Barefoot Training, Striptease Dance Highlight This Year's DCAC Fitness Conference

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Now in its 15th year, the annual DCAC International Fitness Conference& Expo is where fitness professionals go to sharpen their skills and recharge their batteries. Having outgrown its old location, it's now in the heart of the D.C. action across the river in Alexandria. In addition to advanced training across the spectrum of exercise modalities, this year's conference will feature barefoot training to get users back to their primal roots. Also the surprising gyrations of striptease dance make for great fitness and calorie burn. Group classes will take on a new look with exercisers gaining strength and cardio around a CorePole, a sort of maypole with tubing.

Both group fitness instructors and personal trainers alike will be making their annual pilgrimage to Washington D.C. this coming August 2-6 to hone their teaching skills, expand their knowledge into physiology and nutrition, learn new dance choreographies, and pick up on the new, new fitness thing. When they fan out and go home, fitness centers around the world will be updated to the best methods the industry has to offer.

Now in its 15th year, the DCAC International Fitness Conference and Expo has trained fitness professionals from around the globe to the emerging modalities. In addition to its staples of body bar, efi gravity, aquatics, spinning, Pilates, yoga, bosu, step, dance, along with the recent comers of smart bells and gliding, this year will feature striptease as an exciting dance modality along with getting back to roots, literally, with barefoot training.

A Must for All Fitness Professionals

The 2006 DCAC fitness conference is a must for anyone who considers him or herself fitness professional. In what is typically the slow season, it is an opportunity for instructors to sharpen their skills and regain their passion.

The conference will be held at its new location at the Hilton Alexandria Mark Center. "We've outgrown our old location in Reston, and this new location not only gives us more space for conferences and exhibitors, but it's close to all the sites of Washington for after-session sightseeing," said Suzanne Olson, co-producer of the event who was its co-founder 15 years ago.

There are over 200 training sessions - from the high demand topics of personal training, yoga, Pilates, dance, spinning and aquatics to the more esoteric topics of fitness for kids, seniors, pre-natal and sports training, coaching and rehab. In particular, this year will emphasize "Life Coaching".

There are also 26 in-depth pre-conference workshops, held Aug 2nd and 3rd, where attendees can attend half-day and full-day workshops to collect CECs before the main weekend workshops. This year, the pre-conference will feature two superstars of fitness presentation, Rob Glick and Petra Kolber who will instruct in new and exciting choreographies in Step and dance.

Striptease Dance

From celebrities to mainstream, striptease dance is a phenomenon that is sweeping the country. The sensual dance of swirling, twirling, and becoming stripper hot makes the workout fun and the time go by quickly. This year, there are workshops on how to format striptease into a real workout. The workshop is taught by aerobic instructor and video star, Tricia Murphy, the founder of Urban Striptease Aerobics, and a trained dancer of 26 years.

Barefoot Fitness Training

In many ways sustainable exercise is getting back to simplicity and basics. That is why yoga has enjoyed so much growth and longevity. The latest rage is to get back to our primal skills and train in bare feet. This phenomenon was spurred by research coming out of Nike.

Shannon Griffiths-Fable, famed international presenter will be presenting a pre-conference on barefoot training entitled "Balletone Sole Synthesis". Her associate, Stacey Lei Krauss, will also be teaching two workshops on this novel approach to fitness.

According to Griffiths-Fable, many people have pains and ailments in their lower body, mostly because their feet have atrophied by constant wearing of supportive shoes. "When you take the shoes off, your lower extremities have no idea how to support your structure. It's basically forgotten how to move," said Griffiths-Fable. "It's like exercising every day with a neck brace on, once you take the neck brace off, the loss of strength would end up with a 'bobble head'. "

Griffiths-Fable practices what she preaches. "It's been amazing," she said. "Barefoot training has absolutely changed my life to where a year and a half ago I could barely get out of bed in the morning without serious pain, to where now I can't do anything except exercise barefoot."

CorePole Gaining in Popularity

To attract more new members into group fitness classes, there is a movement toward program simplicity that employs compound movements and functional training. That way the participants get optimal full-body exercise in a time efficient manner.

Last year's 2005 show introduced the phenomenon of Gliding and Smart Bells, and this year it will highlight an expanded line of Stott Pilates Reformers and the new CorePole -- a 6' 10" steel pole outfitted with 10 pairs of safe protective tubing, which can be anchored at different heights creating various angles to target different muscles.

In a group class, multiple users may remain in place or rotate uniformly around the pole, performing various resistance-based exercises as they go. "CorePole gives the ability to target every muscle group," said Griffiths-Fable who will also be teaching 2 workshops with this unique device, "It provides the ability to move about the room because the core pole rotates 360°. It's unleashing the true capability of tubing. Again, making exercise simple. Tubing is simple, there are no moving parts, you grab onto the handle and you pull."

Expanded Personal Training Sessions

In addition to the latest in group exercise, DCAC has expanded its personal training lectures and workshops. In addition to regulars that pack the rooms such as Douglas Brooks, Andre Noel Potvin, and Annette Lang, all of international personal training fame, this year offers PhDs Len Kravitz and Wayne Westcott to lend some real academic depth and research to the program.

Westcott will be sharing his latest research findings on effective strength training. "We've done a study with almost 1,700 subjects. We saw how men and women of all age groups responded to strength training and the positive effects it had on their biometrics," said Westcott.

He added, "All groups benefited from and 8-week period of strength training, they averaged about 3 lbs. of muscle gain, lost about 4 lbs. of body fat, and their blood pressure dropped about 4 mmHG on systolic, and 2 mmHG diastolic." Westcott will be lecturing in detail into the specific training protocols to maximize the health benefit while minimizing the time demands on clients.

Life Coaching Is Also Gaining Traction

Club members feel a certain rapport with their personal trainers and often seek advice and coaching outside the parlance of exercise -- not just lifestyle changes, but life changes for a better, happier life. Consequently, many instructors and personal trainers are learning about life coaching so they can add another competency to their portfolio and help these clients. Mare Petras, a national expert on the topic, will be conducting the workshop.

Extensive EXPO

There is also an adjacent trade show floor that is populated by over 50 of the leading vendors in the industry. The floor is open to the public and many products are sold at bargain prices: fitness CDs, apparel, athletic footwear, mats, straps, videos, group exercise equipment, and the latest in group fitness music.

About the DCAC International Fitness Conference and Trade Show

Since 1992, DCAC has produced an annual conference and trade show in greater Washington, D.C. World-renowned industry experts and educators are brought together for a five-day event that enables health and fitness professionals, as well as enthusiasts, to attend a wide array of training seminars and the trade show floor. Participants can earn continuing education credits for many of the industry's major certification organizations such as AEA, IFTA, AAAI, ACE, AFAA, NSCA, NSPA, NASM, and WITS. This years’ show will be held Aug. 2-6, 2006 at the Hilton Alexandria Mark Center, in Alexandria, Virginia, just outside of Washington D.C. proper.

For further information, contact DCAC at (800) DCAC 551, or visit: http://www.dcacinc.com.

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