinic, drinking from the hose carries some significant risks, and is something parents should try and steer their children away from.

gardenhose5

“”We’’ve learned some things more recently that would certainly talk about the risks,”” says Dr. Allan. “”Probably the biggest risk is some of the chemicals that are in the water itself.””

gardenhose2

Such chemicals include BPA (Bisphenol A) and PVC (polyvinyl chloride), which have both been banned from children’s products.

gardenhose3

Dr. Allan says these types of chemicals have been linked to cancer, hormone problems and developmental problems in children.

gardenhose23

“”If there’’s lead – that can lead to a host of neurological problems – so there are a lot of things to be concerned about,”” says Dr. Allan.

gardenhose4

While skipping sips from the garden hose all together is the best way to prevent problems, there are some measures parents can take if they just can’t keep kids away.

gardenhose7

Dr. Allan says some hoses are made without harmful chemicals, and are marked as such.

gardenhose40

He says the hose fixture matters as well. Brass fixtures, for example, release lead which will contribute to health risks.

gardenhose20

If drinking out of the garden hose is unavoidable, the best thing to do is to let the water run for a few minutes before taking a drink.

gardenhose50

Doing so will flush out water near the top of the hose that could be contaminated with lead, mold or bacteria.

gardenhose21

Dr. Allan also says to make sure the hose is stored properly.

gardenhose22

“If the hose sits in the sun or is stored in the sun, it will release a lot more chemicals,”” adds Dr. Allan. “

“If you’re going to use a hose for drinking, certainly it should be safe, but store it out of the sun because the sun’s heat will release the chemicals.””

 

gardenhose1

You can find a variety of chemical free garden hoses on Amazon:
https://www.amazon.com/Water-Right-Polyurethane-Drinking-Fittings/dp/B003P9XAAA

MEDIA:

 

blog contact: maria.dorfner@yahoo.com

 

I Love Watermelon. Why You Should Too.

w3

Ah, watermelon.  So refreshing on hot summer days.  Love it.

w4

So, it’s great to know it’s jam-packed with health benefits, including reducing muscle soreness the day after a workout.  Fellow fitness enthusiasts rejoice.

SPINNING

According to a study in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, the amino acids citrulline and arginine in watermelon, help improve circulation. That’s not all.

walking8

A prior study published in the Journal of Applied Physiology reports watermelon’s citrulline may also help improve your athletic performance.

bikeriding1

Study showed improved performance in high-intensity exercises like cycling & sprinting.

runner

 

It also contains amino acids, which you need to make protein function optimally.

walking50

Watermelons are almost 100 percent water, and everyone knows I love H2O.

w5

Other nutrients worth noting are Vitamins C, B6, A, lycopene (the redder the watermelon, the more lycopene!), antioxidants, and potassium. Zero fat.

 

w6

Lycopene is tied to reducing prostate cancer cell proliferation.  Source: Nat’l Cancer Institute. 

walking6

Good electrolytes help prevent heat stroke. Great choice when temps rise.

w2

Watermelon also contains choline. That helps lower chronic inflammation.

healthy

A study published in the American Journal of Hypertension found watermelon lowers blood pressure in obese adults and helps reduce hypertension.  Stress can cause inflammation flareups in your body. Anti-inflammatory foods help reduce that.

walking2

Just like exercise. Walking outdoors in nature (pollution also causes inflammation), preferably laughing with loved ones or friends is great for your health and well-being.

walking10.jpg

When you lower stress, you lower inflammation and pain in your body.

walking4

And there’s another benefit for your looks.

walking5

According to Cleveland Clinic Vitamin A and C in watermelon are great for your hair and skin. It keeps it moisturized from the inside and promotes new collagen and elastin cells. Just one cup contains nearly one-quarter of your recommended daily intake.

heart4

It increases blood flow, which is heart healthy. And fiber in it keeps you regular.

w4

And if that’s not enough, a study published in Menopause found postmenopausal women benefit from improved blood flow and reduce their accumulation of excess fat from the arginine and citrulline in watermelon.

women

Women in the study who took watermelon extract for six weeks saw decreased blood pressure and arterial stiffness compared to those who did not take watermelon extract.

