Matthew 6:25-34, Jesus teaches us about not worrying and to not be anxious about anything. Scripture tells us to focus on today and today only, tomorrow will take care of itself. Controlling what we can control and making the best of today, will help with your overall health, mood, and protection from illness. Yes, be informed. Yes, be careful and safe. Yes, take necessary precautions right now but we also must remember that our mind and emotional state both have a huge effect on how our physical body responds. Get out in the sunshine, play outside with your kids, exercise at home, stay hydrated with constant water intake and remember that this is only a season of our life. There is a time coming when COVID-19 will be behind us and we will all be stronger.
Exercise and proper nutrition are great ways to stay healthy and improve overall metabolic health. Choose today to eat healthier, drink more water, get more exercise and practice positive things in our life that will help physically and emotionally. All of us at First Choice Physical Therapy are here to help you. We are open and essential. If you need to make an appointment with us we are here to help. We are also here if you have any questions regarding home exercise programs. If you had an upcoming surgery canceled, contact us if you have any questions on what to do to prepare for the surgery once that time comes. These are not common times, but we are not common people. Stay strong, stay positive, stay in constant prayer with the Heavenly Father and know that we are all going to get through this.
Brannon Chester, DPT
Doctor of Physical Therapy
What is Lower Crossed Syndrome?
Lower crossed syndrome is a common abnormal posture associated with muscle imbalances in the lower body. This muscle imbalance consists of some weak/lengthened muscles (ie. the abdominals as well as the glutes) and some tight/over-developed muscles (ie. the lower back muscles and hip flexors).
What causes lower crossed syndrome?
There are several causes of lower crossed syndrome, including poor posture and suboptimal training that can lead to muscle imbalances. A sedentary lifestyle can cause the hip flexors to remain in a shortened position for long periods of time, which can lead to tightness. When you aren’t as active, your glutes and abdominal muscles also won’t be challenged, which may lead to weakness in these muscles. Even if you are active, overworking the hip flexor muscles or lower back muscles can also cause this imbalance.
How do you fix lower crossed syndrome?
In order to fix lower crossed syndrome, you have to address the muscle imbalance. To do this, you will need to strengthen the glutes, which pull the backside of the pelvis downwards. You’ll also want to strengthen the abdominals to help pull the frontside of the pelvis upwards. But that is just half of it. You’ll also want to stretch the tight muscles. This includes the lower back muscles and the hip flexors as mentioned above. Listed below are a few exercises that can help correct this poor posture. Come into First Choice Physical Therapy for proper instruction with each of these exercises!
● Lower Trunk Rotations
● Half-Kneeling Hip Flexor Stretch
● Single Leg Bridges
● Bird Dogs
● Pallof Press
Dr. Ryan Bohn, PT, DPT
Being properly fitted to your road bike will not only make your ride more comfortable, but it will also help you maximize your efficiency, increase your speed, and most importantly prevent injury. Here are a few fundamental things to check out the next time you hop on the bike to make sure you have the best fit on your ride!
Frame Size: When standing over the bike, the top tube should be about one to two inches away from your crotch.
Seat Height: At the bottom of your pedal stroke there should just be a slight bend in your knee. There is some trial and error in finding the perfect seat height. If the seat is too high, you might feel your hips rocking while pedaling. If the seat is too low, you may start to feel some pain in your knees.
Seat Position: You will also want to check to make sure your seat isn’t too far forward or backward. To determine this, take a look at where your knee cap is when your cranks are parallel with the ground. The knee cap should be directly over the ball of your foot in this position.
Handlebar Position: The handlebars should be set to a position where your torso makes about a 45-degree angle and your arms form a 90-degree angle with your torso. However, some riders are all about maximizing speed and are willing to sacrifice a little discomfort to achieve this. Whereas other riders would rather be a little slower if it means they can be more comfortable on the bike. This can and definitely should be adjusted accordingly. The angle of the torse will be less if you are trying to be a little more aerodynamic and the opposite is true if you are looking for a more comfortable ride. Sometimes a different stem is necessary to achieve the perfect position for you.
Dr. Ryan Bohn, PT, DPT
Whether you are a beginner, intermediate, or a professional wakeboarder, participating in this sport definitely requires a lot of balance. Lacking balance out on the water can potentially lead to serious injury and emphasizing balance training should be a priority for all wakeboarders. Listed below are three exercises that can help take your wakeboarding skills to the next level and more importantly, minimize the major wipeouts that can leave you injured instead of ripping it up behind the boat. But before you try these exercises out, schedule an appointment at First Choice to make sure these are right for you!
Bird Dogs. This exercise will strengthen both the glutes as well as the core musculature, which are key muscles when developing a solid foundation and optimizing your balance. To perform this exercise you will start in the quadruped position (on your hands and knees). You are going to want to maintain a neutral spine throughout this exercise, so make sure to tighten up your core by engaging the abs. Next, you will kick one leg straight back and at the same time, raise your opposite arm. Pause at the top of this movement and then lower both your arm and leg. Perform 15 repetitions on one side and then switch to the other side.
Bosu Ball Squats. Looking for a little more air? Strengthening the quadriceps muscles will give you that extra “pop” off the top of the wake and give you that major hang time you need to land your latest trick. Once you are standing on the ball, bring your legs about shoulder-width apart. Begin the squat by bringing your hips back like you are sitting down in a chair. Pause at the bottom of the squat and then simply stand back up while making sure your knees are in line with the direction of your feet.
Single-Leg Bridges. Cutting hard into the wake requires a powerful hip drive. This glute strengthening exercise will help maximize your speed coming into the wake, setting you up for some major air. Start this exercise by lying down on your back with both knees bent up and your feet flat on the mat. Now straighten out one leg so your leg is just slightly higher than your other knee. Engage the glutes and drive your hips up. Pause at the top and then slowly lower your hips back to the mat.