Fitness is a Science not Magic! Rule 1 (part 3)

Posted on August 30, 2012. Filed under: Exercise | Tags: , , , , |


The non-falsifiable statements, which is very popular among internet gurus, involves the use of the multiple ways out of their rule being proved false.

 

Basically it’s a series of excuses intended to explain away the evidence that would prove their claim is a lie. Paid celeb endorsements, before and after photos of people you will never meet, or even the infamous “because I said so” approach.

 

Additional examples of multiple outs are the conspiracy theories. Point out the lacking of any real evidence and it’s because the evil million/billion dollar supplement industry doesn’t want you to know. It’s Big Pharma, Big Agra, Vegans, celeb trainers, Meat Industry, etc.

 

Granted, big business will look after their own interests but they do that through lobbyists, not hunting down ‘rebel’ retail sites. (1)

 

Diet gurus can’t help if you have the wrong mindset. This miracle workout will work for you if you’re not wimp.

 

Listen to what the advertiser is saying and if it sounds like “heads they win, tails you lose,” you are hearing a non-falsifiable statement.

 

Another method is to bury you with lab study references.

 

I’ve seen a few articles, sites where people will use PubMed like its weapon. The idea is that by listing dozens of scientific references you will assume what they say is true and valid.

 

This only works however if one is not patient (or in my case nerdy) enough to look up those studies. In the end you find that the studies referenced are very broad based so they ‘could’ validate the general idea of what the guru is saying. But there is nothing specific that can determine it one way or the other.

 

So how do you know when someone is speaking truth? If they can tell you in clear terms that you can understand why this will work and why it won’t, chances are you are off to a good start. If they can’t then either they are not dealing in truth, or they are not educated enough on the subject themselves.

*whew* One down, stay tuned for more.

 

 

Keep Fitness Groovy

Coach W

1)   Best Government Money Can Buy (2010) Francis Megahy

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Fitness is a science not magic. Rule 1

Posted on August 30, 2012. Filed under: Exercise | Tags: , , , , , |


Can it be disproven?

 

It may sound odd but one of the principles behind scientific theory is falsifiability or refutability.

 

Falsifiability is considered a positive and essential quality of science because it means that an idea or hypothesis is testable and thus conforms to the scientific standards .

 

That something is “falsifiable” does not mean it is false, rather it means that if it is false, then observation or experiment will at some point demonstrate its falsehood.

 

Any claim someone makes about fitness, nutrition, should be clearly and easily falsifiable.

 

I’m adding on ‘easily’ since most fitness marketed out there is for the general public, not elite level athletes. And since that is the case the results should be both falsifiable and easy to explain to general public.

 

For example if I were to tell you water always boils at 100 degrees Celsius, it is very easy to see if that’s true or false, and fairly simple for you to understand. You don’t need me to explain the laws of thermodynamics to you, for you to check this for yourself.

 

Refutability is important for a simple reason: If nothing could ever disprove the claim, then the evidence that does exist would not matter. It would become useless to even have proof, because the conclusion is already known.

 

Which means anything claimed to be true, is meaningless.

 

It is impossible for any claim to be true no matter what. For every true claim, you can always conceive of evidence that would make the claim false. Even creatine, a supplement with 1000’s of research papers supporting its effects has non-responders.

 

The two main ways this rule is violated is the undeclared claim and the non-falsifiable statement.

Stay tuned

 

Keep Fitness Groovy

Coach W

 

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