WALK1

Make sure the watermelon is ripe and red, which means higher concentrations of phenolic antioxidant, beta-carotene and lycopene.

Tomatoes, another favorite, are also high in lycopene.

One cup of cooked tomato contains almost 25 mg. One fresh tomato contains 3.7 mg. Again, lycopene reduces inflammation in your body and builds your immune system.

 

tomatos

These dessert options at get togethers keep family and friends healthy.

w12
Healthy choices make you feel your best. Select a variety of fruits & veggies.

w13

Disclosure:  I haven’t been paid to sell you watermelon.  I really do love it. Just to be fair, here are OTHER amazing hydrating foods.

Adults need one & 1/2 to 2 cups of fruit each day, so mix it up!

health8

Don’t forget too much watermelon will leave you feeling bloated.
So, stick with the recommended amount.

watermelondiced.jpg

Again,  that’s 2 cups of diced watermelon OR
a small 1-inch thick wedge of sliced melon.

watermelon.jpg

If you have Diabetes Medline.com did a terrific article called “Can I Eat Watermelon If I Have Diabetes?”  The following is an excerpt from it, but I highly recommend reading the full article at:

http://www.healthline.com/health/diabetes/watermelon-and-diabetes

Although eating watermelon has its benefits, you should consider balancing your diet with fruits that have a lower GI. Be sure to pick up fresh fruit wherever possible, as it doesn’t have any added sugars.

If you want to buy canned or frozen fruit, remember to opt for canned fruits soaking in fruit juice over syrup. Be sure to read the label carefully and look for hidden sugars.

Dried fruit and fruit juice should be consumed less often than fresh fruit. This is due to calorie density, sugar concentration, and smaller recommended portion sizes.

What are other diabetes-friendly fruits?

Diabetes-friendly fruits with a low GI include:

  • plums: 2 whole plums have a GI of 24 and a GL of 4
  • grapefruit: 1 average size has a GI of 25 and a GL of 7
  • peaches: 1 large peach has a GI of 28 and a GL of 5
  • apricots: 5 whole apricots have a GI of 34 and a GL of 6
  • pears: 1 small pear has a GI of 37 and a GL of 2

And one more bonus. Kids love watermelon too.

watermelonkids

Stay healthy!

maria.dorfner@yahoo.com

 

 

New Study: Diet Soda During Pregnancy Could Mean Overweight Child Later

dietsoda1

Many pregnant women worry about what’s safe and not safe to drink while expecting.

dietsoda2

A recent study says women with gestational diabetes who drink diet soda during their pregnancy could be putting their children at risk for weight gain.

dietsoda40

Salena Zanotti, M.D., of Cleveland Clinic did not take part in the study, but said previous studies have shown that drinking diet soda in moderation during pregnancy is generally safe, but this most recent study is the FIRST to look at the potential impact long-term.

dietsoda6.png

Researchers looked at data from more than 900 pregnant women with gestational diabetes between 1996 and 2002.

dietsoda10

About nine percent of the women surveyed drank at least one diet soda per day.

“”What they found, when they looked up to seven years – which is a long time so far for these studies – that their infants, especially the boys, had a higher risk of being overweight and being obese,” says Dr. Zanotti.

Researchers say the women who consumed diet soda were 60 percent more likely to have babies with a high birth weight compared with women who did not drink any diet soda during pregnancy.

dietsoda4.jpg

Likewise, the children born to the women who drank water instead of sweetened beverages were 17 percent less likely to be overweight by age seven.

dietsoda12

Dr. Zanotti adds,  “What remains to be determined is whether the diet soda alone was the problem, or whether the women who drank diet soda also ate diets high in fat and sugar.”

She says sometimes pregnant women will eat sugary and high fat foods and think it’’s okay if they’’re drinking diet soda, when really it’’s only okay to drink it if they’’re eating a well-balanced, low fat, higher protein diet.

dietsoda13

“If you wanted to have an occasional soda, you could have one a day, if that’s what you want to have,” says Dr. Zanotti. “

dietsoda11.jpg

For some people they’’ve given up a lot of things that they really like and this is their one vice and I think that’s fine, if they’’re doing everything else correctly.”

dietsoda7

Dr. Zanotti says, “Water should be a woman’s beverage of choice during pregnancy.”

dietsoda20.jpg

She says too much sugar is a problem whether it’’s real sugar or a sweet substitute.

dietsoda

“Excessive sugar intake leads to excessive pregnancy weight gain, which means a higher risk of having bigger baby and a higher risk of having to deliver the baby via a cesarean section.”

