Each day…

Each day I look forward to a few things:

My coffee, my dogs, saying good morning to Dawn and Dr. Kathy Dooley’s Daily blogpost. The first 3 things should be apparent as to why I look forward to them. But some of you may not know Kathy. I’ve never met her personally but I’m going to soon. Her Immaculate Dissection course will be coming to Kinesis this summer and we’re over the moon excited to share in it! https://www.facebook.com/ImmaculateDissection?ref=br_tf

Each day, Kathy’s Daily blogs inspire, push, ignite and remind me of the WHYs Kinesis was brought to life. Her mission – http://www.drdooleynoted.com/the-dooley-mission/ – really brought me back to the REASON for opening our own business.(http://www.KinesisLiving.com)

Each day, Dawn and I hope to give our clients power over their pain, educate them into their own physical evolutions, allow them to safely advance their movement patterns and honestly LIVE in the most optimal way possible.

Each day, all of you remind Dawn and me why EACH DAY is so very important.

Coach Kimmie

De Feet Boss… De Feet!

By: Dr Dawn DPT

How many of you really think about your feet? No, I mean really consider those 2 (if you’re lucky) pieces of flesh at the end of your legs that serve as ground-body interface to transport you (again, if you’re lucky) from point A to point B? Most do not even think about the toes and feet until they demand some attention! They are taken for granted to be always at the ready. But what happens if they’re not happy? Cranky feet make for a cranky attitude in general! My feet are KILLING me! Don’t talk to me until I get these shoes off! Etc!

feetscreaming

Let me introduce you to your feet…the complex machinery taking up real estate just south of your ankles. There are 26 bones, 33 joints,  and over a hundred muscles/tendons/ligaments.

footbones intrinsicfootmuscles

Take a stand on foot health! Pay attention to standing posture. It is the first step to a healthier relationship with your feet and their interface with the rest of you.

Look at the potential chaos that ensues up the chain from a chronic toe out posture. malalignedskeleton

And chronic toe out posturing often leads to foot pronation which often leads to bunion formation.

pronationandbunions bunionbones

footalignment

If your car wheels were aligned like this, you would rush to your trusted auto mechanic for a realignment…ASAP! Otherwise, you might end up driving in circles and ruining your car tires as well your axles in the process. So why do you allow your pedal vehicles to point in a direction other than the one you intend to travel?

footalignmentLook at the photo to the right and then look in a mirror. Which set of legs and feet look most like your own? If you didn’t choose the center, you’ve got some work to do. And it does take work! Lots of it! Frequent corrections throughout your day during various activities. Your brain needs a neuro reset…an attitude readjustment so to speak. It is important that you remain persistent in your pursuit of a better stance. Remember, this habit stance may have developed years ago! It won’t change overnight or over a month.

earlyposturizing

Look at the toe posture on that young girl on the right. Oh and what do you think about the 2 photos? First thing I notice is the change in youth stance from 1981 to 2012! Yikes!!!

You better get started now! Katy Bowman, biomechanist, is a great resouce for further info on foot health: http://www.alignedandwell.com

Next entry: calf, ankle, and foot stretches to assist in the alignment process.

Proprio”de”ception

By: Dr Dawn DPT

It’s 3pm on Tuesday. Do you know where your body is in space?

astronautdrinkingbeer

bodyinspace

Proprioception is our body’s sense of its own position, balance and movement. It informs our brain about our physical environment and how we are interacting with it.

lyingnoseBut often times the body lies about its whereabouts… not on purpose mind you… but because it’s been led to believe a certain set of spacial information is true just because it occurs most frequently. So, oft held postures or movement strategies become your body’s default way of interacting with the world because they are most familiar to the brain. And then aberrant postures or movement patterns become the new normal no matter how unnormal or unnatural they may appear to others or even ourselves if we look in a mirror!

How does this happen you may ask? Neuromyofascial imbalances occur over time due to injuries, handedness, unilateral sports (tennis, golf, baseball, etc), habit (carrying a baby while doing 3 other things, always standing like a duck, always crossing the same leg over the other). We have an amazing array of movement patterns available to us that diminsih over time when we ignore half of them! Move it or lose it is definitely a truism! The movements and postures we habitually practice are strongly embodied, but ignoring huge chunks of our evolutionary movement strategies creates a proprioceptive embodymap akin to the incredible shrinking continent. And the repetitive over-use of limited patterns of movement leads to degenerative changes and injuries.

SO… how do we stop deceiving ourselves?

1. Seek out a mirror and/or a movement professional to assist you in developing better postural habits and designing biomechanically appealing movement strategies.

2. Spice up your movement with liberal doses of variety and integration . Adding them to your daily life movement recipe ensures a creative concoction of proprioceptive potpourri. EXPLORE! PLAY! Use your non-dominant hand and/foot in an activity. Trying juggling while standing on 1 leg. You are only limited by your creativity!

3. Watch and learn from this amazing man:

Now that’s some proprioceptive magic right there folks!!!

GET OUT AND PLAY!!!

Posturing

By: Dr Dawn DPT™

Your posture follows you like a shadow wherever you go… Stand up for yourself… Stand with integrity… Sitting is the new smoking… Death by sitting… Take standing breaks…

There is lots of posturing going on lately… thank goodness!!! We are finally talking about the elephant in the room, the problem at the core of many injuries. Basically, posture is as posture does. In other words, it’s the posture you practice ALL DAY LONG that makes a real difference in your default posture… your go-to stance, sit, and exercise position when no one is looking, not even you!

