No Time To Go To Gym? Here Is The Solution!

We can’t emphasize enough the importance of the exercise. Gym provides excellent gears and workout environment but not everyone has time to take advantage of it. Here are some great home exercises you can do which don’t require any equipment!

Ok are you ready?

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Shoulder Workout

Ab Routine

Chest Workout!

Leg Workout

 

And lastly..

 

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Don’t forget to do enough stretches before and after the workout to prevent the injuries!

Let’s turn off the TV and do some Workout!

 

 

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Low back pain? It could be from your Pelvis!

So, you have been suffering from on-going low back pain for a number of years. You’ve tried this and that but nothing really helped much although you got some relief for a short period time. When the lumbar pain is persistent like that, it may not just be a low back problem. Have you gotten your pelvis checked?

I’d like to introduce the term “Anterior Pelvic Tilt” and “Posterior Pelvic Tilt” which are really important when it comes to the lumbar pain.

What is Anterior Pelvic Tilt?

When we sit a lot, our hip flexors (mainly rectus femoris & psoas major) shortens. If you have short hip flexors and stand up, your hip flexors will pull on the femur on one end and the hip, as well as the lumbar spine (lower back). This will cause the hip to tilt forward and the lumbar curvature to increase (excessive lordosis). Excessive lordosis puts lots of pressure on lumbar spine which can cause sore low back.

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How to fix it?

 

Kneeling Hip Flexor Stretch

The kneeling hip flexor stretch targets your hip flexors. Begin in a kneeling position on the floor. Bring your left foot forward so that it is directly below your left knee. Both legs should be at a 90-degree angle. Lean forward into the hip while keeping your back straight and your pelvis from tilting to either side or forward. Hold the stretch for 30 to 45 seconds and complete the stretch two to five times. Repeat on the other side.
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The Bridge

The Bridge targets your gluteals and hamstrings. Start by lying on your back with your knees bent and your feet flat on the floor. Place your feet hip-distance apart. Contract your abdominal muscles to press your back into the floor. Maintain your abdominals and spine in this position throughout the exercise. Lift your hips off the floor and toward the ceiling while pushing into your heels for stability. Your gluteals and hamstrings should be contracted and used to complete this action. Hold this position for 30 to 45 seconds, lower your body, and repeat three to five times. Alternately, you can perform a pulsing action of repeatedly pushing your hips up and lowering slightly.
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The Plank

The Plank is a full-body exercise that targets your abdominal muscles as well as your erector spinae. To complete this exercise, begin on all fours, with your palms directly below your shoulders. Move into a pushup position by bringing each foot back, engaging your abdominals and adjusting your feet as needed. Hold the pose for as long as possible, working up to 60 seconds or longer. Alternately, the exercise can be completed with your elbows on the floor directly below your shoulders.
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What is Posterior Pelvic Tilt?

When the front of the pelvis rises and the back of the pelvis drops. This happens when the hip flexors lengthen and the hip extensors shorten, particularly the gluteus maximus which is the primary hyperextensor of the hip. This causes straight back which doesn’t allow low back to absorb the shock efficiently so it can cause lumbar pain.

 
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How to fix it?

 

Foam Roll
The first step to corrective exercise is foam-rolling and/or stretching the tightened muscles. To foam-roll the hamstrings, sit with the foam roll under the hamstring, applying as much pressure as you can handle. Hold each sore spot until the pain subsides (roughly 30 seconds). For the glutes: Sit on top of the roll, with one ankle resting on the opposite knee, lean toward the lifted leg, feeling for those tight spots. The abdominals cannot be foam-rolled but should definitely be stretched. After foam rolling, stretch the hamstrings and glutes to allow the muscles to return to their normal lengths.
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Lunges
To keep the pelvis from reverting back to posterior pelvic tilt, some strength exercises are required. Corrective exercises should include those that require the hamstrings, glutes, and quads to work synergistically rather than allowing the hamstring and glute dominance to continue. One example is the lunge. Lunges are particularly good because they break the work into two separate legs, allowing for even more focus on the correct muscle group. There also tends to be a bit of focus on the weakened quadriceps and hip flexors. To do a lunge, take a long stride with either leg forward. Keep your weight evenly distributed and lower your weight until both knees are bent at 90 degrees, then return to the starting position. Repeat the same number of repetitions on each leg.
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Superhero
The lower back muscles also need to be strengthened since they too are a part of the weakness that allows posterior pelvic tilt to be a problem. Any exercise involving spinal extension will help to strengthen the muscles of the lower back. One of the simplest and most effective is the superhero: Lie face down on the floor with arms extended out in front of you. Slowly, lift the arms and legs off the ground simultaneously (like a superhero during flight). Lower, and repeat for the desired repetitions.
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What causes the Neck pain?

