Best 4 Exercises to Prevent Decline with Age

“Aging is not lost youth but a new stage of opportunity and strength.” We all age a little bit every day. Getting older is just a fact of life, but the rate of decline in our physical and mental health depends on our daily choices. Are you active, or do you spend most of your … Continue reading “Best 4 Exercises to Prevent Decline with Age”

“Aging is not lost youth but a new stage of opportunity and strength.”
We all age a little bit every day. Getting older is just a fact of life, but the rate of decline in our physical and mental health depends on our daily choices. Are you active, or do you spend most of your free time on the couch? Do you lift weights, or do you have a hard time lifting your groceries? Are you setting yourself up for a happy future or a struggle?

 

One of the most noticeable side effects of aging is loss of muscle mass, which can ultimately lead to a decline in functional activities. Signs of shrinking muscles include avoiding stairs, having to use walls and furniture for balance, and being unable to comfortably get on and off the floor. In this blog post are four easy but essential exercises to keep your lower body, trunk, and upper body strong enough to tackle anything you need to do as you get older!

 

Exercises:

 

A general guideline used in strength training is to train major muscle groups 3-5x per week. This means to do these four exercises at least 3x throughout the week.  4 sets of 8-15 reps of each exercise have shown to be the most versatile in gaining muscle strength and endurance.

 

Depending on your fitness levels, you may notice changes after a few weeks, or you may need more resistance and an increase in exercise volume to see noticeable changes.  You can always add resistance by using weights or resistance bands with some of these exercises. However, body weight exercise is better than no exercise at all! The great thing about these 4 simple exercises is they require almost no equipment except for a chair and a wall!

 

If you need more help maintaining mobility, inquire about our virtual classes or virtual 1 on 1 physical therapy and wellness services (exercise training also available!) Call (619) 260-0750 today!

MAKE DO WITH WHAT YOU HAVE AT HOME – TIPS FOR HOME WORKSTATION

Many of you are now working from home due to the novel coronavirus, but don’t necessarily have the ergonomic workstation that you were accustomed to using at your office.   You are also probably using a laptop, likely for hours on end, at your kitchen table,  dining room table, coffee table, on your couch or … Continue reading “MAKE DO WITH WHAT YOU HAVE AT HOME – TIPS FOR HOME WORKSTATION”

Many of you are now working from home due to the novel coronavirus, but don’t necessarily have the ergonomic workstation that you were accustomed to using at your office.   You are also probably using a laptop, likely for hours on end, at your kitchen table,  dining room table, coffee table, on your couch or on your bed. Doing this for weeks or months on end you are likely experiencing maybe for the first time neck, shoulder and back muscle aches and pains that you didn’t have before you were relegated to working out of your home. One solution is to go online and buy an expensive chair, desk and other specialized equipment.  Or you can properly use what you have at home by making just a few simple adjustments to your present work situation.

Mirriam-Webster’ definition of ergonomics is “an applied science concerned with designing and arranging things people use so that people and what they use interact most efficiently and safely”. If you can accomplish this by making a few simple changes you will not only be more productive and better focused, but will avoid the strains and pains that go along with prolonged improper sitting postures. 

 

Here are a few easy suggestions using what you have at home to prevent undue muscle strain to your neck, shoulders and back whether you use a desktop or laptop:

  • Use a straight back chair at your dining or kitchen table.  Sit as far back in your chair as you can so your back touches the back rest.  If you can’t sit all the way back you can fill in the gap using a rolled towel or pillow. This will enable you to sit up straight rather than having to lean too forward to too far back which will put stress on your neck, shoulders and back.  
  • Plant your feet flat on the floor.  Don’t cross or sit on your legs.   If your feet can’t touch the floor, rest your feet on a platform that you can create with a stack of books, a wood box or a cushion.  
  • Ideally your forearms should be parallel to the floor with your hands resting on your keyboard.  If the table is too low then place your laptop on some type of raised surface.   If the table is too high then sit on a cushion to raise yourself up to meet the ideal forearm position.  
  • For prolonged laptop use, a laptop stand is recommended (which you can create yourself) but this would also require an investment in an external keyboard and mouse.   If that is not practical,  make sure your screen is tilted back slightly and move your chair away from your table so that the laptop screen is about an arm’s length away and near the edge of the table.   This posture will prevent you from leaning forward.