Here are some examples of good and bad standing, sitting, and exercise postures. Which side of the fence does your posture fall… um…er… stand?

standingpostures

Side view of standing posture: Align your hips over ankles, rib cage over hip cage, shoulders overs hips, and ears over shoulders.

standingfunctionalalignment

Front view: Stand evenly on both feet with your feet facing forward and parallel with each other approximately front hip bone (ASIS) distance apart.

wallstandingposture

Here’s a great benchmark test: Wall standing… where do you stand?

And now for your sitting (dis)pleasure: Are you more likely to find yourself looking like the left (poor) side or right side?

badgooddeskpostureEver been in this position waiting for someone or something?

badsitpostureonbench

And what about your posture as you go about your daily activities:

cookingposture Does this look like good posture to you?

standingatpoolpostureOr this?

goodbarbellposture

Practice makes permenance. If you practice poor posture throughout your day, that is your default positioning no matter how many times you do a “posture” exercise. We MUST continually remind ourselves to remind ourselves about our posture ALL DAY LONG especially when we’re not exercising!

And don’t forget to remind your kids! They’ll thank you for it later… much much later…

kidsposture

R.E.S.P.E.C.T. Yourself

By: Dr Dawn DPT

How we do anything is how we do everything.

Everything is attached to everything and anything can cause anything.

An hour in the gym x 2-3/week does not offset the hours spent dishonoring your biomechanical structure. As my dear friend and mentor Jill Miller says: Your posture follows you like a shadow wherever you go, whatever you do! Take a good look in the mirror or your reflection in a store window as you walk by. Is your postural shadow creepy or classy?

Bow to the temple of your familiar:

rowinmirrorReveal your body blind spots through frequent introversion of attention during your daily movement rituals. The next time you are working out, focus completely on form detail vs your friend’s run down of last night’s or today’s or the weekend’s festivities!

Examine your body’s posture and movement strategies. A mirror is quite helpful but seeing and feeling from the inside through proprioceptive awareness is just as important.didyouworkhard

Self-explore your tissues with regular use of myofascial release tools. My favorite tools are Yoga Tune Up® therapy balls!

puppytuneupballs

standingposture

Posturize yourself! Stand on your 2 feet equally, feet under lungs and parallel to each other, rib cage over hip cage, head over shoulders. Lift your cell phone to eye level vs stooping your head and neck to your lap!

Excel at being a good posture example in your world.

Cultivate conscious breath control during times of added stress whether it be physical or emotional.

just_breathe

Thank yourself for showing up to life and fully focusing and refining your unique movement patterns.

And no, no one else can do it for you Homer! justdoithomersimpson

7 Habits for Healthy Living

By: Dr Dawn

I am constantly reading about some new health food/supplement, exercise regime, or guaranteed cure for whatever ails you. There are so many gadgets and supplements on the market that ensure their use is the one exact tool you need for a healthy happy life. Well, I am here to tell you that none of those “things” are important components of healthful living. In fact, the recipe for living a healthy happy life is quite elegantly simple although challenging to commit to on a daily basis.

I believe there are essentially 7 daily habits, that if adopted, will surely lead you to a healthier and happier you!

1) Get plenty of sleep/rest

Most people need 7-8 hours of sleep every night for tissue regeneration and overall rejuvenation. Above and beyond a good night’s sleep, quiet restful times sprinkled throughout the day offer tremendous assistance to both our physical and mental performances. I include meditation in these moments.

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2) Eat REAL food

Real food is unprocessed without any added ingredients. Buy, cook, and eat fresh organic vegetables, fruit, and protein as often as possible throughout the week. Whether you subscribe to paleo, gluten free, South Beach, vegan, vegetarian, etc eating REAL whole unprocessed foods is the most important factor. Make your own energy bars with raw ingredients from your own kitchen. Cook dinner and make enough for left overs at lunch the following day. Start every day with a hearty home made breakfast… you can make egg muffins days in advance if cooking in the morning is too much of a time-challenge.

veggies

3) Move your body

Determine what movement based activity you enjoy doing and do it!! OFTEN!! And don’t forget to mix it up! Take walks, hang from the monkey bars, participate in group strength training sessions, go for a bike ride, etc. Our bodies are made to move and require daily movement in a variety of ways to tease out the fascial cobwebs that sleep and rest tend to spin.

Swimbikewalk

4) Practice good posture

Stand up straight! Sit up straight! Our mothers really did know what they were talking about! Practicing good postural biomechanical alignment is one of the most important factors for reducing repetitive stress pain. Sit on your sit bones and stand with shoulders over hips over ankles. For more info please see https://www.facebook.com/pages/Dr-Dawn-DPT.

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5) Establish a regular self-care routine

A self-care routine may include massage, self-massage with myofascial release tools (Yoga Tune Up® Therapy Balls are my personal fave!), and stretching. Meditation or just quiet reflection/contemplation can be included here as well.

Yoga Tune Up® Therapy Balls, Foot Wakers, Yoga block and strap, Yoga mat, KinesioTex Tape

Yoga Tune Up® Therapy Balls, Foot Wakers, Yoga block and strap, Yoga mat, KinesioTex Tape

6) Communication and Socialization

Quality time and talks with loved ones is extremely fortifying! Talk to your spouse/partner every day about life, love, desires, quests, hardships, disagreements, etc. An open line of communication is the thread that stitches the tapestry of your relationship. Spend time laughing and enjoying each other’s unique perspectives on life. Make sure you include time with good friends who nourish your social needs.

kim and dd

7) New skill acquisition/life-long learning attitude

Never stop learning and growing as a person! Create and encourage new experiences to challenge your status quo! School, continuing education, informal skill learning, dance class, new exercise challenge… the options are endless and only limited by your own desires and imagination.

new learning

None of these ideas are earth-shatteringly complex! No rocket science in these ideas! But it does take some thought, attention, and mindful practice to really follow this path to health and happiness. It takes accountability. Only you can do this for yourself.

Calm and Simple