In my practice, about 7-8 people out of 10 have stiffness or pain in their neck. It’s not difficult to discover the neck issue even if they came for some other problems. Too much use of computer, stress, bad postures,etc contribute sore neck. Let’s look at the simple muscle lever system on the neck.

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As you see above, AF(applied force) should be applied to sustain R(resistance). That means when there is more Resistance, the stronger AF should be applied otherwise the head will drop. That’s why the back of your neck gets tight (AF) when you spend long hours looking at the computer screen or playing with your phone with your head pushed low and forward (R).

Now let’s look at the primary muscle that controls the neck flexion.

Sternocleidomastoid (SCM)
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You can easily see and palpate this muscle when you turn your head to the either side. When this shortens,it pushes your head forward (more Resistance).

What can we do?
Simply massage SCM muscle and do the stretch shown below will help you correct the slouched posture. You can do this as often as possible throughout the day. I recommend you to set the timer on your mobile every 20 – 30 mins so you won’t forget to do your stretch.
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Are you breathing properly?

Running man resting after run in New York City

Most people tend to breathe in a slightly abnormal way, they tend to hold in their stomachs, make little use of their diaphragm, and breathe using the muscles of their upper chest, neck and shoulders. This is not the most effective way to get the needed oxygen to our brain and muscles. The good news is that we can relearn how to breathe properly – learning to breathe using our abdomens. Let’s have a look the difference between Chest breathing and Abdominal breathing.

Chest breathing refers to breaths from the top lobes of the lungs that use the chest muscles to inflate the lungs by pulling on the rib cage. In chest breathing, the chest expands and contracts with each breath while the abdominal area does not. These breaths tend to be short and quick, using only a small portion of the lungs and delivering a relatively minimal amount of oxygen to the bloodstream. Chest breathing is often associated with hyperventilation and a sensation of feeling out of breath, as you attempt to take in oxygen quickly despite the low air volume from each breath.

Abdominal breathing, also called belly or diaphragmatic breathing, refers to breaths that use your entire lung capacity. The diaphragm and abdominal muscles pull down on the abdominal cavity to fully inflate the lungs. The chest expands very little if at all while abdominal breathing, while the abdominal area expands significantly. Breaths taken while abdominal breathing are slow and deep, taking longer to inhale and exhale and delivering a significantly larger amount of oxygen to the bloodstream. The larger amount of air intake also allows you to exhale a larger amount of carbon dioxide, eliminating it from your body at a faster rate.
See the video below how the diaphragm works and why deep breathing is beneficial for our body.

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Do you want to sleep better tonight?

Do you want to sleep better tonight? Turn off the TV first!

Many people watch television right before they go to sleep. A recent sleep survey found that two-thirds of people in every country watch TV in the hour before bed.

“The bright light of TV stimulates the brain, which can affect the secretion of melatonin, a hormone necessary for quality sleep,” explains W. Christopher Winter, M.D., Men’s Health’s sleep advisor. And laptops and tablets used at the brightest setting are just as harmful.
As your brain revs up, its electrical activity increases and neurons start to race — the exact opposite of what should be happening before sleep. A second reason has to do with your body: The physical act of responding to a video game or even an email makes your body tense. As you get stressed, your body can go into a “fight or flight” response, and as a result, cortisol, a stress hormone produced by the adrenal gland, is released, creating a situation hardly conducive to sleep.

So, there is a tip for a healthy night time routine. Turn off the TV and spend that hour with a good book instead. Reading under a dim light won’t disrupt your brain’s melatonin production. Plus, studies have shown that overall memory improves if you learn right before falling asleep.

Sleep tight!

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