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Posted by on Oct 19, 2020 | 0 comments

What Is Stability?

I want to talk to you about is stability. Your body, to protect yourself, always seeks stability, meaning you have to be stable when you do things. You can’t let the joints move in ways that aren’t going to be safe for them. So putting it simply, the muscles are going to control the joints, which is going to help them stay stable, but you have to have good mechanics to do that also. The type of exercise or the type of muscle work that you’re going to use for that primarily is isometric contractions. What is an isometric contraction?  If you’re old enough like I am to remember the old comic books where they sold these exercise courses in the back pages, they were isometrics.

Charles Atlas had a program and it consisted if you creating a force without muscle movement. So one of the most popular ones is just putting your hand together, pushing in towards each other for as hard as you could for six to 10 seconds then relaxing, and doing several sets of those. You can do that with all the joints, but it’s a very safe way to build muscle. It builds strength and stability around the joints. It’s called an isometric.

What I’d like to go over are some easy to do, at home isometrics for the lower half that you could do and incorporate into any other exercises you are doing, which can help you with functional activities like walking, running or stair climbing. Anything you’re going to be out doing, then this can help you for that and help give you a better chance of preventing injuries.

Check out our YouTube page where I will demonstrate three different exercises you can do at home to help improve your stability using isometric exercises.  If you have further questions, contact us at Fitness4LifePT.com.

 

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Posted by on Sep 20, 2020 | 0 comments

Neck And Shoulder Health

Today, I’d like to talk to you  about neck and shoulder health. One reason for this is because a lot of people are working from home. The kids are on their computers a lot more because they’re not in classrooms, so we spend so much time, unfortunately in forward positions. Our neck is in a forward position, shoulders in a forward position, and more and more of our lives are being spent rounded forward. It’s not good for the neck, it’s not good for the back, it’s not good for the shoulders. Because of this, if you want to give yourself the best chance of working for longer into your life and not having the kind of issues that a lot of people are dealing with, then you need to start focusing on working on your posture’s a little bit better. There are a few easy exercises you can also do to help back that up.

However, the first thing I want to tell you on this is that you have to get rid of this posture: the cell phone posture where everything is going forward. You’re putting anywhere from 20 to 40 pounds more stress against your head when you are in this position.  So putting that much more stress to your neck muscles will result in everything back there getting to tight. Your shoulders are forward. To sum it up, nothing good is happening from that. What I’m telling people is, you need to start to elongate yourself. Act and walk like you own the place, stand like you own the place. Make yourself tall and pull your spine long. Let your shoulders just settle from there and tuck your chin back a little bit.

Then when you’re looking at computers or phones, just do a little head nod, and bring it up closer to you. This position is more where you need to be using your head from, not this. So working here, sitting at a desk, getting your back more upright. Using more of a nod, not reaching out for your computers. So keeping everything in tighter. Everything in a line, okay? No matter how much exercise you do or anything else, gravity will always beat you. You can exercise your rear off, then you can go and sit for two hours in a bad position, you’ve undone everything. So what I’d like to caution you to do is to start paying a little bit more attention to your postures. You could go a long way towards avoiding aches and pains so that you can work as long as you want or be able to do the things you wanted to do. Keep watching –  we’re going to go over a few shoulder exercises that are very good for posture. If you have further questions, contact us at fitness4lifept.com.

Check out our YouTube page where I will demonstrate three different exercises you can do at home to help with neck and shoulder pain.  If you have further questions, contact us at Fitness4LifePT.com.

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Posted by on Aug 17, 2020 | 0 comments

Why Walking Correctly Is So Important

George Harrison had to say: “If you don’t know where you’re going, any road will get you there.” So along that line, the last time we were I did videos, we were talking about walking and dealing with various foot issues. We’re going to continue that theme, because if you lose your ability to walk, you aren’t going to get anywhere.

If you’re not walking correctly, chances are you going to break something down somewhere. So proper walking, proper gait patterns, are very important. You’ve got to keep moving and if too much time is spent sitting, it will affect the way you move.

I’d like to go over a few more exercises that will help you with your walking. When you are walking, you’re essentially on a single leg for part of that time. You have to be able to control that single leg. A lot of people I see in the clinic can’t, and so because of that, they need to train that and get their stability and strength back.

So what I want to do in the next three exercise videos that we’re going to go over exercises that you can do to help with your gait pattern.

Check out our YouTube page where I will demonstrate three different exercises you can do at home to help with walking and your gait pattern.  If you have further questions, contact us at Fitness4LifePT.com.

