Strength versus Endurance: What’s the Difference?

By: Eric Sexton, exercise science student


Exercise Endurance


When we hear the word “endurance,” we might think of marathons; when we hear “strength,” we think . . . well I think of Superman. In the exercise world, strength goes hand in hand with powerlifting, but marathons and powerlifting are two ends of a broad spectrum. Most people who exercise regularly, even professional athletes, fall somewhere between absolute strength and absolute endurance (besides marathoners and powerlifters, of course). The reality is that most people are not training to run super-long distances or lift the heaviest weight they can. People just want to feel good and like the way they look, but knowing how endurance and strength differ can help you succeed with your exercising.


First up, let’s talk about endurance. How long can your body continue to exercise without stopping until fatigue? Exercise is a broad category, but endurance comes down to aerobic capacity and anaerobic endurance. Aerobic capacity comes into play when someone is running a 5K race, for example. The faster he completes the race, the greater his aerobic endurance. And the greater his ability to continuously contract his muscles while using oxygen (i.e., breathing) as his main pathway for energy. Aerobic-capacity training varies quite a bit depending on the program, but all programs should follow a structure similar to this: warm-up, dynamic stretching, main conditioning, cooldown, and flexibility work. An example of anaerobic endurance would be when someone is performing as many push-ups as she can. It might seem odd, but anaerobic endurance relates more to strength exercises because it involves muscle contractions while not using oxygen as its energy pathway.


Strength is a person’s ability to generate force, and it can be measured with a one-repetition-maximum (1RM) test. All strength training falls under the category of resistance training, or weight lifting. The results that can be obtained from resistance training are increased muscle strength, power (which refers to a muscle’s ability to generate force rapidly), size, and endurance. These four aspects of resistance training are produced by a certain number of reps at a certain percentage of a person’s 1RM or maximum effort (ME), depending on the exercise and availability of testing time. The accompanying chart explains this further.


Muscular Attribute



% 1RM/ME

Exercise Type






> 80%

Major Muscle Groups

Leg Press;

Bench Press


Slow and Controlled








Bench Press

Explosive but Controlled




> 4


Isolated Contractions

Dumbbell Presses;

Bicep Curls;

Quad Extensions

Slow and Controlled; Focus on Reps and Form Rather Than Weight


> 15

> 4


Compound Movements

Swimmer Curls;


Controlled; Focus on Reps and Form


Strength and endurance are both valuable in different activities. For more information on strength versus endurance, please contact us at



  1. Linda S. Pescatello, ed., and the American College of Sports Medicine, ACSM’s Guidelines for Exercise Testing and Prescription, 9th ed. (Philadelphia: Lippincott Williams and Wilkins Health, 2014).
  1. Thomas R. Baechle, Roger W. Earle, eds., and the National Strength and Conditioning Association, Essentials of Strength Training and Conditioning, 3rd ed. (Champaign, IL: Human Kinetics, 2008).

Use of Extracellular Matrix Grafts to Augment Rotator Cuff Repair Surgery on the Rise

By: Matthew Walsh, SPT




Current literature suggests that between 30,000 and 75,000 rotator cuff repair (RCR) surgeries are performed annually in the United States.1 Recent reports have indicated that the re-tear rate of RCR surgeries is between 20% and 40% and can be as high as 94% for chronic rotator cuff tears.1 Because of these rates, there is a growing demand for alternative strategies to augment RCR surgeries that will improve functional outcomes in patients and decrease unnecessary healthcare spending on subsequent surgeries.


One such alternative strategy is extracellular matrix (ECM) grafts, which have grown in popularity because of their inherent ability to facilitate stimulated healing environments for recovering human tissue. The dynamic nature of these 3D scaffolds, composed primarily of water, proteins, and polysaccharides, supports tissue in-growth while the mesh-like network of the graft allows for revascularization and enhanced cell population to areas of relatively low blood supply.2,3 Current studies suggest that augmenting a RCR with an ECM graft may lead to improvements in strength, range of motion, pain, and function of the affected shoulder. However, clinicians should continue to make skilled decisions based on patient response to therapy, as conflicting evidence exists regarding the use of ECM grafts for augmenting RCR surgery.3,4,5,6


To inquire more about extracellular matrix grafts for a rotator cuff tear, contact




1.) B. W. Sears, A. Choo, A. Yu, A. Greis, and M. Lazarus, “Clinical Outcomes in Patients Undergoing Revision Rotator Cuff Repair with Extracellular Matrix Augmentation,” Orthopedics 38, no. 4 (2015): 292–296, doi:10.3928/01477447-20150402-57.

