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MineFit Strength Series Week Four: The Squat

Posted By Darrell Smith, Monday, August 15, 2016

The Q3 MineFit Strength Series Continues With Week Four:The Squat! This week we go to the lower body to explore the What, How and Why of the Squat. Three interesting facts about the versatility of the squat:

(1) It can be performed with your legs in wide stance or in a neutral position.
(2) You can use a bench or seat behind you to give you a designated end-point.
(3) You can use it with weights or just as an active stretch for your hips.

Strength Move: The Squat

NOTE: The versatility of this exercise makes it the best one in the books…but also the one with the most opportunity to do incorrectly. It is important to make sure your heels are completely planted as you do your squat and that your knees do not come in front of your toes when you bend them.

Doing a Squat should follow these instructions:

Keep your head and chin up, your shoulders broad and chest open. Stick your butt out behind you and start to bend from the knees, hinging at the waist, checking your feet to make sure they are grounded and beyond hip width apart. Make sure your toes are visible in front of your knees. Squat no deeper than 90 degrees. At the bottom of your squat, check your belly button and make sure it is tucked in, keeping the abdominals firm and not “Folded." At the bottom of your squat, it should almost feel like you are bracing for a cough, to firm up the stomach. At the top of your squat, squeeze your kneecap muscles to lock, and lengthen the spine to flat. 

Perform two sets of 20 squats, with your feet a little wider on set one and a little narrower on set two.

*Please listen to the audio version of these instructions by clicking here, and enjoy strong hips and legs, and NO lower back and knee pain!  

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MSHA: Drill Entanglement Safety Alert

Posted By Darrell Smith, Monday, August 15, 2016
MSHA has issued a Safety Alert to stakeholders concerning drill entanglement…

“Drillers are regularly exposed to rotating machinery that is difficult to guard and can entangle clothing and body parts, resulting in potentially fatal or seriously disabling injuries. Focusing on safe job procedures, staying clear of rotating drill and augers, complying with drilling safety standards and following best practices will reduce the risk of death or injury. Drillers often work alone or in out-of-the-way locations where other miners do not regularly work or travel. Even though drillers observe precautions, drillers may not be assigned to work alone unless they can communicate with others, or be seen or heard. Best practice is for mine operators, contractors and miners to develop the means for, and practice, regular and frequent communications.”

See the attached to read the full alert.

Download File (DOCX)

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Evolution of the Meaning of “Waters of the United States” in the Clean Water Act

Posted By Darrell Smith, Monday, August 15, 2016
The Congressional Research Service has issued a report that details the history of the term “Waters of the US” that may be of interest to some of our members...

“The scope of waters that are properly the subject of federal water pollution legislation has been the subject of long-standing consideration by all three branches of the federal government, particularly in the aftermath of the 1972 amendments to the Federal Water Pollution Control Act, commonly referred to as the Clean Water Act. In a shift from early water pollution legislation, those amendments eliminated the requirement that the federally regulated waters—known as jurisdictional waters—must be navigable in the traditional sense, meaning that they are capable of being used by vessels in interstate commerce. Rather than use classical tests of navigability, the amendments redefined “navigable waters” for purposes of the Clean Water Act’s jurisdiction to include “the waters of the United States, including the territorial seas.” Disputes over the proper meaning of that phrase have been ongoing.”

To read the report, click here.

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MineFit TidBit: High Fives for Brain-Hand Coordination to Reduce Injury and Improve Dexterity

Posted By Darrell Smith, Friday, August 12, 2016
Recent research has worked to examine the visual cues people use to assess object properties before they grasp or otherwise manipulate objects. This body of work has vast implications in the realm of Brain-Hand Coordination, avoiding hand injuries, and therapy techniques for people with chronic or acute hand problems.  

Test your “Handiness” by performing the following drill:

(1) Place your hands on your desk like you were going to play the piano, as if there was a tennis ball under your hand.  
-Move all fingers one by one 
-Then move only the pinkies of the R and L hands.  
-Finally, move only the Left Thumb and the Right Pinky simultaneously...Try it with your eyes closed.  
-Then, try your Left Index Finger and your Right Ring finger. Close your Eyes.

Want another couple of  challenges?  

(2) Tie your shoes with your eyes closed.
(3) Draw a picture of a flower with your non-dominant hand, then try it with each hand, with your eyes closed.   


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NIOSH’s ErgoMine Update

Posted By Chris Greissing, Thursday, August 11, 2016

The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) has developed a new mobile application that runs on Android-powered smart phones and tablets.  ErgoMine is an ergonomics auditing tool that helps its users identify ergonomics and safety deficiencies for three types of mining operations: 1) haul truck; 2) bagging; and 3) maintenance and repair.  These were the areas highlighted by IMA members and others in working in coordination with NIOSH over the past several years as key areas of concern.  By using the ErgoMine app, companies can can address and implement changes to help improve mineworker safety at their facilities. 


Please view the attachment for more information. 

You can also view more information on NIOSH’s website, here


We will be talking about safety issues like this and more at the IMA-NA Annual Meeting, September 12 - 15, 2016 in New Orleans, LA.  More information on that meeting is available, here.


