Precision Movement's KT gives her recommendations for reducing the risk of a flare up from pain and autoimmune conditions as well as re-injury during the Christmas party season.
I am always looking for ways to make your rehabilitation journey more beneficial so you can get back to a life of freedom and adventure - the life that you truly want to build, share, cherish and remember. As a movement specialist I am focussed primarily on the biomechanics of alignment and your movement patterning. However, I fully appreciate a comprehensive approach to healing and recovery, so I have created a 12 week mailout that helps you address all aspects of your lifestyle during your rehabilitation with Precision Movement.
Star qualities of the 12 week mail out:
* It will keep your mind focussed on your rehabilitation during your 12 week journey
* You'll get bite sized reading recommendations for your How To Eat Move and Be Healthy book on other areas that contribute to your healing and recovery
* Helpful reminders that you can refer back to on the things I teach you in the studio
* Tonnes more free information in links, books, articles, videos, audio guides and other sources
* Inspiration and motivation for the tough moments!
This will be available to new clients from September onwards. However, if you would like to receive the bailout for an added boost to your training and rehabilitation then please sign up HERE. It will only be available to "oldies" (!) until the end of September 2016 - so sign up to avoid disappointment!
Can you believe it? Technology has now reached posture! Technology now called "wearables" have become accessible to the public. Consisting of a wearable piece that is linked to an app on your phone it tracks how you sit and stand and transmits a gentle vibration to remind you to sit up straight when you start slouching. In this article I reveal the most popular wearables for 2016, the upside and the downside of using them and I explain why adopting one position for long periods of time is detrimental to the health and wellness of your body. Read on to find out more...
The wearables of 2016
Lumolift is a small sensor that you place on your t-shirt at chest level. It measures the angle of your torso and gently vibrates to remind you to sit up straight if you start slouching.
ALEX is a wearable neck device that sits around the back of the neck monitoring alignment and sending out a vibration reminder when the wearer begins to slouch. It is currently crowdfunding through Kickstarter so not available to the public right now.
I am all for new technology. Technology is woven into every part of our life now so it is natural that designers and product developers are thinking up ways to influence health, wellness and now posture.
I think a positive about wearables is that they provide some sort of consistent reminder of what an individual is trying to achieve - in this case better posture. When trying to improve posture in sitting, standing and corresponding movement, consistency is absolutely imperative to create change. We build programmes for movement and posture that are stored in our brain. The more we use these patterns the stronger they become. I liken it to drawing a line in the mud with a stick - the more times you do this the deeper the groove in the mud becomes. When we work on posture or a new movement pattern we cannot overwrite an old programme in the brain we can only build a new one and try to make it the preferred one. The key to making a movement or posture pattern dominant is to repeatedly use it so it becomes stronger. In essence a wearable can act as a consistent reminder to make a preferred posture pattern stronger.
As a posture and movement specialist sitting and standing better is not just a matter of sitting/standing "up". The changes in posture that an individual needs to make are as individual as their injuries and or discomfort.
Everyone I work with here at Precision Movement receives bespoke programmes and bespoke cues for improving and changing posture. What is really key in sitting and standing posture is the information you give an individual to elicit change.
Often if you tell someone to sit up straight or stand better they get taller but often lean back. They hinge from the mid-back and the position of the shoulders and head stay the same in relation to the chest and back. This is no more correct than slouching forwards and can lead to as many if not more problems in time. It is also common for an individual to "hold" themselves in a better posture creating a higher resting tension in muscles which is both metabolically inefficient and will lead to muscles becoming overworked, tired and sore.
Posture and movement are intricate, delicate, and sensitive systems that require subtle, measured changes to achieve optimal joint centration and muscle balance.
I give my clients a 10 minute audio posture meditation to listen to on their commute to work, during their lunch break or on their commute home to remind them of the cues for better posture. You can listen to it below or click here to the article I wrote about it.
Posture isn't static
The body is built for movement. It is well known and certainly well written about that sitting at a desk is not good for posture. It is true that sitting creates undesirable postures but stagnancy is equally to blame for poor posture, discomfort and injury.
Movement helps prevent muscles, joints and connective tissue from stiffening up. Movement helps pump blood into muscles, it pushes lymphatic fluid out and both provide cells with nutrients and remove toxins. This also helps reduce discomfort.
Rather than trying to sustain one good posture all day it is also beneficial to stand up and walk around the office or go out for lunch. At Precision Movement we often give individuals stretches and mobilisations to do in their chair just to create a bit of movement away from sitting still for long periods.