 

 

dietsoda3.png

SOURCE: https://academic.oup.com/ije/article/doi/10.1093/ije/dyx095/3861466/Maternal-consumption-of-artificially-sweetened

dietsoda18

Bottom line:  Stick to water.

water

Also, if you’re unaware an updated American Academy of Pediatrics recommendation urges parents to avoid giving fruit juice to children under one year of age.

Children’s health is so important and it begins at pregnancy.

MEDIA:  For Soundbites and B-roll:

Other Ways to Access CCNS Video: 

ccf22

Cleveland Clinic Newsroom
Video download password: CLEclinic1921
Username: dailyvosots
Password: dailyvosotsftp
Username: CCNews
Password: CCNews1

Pathfire: If you’re using the web browser, click on the ‘Provider Directory’ and look for the ‘Cleveland Clinic’ tab. Use the ‘Video News Feed Locator’ if you’re getting Pathfire via satellite.

 

*Also, now available using app.extremereach.com – select the ‘Cleveland Clinic’ destination to view the files. If you need assistance, contact videonetwork@extremereach.com

 

dietsoda31.jpg

Stay healthy!

contact: maria.dorfner@yahoo.com

Real Deal: No More Needles for Blood Draws

v12Velano Vascular is on a mission to bring compassion to healthcare and make painful blood draws more pleasant for patients.  So far, they’re succeeding. They’ve received their 3rd FDA-clearance to help children and adults who cringe at the sight of needles.

Needlephobia affects 24% of adults and 63% of children.

v17

The Boy Who Cried Wolf may come to mind when we talk about no more needles for blood draws because of ill-fated Theranos.  They’re the overly-hyped biotech start-up currently under federal investigation by the S.E.C. and U.S. Attorney’s office. Patients initially thrilled about no more needles got hoodwinked by fake news.

Meet the Real Deal.

V2

Velano Vascular creates a single-use, disposable device called PIVO.

 

It attaches to a peripheral IV line, in hospital inpatients, allowing for lab quality blood samples to be drawn back through the IV –without requiring venipuncture (needle sticks or drawing blood from central lines) .

 

Many of the questions Therano’s CEO never answered, avoided or even got asked by reporters is welcomed by Velano Vascular’s CEO, Eric Stone, who I interviewed.

v4

WHAT IS PIVO AN ACRONYM FOR?

ERIC STONE, CEO, VELANO VASCULAR:  PIVO derives from “peripheral intravenous catheter,” or PIV, which is a medical term for the standard IV most hospital patients are hooked up to in order to receive intravenous fluids..

WHAT IS PIVO?

STONE: PIVO is a single-use, disposable device that attaches temporarily to an IV line, allowing for needle-free blood draws from this existing line.

HOW DOES IT WORK?

STONE: It enables blood draws to be taken by clinicians from the same intravenous (IV) catheter most hospital patients already have inserted in their arms, instead of poking them again each time they need their blood drawn and instead of accessing larger catheters (Central Venous Catheters) which raise different challenges associated with each time they are accessed.

v18

WHO DOES THIS DEVICE HELP PEOPLE?

STONE:  The device works for any patient with an IV catheter. Of course, children tend to more commonly have an acute fear of needles, so it can make pediatric care less invasive and painful.

There are also an estimated 30% of our hospital inpatients that are classified as DVA (Difficult Venous Access) because of aging, obesity, disease and more.

PIVO helps practitioners capture critical labs from these growing populations of patients who otherwise may take significant time and expense.

STONE: Also, those in hospitals or other inpatient settings, where the average length of stay is almost 5 days in the U.S. require daily or more frequent blood draws. Many of these patients have problematic veins or skin, which requires a lot of poking and prodding to draw blood. PIVO tackles these issues head on.