2.) C. Frantz, K. Stewart, and V. Weaver, “The Extracellular Matrix at a Glance,” Journal of Cell Science 123, no. 24 (2010): 4195–4200, doi:10.1242/jcs.023820.

3.) F. A. Barber, J. P. Burns, A. Deutsch, M. R. Labbé, and R. B. Litchfield, “A Prospective, Randomized Evaluation of Acellular Human Dermal Matrix Augmentation for Arthroscopic Rotator Cuff Repair,” Arthroscopy 28, no. 1 (2012): 8–15, doi:10.1016/j.arthro.2011.06.038.

4.) F. H. Savoie, L. D. Field, R. N. Jenkins, “Costs Analysis of Successful Rotator Cuff Repair Surgery: An Outcome Study,” Arthroscopy 11, no. 6 (1995): 672–676, PMID: 8679026.

5.) G. J. Gilot, A. M. Alvarez-Pinzon, L. Barcksdale, D. Westerdahl, M. Krill, and E. Peck, “Outcome of Large to Massive Rotator Cuff Tears Repaired with and without Extracellular Matrix Augmentation: A Prospective Comparative Study,” Arthroscopy 31, no. 8 (2015): 1459–1465, doi:10.1016/j.arthro.2015.02.032.

6.)Gupta AK, Hug K, Berkoff DJ, Boggess BR, Gavigan M, Malley PC, Toth AP. Dermal tissue allograft for the repair of massive irreparable rotator cuff tears. Am J Sports Med. 2012; 40(1): 141-147. DOI:10.1177/0363546511422795.

Sports Physical Therapy of NY Expands into East Amherst, NY

Sports Physical Therapy of NY secures space at Hive Lifespan Center


Buffalo, NY (May 17, 2016) – Sports Physical Therapy of NY (Sports PT), an Upstate New York physical therapy company, recently secured space at Hive Lifespan Center in East Amherst, where Body Dynamics (BDPT) was providing physical therapy services. The owner of Body Dynamics, physical therapist Jenna Calabrese-Vaeth, decided to join Sports PT this June, while continuing to provide physical therapy in the Hive space. Sports PT President and CEO Lynn Steenberg, Body Dynamics owner Jenna Calabrese-Vaeth, and Hive Lifespan founder Chris Salisbury announced the news today.

 Hive pic


Sports PT is a growing privately owned physical therapy group with clinics spanning from Buffalo to Saratoga Springs. With the East Amherst addition and the upcoming Malta clinic opening in Saratoga County this summer, Sports PT will have a footprint of 12 clinics across Upstate NY. 


Since Sports PT was founded 11 years ago, its mission has been to provide superior, personalized clinical care to patients and to stay innovative with wellness and prevention in healthcare. This transition with Jenna Calabrese-Vaeth and the Hive space is another step toward growing the wellness model with clinicians focused on excellence.


Lynn Steenberg, president and CEO of Sports PT, said, “This addition is very exciting because we promised to devote our efforts to the growth and development of Upstate NY. We have done just that by gaining an outstanding clinician in Jenna Calabrese-Vaeth and a beautiful facility with Hive Lifespan Center. We’ve had a strong presence in Western NY for many years, and this will allow us to serve the patients in East Amherst and expand collaborative programs with the Hive community. I am absolutely thrilled to have this opportunity and to develop a relationship with both Jenna and Hive Lifespan Center.”  



Jenna Calabrese-Vaeth


When asked about the transition, Jenna Calabrese-Vaeth, owner of Body Dynamics, said, “This was a natural fit. Body Dynamics and Sports PT share similar values. I wanted to become part of a larger organization. Sports PT is a well-respected company that can provide additional professional opportunities for me and withstand some of the healthcare challenges that sole practitioners cannot face alone. I am very excited for this transition and to continue to treat patients at Hive Lifespan Center.”


Chris Salisbury, founder of Hive Lifespan Center, said, “Since its inception, the purpose of Hive Lifespan Center has been to provide the local residents with an honest fitness resource that is built around research and personalized results. Physical therapy services have been an integral part of this foundation, so joining forces with Sports PT will allow us to further strengthen a component that we are already extremely proud of. ”


With a growing focus on Upstate New York, Sports PT continues to carry out its mission as “the premier upstate provider of quality patient services in a positive, professional, and compassionate environment.” 