I think wearables could have a place in reminding an individual on a consistent basis to think about a better way to carry themselves. But (and I rarely ever use the word but), the information given to an individual about how to improve alignment is absolutely crucial to the success of improved posture.
So in conclusion, the cues that an individual is given to improve posture are the real gold here, the wearable can act as a positive reminder in the early stages of change. I would recommend anyone wanting to use one to work with a posture specialist and incorporate the wearable in sessions. I would also recommend a programme of stretches and mobilisations that can be done in an office setting also to encourage movement. The ultimate goal is to find good posture and movement without the use of external stimulus so an appropriate phase out of the wearable should be considered also.
Hello! I'm back. After a long sabbatical of blogging I've returned to share my insights, new finds and help information to help you all recover from injury effectively and maintain a healthy and enjoyable life through movement and fitness.
As many of your already know I am training to be a soft tissue therapist. In it's simplest form I can be referred to as a massage therapist but the techniques I am learning also help with soft tissue injury recovery. Massage is mostly regarded an enjoyable experience that helps you feel more relaxed. But it has many other important benefits for health, injury recovery and training. Read onto find out the top 5 benefits of regular massage treatment.
The flow of fluids
Massage has a pumping effect on blood circulation which helps transport nutrients for growth, repair and nutrition as well as removing waste products at a cellular level. Lymph is fluid found in tissues that is not part of blood that holds certain nutrients and also collects waste products from cells. Unlike the blood, the lymphatic system does not have a pump system. Lymph is moved through muscle contraction. However, if you are recovering from injury and unable to contract certain muscles then massage can help push lymph through the body more effectively.
Body maintenance for regular training
For those of you who train regularly massage is an important maintenance tool for recovery and increased training gains. When you exercise you create micro-trauma (tears) in muscle fibres. The body responds by laying down repair tissues (scar tissue) for healing. This is all perfectly normal. However, with repeated training sometimes the tissues doesn't get enough time to heal so scar tissue can build up without you noticing until there is a significant impairment in muscle function or pain. Regular massage therapy can help identify small areas of build up and break them down before they become an issue. Post-workout massage can increase the rate of healing and recovery which means your body is in the best working condition for your next training session.
Massage can be a great contributor to the healing of soft tissue injury. When muscle fibres are injured the body lays down scar tissue in the first stage of healing. When the fibres are healed the body clears up the excess scar tissue. However, sometimes due to a premature return to exercise scar tissue does not fully leave the healed area and then lays down more in response to micro trauma from exercise. An excessive build up of scar tissue can lead to layers of muscle fibres, which ordinarily glide over each other, sticking together. This can impair the function of the muscle and surrounding tissues and potentially lead to further injury. Massage can help break down the scar tissue and adhesions and realign the fibres so the muscle can heal and return to full function.
Localised tissue flexibility
Sometimes rather than a whole muscle, only a portion of the muscle becomes tight. Stretching the whole muscle cannot reach the portion that really needs to be stretched. Certain massage techniques can help stretch and release localised tissue and also helps to draw muscle fibres and sheets of muscle fibres and fascia (connective tissue) apart in different directions. Massage therapists can help identify areas of tightness before they start affecting performance and/or causing discomfort.
The immediate effects from massage are felt mostly through the nervous system. The direct affect of massage is that is stimulates nerve receptors in the tissues and reduces tissue tension. Nerve receptors also respond to touch, warmth and pressure which helps place the body in a parasympathetic state - otherwise known as a state of relaxation, healing and recovery. It helps decrease blood pressure, mental and emotional tension and encourages digestion. That is why you feel so good after a massage!
One stop shop
In fact, massage is beneficial on so many levels that in my opinion it can no longer be seen as a luxury or a treat. With our busy lifestyles, it is imperative that we stop and take time to relax, heal and recover. When you book a massage treatment you have no choice but to lie on the couch and be treated. Even if you don't want to go because you have a million other things you think you should be doing, after your treatment you'll feel like a different person! For me it's akin to the benefits of meditation or a micro-vacation!
As part of my training I am required to log 100 hours of practice treatments. I hold my free massage clinic on Fridays between 3-7pm in Mayfair. Treatment is 100% free until I qualify in July. The only charge is the clinic room hire of £20. So, if you would like to experience some or all of the benefits of massage email me at KT@precisionmovement.co.uk and we'll get you set up with a date for treatment!