According to the CDC, an estimated 35M inpatient stays occur in the U.S. alone each year.  So, PIVO is set to  help many millions of Americans, not to mention those inpatients around the world.

HOW IS PIVO MORE COMFORTABLE & LESS DANGEROUS FOR PATIENT?

STONE:  For patients who have their blood drawn for a check-up once a year in an outpatient setting, blood draws are not that disruptive.  For a “frequent flyer” in the hospital, or a DVA (difficult venous access) patient –noted as such upon admission or who has become DVA after 10 or 20 days in the hospital feeling like a pin cushion –removing the needle from the procedure can have a lifelong impact.

Enabling practitioners to avoid accessing central lines (large, surgically-placed catheters) for blood draws aims to reduce the risks of Central Line Associated Blood Stream Infection.

Further, removing the needle from blood draws helps avoid risk of injury and infection for our phlebotomists, nurses and physicians. Hospital leadership is recognizing that an important alternative to a prevalent practice is now available.

IF I GET BLOOD WORK FROM AN ANNUAL PHYSICAL WILL THEY USE PIVO?

STONE:  PIVO requires a Peripheral IV catheter in order to access the vein. The IV line serves as a temporary conduit to the vein, so without the IV line PIVO cannot access the vein.

The IV line serves as a temporary conduit to the vein, so without the IV line, PIVO cannot access a patient’s blood.  As such, this procedure is most appropriate for the hospital inpatient setting.

I do envision PIVO will adopted in other care settings, where patients possess an IV line and require frequent blood draws, but the annual physical unfortunately is not one of these.

WHY AREN’T IV’S GOOD FOR DRAWING BLOOD WITHOUT PIVO?

STONE:  IV’s are essentially plastic  tubes which overtime become soft, like a noodle. While a noodle is fine for injecting fluids and medications into a patient, its soft walls collapse under the negative pressure of suction when you try to take fluids out.

There are other reasons why IV’s are less-than-optimal for drawing blood back, but these are quite complex in nature and we’re only just now uncovering some of the novel reasons through our research with leading clinical collaborators.

PIVO simply inserts a small, stiffer tube inside the existing IV tube for the purpose of drawing blood.

It works by propping open and unkinking the IV tube temporarily while enabling lab quality blood be collected.

HOW WAS THE IDEA FOR PIVO ORIGINALLY DEVELOPED?

kidneyblog23

STONE:   Velano’s co-founder and physician, Pitamber Devgon had an elderly patient with bruises up and down her arms from repeated needle sticks.  That patient asked him why he was continually sticking her with needles when she already had an IV catheter in her vein. He didn’t know, but began exploring if it was possible to draw lab quality samples out of the IV line using a separate device.

Stone, a Wharton MBA shares, “Most of my career has been in healthcare, plus I am a needle phobic following my childhood diagnosis with Crohn’s disease as a teenager. So, when I was looking for a company start and a product to bring to market and my former graduate school classmates introduced us, I was instantly engaged following years as a serial healthcare entrepreneur and patient advocate.  From that connection,  Velano was born. “

Velano first won FDA approval for PIVO in 2015, and has also obtained multiple U.S. and international patents for it, with additional applications outstanding in the U.S. & abroad.

v4

STONE: “Five years from now,” asserts Stone, “I believe, without a doubt that PIVO will be the standard of care for inpatient blood draws and vascular access.”

Thanks for a great interview and innovation for healthcare consumers! -Maria Dorfner

http://velanovascular.com

 

MEDIA:   Contact: Michael Azzano at 415-596-1978 to set up telephone or on-camera interviews with patients or Eric Stone, CEO, Velano Vascular.

velano

____________________________________________________

RELATED NEWS:

 

A year ago, Forbes contributor Robert Reiss called Eric Stone “The Steve Jobs of Drawing Blood” and tested PIVO himself.  Reprint of article below courtesy of Reiss.

The Steve Jobs Of Drawing Blood

by Robert Reiss , FORBES CONTRIBUTOR (specializing in writing about CEOs)

Opinions expressed by Forbes Contributors are their own.

I was recently at a board meeting at Griffin Hospital and our CEO was telling us about a new product that could transform perhaps the most ubiquitous healthcare practice – drawing blood.

