Coronavirus taking toll on small fitness centers | Business

NEW YORK – There’s little evidence of Americans’ passion for fitness at the tens of thousands of small and independent gyms around the country.

Gyms, health clubs and workout studios began reopening in late spring following government-ordered shutdowns aimed at halting the coronavirus spread. But most are only allowed to have a fraction of their regular clientele onsite at one time. And some clients are staying away for fear of catching the virus.

The International Health Racquet & Sportsclub Association, an industry group, estimates that gyms, health and fitness clubs lost an aggregate $13.9 billion during shutdowns as of Aug. 31. The group warns that without government help, at least a quarter could close by Dec. 31 as limits on indoor workouts continue.

Michael Hanover is lucky if he gets 45 client hours a week in his Northbrook, Illinois gym, Fitness Hero Wellness Center, down from his usual 60. He

Read More

Scientists observe cells moving through small channels

Oct. 6 (UPI) — Newly captured video of cells moving through narrow channels promises to help scientists better understand the mechanics of cell migration.

The observations, described Tuesday in the journal Biophysical Journal, could offer insights into how cancer metastasizes, or spreads from one area of the body to another.

“Our results describe how cells can migrate and deform through confined spaces, providing potentially new ways to envision cell motility in small blood capillaries in vivo,” senior study author Daniel Riveline, researcher at the University of Strasbourg in France, said in a news release.

Until now, cell motility has mostly been studied on 2D surfaces, but in the body, migrating cells travel through 3D environs. Most often, cells move through blood vessels. For the study, researchers developed vessel-like, micro-fabricated channels.

Some channels were open, confined by just three walls, while others were closer, confined by four walls. Researchers micro-fabricated both

Read More

D.C. residents to see small increase in health insurance marketplace rates

Rates for individual coverage will increase overall by 0.2 percent and rates for small-group coverage, such as small businesses, will decrease by 0.5 percent, according to the D.C. Department of Insurance, Securities and Banking, which reviews and approves rates for the online marketplace.

The 2021 rates are a “big win for D.C. residents in making health care more affordable and accessible,” said William Borden, a professor of medicine and health policy at George Washington University. He pointed to how people have struggled to keep up with rising health insurance premiums, even before the novel coronavirus took hold.

“Having health insurance is clearly associated with better health outcomes, and so if there was going to be a sharp increase in insurance premiums that really could be devastating, especially as individuals, small businesses are already struggling financially,” Borden said.

Insurers initially asked for rate increases as high as 30 percent, but most

Read More

A Small Step for Olive Oil as HFpEF Treatment

Extra virgin olive oil (EVOO) showed promise as a secondary prevention therapy for heart failure with preserved ejection fraction (HFpEF) in a small uncontrolled study.

Nine study participants with HFpEF and obesity were supplemented with unsaturated fatty acid-rich foods and had their EVOO intake estimated over 12 weeks according to their dietary recall, according to researchers led by Hayley Billingsley, RD, of Virginia Commonwealth University, who presented the data in a poster at this year’s virtual Heart Failure Society of American meeting.

Daily EVOO intake increased from zero at baseline to 23.6 g on average during the study, with greater EVOO consumption accompanied by small but significant improvements in cardiorespiratory fitness on cardiopulmonary exercise testing (CPET).

A statistical model indicated that a 40-g increase in EVOO intake led to increased peak VO2 by just under 2 mL/kg/min, a roughly 6% improvement compared with predicted peak VO2; oxygen

Read More

Day cares are reopening. But they can only serve small groups and fear for their survival.

The industry already operates at the margins, and facilities that are open are running undercapacity to comply with strict health guidelines. Many centers have delayed paying their rent or mortgages until they can afford it. Owners say that many workers have left for babysitting gigs or other minimum-wage jobs that reopened sooner.

The demand for child care is growing but is inconsistent and unpredictable, day-care owners said in interviews. They have fewer young infants in their care. But centers with accredited prekindergarten programs say the slots are in high demand, with parents opting for these in-person programs instead of the virtual public school ones. While some centers are turning parents away, others have capacity but no families registered.

And now a new challenge for some day cares: The District announced this month that it would change the way it pays them subsidies — money the city pays directly to day-care

Read More