Improve Your Swing, Right From The Start

By Steven Marsh for Athletico Physical Therapy

Golf is a difficult game, but what if you could take strokes off your round while reducing your risk of injury at the same time?

One of the low-hanging fruits to improve your golf game starts with your position at address. Your posture at address can fall into one of three categories: Neutral spine (ideal), C-Spine or S-Spine. Here is an easy assessment to find out which posture you start out in:

  • Set up your phone so it can take a picture or video. Start recording.
  • Give yourself enough distance from the phone, and assume a normal position as if you were swinging your 5-iron.
  • Come back to the camera and assess!

Once you have identified which posture you naturally set up into, here are a few tips to see if you can bring yourself closer to neutral position at address.


If you have S-Posture:

The main dysfunction of this posture is too much arching of the low back. To help reverse excessive arching through the low back, focus on stretching your hip flexors and strengthening your glutes. For starters, try the Half Kneeling Hip Flexor Stretch and Glute Bridge exercise that are outlined below.

Half Kneeling Hip Flexor Stretch

  • Begin in a half kneeling position with one knee bent in front of your body.
  • Tighten your core and squeeze your glutes (which will tilt your pelvis backward). Gently push your hips forward. You should feel a stretch in the front of your hip.
  • Make sure to keep your hips facing forward and back straight during the exercise.
  • Hold each stretch for 30 seconds, and repeat 3-4 times per leg.

Glute Bridge

  • Begin lying on your back with your arms resting at your sides, your legs bent at the knees and your feet flat on the ground.
  • Tighten your core muscles, squeeze your glutes and slowly lift your hips off the floor.
  • Perform 2-3 sets of 8-12 repetitions.

 


If you have C-Posture:

This posture features slouching of the shoulders and back. Exercises, such as stretches that focus on the chest and strengthening around your shoulder blades, can help correct this posture, like the Pec Corner stretch and Wall Slide with Lift-Off exercise.

Pec Corner Stretch

  • Stand facing a corner. Place your forearms flat on the wall on each side of the corner with your elbows at shoulder height.
  • Slowly lean forward, taking a small step if needed until you feel a gentle stretch in the front of your chest and shoulders.
  • Hold for 30 seconds and repeat for 3-4 repetitions.

 


Wall Slide with Lift-Off

  • Begin in a standing upright position facing a wall.
  • Rest both hands on the wall with your palms facing inward, then slide them up the wall.
  • When your arms are straight, raise your hands a few inches from the wall.
  • Bring your arms back down and repeat.
  • Perform 2-3 sets of 10 repetitions.

Ready to Start

Hopefully these quick stretches and exercises help to get you into a better starting position. This can lead to better ball-striking, improved power and less injuries!

If you would like to learn more from an Athletico physical therapist, please use the button below to request an appointment!

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The 6 Main Causes of Dance Injuries

Dance Injuries

Dance injury rates are significantly statistically higher than that of other sports. A study by Wolverhampton University found that professional dancers are more likely to suffer injuries than rugby players.

Statistics show that 80 per cent of dancers incur at least one injury a year that affects their ability to perform – compared to a 20 per cent injury rate for rugby or football players. Whilst not a contact sport or explicitly high-impact, dance training is intensively challenging and highly demanding for even the most conditioned and able athlete. Here we look at the six main causative factors that result in dance injury.

1. Anatomical Causes

Natural physical limitations and constraints may limit the development of a perfectly correct technique. Correct technique – beyond being prerequisite for professional success – is a fundamental element of avoiding dance injury. This is evident in the fact that the communist anatomical cause of potential problems and injuries is limitation of turn-outs (external rotation) of the hips. As such it is vital that the dance student and teacher recognise any potential physical limitations early on, so that the dancer may learn to work within their true physical range.

2. Incorrect Technique

When dancers allow their technique to slip – usually due to fatigue – they put themselves at a much higher risk of injury. Commonly this becomes an issue towards the end of a long tour or performance run. Slipping technique is why, typically, injury rates among cast dancers increase throughout the duration of a tour. Quickly learning and performing new, unknown choreography can also create injury issues, as regardless of the ability of the dancer, they have had insufficient time to become accustomed to the movements and fine-tune their technique accordingly.

3. Poor Coaching

As with all sports and athletic disciplines, expert teaching and coaching for the development of technical knowledge is vital. It is the responsibility of an excellent and highly knowledgeable dance teacher to be able to recognise, and react accordingly to, any anatomical weaknesses, physical limitations or onset of injury evident in the dance pupil. Furthermore it is imperative that they correctly relay and instill the fundamentals of correct technique and advise upon supporting lifestyle and cross-training that ensure optimum health, well-being and physical performance of the dancer.

4. The Floor

The floor is an extremely important environmental factor to the health and performance of a dancer. Purpose-built dance floors are vital in rehearsal and performance spaces. Floors that are not built for purpose do not provide sufficient supportive impact. Sprung wood floors support dynamic movement; reinforced, concrete or non-sprung wood floors create unsupportive and unsustainable support for the joints, which is highly detrimental to the physical health of the dancer in the long term. Lack of spring in the floor can produce many injuries, notably foot problems, injuries in the lumbar region of the spine, and in the muscles which are associated with take off and landing – mainly the tibia and metatarsals, which may result in stress fractures.

5. Temperature

Ambient temperature of rehearsal studio and performance space is of utmost performance in avoiding dance injury. Dancers have to take extra care to not get too cold before or after practice in order to avoid muscular injury. A standard advised temperature for a training and performance space is 68-70 degrees Fahrenheit, and should not be allowed to drop below this range.

