Showing posts with label Dr. Yoshiaki Sato. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Dr. Yoshiaki Sato. Show all posts

Friday, June 5, 2020

KAATSU The Original BFR At The Digital Running Show

For who? Runners
For what? Recovery, strength, stamina

Following the postponement of The National Running Show London to 2021, the Digital Running Show will be held online on June 13th - 14th 2020 in partnership with Children with Cancer UK.

KAATSU Global will present its original BFR principles and how the KAATSU Cycle and KAATSU Constant modes are used by sprinters, hurdlers, middle-distance runners, distance runners, ultra-marathon runners, triathletes, extreme athletes and recreational runners for performance gains, rehabilitation purposes, and recovery from vigorous training sessions and competition.

For more information, visit

Copyright © 2014 - 2020 by KAATSU Global

Tuesday, March 19, 2019

How To Train Like A Leidy

For who? Baby Boomers, retirees, student-athletes, women
For what? Strength, stamina, functional movement, mobility, flexibility, recovery

After a year of training, Leidy Weinstein entered three National Physique Committee Bikini Class bodybuilding competitions: finishing 5th, 4th, and finally winning the National Physique Committee Florida Gold Cup Open division to qualify for the U.S. national championships.

Her achievement is certainly admirable, but it pales in comparison to her life journey, her drive to overcome adversity, and the unique training protocol she developed in the process.

Leidy grew up in the slums outside of Cali, Colombia where food was scarce, the roof leaked, and her dreams of becoming a competitive athlete were far from anything remotely possible. The food that was available was mostly corn based or fried meat. As a result, she was overweight as a child. Leidy was raised by her grandmother and did graduate from a local school at 16 years old, but she became pregnant that year.

At 17, she found herself sharing a room with a relative in Cali and raising a newborn child. With help from relatives, she worked two jobs to make ends meet.

Then, two years later, Leidy was shot by robbers. Her right arm was shattered and had to be reconstructed with metal plates. The future seemed bleak.

The next year she met her first husband who was visiting Colombia. They married and moved to Florida. Her life was still tough. She worked 10 hours a day cleaning houses and gyms including the home of the gym owners. While cleaning the owners' house, she noticed many trophies for bikini body sculpting and dreamed of winning competitions. During her off time, she began to work out at a local gym.

After getting divorced six years ago, Leidy met her soul mate David Weinstein who she eventually married. En route to delivering their baby, Leidy gained a lot of weight – over 100 pounds (45 kg). When their baby Natasha was born, Leidy tipped the scales at 250 pounds (113 kg). To make matters even worse, the plates in her arm - from her gunshot wounds - broke during the pregnancy and she could not use her left arm as a result.

The surgeons said that there was a 75% chance she would never be able to use her left hand again and she would only have limited use of the arm. After a seven-hour surgery, they were able to reconstruct her nerves and put in new plates. Her husband recalls, "We waited, but an hour after she awoke, Leidy was able to move her hand. She needed yet one more surgery 3 months later before she would be allowed to exercise."

One day in the summer of 2016 while she was recovering, Leidy proclaimed that she wanted to help women lose weight and take control of their health. She decided the best way to help others was to lead by example. She embarked on a path that day with a vision – to lose 100 pounds, sculpt her body, and win a bikini championship. "It was a nice dream in search of an action plan," says David, an entrepreneur in the fields of medicine and biotechnology, who established a new company called LifeForceIQ in Boca Raton, Florida [see below].

Her original plan came from LifeForceIQ. David explains, "LifeForceIQ takes a radically different approach to optimizing health and vitality. It approaches each person by transforming their health biologically, one cell at a time. The equipment and training protocol combines the Japanese blood flow modification system called KAATSU with TRX, light weights, infrared sauna, and LiveO2. Additionally, she ran blood tests for food allergies and then grew organic vegetables, bought grass-fed beef from Montana, and wild salmon from Alaska."

David describes her typical daily training. "Upon waking at 5:30 am, Leidy spends the first 30 minutes in prayer, thanking God for all she has and asking him to assist her in helping others. Then she takes LifeForceIQ supplements to increase nitric oxide and oxygen delivery to her muscles and physique in order to gain lean muscle mass, reduce body fat, and increase strength as well as Rejuvenation to selectively reduce oxidation.

She washes them down with Fat Transformer which provides and energy boost and increases metabolism. The power of these supplements in that they work synergistically with a KAATSU circuit, TRX, and cycling with LiveO2.

We wanted to learn from the inventor of KAATSU so we traveled to Tokyo in order to learn from Dr. Yoshiaki Sato [see photos below]. Our initial session was intense."