The concept from a company called Velano Vascular repurposes the IV most hospital patients already have in their arms so blood can be drawn without having their veins repeatedly stuck by needles.

It aims to eliminate the associated negatives of traditional blood drawing: the pain and anxiety, injuries, excessive time and cost.

It seemed like such a revolutionary solution to a broad issue – sort of like in 1892 when Keds invented sneakers – and I was curious to understand if this was truly an historic moment where the age old process of drawing blood could once and for all be revolutionized.

It reminded me of one of my first CEO interviews back in 2007 with Jay Walker, the founder of Priceline when he described the driving force behind one of his over 700 patents, “The key to successful innovation is having a better solution for something that’s used everywhere and every day.”

So I decided to experience this innovation firsthand and a few weeks later I intentionally became a patient and experienced this new needleless way to draw numerous samples of blood.

I was amazed, the nurses were able to draw blood easily, and to do so as many times as they wanted without ever having to stick a needle in me again.

I was next introduced to the founder of Velano Vascular, Eric Stone, who I now admiringly call the Steve Jobs of drawing blood, and below are a few insights from our conversation:

Robert Reiss: How much blood is currently being drawn and what are the problems with the current system?

Eric Stone: Blood draws are not fun – and they are overlooked and underappreciated…except by patients. They are likely the most common invasive medical procedure, with an estimated half a billion in U.S. hospitals alone conducted every year, and two to three times this number across all hospitals worldwide annually.

Recognizing that the U.S. represents nearly 40 million inpatient admissions annually, with an average length of stay of five days, and a conservative estimate of two blood draws per patient per day, we are easily conducting hundreds of millions of inpatient draws each year quite readily.

This does not even take into account other non-hospital settings where patients require regular blood draws, such as long-term care facilities, skilled nursing homes and more – all locations where patients may have a peripheral IV (PIV) catheter indwelling (a requirement for our innovation to be relevant).

For a procedure that informs nearly 70% of all clinical decisions, it is remarkable that the last major innovation was the abandonment of bloodletting centuries ago.

Whether you’re the parent of a sick child or the son or daughter of an elderly parent, repeat hospitalizations and frequent blood draws hit home for just about everyone. It’s scary, it hurts, and it’s critical that we begin to pay attention and stop taking the steely reserve of our patients for granted.

Herein lies the rub. People scared of needles (trypanophobia) avoid necessary tests and treatment, needles injure healthcare workers more than 2 million times a year in accidents that can lead to serious infection, and the list of dysfunction goes on.

The way we draw blood today has real emotional, clinical and financial consequences. We can, and we must, do better. We can start by paying attention.

Reiss: What specifically is different about the Velano Vascular product?

Stone: Velano’s FDA-approved PIVO™ is a disposable, needle free device that connects to a patient’s existing IV catheter, enabling blood draws during their entire hospital stay without requiring subsequent needle sticks.

It turns out that IVs are great at putting fluids into the body but unreliable at pulling them out – that’s why patients receive so many needle sticks while in the hospital.

PIVO turns the routine IV into a reliable conduit for drawing high quality blood samples. This is an elegant solution to a centuries-old problem.

Now, patients no longer need to feel like a “pin cushions” or experience abrupt awakenings between 2:00 am and 6:00 am for the nighttime needle stick – when 40% of blood draws occur.

The company was founded based on a simple idea back in 2012, and subsequently PIVO has been used in clinical pilots and trials at a number of leading U.S. hospitals since receiving regulatory clearance in early 2015.

It has won a number of awards, including the Frost & Sullivan New Product Innovation Award for Vascular Access in 2016 and the Sheikh Zayed Institute for Pediatric Surgical Innovation competition at Children’s National Health in Washington, DC.

Reiss: What are the strengths and weaknesses of your methodology on quality outcomes?

Stone: Velano is most often measured by the clinical quality of blood samples drawn and its impact on both practitioner and patient experience.

In thousands of patients, the quality of our blood samples has been definitive and easy to measure, both through clinical studies and “real world,” commercial use.

Blood drawn from PIVO has similarly low hemolysis rates (blood cell shearing or tearing that can relegate a patient to a re-draw and delays in essential care) to needle draws.

