POSTURE AND BREATHING IS HOW TO START

Tue Jan 19, 2016

Wow…the month of January is just about over!  

How are the resolutions coming?  I know many of you promised yourselves this is the year…the weight is coming off, the marathon is gonna happen, I’m going to that gym 3 days a week…

I believe everyone should be working on their body, the weight issues and whatever fitness goal you choose.  I also believe there is a proper “process” you should go thru to get the most out of your program.  Trust me…if you are overweight for example, don’t jump jump into a h.i.i.t program.  If you have back problems for example, don’t jump into running.  Matter of fact, don’t jump into any workout program until you have been evaluated. 

The most important thing you can do before starting your choosen fitness routine is to get your posture (alignment) checked.  I can promise you… If the body is not in good alignment there will come injury, muscular pain and tightness and/or joint problems.  This will lead to time off or quitting due to the discomfort/pain issues.  

The 3 main principals to be addressed by EVERYONE…from beginners to seasoned exercisers are:

1.POSTURE (ALIGNMENT)

2.BREATHING

3.CONTROL

To be honest…most personal trainers do not focus on this.  I see people in the gym everyday exercising in poor posture…some in extremely poor posture!  This is not helping them.  They are putting more stress on their joints and muscles due to the poor alignment.   The brain is busy making compensation patterns in order to get thru the exercises.  Again, injury, tightness and pain will follow…

Do yourself a favor…learn about your posture and how your body is moving.  You will gain more awareness, strength and mobility just by working on your posture before you ever pick up a weight or jog that first mile.

I want everyone to exercise…whatever form you choose!  Learn to do it safely…efficiently…in as good of form as possible!

Find a posture specialist or someone who includes posture in their fitness assessments.  You will exercise better!

Of course, posture and exercise is what I do.  Contact me for your assessment today!

Getting Back To Basics

Wed. Dec 30, 2015

Well we are just about to close out 2015.  This was not a great year for me… I, for one am glad 2015 is in the books and ready to move on.  Hopefully, 2016 will bring some joy.

Let’s talk about health/fitness goals since that’s what I do.

My focus will continue to be “bodywork”.  Posture, movement mechanics, Foundation Training, corrective exercise, and floor work.  I’m really liking the floor work!  This involves crawling, rolling and animal movements.  It looks easy…but is quite challenging!  

This type of work is all about going back to basics.  Getting our posture corrected is the first step.  Our bodies are not going to function mechanically as well as they should if our posture is poor.  Poor posture is epidemic and just about the leading cause of neck, shoulder and back pain.

The New Year is here.  The best time to always start fresh…start over!  Start with learning what some of your posture issues  are and correcting them.  I can promise you there is much more to it that just standing up straight.  Some of the things I teach are quite challenging.  

For those of us in our middle age years this type of work is going to “young you up”!  I have been doing Foundation Training over 2 years now.  My posture is great and my back is so much stronger and does not lock up anymore.  My hips are much more mobile.  I know how to perform movements safely.   Something as simple as loading a dishwasher matters!  There is nothing more important…at least for me than being able to move well and have my health as I age.  I watch people all the time…the way they move, the way they stand, how their head sits on their head…a lot of these people will be much younger than me.  They probably have no idea why they are walking slumped over or with their feet pointing outward?Posture can be improved and movement patterns can be corrected… You just have to know what the faults are in order to apply the corrections.  

Start your new year by getting back to basics.  Posture work, core work, movement pattern work, Foundation Training, some floor work and more!  This is the best way to work out.  It works for me….it can work for you!

Contact me with any questions you may have.  

Have a great day!

WHY WE SHOULD “SQUAT”

Dec 26, 2015

Well now, it’s the day after Christmas…how many of you feeling tired, full and the thought of moving around today is dreadful?   Just lay there for now with that cup of coffee and read the article.

If the thought of performing a “squat” seems impossible or you’re thinking, why in the world would I need to being doing squats?  I’m talking about bodyweight squats…not weighted squats.  The reason you should be performing bodyweight squats regularly is they are about the most beneficial movement for the body.  Squats are absolutely awesome for the spine, the ankles, hips and the muscle groups that work during the squat.  

