Guest Blog by Physioworks- Activate your Core
Activate Your Core
By Physiotherapist Jessie Wu, www.ptworks.ca
Summer is here! Or at least according to the calendar it is. But either way, we are starting to get outside and being more active. Whether it’s gardening, playing beach volleyball, or simply taking the kids out to the park, we are bending, twisting, and generally moving more than usual. It is not surprising to see a rise in back aches and pains in the clinic this time of year. Here are some tips to help you prevent injury and stay healthy:
1. Strengthen your core - Your core holds your spine in a neutral position ie. good posture and protects your back from stress. It allows you to move stronger and more efficiently through your limbs. Some basic strengthening exercises are:
Bird and Dog
2. Have good posture and mechanics - Be aware of your ergonomics. Stay low to the ground and avoid excessive reaching away from your body. Try to keep your back straight when bending and if you are lifting, keep loads close to your body. Also, limit the amount of twisting through your spine – move your feet instead! Here are some exercises to practice good ergonomics and posture:
3) Have a proper warm-up and stretch after – Ease into your activity. Start with some global dynamic movements related to your activity. For example, if you are golfing, warm up with some trunk rotations. If possible, get your heart rate up a bit as well. Try going for a brisk walk or light jog for 15 mins. Remember to stretch after – focus on the main muscle groups you used. Here are some common warm up movements:
So get out there and take advantage of our beautiful city! Remember to pace yourself and vary up your activities. Consult a physiotherapist if you want some more specific stretches and strength exercises for your activity or sport.
Jessie is a registered physiotherapist who received her training from the University of British Columbia. Jessie’s main interests include sports injuries, neck/back injuries, arthritis, peri-natal care, and pre/post-surgical rehabilitation. Her treatment philosophy combines the use of manual therapy, exercise and education to achieve long term results for her clients.
Jessie is an owner of PhysioWorks, a progressive multi-disciplinary clinic offering physiotherapy, massage therapy, and active rehabilitation services to Kitsilano, Point Grey, and surrounding Vancouver communities.