Now that you have designed a more ideal ergonomic workstation, staying in one place for too long will take its toll on you no matter how good your posture is, unless you take breaks!   So set your smart watches!  Ideally, you need to stretch, stand up, move about approximately every 20-30 minutes for at least a minute, but 5-10 min would be even better.      

Whether you have pain or stiffness that has just started or troubling you for months from too much sitting, typing, or other close work, your physical therapist can give you more suggestions on setting up your workstation or instructing you with a stretching routine.  

We’re here if you need us at Innovative Physical Therapy for in person appointments (yes, we are open!) or via virtual (telehealth) appointments!  

Call us at 619-260-0750 or email info@innovativept.net for more information or to book your appointment today.

researched and written by: Marilyn Johnson, PT. 
https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/ergonomics?utm_campaign=sd&utm_medium=serp&utm_source=jsonld

 

 

 

 

 

So you think you can squat!

Why does form matter? Proper form helps you work out more efficiently so you can use your energy for the extra push rather than wasted movements. Improper form may mean you are targeting unintended muscles or muscle groups. The better your form the better your results – run faster, lift more, and jump higher when you do it right. More importantly, when you … Continue reading “So you think you can squat!”

Why does form matter?

Proper form helps you work out more efficiently so you can use your energy for the extra push rather than wasted movements. Improper form may mean you are targeting unintended muscles or muscle groups. The better your form the better your results – run faster, lift more, and jump higher when you do it right. More importantly, when you use improper form you risk serious injury.

Today we’re going to talk about three functional exercises. A functional exercise strengthens the muscles that you use on a daily basis doing everyday activities.

Squats

Squats are an essential exercise since we constantly bend down to either pick or lift something up. It is a great exercise that strengthens the quads, rectus abdominis, and posterior chain of muscles: erector spinae, hamstrings, gluteus maximus. If performed correctly, squats can improve our activities of daily living, and help reduce the risk of potential injuries. Here are some squatting cues to help you perform the perfect squat!

Squatting Cues:

    • Start off standing with good posture: neutral spine and feet shoulder width apart.
    • The initial movement is to hinge at the hips
    • As you hinge your hips, bend your knees to get lower. Go as low till your thighs are parallel to the ground. If you’re not able to go as low, bend your knees to where you’ll feel the tension on your quads before any pain.
    • When you are at the end point of the squat, make sure your torso and shins are parallel to each other, your heels are planted on the ground, and your weight should be more on the midfoot.
    • As you go back up, make sure your knees and hips are extending at the same time.
    • Also, when you go up, make sure your knees don’t cave in. Do your best to maintain your base position and drive the knees out. Caving of the knees (valgus) can potentially lead to hip or knee injuries.
    • It is important to always maintain that neutral position. Common myth of performing the squat, especially the back squat with a barbell, is to look up. Looking up will actually put more pressure on the thoracic spine and lead to injury.

Deadlifts

Everyday when we constantly bend over and pick something up, we’re performing a type of weight lifting exercise, the deadlift. A deadlift is a functional full body exercise that involves lifting up weights/objects from the ground to hip level. Although we perform this movement on a consistent basis, is it done correctly?

Cues/Tips for performing the deadlift:

  • Hinge at the hips
    The deadlift uses the posterior chain muscles (glutes, hamstrings, erector spinae muscles). Hinging at the hips will help activate these groups of muscles.
  • Knees bent and heels flat on the ground
    Establish a solid base and an even distribution of weight on the feet so you won’t fall too forward or back.
  • Maintain a neutral spine
    DO NOT ROUND THE BACK!!! This is very important while performing the deadlift. You want to retract the scapulas, keep the back straight and engage that lower back and core. Just imagine a rod is on your back, you want that rod to maintain the 3 points of contact: Your head, thoracic spine, and sacrum (butt).
  • Hips and Knees should fully extend at the same time
    Evenly distribute the load on the lower back, hips, and legs. Extending the legs first will require more muscle activation on the lower back, and can potentially lead to an injury.

