Shovel Saftey

It feels like we are getting off easy so far this winter. We’ve barely had to shovel since the New Year. But as a real New Englander, I just presume that means we will have to suffer before winter is out. (She said half in jest all in earnest.) Just in case, here are some tips for shovel safety:

Know the Risks for Shovel Safety

The most common shoveling injury is strained muscles and tendons (usually in the low back). That’s actually a good thing. Because when soft tissue is the problem, more often that not we can change what we are doing to reduce the risk of injury.

Slips and falls are the second leading cause of shoveling injury. So make sure you have good footwear. Consider grips you can put on your boots when it’s icy and make ensure you can balance where you are shoveling

Apparently, a surprising number of people get hit with other shovels while shoveling, so be aware of your surroundings.

Finally, heart attack is always a concern. Make sure you aren’t getting too winded. If you can’t maintain a conversation while you shovel, you might be exerting yourself too […]

Shovel Saftey2020-02-07T17:32:58-05:00

Butt Workouts

For optimal posture, we need a strong glute muscle!

Your gluteus maximus is the largest muscle in your body. A strong, healthy butt muscle is also important for upright posture, reducing lower back pain, and overall healthy movement. When we sit all day the glute max gets stretched out and often weakened. We need to incorporate butt workouts into our regular movement routine.

Here are some tips for working your butt workouts:

To Work the Glutes You Need the Abs!

Very often when we try to work that largest muscle in our backside, we end up really moving from the back and straining over time. When you start doing a butt workout, you want to make sure your abs are engaged to keep the back safe.

Notice What You Feel

When you start to do any traditional butt exercises, check in with your body. Do you feel the glutes doing the work? Do you feel the back doing the work? Are you unsure? What can you change to the movement in order to feel the glutes? Hint: try engaging your abs.

Small Movements

When your leg and torso are in a straight line, your glutes are already working. […]

Butt Workouts2019-07-17T12:25:11-04:00

Pain in the Buttocks

Sciatica can be a pain in the buttocks —literally and figuratively.  The sciatic nerve runs out multiple vertebra in the lower back and down both sides of your legs passing through the glutes (butt muscles).  The compression and inflammation of the nerve at the spine can cause the pain in the glute and down the entire leg.  In addition sometimes one of the muscles in your butt called the pyriformis can be adding to the pain.  If you do the four stretch and you feel relief, you might have pyriformis syndrome.

How to do the Four Stretch:

Note: You can do both sides, but the side with the pain should get relief when crossed over.

Sit down on a firm chair.

Cross the leg with pain over the leg without so that the ankle rests just above the opposite knee

Sit up Tall.

Stay for 3-5 deep breaths.

Relax and Repeat Up to 5 times.

OPTIONAL: Hinge (do not round) forward slightly for […]

Pain in the Buttocks2019-07-17T12:26:58-04:00

Talk to your doctor about getting an MRI

I’m not a doctor.  I don’t even play one on TV.  Ultimately, the main messaging of this blog is that if you have certain types of pain, you should talk to your doctor about getting an MRI sooner rather than later.

Anecdotally, I find that the clients I work with get so much helpful information from an MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging).  Information that seems to help the course of action at physical therapy, or improve accuracy of cortisone shots, or the realization that the injury likely requires surgery or sometimes a simple procedure to resolve a problem.

Yet for some reason, also anecdotally, I find that my clients will be in pain for months and see multiple doctors before getting an MRI. According to the FDA, adverse side effects are rare, so I wondered why more people aren’t getting them.  If MRI’s seem to provide so much useful info, what’s the delay in prescribing them?

MRI’s are expensive procedures.  On average an MRI costs $2,611.  The machines themselves can cost over $3-million, not including what it costs to outfit the room to be able to host an MRI machine.  That is a […]

Talk to your doctor about getting an MRI2018-10-08T17:58:22-04:00

Why You Really Want a Toned Butt

This is not a picture of my butt, but it is a picture of me hiking. And without my butt, I wouldn’t go hiking!

No doubt many of us would like a lifted and toned butt.  The look is appealing, but strong glutes (those are our butt muscles) are important for more than aesthetics.

Standing & Posture

Our glutes have an important role in keep us upright all day.  We often take that for granted.  The back and butt work together to hold us up straight.  Our tendency to sit and slump makes their job even harder.  Daily glute exercises would be a great habit to get into.  They are large muscles.  They can take daily workouts.

Strength

The glute max is the largest muscle in the body.  It’s the back of the butt.  When you think of the butt, you are thinking of the glute max.  The muscle is a major mover in propelling us forward with every step.  If you are an athlete you need your butt to propel you forward and up in nearly every movement you do.  Athlete or not, if you walk or jog your butt is required so that […]

Why You Really Want a Toned Butt2018-02-09T14:42:25-05:00