Just 3 short years ago I could not do a full squat either.  Actually, had no desire too and saw no point in it.  Plus, half way down I thought my back would pop out of place.  Then I was introduced to FOUNDATION TRAINING!  Everything changed after that.  Foundation Training addressed a lot of my hip flexor tightness, my low back & hamstring tightness, and some weakness in my low back and glutei.  Even though, I have been stretching for years…FT was different!  FT gets the whole chain of muscles to work together…you become stronger and more mobile that ever.  

BENEFITS OF DEEP SQUATTING

ANKLE MOBILITY

Limited ankle dorsiflexion range of motion is a common problem linked to a number of other issues in the body, including overpronation, bad posture, and runner’s knee. A loss of ankle mobility is caused by both inflexibility in the calf muscles and Achilles tendon, and stiffness in the joint. A proper squat, with the heels flat on the floor, requires good flexibility at the ankle.  Exercise for the feet and ankles is one of the most important things you can do to improve your body.  No one thinks about the feet…if the feet don’t work well…other parts of the body will suffer.

HIP STRENGTHENING

If you notice when you sit down that your knees move inward…you have weakness in you hips.  Learning to squat properly will make the hip move outward and strengthen the muscles of the hip and leg.  I see a lot of women with this pattern.

REDUCE BACK PAIN

Yes, even I thought at one time I would make my back worse by squatting…I was wrong!  Once I loosened up the hip flexors (thru FT) I could squat like I was a kid.  Freeing up the hip flexors allowing my pelvis some room to move into a squat.  So many muscles of the leg (front and back) are attached to and around the pelvis.  

GLUTE STRENGTH

If you sit on your butt all day at your job…then you most likely have weak glutei.  They can not be working if you are sitting. Squatting is excellent for the glute muscles.  Actually, you will have to pretty much go down more than hip level to really get into the glute.  The glute muscles are large muscles and help us perform many movements of the hip and legs.  We need strong glutei!

POSTURE

My favorite reason of all…make squatting a habit.  Squats help so many joints and muscles get stronger and more mobile that your posture will improve.  Good posture is everything!  Good posture is better balance, better movement, better health, strength and confidence.  Challenge yourself.

I hope someone became inspired or challenged today.  

I can help you move better and feel better.  Contact me for an assessment or to talk about what you may need.  Start the New Year off by getting to know your body and learning what it is capable of doing.

Have a great day!

FOUNDATION TRAINING

11/04/15

There are several elements to Foundation Training.  Decompression Breathing, Hinging and Anchoring.  These 3 elements when applied during the FT exercise, or to any type of workout will greatly improve posture, strength, flexibility, endurance and mobility.  When applying these elements to everyday life all movement patterns will greatly improve.  

I have been speaking about FT and trying to expose FT to the public for over two years now.  Foundation Training is still amazing at help people become aware of their bodies, aware of their movements, aware of their posture.  People who learn Foundation Training can and do make changes in their posture and their movement patterns.  Pain can be managed and in some cases go completely away.  My back pain issues, degeneration and muscle tightness is so much better because I practice a little FT everyday.  It’s all about managing…knowing your movement patterns, your muscular strengths and weakness.  People do not have to suffer with back pain…I now know that!

Foundation Training is still evolving.  A new book will be out in 2016 and the team is always tweaking the exercises and/or adding a new element.  I actually need another workshop to get caught up on all that is new and improved.  That will be in my future plans.

  

FLEXIBILITY AND FOUNDATION TRAINING

Mon 9/28/15

Whether you attend the gym or sit in the office daily; you probably have tight muscles and may know little about flexibility. Do you experience neck or back pain? Do you feel aches and tightness when moving your arms and legs? Many people are unable to perform simple movements properly and thousands are suffering from back and neck pain. Please keep reading; your flexibility is more important than you realize.

Flexibility- the ability of a joint to move through its full range of motion.

Remember, our muscles are attached to the bones.  When the muscles become short and tight they pull on the bones.  They can literally pull the bones out of position.  When muscles become short and tight they will prevent us from moving as freely as we need to.  How many times have you stood up after sitting for a long period and you find it difficult to straighten up?  Our muscles become short and tight for a lot of reasons…mainly sitting to much and lack of use.

