When Dr. Leonard Schwartz pulled his hamstring while out for a run one fateful day, who would have ever thought he’d come to discover “panaerobics.” The resulting discovery not only led to a revolutionary way to exercise, it led to a lifetime’s worth of firsthand experiences and research that are still ahead of their time. It has nearly been two years since he has passed away, and it is only a matter of time before his life’s work becomes more publicly accessible.
He was so into his exercise, he had a multitude people give it a try. From fitness buffs, out of shape first-timers, relatives and senior citizens to pretty much anybody. Each had distinct outcomes and all shared one thing in commom: Progress. By showing out of shape first-timers, Dr. Schwartz proved that it was easy to learn and extremely effective. At one point he taught his young grandchildren how to pump and walk, noting how much they enjoyed it and how easily they picked it up. Senior citizens can benefit from its effectiveness while maintaining a low heart rate by utilizing light weights on the treadmill.
Many big, strong body-builders have a tendency to overlook the “Heavy handed" exercise because of how simple it appears to be at surface level. At one point, Dr. Schwartz was able to convince a huge armed 21 year old that could bench-press 420 lbs multiple times to give it a try. Confident that he could pump and walk with 15 lb dumbbells in each arm, he was completely worn out within two minutes. This story proved that strength alone is different from strength-endurance, or as Schwartz called it: "Long-Strength."
Dr. Schwartz’s daughter Jodi has been continuing his efforts in getting the word out, describing Panaerobics as “an amazingly efficient method; more people should take it up!” In a casual conversation, Jodi shared the story of how panaerobics started, saying “My dad was a runner, until he suffered a pulled hamstring. Desperate to continue doing his cardio routine, he started swinging a baseball bat, and realized that his heart rate got as high from swinging a bat as it did from running. He realized that the legs are already trained because we use them automatically to carry us through our life. But the arms had great to potential to train the heart!! So he made some custom-made heavy bats, and swung them for awhile, until he came up with the idea for Heavyhands weights. He believed that the more muscles we use, the easier the exercise feels.”
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