Download File (PDF)

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Annual Meeting Speaker Spotlight - KaMin CEO Rankin Hobbs

Posted By Ariel Hill-Davis, Thursday, August 11, 2016

As we rapidly approach our Annual Meeting, which is being held from September 12-15 in New Orleans, IMA-NA staff is excited to highlight our speakers.  During our luncheon on September 14th, we will have the pleasure of hearing from IMA-NA member, current Chairman for the Kaolin section, and CEO of KaMin LLC, Rankin Hobbs. Rankin's address, Managing an Industrial Minerals Business in a Downturn – KaMin as a Case Study, will pull from his years of experience in the industry and how KaMin continues to adapt and meet the challenges of the changing marketplace. Rankin will provide attendees with insight into how KaMin approaches and navigates the recent fluctuations and downturns in the industrial minerals markets.



Prior to partnering with Tom Chambers to create IMin Partners, a business focused on investing in industrial mineral and specialty chemical businesses, Rankin worked in the financial services industry. Since its founding, IMin Partners has participated in numerous industrial mineral and specialty chemical businesses including pumice, diatomite, chemical additives, magnesium oxide and kaolin clay. Additionally, Rankin serves on the Board of CR Minerals and MidContinental Chemical. 

During his career, he has also served on a number of private company and non-profit Boards. He is the Past Chairman of the Agape Clinic, a health care clinic serving the underprivileged of Dallas, and is on the Board of the Hicks Muse Furst Tate Center for Private Equity at the University of Texas. Mr. Hobbs received a BA in Economics from Vanderbilt University and a Masters in Business Administration from the University of Texas at Austin. 

Across the board, Rankin's experiences allow for unique insights into the interplay between various sectors of our economy. IMA-NA is excited to hear from a leader within our membership and our industry at our Annual Meeting.

To Register for the Annual Meeting Click Here


Tags:  2016 annual meeting  annual meeting  Rankin Hobbs  speaker 

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MineFit Strength Series Week Three: The Press-up

Posted By Darrell Smith, Monday, August 8, 2016

The Q3 MineFit Strength Series Continues With Week Three: The Press-up! This week our move achieves three goals and helps enable the perfect pushup:
(1) Stretches the upper and middle back;
(2) Strengthens the arms, shoulders and triceps;
(3) Engages the core and lower back muscles.

Strength Move: The Press-up 

Technically, this “yoga” exercise should be performed laying on your stomach. BUT, you can also do a press-up using a countertop, a bench, or a wall. The main focus of this activity is to use your arms to push you into a position to release the shoulders and upper back, arching the spine up and pressing the pelvis down, using your arms as your leverage. Squeeze your butt as you press your spine away from the floor, and tuck your belly button to engage your abdominals.  

Perform 10 press-ups once a day, focus on breathing into your ribcage and lengthening your neck.

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MineFit TidBit: Selling a Vegetable?

Posted By Darrell Smith, Friday, August 5, 2016

Veggies might not be the most “sexy” food. But if you are selling fresh fruits and veggies, It's best to make them "Super!"

The same marketing  principles that make candies, sugary cereal, and other processed food appealing apply successfully to healthy foods, and food that is nourishing to the body. And, adults react the same way kids to do to marketing strategy.

So...Put a Cape on a Carrot...Give a Brussel Sprout a Moment on TV...

...and make your favorite fruits and veggies heroic. The study link here explains why it works.  Have a good Friday and please remember to post materials at your worksite to spread the knowledge. 

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Monday Moves: Strength Series Week Two: The Bicep

Posted By Darrell Smith, Monday, August 1, 2016

This week’s move marks the second week of a strength series culminating in a list of the best strength exercises you can do in the shortest amount of time.

The Series Goal:
(1) Improve overall body strength.
(2) Increase joint integrity and reduce osteoarthritis.
(3) Reduce chronic injury and strain to shoulders and lower back.

Strength Move: Bicep 

A bicep curl isn’t just about sculpting your guns.  

This key exercise helps in lifting activities and engages the back of the shoulder for better posture when done properly. Most biceps are actually under-developed because the upper-trapezius and neck are doing too much of the work. Learning a proper bicep curl reduces the risk of neck and upper-back strain (don’t know what an “upper-trapezius” is? Use your Google Machine and find out! Empower yourself with new knowledge).

Stand tall with a long flat spine, and stay firm through the stomach. Engage in two sets of 15 to 20 repetitions, focusing on not arching your lower back or pushing the hips forward. Also, keep your elbows firmly attached to your ribcage. Focus on the "Ball of Your Bicep" as you perform your curls, and decelerate at the same speed at which you curled the weight up. Use 8-20lbs -- no more than that, in order to properly isolate the muscle.

Please note: this exercise can be performed in a seated or standing position using a cord (with feet leveraging your cord), or with a cable cross machine or dumbbell.  

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Member Spotlight: Vortex Valves Receives Recycling Award

Posted By Ariel Hill-Davis, Friday, July 29, 2016

IMA-NA Associate Member, Vortex Valves, recently received an award related to their industrial plastics recycling program. Through their work with the Solutions-Based Customer Recycling Award Program (S.C.R.A.P) Vortex achieved Cope Plastics’ Green Level Milestone Award in March 2016 by diverting 50,000 pounds of industrial plastic from landfills. This award is an excellent example of the various sustainability programs IMA-NA members participate in. Sustainability programs are an important aspect of corporate responsibility across four main areas: environment, economics, politics, and culture. Vortex's plastic recycling program is just one aspect to their sustainable development efforts, which also include a recycling of many other materials, investing in their communities, and conservation programs. IMA-NA's Sustainability Task Force is always looking for new ways to engage with and encourage sustainability across the industry. If you are interested in getting involved or highlighting the efforts of your company please contact Darrell Smith or Ariel Hill-Davis.

To read more about Vortex's award click here. 

Tags:  Associate Member  award  recycling  sustainability  sustainability task force  Vortex Valves 

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