Poor flexibility means more difficulty when performing your daily activities and can cause joint stiffness, muscle tightness, lower back pain and other postural, and health related problems. A study posted in the American Journal of Physiology has associated poor flexibility with arterial stiffening. Arterial stiffening is called arteriosclerosis and it influences how hard your heart has to work to pump blood through your body. Myocardial infarction (heart attack) and stroke are both a direct consequence of atherosclerosis.

FOUNDATION TRAINING is a great remedy for improving flexibility.

Flexibility is essential for keeping our bodies and our health.  Every move we make requires requires neuro, muscular and joint activation.  As an aging active adult myself I spend time everyday doing a little Foundation Training as well as teaching clients the FT way.  

FOUNDATION TRAINING improves the human body in so many areas.  

FOUNDATION TRAINING improves the way you breathe, improves lung and diaphragmatic capacity, posture, balance, flexibility and strength…which leads to much better mobility.  

Learn FT!  It’s on of those things you just need to do to really “get” what I am talking about!  

Move better…feel better with Foundation Training!

INGREDIENTS FOR A HEALTHY LIFE

Tue 8/18/15

There are three things we have to have in order to be healthy: Air, food, and water. Together, air, food and water give us life. It is air that feeds us oxygen which keeps all our cells alive. It is food that feeds us nutrients which keeps all our cells alive. It is water that keeps us hydrated, which keeps all our cells alive. Without these three things, we are toast, dried up on a path of destruction.

As essential as air, water and food are, our bodies still need one thing that may be just as essential: Movement!  Our movement and the movement of others around us also brings nourishment to our bodies. In fact, the movements we make and the movements we receive can nourish our brains just like the nutrients from food does. Without movement, without information generated from movement that feeds the brain, the brain will become malnourished and starve. If the brain begins to starve and deteriorate, the body will also lose its resiliency and it, too, will break down.

In order to move their must be communication between our brain and our muscles.  Feed the brain well…feed the body well.  Breathe deeply and often…oxygen feeds cells!  Move deeply and often…movement feeds our soul!  

The world we live in today can be harsh.  Hard work, long days, stress…

Life is life…

It is our responsibility to make the most of our lives.  Make a healthy life a priority.  Eat well…plants, veggies, fresh fruit….daily.  Move often!  Humans are made to move…get up and and do it!  Stand up at your desk, walk down the hall, walk around the building after lunch.  Make yourself do this.  

I am signing off now…time for my walk before I head to the gym and the office.  Let’s have a good day!

BALANCE

Sunday 7/12/15
How’s your balance? Most of the time, you may not even notice how it plays into your day. It’s a steady presence that keeps you on your feet.

But here’s something you may not know: Balance training — exercises designed to improve balance — can give you a stronger core. Your core includes the abdominal, chest, back, and hip muscles.

When you practice staying balanced, you give these muscles a real workout too. This makes your midsection stronger and more stable. That’s one of the ways working on your balance helps reduce your risk of falls, back pain, and injuries.
Balance training is often recommended for older adults. But a strong core and good balance can help people of all ages in their everyday tasks and fitness pursuits. For example, you can put them to use when you’re climbing a ladder, carrying a toddler, skiing, golfing — and more.

It’s actually pretty easy to add simple balance exercises into your day — no special equipment required. These five basic moves are a good start:

Walk backward or sideways.

Walk on your heels.

Walk on your toes or heel–to–toe.

Stand up from a sitting position without using your hands.

Stand on one foot.

You can do these exercises as the space and situation allow. For example, you might stand on one foot while waiting for the microwave or talking on the phone. When you do any of these moves, make sure the surface you’re on is smooth and free of any potential hazards. If you’re unsure how steady you’ll be, have something sturdy to hold on to.

FOUNDATION TRAINING: My absolute favorite training technique for everything.  Since we are talking about balance…FT is great for training the core.  Movement starts in the core…the legs and arms move all around the core.  The stronger the core…the more control you have in balancing and moving.