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With a surge of new fitness apps, wearable devices, and wellness technologies, trainers are beginning to enter the next level of smart coaching with the potential to garner more money from clients that are getting better results.

This January, at the world’s premier technology conference, Consumer Electronics Show, influential fitness brands such as Under Armour, Fitbit, Matrix and MYZONE impressively showcased how their brands are promising to move the needle of fitness for health consumers, gym owners, and savvy fitness professionals- all through the use of digital health.

As the pulses from millions of devices signal the growing trend of digital health as a household name, the uncomfortable truth is that a majority of personal trainers still remain in the dark about just exactly how to use them with their clients.

Money trails and step counters all point to the power of increased connectivity and accountability for users on and off the gym floor, but the educational gap around how to use this new technology for trainers is growing wider every day.

The solution, as shown by an sharp increase of digital health coaching platforms since 2014, is to use the cloud to leverage a trainer’s time, energy, and expertise into leading small connected accountability groups through virtual touch points.

Digital Health Group Training

Do you ever give blood? According to the Red Cross, every two seconds there’s an American in need of it, requiring roughly 41,000 donations per day. In the U.S., more than 100 million people are eligible to donate, although only about 9 million do so every year (1). Blood donations help people cope with diseases like sickle cell (affecting more than 90,000 people in the U.S.), and cancer (affecting 14 million (2)), which require frequent blood transfusions. Hospitals also need a continuous supply of fresh blood for surgical patients, laboring mothers, and trauma cases (1,3).

While a necessary and benevolent act, exercisers and competitive athletes should be aware that donating blood is not without physical consequences, including a temporary reduction in endurance performance (4,5,6,7) and in some cases, iron-deficiency (8).

Blood Donation Types and Functions

When giving blood, most donors opt for the more common donation type called “whole blood” donation or some choose a partial donation in which only specific aspects are extracted: plasma, red blood cells (RBCs), or platelets (9-11). During a whole blood donation, blood is taken from the arm and then separated later into its usable parts, which can benefit up to three people (9).

A partial donation is performed nearly the same way except that the donated parts, platelets for example, are machine-separated from the blood, then the remaining parts are returned back to the donors arm (9).

Regardless of donation type, every part of your blood can be (and is, according to the Red Cross) used to help someone in need (9). Here’s how each part of the blood plays a role in your body, and in saving someone’s life. 

Red Blood Cells

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