It is not a secret that movement is generally considered one of the cornerstones of good health. The World Health Organization states that adults between the ages of 18-64 should complete at least 150 minutes of moderate intensity aerobic physical activity throughout the week or at least 75 minutes of vigorous intensity aerobic physical activity throughout the week. Balance, coordination and stretching should be completed for approximately 30 minutes per week whilst muscle strengthening activities should be done involving major muscle groups on two or more days a week.
Whilst the times are pretty easy to understand it might be helpful if we could define what type of movement is indicated as real exercise as opposed to general movement. Also what should we be aiming for to achieve optimal health and longevity?
Movement in general can be divided into two major classifications: general daily activity and exercise. General daily activity, which is often referred to as...
With so many products on the market these days it gets increasingly confusing to know what you should be eating before you exercise and what you should be eating afterwards. After all it takes a great deal of effort to actually start and complete that workout so you want to make sure your are optimizing your results. Fueling your body correctly can mean the difference between feeling strong after your workout or getting a sugar crash.
A new study published by the Nutrition Society has revealed that combining a healthy well balanced diet with exercise is better for you than only eating well without working out, or only going to the gym without changing your diet.
Not only are the combination of diet and exercise the winning combination fueling your body with the correct nutrients will increase your energy and the strength to improve your performance, as well as help you to recover faster from muscle soreness.
You can consume a meal between two to three...
If you are reading this then you are more than likely one of the 80% of us worldwide who are currently suffering with back pain. You have probably had to miss work at least once as a result of the pain and you are a regular visitor to the doctor, chiropractor or therapist. You are also contributing to the billions that is spent each year on back pain; and that is just for the more easily identified costs. You are probably also taking some form of pain relief and you know you should be exercising but the lack of mobility and pain make it almost impossible to take part in a regular program.
How about this statistic though?
Most cases of back pain are mechanical or non-organic, meaning they are not caused by conditions such as inflammatory arthritis, infection, fracture or cancer.
So what is the number one cause of so much pain?
SHORT, TIGHT MUSCLES – the majority of people’s back problems are a direct result of poor postural alignment.
It is that simple. The fact is...
I am sure we have all heard of the term “core strength training” and I am sure you all know that it refers to the abdominals and maybe you all know that it also includes some of the back muscles but did you know the pelvic floor muscles play an incredibly important role in the overall strength of the core?
Firstly, What is the Pelvic Floor?
The pelvic floor is a group of 16 muscles that work together as a functional unit to provide support, control, sexual function and stability to the pelvis and spine. This sheet of muscles, as one of the core muscles, helps in maintaining posture and intra-abdominal pressure and for holding organs in place. In fact the pelvic floor muscles work together with the deep abdominal muscles and the back muscles to keep the body erect.
The actual main task of the pelvic floor muscles is to hold up the pelvic organs against gravity, they ensure they stay in place when abdominal pressure increases from sneezing, coughing, laughing,...
We’ve all heard about it, we’ve all read about it and we know we should be working it! But what is it, where is it, how should we work it and what benefit will it be to us if we do?
To answer these questions you should ask a dancer or should I say a ballet dancer. Dancers have understood the role and benefit of core strength for centuries and it shows – professional dancers generally stay fit well into their old age. They stand taller and have more energy at a time when many of their peers can just hobble along. To think that Margot Fonteyn was forty years of age when she first danced with Nureyev in Giselle is remarkable, especially when you consider he was 20 years her junior!
The core muscles include not only those in your abdominals and back (erector spinae), but also muscles in your pelvic floor and hips. Who would have thought that those pelvic floor muscles we’re continually told to keep strong before and after birth...
I have written numerous articles on the benefits of exercise and how important it is to overall wellbeing no matter what your age, but particularly as you age. It would seem that exercise is becoming the new elixir of youth benefiting our mind and body and protecting us from the process of wear and tear.
A new study published in the Journal of the American Heart Association, found that older people who spent less time sitting and more time moving had fewer signs of heart disease.
The study involved 1,600 British volunteers aged between 60 to 64. They were given heart-rate sensors to wear for five days. They analyzed the participants’ activity levels and compared them to indicators of heart disease such as cholesterol precursors and a substance called interleukin-6. Overall, the participants who moved more more had lower levels of all of the negative biomarkers.
The scientists also noted the effects on the participants’ activity in 10-minute chunks....
It is no secret that honey is one of the superfoods trending at the moment and it has been proven scientifically that it is a natural healing powerhouse. Honey delivers potent antibacterial, antioxidant, and anti-inflammatory properties, is comprised primarily of fructose and glucose, as well as numerous flavonoid polyphenols, enzymes, minerals, free amino acids, vitamins, and proteins.
The uses for honey have grown wider and wider as more evidence is gathered about it’s properties. Here are just a few to ensure you make sure you have a pot or two handy on your kitchen shelves.
Honey contains an enzyme that produces germ-busting hydrogen peroxide reports the National Institutes of Health (NIH) online. In fact the NIH states that the “medicinal importance of honey has been documented in the world’s oldest medical literatures, and since ancient times, it has been known to possess antimicrobial properties as well as wound-healing...
I think you are all perfectly aware of my views with regard to the dangers of prolonged sitting. I have written articles about it, have self help videos on the subject and continually speak to my clients about ways for them to combat the postural issues sitting can cause.
But can it actually kill us?
Would you believe that researchers have discovered a direct relationship between prolonged hours of sitting and early mortality rates?
Now if you are someone who goes to the gym or takes part in some form of exercise every day, don’t believe you should stop reading because this doesn’t apply to you. For instance, if you are an office worker or drive for a living and go to the gym every day, you are still at risk for it would seem it is the sustained period of time you sit for that is the culprit here.
One study used a hip-mounted accelerometer to analyze the movement of adults over 45. The results showed that, on average, sedentary behavior accounted...
The answer to this question is a resounding YES!
Surprised? Well, don’t be, you are not alone. The benefits of good posture may be among one of the best kept secrets of the current fitness and wellbeing world. Posture ranks right up at the top of the list when you are talking about good health. It is as important as a healthy diet, exercising, getting a good night’s sleep and avoiding potentially harmful substances like alcohol, drugs and tobacco.
In fact ask any chiropractor, doctor or health professional and they will tell you that when the spine shifts and the “arc of life” (40-45 degree curve in our neck) are compromised any one of the ailments listed below could be caused by your poor posture.
Whether we like it or not, excess weight and back pain often go together. If you are suffering with back pain and haven’t addressed excess weight then no matter what you do, your chances of getting rid of the pain will be minimal.
Excess weight, especially if it around the abdomen will strain your back muscles and ligaments which in turn causes pain. Weight gain in your abdomen forces your pelvis to slant forward due to the tremendous strain that this weight causes. Once the pelvis is pulled to the front then your lower back has to follow deepening the curve of the lumbar region of your spine.
The graceful arch in a normal lower back becomes more rounded, which ultimately increases the pressure on the nerves, and over time can lead to bulging discs and herniation on the lumbar vertebrae.
A normal back arches up from your pelvis and back, surrounding your vital organs, before curving inward again to your neck and extending up to your head, right between your...