Following these cues will help improve your activities of daily living (ADL), and help reduce back pain while lifting. So next time you grab those grocery bags, or pick up and place down that heavy box/object, be very conscious and aware of your body positioning. Also, don’t forget to always engage that core!

Planks

The plank is a great full body exercise to strengthen the core. It also targets the back, shoulders, and quads. Virtually any age group can perform the plank exercise. There are always modifications if you cannot safely get on the floor, such as holding the plank position at a slanted angle on a sturdy table or chair.

  • Benefits of the plank exercise
  • Strengthens your core
  • Gives you better posture and helps with back pain
  • Improves flexibility
  • Enhances bone and joint health
  • Mental fortitude

How to do a plank

  • Go into push-up position on the floor.
  • Now bend your elbows 90 degrees and rest your weight on your forearms.
  • Keep your torso straight and rigid and your body in a straight line from ears to toes with no sagging or bending.
  • Your head is relaxed and you should be looking at the floor.
  • Hold the position for as long as you can.
    • For beginners, hold for 30 seconds to build up tolerance and core strength
  • Remember to breathe. Inhale and exhale slowly and steadily.

Questions? Give us a call!

Walking : The New Quarantine Workout

Amidst all this chaos with COVID-19 and being quarantined, many people are finding it difficult to fit in activity and workouts. Many are taking up walking as their primary mode of exercise or even to just get out of the house. The problem is that many people did not walk this much prior to the … Continue reading “Walking : The New Quarantine Workout”

Amidst all this chaos with COVID-19 and being quarantined, many people are finding it difficult to fit in activity and workouts. Many are taking up walking as their primary mode of exercise or even to just get out of the house. The problem is that many people did not walk this much prior to the quarantine orders so there is some risk in experiencing overuse injury or repetitive stress.

For example,

If my body is only used to walking 3,000 steps per day, and all of a sudden I change that to 15,000 steps per day, that is a lot more stress on your tissues that your body is not used to.

Therefore, it is important to discuss progressive overload – or the practice of slowly stressing tissues to become stronger to make the adaptations to increase the tolerance of those tissues to activity. For this, you want to start at your baseline –

  • How many steps do you typically take in a day?

OR

  • How many minutes do you normally walk, or how far do you typically walk?

Instead of increasing drastically from your baseline, try to increase in small increments.

For example,

If you take 3,000 steps per day, the next day go out for 5,000, then 7,000, then continually increase. You can take this same principle and apply it to how long you are walking for time or for distance.

This way your tissues can build tolerance to the increasing stress you are putting on your body rather than sustaining overuse injuries such as plantar fasciitis, achilles tendinopathy, and shin splints.

There are plenty of exercises that can also prepare your feet, legs, and body for more activity like walking, running, and doing virtual workout classes. Foot health is one of the most neglected aspects of fitness and wellness – there are numerous activities and specific exercises to help take care of your foundation (FEET!)

Look out for our video coming soon on some simple foot exercises.

If you would like more advice about how to specifically use the principles of progressive overload for walking, running, or any other activities let us know and schedule a virtual session with one of our therapists! We also are still open to see patients in person! Stay healthy, stay active, and stay innovative in these crazy times!

Book/Call us at 619-260-0750 or email us at info@innovativept.net

Telehealth Services Now Being Covered by Most Insurance Companies

We at IPT are excited to announce that Telehealth services are now being covered by most insurance companies! This is extremely important and helpful in continuing to work through your PT recovery. Please call us at the office 619-260-0750 or email us at info@innovativept.net to see if your insurance company will cover our new Telehealth … Continue reading “Telehealth Services Now Being Covered by Most Insurance Companies”

We at IPT are excited to announce that Telehealth services are now being covered by most insurance companies! This is extremely important and helpful in continuing to work through your PT recovery. Please call us at the office 619-260-0750 or email us at info@innovativept.net to see if your insurance company will cover our new Telehealth services so you can continue and or start your recovery today!

Checking In: Staying Healthy & Active

Hi IPT Family! Checking in to stress the importance of staying healthy and active during this quarantine. Whether it’s taking daily vitamins, remembering to eat healthier or adding a home workout to your new normal, all of these things can and will help better your mental and physical health!

