Posts made in March, 2015


How often do you look at the ground…? A few years ago, I remember a friend calling to me from across the road as I walked to the shop , she couldn’t get my attention because I was in a world of my own, and I was looking at the ground as I walked.She told me off for looking at the ground too much..and you know, I did that a lot, she was right… Now, I see this all the time in clients with tight lower backs and painful shoulders and necks, they look down a lot, its as though their head weighs too much to lift it up and keep it there, and in a way, thats true..but it runs a little bit deeper than that.. Theres something called the green light reflex, and it looks a little bit like this, and call also be known as a classic Swayback Posture: Is that you? What does it mean though? Its my posture for sure! Hips pushed forward, extended knees, weight in the heels ( you feel as if you would lose balance if you shifted your weight forward to the front of your foot) A green light posture can show that your mind, your beliefs, is for someone whose mind is always on the go, always doing something next, rather the a focus on the here and now. Worry and anxiety can also be a part of this posture. If you look at the lower back, and the rib cage just above it, most of the pressure rests on the first couple of your lumbar vertebrae, creating a painful, tight lower back, its not weak, its being over worked. Yes, this is an extreme version of the posture, and it can vary, but this is just one way of seeing whats going on in your body and mind. There can be a restriction in the pelvis and shoulder region, pain in the lower back and hips is very common as is breathing into the upper chest. You can work your glutes all you like (these are usually “weak” in a green light posture) but if you don’t address the cause, then you are just putting a plaster on it, glutes , like abs, don’t just work because you are doing an exercise for that specific muscle. You can do loads of squats, but your brain might be using the wrong muscles to get there and back, and you can then look at your bum and wonder why it isn’t tight ! the same can b for abs, you can have a great 6 pack, but have a rubbish...

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Mel Collie | How Can Your Eyes Improve Your Press Up? The press up, you either love it or hate it. personally I love them, mainly because we rarely do many pushing moves these days, unless your chosen sport includes a lot of pouching, the average office worker will be sat at a keyboard for 8 – 10 hours a day, and usually the only thing they will be pushing day to day will be opening a door. In your body, your nervous system runs the show. That being the case, the position of your cervical spine, your neck, will change how you execute a press up. Think about a squat, for example, if you are in a gym, lifting a weight, using the squat technique, the neck usually compresses back, closing the gap between the base of the scull and the upper back. But thats only part of the story, as when we do that, the eyes follow. Why is that a big deal? Eye positioning can decrease strength. Think about it… There are small nerve endings around the eyes that give the brain & spinal cord proprioceptive feedback that go towards guiding movement, creating full body muscular responses. Why? well, mainly to aid the vestibular system, the inner ear and the eyes work together. How does that help you? Well, when you look up with the eyes, just the eyes, keep the head still, those nerve endings in the muscles around the eyes, facilitate the extensor ¬†muscles and inhibit the extensors – the muscles opposite the flexors. The same is true the other way around, so if you are flexing the elbow in a press up for example, using the eyes to look down creates more strengthen the flexors and inhibit the extensors. So next time you do a press up, don’t move the head, keep it neutral, and just move the eyes. The same is true of any movement, like a squat for example. WOW! So, make it simple next time you are training, eyes down when flexing, eyes up for extensors with a neutral neck position. Enjoy. Mel Collie is a Corrective & Performance Exercise Specialist Working in Llanberis, Snowdonia. She currently has daily postural assessments from her home posture studio, where she combines neurological science and kinetic chain assessments to keep clients out of [pain and improve their performance. www.posturegeek.co.uk www.melcollie.com...

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Mel Collie | Discover simple ankle mobility in seconds Have you seen that advert for a foot scraper? It was on a lot over Christmas, I think a company was selling them as a gift idea…for a loved one…something that looked like a cheese grater for your feet. Maybe you never have massaged your feet let alone thought about shaving off the hard skin yourself. Why do we neglect our foundations? And do you know, your feet are your most valuable asset, your foundation, and we all know how important foundations are for properties. And thats where we, as adults, fall short, so to speak, we dont play anymore. Im not going to tell you to get yourself a swing or a roundabout, though it would be fun if you did, but show you some simple ankle exercises that release jammed joints and tight fascia. Simple exercises that take seconds, can be done at home, in the office, at the gym between sets, at the climbing wall between routes or problems, before yoga, pilates, whatever you love to do. Just so you can imagine what area we are focusing on – put a finger on one ankle bone (the outside of the foot, not inside of the foot) move it about an inch down and 1/2 inch back towards the heel. . This is the area you are going to focus on as we do the first exercise. a. Standing, place one leg forwards. Toes facing forward on both feet, keep a tall posture and don’t hold your breath. Gently roll to the outside edge of the foot, so the inside edge of the foot will lift. Its ok that the toes will lift, except the little toe. The area where you placed your finger is the area you are aiming towards the floor. Return to neutral, repeat 5 times. Then change feet. b.This time we are stretching the same area but on the inside edge of the ankle. 1 inch down and 1/2 inch back. Do a sideways lunge. Your focus is on the straight leg. The area where you are focusing is the area you are wanting to stretch, so do exactly the same move as before, but its the inside edge you now want to stretch. c. Finally, this is for the front of the foot, the cuneiform bone. This video talks you through it, 3 – 5 reps on each side. You are focusing on feeling a stretch in the toes. Don’t do this on a hard surface, its painful ! If necessary place the foot on a rolled up towel. If your balance feels...

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