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Strategies to Improve Critical Thinking Skills, with Lars Avemarie

Episode 45:

Strategies to Improve Critical Thinking Skills

In this show, Raph speaks to Lars, a prolific advocate of evidence-based practice, critical thinking, and a passionate educator. They discuss several topics related to evidence-based practice and how to evaluate the research and dissect what it all means. Our fundamental mission on the Pilates Elephants podcast is to help people create strategies to improve critical thinking skills and apply those skills to their beliefs in the Pilates industry, so we’re excited to share Lars’ words of wisdom about how to reflect on your own critical thinking and health literacy.

What You Will Learn:

  • Strategies to improve critical thinking
  • The practical definition of critical thinking
  • How to prioritize critical thinking skills to help clients in the fitness realm
  • Why critical thinking takes a specific skillset
  • Why psychosocial factors often impact physical health
  • Why an evidence-based scientific education is so important in the development of the fitness industry

Critical Thinking in the Fitness Realm

The transition to prioritizing critical thinking skills in the fitness realm can sometimes be complex. Lars describes why critical thinking is based on knowledge of argument theory — which includes logical fallacies, cognitive biases, epistemology, and knowledge about the scientific method. He shares why combining all of this knowledge will give you the foundation to build better critical thinking skills to support your clients.

Logical Fallacy

Humans are pattern generators, and we try to see patterns in our interactions with the outside world. Critical thinking skills give us the space to reflect upon the idea that the patterns we have created aren’t necessarily facts. The logical fallacy of post hoc ergo propter hoc, or ‘after this, therefore because of this,’ leads us to false conclusions that don’t help us to support our clients to move confidently and fearlessly.

Science-Based Education

Conceptualizing pain as a linear biomechanical output is a commonly held misconception in the fitness industry. And this will only change when our education changes — people are still relying on outdated theories about the body, and it’s a problem on a global scale. Lars shares his thoughts on separating the truth from the myths in the movement industry and why it’s critical to adopt a science-based approach.

Strategies to Improve Critical Thinking Skills

About Lars:

Lars Avemarie is one of the most well-read, clear-thinking people I have come across in the fields of pain science and rehabilitation. Born in Denmark, he currently works in Sweden. He is a physiotherapist and personal trainer and a prolific blogger, educator, and public figure on social media.

How to Connect with Lars:

About Raphael and Cloe:

Raphael Bender, CEO, Breathe Education

Raph believes everyone deserves the opportunity to transform into a better version of themselves. His main strength as a teacher and movement professional is the ability to distill complex research findings into a simple, science-based approach to help people move fearlessly, thoughtlessly, and painlessly. He LOVES running, weights, cycling, and Contrology.

Raph holds a Master’s degree in Clinical Exercise Physiology (Rehabilitation), a Bachelor’s degree in Exercise and Sports Science, Diploma of Pilates Movement Therapy, and STOTT PILATES full certification.

Cloe Bunter, Training Manager, Breathe Education

With 8+ years in the industry, both teaching Pilates and nurturing new instructors, Cloe is passionate about empowering new and seasoned instructors to think critically and move fearlessly. Empowered instructors empower their clients, and in turn, change lives.

She finds great joy in building connections with clients, students, colleagues, and the broader movement and rehab community. Co-hosting the Pilates Elephants Podcast, with Raphael Bender, has provided an incredible platform to bust common Pilates, movement, and rehab myths whilst creating a worldwide community of critical thinkers who are elevating health literacy.

Cloe is fascinated by movement in general, and its ability to enhance our lives, at any age. Her own movement practice includes Contrology/Pilates, running, weights, and kettlebells. She has a Diploma of Clinical Pilates, Cert IV in Pilates, and Cert IV in Training and Assessing.

How to Connect with Raphael and Cloe:

Pilates Instructor Training Resources:

Lars’ recommended resources:

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