If you join a fitness facility, chances are you are presented with paperwork to fill out. Not all of it may pertain to your billing information. After you get past the part where you hand over your credit card number or banking information, you will find yourself answering some basic health history questions. Don't take it lightly. Cardiac issues or heart attacks are less common in people that exercise regularly and somewhat hard. Exercise is part of their life. It is not to say the person on the stair climber daily won't someday have a heart attack on the stair climber. However, someone who has a sedentary lifestyle and suddenly decides to exercise vigorously with a do-or-die attitude could be do or die! There is a chance that they might have some disease that has gone undetected until the day of do or die. I have written previously about websites that you can visit to get an initial idea of where you stand for risk of exercise. I hope you paid a visit to one of them.
The American College of Sports Medicine has developed three questions to aid fitness professionals in determining the risk factors. One of the three most important questions is
"has the person been diagnosed with a cardiovascular, pulmonary, or metabolic disease?"
This is huge. If this were me, I would make sure every staff knew my health history. I think unfortunately some keep it quiet. Take the health history information seriously and if necessary,
visit you health care provider.
Answering these questions honestly might help you dodge a bullet. It doesn't matter how strong you think you are or if you are young and think nothing could possibly bring you down, honest answers might save your life. More on risk factors later.
Resource: ACSM's Health and Fitness Journal Risk Classification "Is It Safe for your Client to Exercise?" Warren D. Franke, Ph.D.,FACSM