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Posted by on Jul 15, 2020 | 0 comments

The Importance Of Feet Stability

Hi, Mark and Ringo coming to you from Fitness4Life. What we’re going to talk about today is what I’ve been spending a lot of time focusing on lately – and that is feet. The reason being is because that’s the only contact a person has with the ground. So if your feet aren’t in a good position, if your feet aren’t stable, it can cause a lot of problems. So you’ve got to have a good foot-to-ground contact with any activity. Otherwise, any other area in your body can be prone to break down, because your body’s always trying to be stable.

Your body is going to try to find a way to keep you protected by trying to stabilize things. If you don’t have a good foot-to-ground contact, and your feet aren’t providing a good stable base to start from, nothing above your body is going to be able to find a very good stability point either. So we see a lot of people breaking down simply because of what their feet are doing.

Sometimes, unfortunately, this can mean they have pain or problems elsewhere. You cannot only look at where they’re having pain.  Knee pain, for instance, is not necessarily a knee issue.  A lot of times you have to look at the foot and/or the hip because the knee is just taking the brunt of it. It’s not because of the knee having the problem itself. It’s just where the symptoms are. So with that being said, when I’m looking at it with any patient for almost everything that they come in with is looking at their feet first; seeing how they’re walking, seeing how they’re standing, see if they’ve got mobility, see if they’ve got stability.

Check out our YouTube page where I will demonstrate three different exercises/stretches you can do at home to help stabilize your feet.  If you have further questions, contact us at Fitness4LifePT.com.

 

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Posted by on Jun 22, 2020 | 0 comments

Trigger Points In Lower Muscle Groups

Hi, Mark at Fitness4Life PT. We have been talking about trigger points. Previously, we did upper body. I’d like to continue that discussion because now that people are starting to get out more and starting to do more, such as running and biking, we are seeing the common issues that coincide with this. People are getting calf pain and/or tightness, cramping in the middle of the night in their calves and so on. A lot of people deal with plantar fasciitis or pain on the bottom of their feet. Very common issues, especially when somebody goes back and start running again, and they haven’t been used to doing it.

We’ve all been locked up for awhile and then when you get back out doing what you did before, your body starts reacting to that, not always in the best way. You get pain. You get tightness. You have issues. If you try to just keep running through that, or working through that, chances are you will make yourself worse and then will get shut down simply because of the pain in your body.

So what I would like to remind you of what a trigger point is. It’s a tight muscle band in a group of muscles. It is typically around the size of a pea. You can’t always see it, but you’d notice it there because of the tenderness. What defines it as a true trigger point is when you press on it, it can send pain to another area. So treating the area where you felt the pain at doesn’t get you better. You have to treat where it came from. So what we’re going to do is we’re going to go over three different muscles that work the back of the leg, and can also cause pain on the bottom of the foot.

Check out our YouTube page where I will demonstrate three different trigger points that are typically active when you have pain in the lower half of your body or feet,  and I will show you how to treat these yourselves. If you have further questions, contact us at Fitness4LifePT.com.

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Posted by on May 18, 2020 | 0 comments

How To Deal With Trigger Point Pain

Trigger points are painful nodules in the muscle. The thing that makes them special is that they can cause pain elsewhere from where the tender spot is. So today, what I’d like to go over is an area of pain that a lot of people suffer from because they sit too long, or just doing daily activities. A lot of people complain of having pain all along the top of their shoulder, even up the back of their neck, and down around the top of their shoulder blade. This whole area is a common area that people are sore and painful. Headaches coming around the side of your head, up over the top of your head, and even behind your eye are also common. These can all be caused from a trigger point.

Let’s talk about trigger points. You’ve got muscles that are basically like these rubber bands. You’ve got hundreds of thousands of fibers that stretch and come back together when a muscle shortens and stretches. A trigger point is a small nodule like a knot in a rubber band. Everything around it can move but the area where the knot is.

Trigger points are typically about the size of the pea, so they’re a small area. Sometimes, because of that knot, you can have a little tight band that runs either way from it. This is when you feel like a little rope underneath the muscle. This is not be confused with a cramp. A cramp is when the whole muscle tightens and spasms up. A trigger point is just a very small nodule, and it’s always going to be painful when pressed upon.

The other thing that distinguishes it is that if you press on that knot, it can send pain somewhere else. And this is where people get confused because they try to treat where the pain is going when this actual pain is coming from a different location.

Check out our YouTube page where I will demonstrate four different trigger points that are typically active when you have pain over the top of your shoulder, or are dealing with headaches, and I will show you how to treat these yourselves. If you have further questions, contact us at Fitness4LifePT.com.

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