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Exercises for Mobility and Functional Strength

A Simple Routine to Improve Balance and Ankle Mobility

To build upon the ankle plantar flexion stretch that I shared earlier, here is a short routine of 3 mobility exericses that I enjoy doing to improve ankle mobility:

Ankle Raises While on Balls of Feet:

Ankle raises are excellent for strengthening your calf muscles and Achilles tendon, and for warming up all of the soft tissues that surround your ankle joints. Ankle raises are also helpful for developing balance and proprioception. Read more

 

Basic Plank Core Exercises Using an Exercise Ball

For more mobility videos, please visit our YouTube channel:

https://www.youtube.com/drbenkim Read more

 

This is Essential for a Strong and Healthy Back

While developing and maintaining good core strength is extremely helpful to protecting the spine and surrounding tissues against injury, it's equally important to work at improving usable strength of the trunk toward its end ranges. Read more

 

A Simple Way to Improve Shoulder and Back Mobility

To improve shoulder and upper back mobility, lie face-up with your head slightly off the end of a bed and let your arms hang freely above your head.

Once you’re comfortable in this position, slowly take your arms through a small arc as though you are making a snow angel - you can do this several times to warm up your shoulder joints. Read more

 

Protect Your Back By Lengthening Your Hamstrings

Short hamstrings and even short calves can contribute to intermittent back pain and stiffness, as a shortened posterior chain creates a constant downward pull on the pelvis, predisposing the tissues that surround the spine to sprains and strains.

With most of us sitting for many hours each day with our posterior chain contracted, it's highly worthwhile to stretch the hamstrings and calves on a daily basis. Read more

 

For Foot Pain and Stiffness

In sharing a recent post on what to do for stiff hands, several readers asked for suggestions for foot pain and stiffness. I shared a short video on foot and toe exercises last week, which is re-posted below. Also embedded below is a video that demonstrates how another person can mobilize your feet. I hope these resources are helpful. Read more

 

Juggling and Balance Exercises

Here are some other balance exercises from our YouTube video library:

Variations of squats:
https://youtu.be/ISSnfN9Eulc

Purposeful movement for balance:
https://youtu.be/6DrRRS1H7UI

Deep squat for balance:
https://youtu.be/_r8i_T5Dr1M Read more

 

Hand Grip Strength - One of the Best Indicators of Health-Related Quality of Life in Old Age

Over the past year, I've noticed an increasing stream of studies that point to hand grip strength as a strong indicator of health-related quality of life in old age. This aligns with mounting evidence that one of the best things we can do to preserve our health as we age is to develop and maintain muscle tissue and the physical strength that it affords. Read more

 

5 Simple Hamstring Exercises for Improved Knee and Hip Function

This video demonstrates a variety of simple hamstring-strengthening exercises that almost invariably lead to improved knee and hip function. Please be sure to have the volume on your viewing device and within the video on for accompanying guidance for each exercise. Read more

 

Exercises for Shoulder Pain and Upper Back Stiffness

This is a routine of mobility exercises that can help address chronic shoulder and upper back pain and stiffness. You can find more details on doing each of the exercises described below by searching for them in our Mobility Exercises Archive.

Start with Cow-Cat, alternating between full flexion and extension of the spine while on all fours. Read more

 

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