Leidy was ready.

"She listened to Dr. Sato's advice and followed his protocols to the letter," observed KAATSU Master Specialist David Tawil who participated in the initial session with Leidy. "Leidy was pumped psychologically and became so physiologically toned - ripped - it was unbelievable."

Dr. Sato started Leidy with several KAATSU Cycles, gradually increasing her Optimal Pressure from 150 SKU to 300 SKU on her arms. "Leidy's skin gradually started to get pink and then became a healthy glow of red by the end of several KAATSU Cycles," said Tawil. "Then Dr. Sato went from the KAATSU Cycle modality right into KAATSU Training when he untethered Leidy and did a variety of short exercises from isometric exercises to triceps extensions on a bench."

Leidy then went into the recovery mode with a finishing KAATSU Cycle. She recalled the experience, "I felt great - like I just had an hour-long workout in the gym. But KAATSU got me to muscular failure within minutes. It is so efficient and effective when the blood is pooled in your limbs."

In her morning regimen, Leidy hits the bike first. Leidy likes to alternate between climbing and riding her Schwinn Blue stationary bike while using the LiveO2 system. The system let her perform a high intensity interval training (HIIT) program while breathing highly oxygenated air to saturate her tissues with oxygen. Every other sprint, she will down regulate the oxygen to high altitude hypoxic training. In this way, her circulatory system expands and contracts. This allows her cells to detox and increase metabolism simultaneously.

After 30 minutes, she will do some stretching or a spend a few minutes on the inversion table. She wraps up the cardio portion of the workout with a Tabata set either with kettle bells of jumping on a mini trampoline.

Then it is time to do an upper body cycle of KAATSU. By running a squeeze and release warmup KAATSU Cycle, the blood vessels begin to vasodilate. Then Leidy fixes her optimal pressure and begins to run three sets of different exercises addressing her biceps, triceps, shoulders, back and pecs.

Both the KAATSU and Blood + Physique supplements increase nitric oxide production which allows oxygen to nourish the body and carry away waste products. Additionally, due to KAATSU, lactic acid is produced and trapped in the veins as the venous flow (blood return to the torso) is modified. Signals are sent from the veins through the central nervous system to the pituitary gland and the brain is alerted that human growth hormone is needed. Growth hormone production increases which optimizes her physique and uses increased energy which burns fat.

On alternate days, Leidy will do KAATSU on her legs either with TRX or weight machines.

Following the morning workout, Leidy takes a 45-minute infrared sauna with red light therapy applied at the end. She alternates the sauna programs for weight loss and pain relief. When finished, it is time for a 5-minute cold shower with aromatherapy. Following this, she downs a green juice cleanse. She rotates her diet between ketogenic protocols and paleo plans that are combined with intermittent fasting.

Her husbands summarizes her day and training, "By the time the morning has started for most people, Leidy has already cooked lunch for the family which is followed by cleaning the house, training clients, and preparing dinner. The evening will be filled with stories about what happened at school, why is the world the way it is, and what can we do about it.

At the end, each day is a blessing and Leidy embraces each day as precious

Copyright © 2014 - 2019 by KAATSU Global

Sunday, January 17, 2016

Improvements In Speed, Strength, Stamina At Gator Swim Club

Courtesy of Chris Morgan [see video below], Head Coach, Gator's Swim Club (2015 New England Senior Swimming Championship Team).

We work on speed, strength and stamina every workout at the Gator's Swim Club in Waltham, Massachusetts.

Like other competitive age-group swim teams, the Gator's augment those hard training sessions with a focus on proper technique, good balanced nutrition, and all kinds of “outside the box” dry-land training.

This year, our athletes began an innovative addition to our entire training regime that has resulted in some unprecedented drops in time:

Over a 3-month period, some of our representative swims include:

Henry Gaissert (17 years old)
• 100 freestyle: from 47.0 to 44.8 (44.1 relay split)
• 100 butterfly: from 52.4 to 49.8
Maddie Wallis (16 years old)
• 100 backstroke: from 57.1 to 54.9
• 200 backstroke: from 2:07.9 to 2:00.3
Johnny Prindle (17 years old)
• 100 freestyle: from 48.1 to a 45.9 relay split
• 200 freestyle: from 1:47.2 to 1:41.5
• 100 breaststroke: from 59.0 to 57.5

Our secret…?

KAATSU the original BFR.

KAATSU is the secret advantage that Olympic and professional athletes from Japan, and increasingly in the U.S., Switzerland and Hungary, have been using to gain specific strength in order to improve speed and increase stamina.

