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Health Concerns

6 Mobility Exercises that Improve Back Extension

With many of us sitting for long stretches during our daily lives, almost all of us can benefit from regular mobility work to restore extension through the spine, mainly the thoracic spine.

Sitting and working with our arms in front of us also tends to rob us of healthy flexion of our shoulder joints - that is, our ability to raise our arms up in front of us and overhead.

So it's no surprise that most people living in first world nations today eventually experience back and shoulder pain. Read more about 6 Mobility Exercises that Improve Back Extension

 

Mobility and Functional Strength Routine

What follows is a suggested routine that most people can do over 20 to 30 minutes on a daily basis to improve overall mobility and functional strength. Please keep the following tips in mind:

  • Let your body be your guide - only try movements that you feel capable of doing without hurting yourself. Even a few inches of movement (amplitude) and one or two repetitions of any of the exercises below will lead to some benefit.

Read more about Mobility and Functional Strength Routine>
 

Suggested Resources for a Home Gym

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A number of readers have asked for some thoughts on setting up a home gym. Being a minimalist in most spheres of life, I enjoy just a handful of tools that help me use movement with my own body weight to improve mobility and functional strength. Read more about Suggested Resources for a Home Gym

 

How to Make Quinoa Stuffed Avocados

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One of nature's healthiest high-protein foods? Check.

Easy to prepare, low in calories, and rich in flavor? Check.

Free of gluten, dairy, and animal protein that can become harmful when exposed to high temperatures? Check, check, and check. Read more about How to Make Quinoa Stuffed Avocados

 

How to Mobilize Your Feet

A common risk factor for spraining an ankle is wearing high heels, especially when walking on uneven terrain. If you wear high heels or did in the past, your fore-foot and mid-foot regions can likely benefit from some simple mobilization work, which is best done by a willing partner.

This video presents a brief look at how to mobilize your toes, metatarsals, and the articulations between your metatarsals and row of cuneiforms, cuboid, and navicular bones. Read more about How to Mobilize Your Feet

 

Ankle Plantar Flexion Stretch

If you've ever sprained an ankle, chances are that you have some shortened soft tissues or even scar tissue along the front and side of your ankle that is preventing optimal mobility whenever your foot is plantar-flexed.

This Ankle Plantar Flexion Stretch can help restore diminished plantar flexion to your ankles: Read more about Ankle Plantar Flexion Stretch

 

3 Fundamental Exercises for Functional Core Strength

To develop core strength via forearm plank pose, press your elbows strongly into the ground to keep your shoulder blades separated (protracted), keep your head neutral (not extended up), and try to maintain a straight line through your shoulders, hips, and ankles. Read more about 3 Fundamental Exercises for Functional Core Strength

 

How to Improve Shoulder Extension

There are very few activities of daily living that require us to use our innate capacity for shoulder extension - that is, to actively use our arms while they are behind us. This translates to having short biceps, brachialis, and pectoralis minor muscles, which predispose us to elbow and shoulder issues, including golfer's elbow, tennis elbow, and shoulder impingement syndrome.

For this reason, it's best that we include shoulder extension exercises in our self care programs. Read more about How to Improve Shoulder Extension

 

The Best Stretch for Tight Shoulder "Shawl" Muscles

If you experience tightness in your shoulder "shawl" muscles, you will likely benefit from this stretch, highly effective for lengthening your trapezius and levator scapulae muscles.

Please be sure to enable audio for guidance. If you have any questions, please feel free to leave them in the comments section below or you can always reach me at benkim@drbenkim.com. Read more about The Best Stretch for Tight Shoulder "Shawl" Muscles

 

Mindful Parenting for Gritty Children

If you're raising young children or even teenagers and wonder from time to time if your approach to parenting will yield emotionally intelligent, courageous, and persevering progeny, I think you'll find Dr. Angela Duckworth's book on Grit to be a worthwhile read. Read more about Mindful Parenting for Gritty Children

 

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