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Whole Body Movement

Just in case you missed Part 1, Progressive What? I thought Overload was Harmful. This will be the more concise summary version. If anything here sounds weird, please refer to Part 1. KEY MESSAGES: Pain or injury happens when you load a part of your body more than that part of the body has the capacity to resist that load. This is why we call it an “overload” or “overuse” injury. (Note that persistent or chronic pain is...

I get a lot of questions from clients about how to strengthen the core. The questions I hear often come with deep confusion after clients have read a variety of contradicting junk views out there on the interwebs. AND despite the Myth of Core Stability being debunked as early as 2007, the number of yoga and fitness classes out there these days promising “hard abs” or a “strong core” to “protect the low back” or...

Yoga is a wonderful practice for connecting the mind and body, calming the nervous system and increasing feelings of well-being. That's what got me hooked more than 20 years ago. That high I felt after a yoga practice. And so I practiced and my mind felt clear and my heart felt open. But too much of a good thing lead me to physical imbalances.  No single movement practice contains everything and my body was craving the movements...

If you’ve been to any of my classes or workshops you’ll know that I absolutely love learning about anatomy, alignment, biomechanics and how it all relates to the practice of yoga. Over the years my understanding of the purpose of alignment in yoga or any movement practice has changed. Significantly. I recently taught a workshop on this topic as part of a 200-hr. Yoga Teacher Training program and was inspired to share some insights here. When I...

This year we decided to enter the Northwest Territories Recreation and Parks Association’s (NWTRPA) Walk to Tuk challenge as a family. With two adults and 2 kids (ages 6 and 8) we would need to each walk an average of 7km each day of the 2 months to complete the 1658 km journey (and get our t-shirts!). Less than a century ago walking that distance daily or more would have been normal but in our car-driving,...

In my recent blog posts on tight muscles not needing to be stretched and lengthened and strength-training not shortening your muscles, I mentioned that increases in flexibility or passive range of motion resulting from yoga or passive stretching practices don’t stem from increases in resting muscle length but from the nervous system being able to tolerate the stretch better. This mechanism of the nervous system is known as stretch tolerance. To recap, when you hit your...

We’ve established that a “tight” muscle is not a short or contracted muscle and that “tight” is a subjective sensation of the nervous system. If you missed that blog you can catch up here. So let’s continue and do away with another popular myth that states, “Strength training will contract your muscles and make their resting lengths shorter and therefore should be accompanied by stretching to lengthen them back out.” The previous blog described how stretching doesn’t...

I recently taught a class called “Foot Gymnastics for Dynamic Aging”. The class was designed to introduce people to the importance of their feet (the foundation of support for the rest of you, major role in balance and agility, etc.), and explain how paying more attention to our feet and giving them some movement inputs daily can help prevent the loss in balance and mobility we have come to expect is a natural part of...

If you’ve been to one of my workshops or classes you probably know that I pay a lot of attention to feet. They are the foundation that supports our entire body, our entire posture and if something is not functioning well in the feet it can have a ripple effect on e.v.e.r.y.t.h.i.n.g. In the body, that is. I often compare this to your house. If there is a cracking or unstable foundation that results in a...