Years ago, Olympic champion Misty Hyman from Stanford University did something vaguely similar. The 200m butterfly Olympic champion in the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games placed several thick postage rubber bands around her arms and legs. She would at times swim as much as 8,000 meters with the bands at AFOX in Arizona under the guidance of its coach Bob Gillette as a high school student. Her unusual training method started in Arizona as a top age-grouper and continued at Stanford University under Richard Quick [where I served as an assistant coach].

But we learned from Dr. Yoshiaki Sato and our KAATSU Global colleagues that very specific pressures with carefully engineered pneumatic bands used in short durations is the key to significant improvements in speed, strength and stamina. We use the KAATSU Master and KAATSU Nano devices to identify two types of specific pressures (called Base SKU and Optimal SKU where SKU stands for Standard KAATSU Unit). These pressures are specific for each athlete that can vary from day to day and workout to workout. Those specific pressures, that vary from athlete to athlete, are how our athletes have maximized the benefits of KAATSU or "blood flow moderation training".

Invented in 1966 and perfected by 1973 by Dr. Sato of Tokyo, the KAATSU inventor was honored by the Japanese Olympic Committee in 1992. Word eventually leaked out from Japan about KAATSU beginning in the 1980s and throughout the 1990s, but it was mostly adopted without knowledge of the Base SKU and Optimal SKU by the bodybuilding community. These bodybuilders, looking to achieve muscle hypertrophy, never understood the importance of using pneumatic bands or identifying Base SKU or Optimal SKU. Eventually, the bodybuilding community referred to using knee wraps and other sorts of restrictive bands as occlusion training or tourniquet training. But acceptance of the thick postage rubber bands or knee warps never took off in amateur or professional sports in the West. So for years, American and European bodybuilders simply tied knee wraps and other bands around their arms to build bulk based on 2D photos they saw of the KAATSU bands.

In contrast to the specific KAATSU protocols to identify optimal pressures, bodybuilders tie their limbs using a pain scale from 1 to 10, with 7-8 being the recommended level of pain by various American researchers. This kind of simplified and frankly dangerous* means to occlude blood flow in the limbs was neither possible nor practical for age-group swimmers or older masters swimmers. In contrast to those focused on muscle hypertrophy, we wanted a proven, safe and effective means to help our athletes improve their speed, strength and stamina - not a means to get bulkier.

Since the Center for KAATSU Research at the Harvard Medical School was established in 2013, I first used KAATSU on myself** and learned the proper protocols and how to safely use the KAATSU equipment. With that knowledge and experience, the athletes of the Gator's Swim Club have been experimenting with KAATSU and our age-group swimmers, several who are national-caliber swimmers.

I quickly learned how we could replicate 'race pain' without the need for a time-consuming test set by using the KAATSU equipment. By engorging the muscles in blood (instead of keeping blood out like the bodybuilders and their knee wraps), I studied how this revolutionary training technique could be utilized by competitive swimmers whether they are focused on their local high school championships and getting into college or others like Roy Burch and Mohamed Hussein who have their eyes on the 2016 Rio Olympic Games.

We now use KAATSU in three fundamental ways:

1. In rehabilitation
2. For recovery
3. During training

We have used KAATSU to quickly resolve sore shoulders and the tweaks of overuse injuries from both our age-groupers and masters swimmers. We use the KAATSU Cycle modality that starts off with lower pressures and gradually builds up to higher pressures. These protocols are the same protocols that are used by Olympic gold medalists and members of the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics USA team and professional soccer players.***

We use the KAATSU Cycle modality between races and between the preliminary and final events in a multi-day event (e.g., the 2015 Winter Junior National Championships in Atlanta, Georgia).

We do a variety of sets with KAATSU in order to improve technique, speed, strength and stamina. None of these sets last over 20 minutes, as per the standard KAATSU protocols. Some of the sets involve using arm bands and some of the sets involve using leg bands, including sets that exclusively focus on starts or turns.

These sets can range from 10 x 15m breakouts to 10 x 50 at a specific pressure.

Not only have our athletes and their parents accepted KAATSU and appreciate its benefits, but we also have some of our graduating seniors requesting the KAATSU machines accompany them to their new collegiate teams.

