S — Fitness A-Z

Fitness terms beginning with 'S'

Our A to Z of fitness terms should ensure you are well versed in all the jargon and other technical terms associated with fitness. Here’s all the fitness terms we have identified beginning with ‘S’…

Sciatica, other technical term.
A common problem which manifests in leg pain, often in the buttocks and hamstrings. Usually the source of the pain is in the lower back due to pressure on the sciatic nerve, which runs from the lower back and down the legs. Massage and flexibility exercises can frequently bring relief.

Set, technique.
A number of repetitions of a resistance training exercise performed without any rest. For example, one set of ten repetitions (or 1 x 10).

Shin splints, other technical term.
Pain at the front of the lower leg caused by insufficient cushioning in training shoes, excessive overpronation, continual training on hard surfaces such as concrete, or a significant increase in training. Alleviated by wearing correct footwear, maintaining a careful training build-up, and/or rest.

Sit and reach test, technique.
A protocol for evaluating flexibility, where the subject sits with his or her feet against a baseboard and reaches forward as far as possible along a graduated scale. Largely outdated now in favour of more effective testing methods.

Speed, agility and quickness, (SAQ), technique.
A training technique comprising specific exercise drills which are designed to improve speed, agility and quickness for a variety of sports.

Speed and distance monitor, (SDM), equipment.
An electronic foot-mounted sensor which calculates a runner’s speed and pace and relays the information to a wristwatch-type receiver.

Spinning, activity.
A cardiovascular group exercise class on stationary bicycles with background music. Spinning classes are usually challenging.

Sports bra, equipment.
A reinforced garment specially designed to support the bust during the more active movements when exercising.

Stability ball, equipment.
A large 55 to 65cm-diameter ball often available in gymnasiums and used to perform exercises on that develop the core muscles.

Stability disk, equipment.
A partially inflated 30cm-diameter disk used for core and leg exercises.

Step, equipment.
A height-adjustable piece of cardiovascular training equipment that is frequently used in group exercise classes.

Stepper, equipment.
A gym machine that replicates repeatedly climbing steps. Good for cardiovascular exercise.

Stomach muscles, body part.
See Abdominals.

Stretching exercises, activity.
See Flexibility exercises.

Studio, other technical term.
A dedicated room, usually within a gym, which is set aside for exercise classes.

Supination, other technical term.
This refers to the action of the foot during running, and describes an outward-rolling action between the heel striking the floor and the toe leaving the ground. Much less common than pronation, excessive supination can result in injury but can be helped by an appropriate choice of training shoes and/or corrective insoles

Swiss ball, equipment.
See Stability ball.

Systolic, other technical term.
The blood pressure when the heart is contracting. Expressed as a number in combination with the diastolic blood pressure.

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