Clinical study efforts and pilots with some of the country’s leading healthcare institutions such as University Hospitals Cleveland, Intermountain Healthcare, The University of Pennsylvania Hospital and Harvard’s Brigham and Women’s Hospital reflect clinically appropriate laboratory results – confirming that blood drawn with our compassionate technology can become a standard of care for clinical decision-making.

Practitioner and patient experience is harder to quantify, but our surveys and testimonials to-date are resoundingly positive. In fact, patients who receive PIVO draws are requesting PIVO when transferred to floors in the hospital that are not participating in our pilots or upon readmission to the hospital. They are actually asking for the product – it is remarkable.

The onus is on Velano to continue improving our quality measurements to undeniably prove this innovation is truly a win-win-win, as we seek to elevate the quality of care and outcomes for patients, practitioners and hospitals alike.

Reiss: What is the financial model for a user and what is the economic impact nationally?

Stone: The cost of a blood draw is not just the $1 or less spent for a needle. Instead, it is the many billions of dollars a year spent on wasted materials, rejected blood samples, patient and practitioner risks, delayed results, labor costs, central line escalations, and more resulting from this less-than-desirable and madly inefficient procedure.

Some of the financial downsides of traditional blood draw standards are somewhat obscure, however we’ve helped our hospital partners understand the current impact by simply asking sincere questions, seeking to learn, and paying a modicum of attention to the topic.

Think about the blood draw on an elderly or obese or diabetic patient that can take as long as an hour of a nurse’s time and 2-3 needles to find a vein and collect an adequate sample.

Consider that even one single case of an employee blood borne pathogen transmission from a needle stick can cost millions of dollars in exposure for a hospital.

For PIVO, we understand that in an environment of increasing health industry price transparency and pressures, when our entire healthcare system is experiencing economic upheaval, and cost neutrality is required for rolling out true innovation in hospitals.

 

Reiss: Why did you start Velano Vascular and what’s your vision?

Stone: The reason why is very simple – because I am first and foremost a patient, and I am a parent.   25 years ago I was diagnosed with Crohn’s disease, launching me on a lifelong journey as a healthcare entrepreneur, patient advocate, and National Trustee of the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of America. Since a young age, I’ve been motivated by IMPACT.

I started Velano in partnership with an intellectually curious physician inventor intrigued by a seemingly simple question posed by his patient – “why are you repeatedly sticking me with needles [when I already have an IV line in my arm]?”

This simple, yet elegant idea resonated strongly with me, for I am needle-phobic myself, and I have been that “tough stick” patient during my hospital stays. Today, this brilliant idea has become reality.

My vision for Velano is to touch every human being on the planet; for we will all spend time in a hospital at some point in life, and we will certainly need our blood drawn when we do.

 

http://velanovascular.com

 

MEDIA:   Contact: Michael Azzano at 415-596-1978 to set up telephone or on-camera interviews with patients or Eric Stone, CEO of Velano Vascular

logonewsmd

Maria Dorfner founder of NewsMD: What’s Hot in Health

abc2

NewsMD Communications was founded in 1998 to educate healthcare consumers by connecting medical + media to inspire and empower millions to want to live healthy.

In 1993, Maria created Healthcare Consumers, Healthy Living, Lifestyles & Longevity and Healthcare Practitioners. The shows aired on CNBC, which she helped launch in 1989.  She is the founder of Cleveland Clinic News Service, helped launch MedPage Today (sold to CNN) and wrote & produced 21st Century Medicine for Discovery Health.  Her awards include Freddie for Excellence in Medical Reporting, Outstanding Leadership Abilities, Media Recognition, Who’s Who, Medical Reporting Scholarship. She produced for Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) Report, talk shows & reality programming.

She began as an intern at NBC todaylogo SHOW in NYC in 1983.

This is her blog.

Have an innovative solution healthcare consumers|media should know about?

Contact: maria.dorfner@yahoo.com  

Response only if it’s a story of interest. Thank you.

gmalogodiscoverylogo2 cnbclogo

nbclogo4  abclogo cbslogo1nbc1cnn foxlogo

cbslogo  nbclogo2

todaylogo