6. Excessive Practice

Unavoidably, dancers often adhere to grueling training schedules – a necessary requisite to master the art, and a mainstay of rehearsals for dance productions and tours. Obviously this presents a high risk factor for creating overuse injuries, particularly when a dancer must continue to train at high intensity with an existing injury. Clearly the combination aforementioned factors – excellent physical cardiovascular fitness, diet, training, technique, ability and training environment – greatly reduces the risk of injury under the demanding training schedules of a professional dancer, however dancers at the top of their game still frequently incur significant injury.

By SportsInjuryClinic

Running May Be Socially Contagious

Can our workouts be shaped by what our friends do?

That question is at the heart of an important new study of exercise behavior, one of the first to use so-called big data culled from a large-scale, global social network of workout routines.

The researchers focused on running, because so many of the network participants were runners. And what they found suggests that whether and how much we exercise can depend to a surprising extent on our responses to other people’s training.

The results also offer some practical advice for the runners among us, suggesting that if you wish to improve your performance, you might want to become virtual friends with people who are just a little bit slower than you are.

There have been intimations for some time that aspects of our lifestyles and health can be contagious. Using data from surveys and postings on social media, scientists have reported that obesity, anxiety, weight loss and certain behaviors, including exercise routines, may be shared and intensified among friends.

But those studies had limitations, particularly related to the tendency of people to gravitate toward others who are like them. This phenomenon, which researchers call homophily, makes it difficult to tease out how friends influence each other’s lives. Many of these studies also relied on people’s notoriously unreliable estimations of their behavior, whether it involved eating or exercise.

The new study, published in Nature Communications, sought to avoid these pitfalls by turning to data from a worldwide social network devoted to sharing objectively measured exercise routines. (The network is not named in the study for contractual reasons, the researchers say.)

People who join this network upload data from an activity monitor, which precisely tracks their daily exercise regimens. They also become virtual friends with others in the network who seem like-minded. Friends then automatically share workout data.

The researchers, from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Sloan School of Management, eventually gathered five years worth of data from about 1.1 million runners from across the globe. Cumulatively, those in the network had run almost 225 million miles during that time.

The identity of the individual runners was masked, but the researchers could tally exactly how often, far and fast each had gone every day for five years. They could similarly map out how often, far and fast their particular friends had run on those same and subsequent days.

Using this data, the researchers noted immediate correlations. Friends tended to display similar training routines day to day and year to year, even if they were separated geographically. But it remained unclear whether the runners were influencing one another’s distance and pace or just hanging out virtually with people who already ran like them.

But those studies had limitations, particularly related to the tendency of people to gravitate toward others who are like them. This phenomenon, which researchers call homophily, makes it difficult to tease out how friends influence each other’s lives. Many of these studies also relied on people’s notoriously unreliable estimations of their behavior, whether it involved eating or exercise.

The new study, published on Monday in Nature Communications, sought to avoid these pitfalls by turning to data from a worldwide social network devoted to sharing objectively measured exercise routines. (The network is not named in the study for contractual reasons, the researchers say.)

People who join this network upload data from an activity monitor, which precisely tracks their daily exercise regimens. They also become virtual friends with others in the network who seem like-minded. Friends then automatically share workout data.

The researchers, from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Sloan School of Management, eventually gathered five years worth of data from about 1.1 million runners from across the globe. Cumulatively, those in the network had run almost 225 million miles during that time.

The identity of the individual runners was masked, but the researchers could tally exactly how often, far and fast each had gone every day for five years. They could similarly map out how often, far and fast their particular friends had run on those same and subsequent days.

Using this data, the researchers noted immediate correlations. Friends tended to display similar training routines day to day and year to year, even if they were separated geographically. But it remained unclear whether the runners were influencing one another’s distance and pace or just hanging out virtually with people who already ran like them.

But the findings apply only to people who already are runners, he adds, since the data he and his colleagues used described runners. They cannot tell us whether other types of exercise are equally catching or how to make exercise in general more palatable and contagious among inactive people.

Dr. Aral and his colleagues plan to use other social media data to study those questions soon.

By

14 Powerful Reasons to Eat Bananas

25 Powerful Reasons to Eat Bananas

1. Bananas help overcome depression due to high levels of tryptophan, which is converted into serotonin — the happy-mood brain neurotransmitter.
2. Eat two bananas before a strenuous workout to pack an energy punch and sustain your blood sugar.
3. Protect against muscle cramps during workouts and nighttime leg cramps by eating a banana.
4. Counteract calcium loss during urination and build strong bones by supplementing with a banana.
5. Improve your mood and reduce PMS symptoms by eating a banana, which regulates blood sugar and produces stress-relieving relaxation.
6. Bananas reduce swelling, protect against type II diabetes, aid weight loss, strengthen the nervous system, and help with the production of white blood cells, all due to high levels of vitamin B-6.
7. Strengthen your blood and relieve anemia with the added iron from bananas.
8. High in potassium and low in salt, bananas are officially recognized by the FDA as being able to lower blood pressure and protect against heart attack and stroke.

Eating Bananas Aids Digestion

9. Rich in pectin, bananas aid digestion and gently chelate toxins and heavy metals from the body.
10. Bananas act as a prebiotic, stimulating the growth of friendly bacteria in the bowel. They also produce digestive enzymes to assist in absorbing nutrients.
11. Constipated? High fiber in bananas can help normalize bowel motility.
12. Got the runs? Bananas are soothing to the digestive tract and help restore lost electrolytes after diarrhoea.
13. Bananas are a natural antacid, providing relief from acid reflux, heartburn and GERD.
14. Bananas are the only raw fruit that can be consumed without distress to relieve stomach ulcers by coating the lining of the stomach against corrosive acids.

From www.gymworkoutchart.com/nutrition