Hi IPT Family!

Checking in to stress the importance of staying healthy and active during this quarantine. Whether it’s taking daily vitamins, remembering to eat healthier or adding a home workout to your new normal, all of these things can and will help better your mental and physical health!

IPT Clinic Temporarily Closed due to COVID-19

We at IPT just wanted to let you know we are temporarily closing to comply with the CA state Governor’s “Stay at Home” order. We will be canceling your visit this upcoming week if you had an appointment and will continue to do so on a week to week basis. We are working on setting … Continue reading “IPT Clinic Temporarily Closed due to COVID-19”

We at IPT just wanted to let you know we are temporarily closing to comply with the CA state Governor’s “Stay at Home” order. We will be canceling your visit this upcoming week if you had an appointment and will continue to do so on a week to week basis. We are working on setting up tele-health via insurance but currently offer it on a cash basis. If you are interested we can set you up on the schedule. On another note, we are offering live virtual exercise classes daily. Check out our website and social media for the schedule. www.innovativept.net/book-a-class or on Instagram @innovative_physicaltherapy

Book A Spot! Virtual Fitness Classes & Private PT Sessions Available Online!

Hello ALL! Given the most recent updates on COVID-19, we are not offering any in clinic fitness classes, we are operating all fitness classes ONLINE! Please sign up via zoom on our website: www.innovativept.net/book-a-class or give us a call at 619-260-0750!

Hello ALL!

Given the most recent updates on COVID-19, we are not offering any in clinic fitness classes, we are operating all fitness classes ONLINE! Please sign up via zoom on our website: www.innovativept.net/book-a-class or give us a call at 619-260-0750!

Virtual Physical Therapy Sessions & Fitness Classes Now Available!

As of today, Innovative Physical Therapy will remain open offering it’s regular services. In addition, we are now offering virtual sessions of one on one Physical Therapy and our Yoga, Pilates and Balance classes for both existing patients and new patients. Please give us a call to learn how to get connected with us virtually … Continue reading “Virtual Physical Therapy Sessions & Fitness Classes Now Available!”

As of today, Innovative Physical Therapy will remain open offering it’s regular services. In addition, we are now offering virtual sessions of one on one Physical Therapy and our Yoga, Pilates and Balance classes for both existing patients and new patients.

Please give us a call to learn how to get connected with us virtually 619-260-0750 or email info@innovativept.net

COVID-19 Advisory from Innovative Physical Therapy

Dear Innovative Physical Therapy Patients & Colleagues, With the increasing number of cases of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) being reported across the world, Innovative Physical Therapy wants to ensure all of you that we are taking every precaution and will provide as much information regarding this situation as it arises. At this moment the clinic is … Continue reading “COVID-19 Advisory from Innovative Physical Therapy”

Dear Innovative Physical Therapy Patients & Colleagues,

With the increasing number of cases of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) being reported across the world, Innovative Physical Therapy wants to ensure all of you that we are taking every precaution and will provide as much information regarding this situation as it arises.

At this moment the clinic is still open Monday-Friday, with no intention of closing. We are taking extra precaution in making sure not only our staff but each patient respectfully washes their hands before and after treatment, including any time in between when using clinic equipment. We are implementing additional cleaning around the clinic ie: treatment rooms, treatment tables, equipment and countertops with Cavi cleaning wipes, which are used for medical and surgical operational facilities.

We are monitoring all news reports from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the State Department, United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee (USOPC), and The World Health Organization (WHO) for the latest updates.

To reinforce health safety and best practices for illness prevention, please read the list below:

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
  • Follow the CDC’s recommendations for using a facemask.
  • The CDC recommends that ONLY people who are ill wear a face mask, as it can be an effective tool to help prevent the transmission of respiratory illnesses including Coronavirus.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
  • If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Always wash hands with soap and water if hands are visibly dirty.

For information about hand-washing, click HERE

Your safety and health is of our utmost importance and we understand the concerns you may have. Please do not hesitate to email or call us for more information.

Email: info@innovativept.net

Phone: 619-260-0750