* Clinical Journal of Sport Medicine. 2010 May; 20(3): 218-9: Low-load ischemic exercise-induced rhabdomyolysis

** In 2013, I competed in a local Tough Mudder obstacle race. I used the KAATSU Master to improve my fitness level, but on the day of the event, at mile #10, I slipped on a log, smashed my side, and broke 2 ribs. For 7 days immediately after the injury, I used the KAATSU Master and KAATSU Air Bands as prescribed for broken bones. By day 7, the pain and sensitivity of the broken ribs had vanished. Ten days after the first x-rays revealed the broken ribs, I took a second set of x-rays that showed a complete recovery. Since that time, I wanted the athletes who I work with to benefit from a clear and methodical use of KAATSU.

*** Get Stronger, Go Longer. KAATSU is Blowing Researchers' Minds (Military Times) and KAATSU Japanese Blood Flow Routine (Outside Magazine)


Copyright © 2014 - 2016 by KAATSU Global

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Doing KAATSU With Multiple Sclerosis

Occasionally, individuals with multiple sclerosis (MS) ask if they can do KAATSU.

The answer is YES. With individuals with multiple sclerosis, the KAATSU Specialist ask the individuals to do what they can with KAATSU. Individuals with multiple sclerosis fatigue early, but are otherwise normal. KAATSU Global fundamentally recommends the following:

* exercises that are safe to do (e.g., no falling off spinning bikes)
* get muscle mass distal to (below) the KAATSU Air Bands contracting rhythmically
* exercise the affected muscle mass to the extent the individuals can, regardless if it is distal to the KAATSU Air Bands
* exercises can include push-ups, leg squats, hip raises (on back), holding a weight ball and moving side to side, walking, or any kind of resistance training
* individuals should always be well-hydrated and never feel numbness in the limbs or lightheadedness
* individuals should always have a rosy/pink KAATSU color in their limbs due to the blood engorgement

Below is a standard regimen for individuals with multiple sclerosis developed by Dr. Yoshiaki Sato in Japan after thousands of sessions:

Includes KAATSU Cycle (on either arms and/or legs) + KAATSU 3-point exercises (on either arms and/or legs) or KAATSU Performance Training (on either arms and/or legs)

2-3 times per week minimum, but sometimes more frequent if desired/possible

KAATSU Cycle Regimen (Standard):
Step 1: Find the user's Optimal SKU (e.g., 200 SKU)
Step 2: Do 1-2 sets of the standard KAATSU Cycle (i.e., 8 cycle of 20 seconds on + 5 seconds off)
Step 3: Proceed to either Advanced KAATSU Cycle** or KAATSU 3-point Exercises on arms

KAATSU Cycle Regimen (Advanced)**:
Option 1
Step 1: Find the user's Optimal SKU (e.g., 200 SKU)
Step 2: Purposefully increase SKU to a higher pressure level than Optimal (e.g., 260 SKU)
Step 3: Do 1-2 sets of the Advanced KAATSU Cycle at this higher level as possible (i.e., 8 cycle of 20 seconds on + 5 seconds off)

Option 2
Step 1: Find the user's Optimal SKU (e.g., 200 SKU)
Step 2: Purposefully increase SKU to a higher pressure level than Optimal (e.g., 260 SKU)
Step 3: Do 1-2 sets of the Advanced KAATSU Cycle for longer at this higher level as possible (i.e., 8 cycle of 40 seconds on + 10 seconds off)

Option 3
Step 1: Find the user's Optimal SKU (e.g., 200 SKU)
Step 2: Purposefully increase SKU to a higher pressure level than Optimal (e.g., 260 SKU)
Step 3: Do 1-2 sets of the Advanced KAATSU Cycle for longer at this higher level as possible (i.e., 8 cycle of 60 seconds on + 20 seconds off)

** As the user becomes stronger and more accustomed to KAATSU, their ability to handle higher pressures for longer periods becomes readily apparent, but the user and the KAATSU Specialist should always start off conservatively. The body will acclimate well, but at the beginning, the user and KAATSU Specialist should always error on the side of lower pressures.

KAATSU 3-Point Exercises for Arms:
Step 1: Find the user's Optimal SKU (e.g., 200 SKU)
Step 2: 3 sets of the hand grips (note: the number of repetitions should decrease with each subsequent set)
Step 3: 3 sets of bicep curls
Step 4: 3 sets of tricep extensions
Step 5: Proceed to KAATSU 3-point Exercise on legs

KAATSU 3-Point Exercises for Legs:
Step 1: Find the user's Optimal SKU (e.g., 200 SKU)
Step 2: 3 sets of the toe curls (note: the number of repetitions should decrease with each subsequent set)
Step 3: 3 sets of heel raises
Step 4: 3 sets of either squats (quarter or full) or leg curls

KAATSU Performance Training for either Arms or Legs:
Step 1: Find the user's Optimal SKU (e.g., 200 SKU)
Step 2: Do the preferred activity of the patient (e.g., walking, resistance training, stretching, mobility exercises, rehabilitation)

Note: The number of repetitions should decrease with each subsequent set. Alternatively, if the user is walking on a treadmill, the total time should be limited to 20 minutes. If the user is using his upper body, the total number should be limited to 15 minutes. Users can elect to do both arms and legs during the same session if they wish.