About Sports Physical Therapy of NY, PC


Sports Physical Therapy of NY, PC is headquartered in Syracuse, NY, and is an award-winning provider of skilled physical therapy services across New York State. Sports PT was founded in 2005 and is owned by Lynn Steenberg. Steenberg is a licensed physical therapist and athletic trainer who has more than 38 successful years of experience in the healthcare industry.


Sports PT of NY now has twelve locations in Upstate NY. There are three locations in the Buffalo area (Tonawanda, Downtown Buffalo, and East Amherst), four locations in Rochester (Webster, Greece, Brighton, and Legacy), three locations in the Syracuse area (Camillus, Liverpool, and Manlius), and two locations in Saratoga Springs (Saratoga and Malta).


Sports PT provides high-quality outpatient physical therapy services for a wide variety of injuries, such as post-operative care, sports injuries, overuse, and chronic injuries. Its physical therapists are leaders in treating vestibular challenges (dizziness), post-concussion syndrome, and pain related to pregnancy.


Sports PT is recognized as a leader in community service and has been a major supporter of the American Red Cross. To learn more about Sports Physical Therapy of NY, visit its website at

Starting an Exercise Program? Here Are Five Things to Keep in Mind.

By: Eric Sexton, BS, Exercise and Sports Studies


Exercise is an important aspect of living a healthy life and maintaining independence as we get older. That being said, it is important for anyone thinking of starting an exercise program to understand the risks that accompany all types of workouts. Before you start a new activity, be sure to follow these steps to ensure that the program is carried out in a safe and effective way.


1. Address any aches, pains, and injuries that may be ailing you prior to beginning any exercise.


This can be done by consulting your doctor of physical therapy. He or she can help you prepare your body for a regimented exercise program. Symptoms like back pain, knee pain, and shoulder pain can be accentuated both during and after exercise, so addressing problems like these before beginning a new program will ensure that the condition does not progress – and it will help you avoid any further injury. Pain and injury can both be demotivators for exercise and weight loss.


2. Set goals for yourself.


Identifying simple and specific goals can help maximize the effectiveness of the exercise program. Goals should also be progressive in nature to help keep you motivated. Unrealistic goals can cause you to give up or stop the program altogether. So while having a major goal will help steer an exercise program, having minor goals along the way to the major one will help keep you on track.


3. Identify what types of exercise you are willing and able to participate in.


Exercise is a broad category, and exercising regularly requires discipline. What makes it even harder is participating in a program that is not enjoyable for you. While your program should be relatively challenging, it should be enjoyable at the same time. Oftentimes the reasons people despise certain workouts or movements are related to pain or discomfort felt while performing them.


4. Seek help when needed.


Searching the web for answers to your exercise questions can lead to generalizations, so be sure to consult an expert in the exercise arena. If you are not sure where to start or are a novice, seeking health and exercise expertise or direction from your physical therapist is very important. Often physical therapists refer to a specific network of highly qualified personal trainers who can help you with daily workouts.


5. Finally, make your exercise uniquely your own.


What works for your friend may not be effective for you. Tailoring a program to your specific needs and goals will help increase its effectiveness for you.



American College of Sports Medicine, ACSM’s Guidelines for Exercise Testing and Prescription, 9th ed., Linda S. Pescatello, ed. (Philadelphia: Lippincott Williams and Wilkins Health, 2014).

Three Tips to Reduce Pain while Gardening.



Now that the weather is nicer and plants and trees are blooming, you might be compelled to flex that green thumb. Check out this advice on how to keep back, joint, and wrist pain to a minimum so you can enjoy spring to the fullest.


Use Plant Location to Your Advantage.

  • Ground level: Try to do ground-level work on your hands and knees to minimize the pressure placed on your spine. Periodically swapping your working hand with the one you’re using to support your weight may reduce pressure on the wrists and shoulders.


Lift Safely.

  • Closer is better: Lifting heavy objects, like bags of soil or mulch, farther away from the body prevents you from using larger, stronger muscles better equipped for heavier loads. Using a closer approach with good form allows you to use these muscles to your advantage.
  • Bend at your knees – not your back: A rounded spine when lifting causes increased pressure on the discs in your back. Instead, keep your back flat and squat down to lift the target object by bending your knees and hips.


Know the Importance of Quality Tools.

  • Keep your tools sharpened: Dull tools may cause you to use more repetitive motions, causing more stress on the joints in the hands and wrists. It’s a worthy investment to reduce effort. Local hardware stores often offer sharpening services for garden tools at a reasonable price.


These are just a few simple techniques you can impliment to help keep your back, joints, and wrists in check while you garden.


For more information on how physical therapy might benefit you this spring, contact

Happy planting!