Yvonne C. Learmonth and her colleagues at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign conducted a study in 2015 called "A novel approach to low level resistance training in multiple sclerosis; Kaatsu occlusion training".

Their research was funded by a grant awarded from the American College of Sports Medicine [see poster on left or here].

Their conclusion was that 6 weeks of thrice weekly low-level resistance training in people mildly to moderately affected with MS results in large and significant changes in lower limb strength. This suggests that short progressive low level resistance training intervention may be an effective intervention for many people affected with MS. Occlusion resistance training appears safe and acceptable to people mildly to moderately affected with MS.

Copyright © 2014 - 2015 by KAATSU Global

KAATSU 3-point Exercises For Legs

KAATSU 3-point Exercises are a fundamental part of the standard KAATSU protocol for both the arms and legs.

Dr. Yoshiaki Sato, who invented KAATSU in 1966, first established the KAATSU 3-point Exercises in the 1970s. These simple exercises have been performed safely and effectively among millions of individual KAATSU sessions among people of all ages and abilities with myriad physical conditions or ailments.

The KAATSU 3-point Exercises can either be used to help determine the optimal SKU pressure or as a form of basic exercise for both the arms and legs. After the Base SKU (manually applied pressure) is established, then the KAATSU 3-point Exercises is a means to determine if the Optimal SKU (inflated pressure of the pneumatic bands) is appropriate (read a more detailed explanation here).

Alternatively, especially for Baby Boomers and adults who are being reconditioned back to a state of wellness through a simple exercise program, the KAATSU 3-point Exercises can consist of their entire KAATSU training program. When the KAATSU 3-point Exercises are performed, the exercises can be performed either on a KAATSU Master or a KAATSU Nano or a KAATSU Cycle unit. The KAATSU 3-point Exercises can be performed while the user is either tethered (connected) or untethered (disconnected) to the units.

KAATSU Leg 3-point Exercises [illustrations posted on left]

The KAATSU 3-point Exercises for the legs are either defined as Standard or Advanced.

The Standard KAATSU 3-point Exercises for the legs involves toe curls, toe raises, and heel raises. These are all performed while the user is seated comfortably with good posture on a chair. In general, these are preferred for older or less fit individuals or those just starting an exercise program or KAATSU.

The Advanced KAATSU 3-point Exercises for the legs are alternatively used by more fit or active individuals or for those individuals with more experience in KAATSU. These 3 basic exercises includes heel raises, leg curls and squats. The heel raises can be done while sitting or standing. The leg curls can be performed while standing and holding onto a chair or balancing against a wall. The squats (or "chair touches") can be performed while bending the knees to touch a chair and then popping back up.

Ideally, the squats are "non-lock" (partial extension) so that the muscles are constantly engaged and there is no rest while the knees are "locked" straight (in a full extension). This will build up fatigue and lactic acid more quickly.

Each set of exercises should be done 3-4 times each with a maximum of 20 seconds between each set. Ideally, the number of repetitions for each exercise decreases before the user reaches muscular or technical failure (or fatigues).

That is, an ideal set would be 25-30 repetitions on set #1, 10-15 repetitions on set #2, and 5-10 repetitions on set #3. Even if only 1-2 repetitions are completed on the last set, this failure signal sent to the central nervous system is one of the goals of KAATSU.

KAATSU Arm 3-point Exercises [illustrations posted here]

The KAATSU 3-point Exercises for the arms involves hand clenches, bicep curls and tricep extensions. Each set of exercises is done 3 times each with a maximum of 20 seconds rest between each set. Ideally, the number of repetitions for each exercise decreases before the user reaches muscular or technical failure*.

That is, an ideal set would be 25-30 repetitions on set #1, 10-15 repetitions on set #2, and 5-10 repetitions on set #3. Even if only 1-2 repetitions are completed on the last set, this failure signal sent to the central nervous system is one of the goals of KAATSU.

* Technical failure is defined when the individual starts to do improper technique (movement) due to an increasing sense of fatigue. At this point, the set is stopped.

Copyright © 2014 - 2015 by KAATSU Global