Author Archives: Zeena Dhalla
Author Archives: Zeena Dhalla
I was teaching clients in my studio a few days ago, and I said to them, “This is the best (but often hardest) exercise you can do daily”. Then I paused and said, “I think I’m going to write about it!”
So here I am, and here is the exercise:
These are the reasons why I love the reverse plank tabletop exercise so much:
1. It offers a killer chest and anterior shoulder stretch.
2. It forces your back muscles to work and support you in the lifted position.
3. The hamstrings fire to lift the hips, and the core has to engage to keep the pelvis still.
4. The whole backside of the body is working while the front side is stretching.
Now, let’s get real. Many people find this super difficult, because it’s a pretty intense chest opener. If you hunch forward at all, this exercise may be very uncomfortable! Beware, your hamstrings could begin to cramp if they are not used to working this way.
Now that I might have scared you away from trying it, let me add 3 warm up exercises you can do BEFORE attempting to do a reverse tabletop plank.
First, let’s do a quick chest stretch to open up the chest and shoulders.
Second, let’s do a pelvic curl to wake up the hamstrings and glutes.
Third, let’s do an exercise I call “hand pumps supine” to warm up the lats and other muscles that pull the shoulders away from the ears.
Finally, let’s try the reverse plank again. Is it easier? Do you now feel able to complete the exercise? Finally, do you think you can hold his for at least 30 seconds? Comment below as I’m curious to hear your answers.
So there you have it. A 4 exercise routine that will almost guarantee success in performing my favorite exercise. Do this daily, and you’re sure to get stronger in your backside and more flexible in your front side.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: sitting is the new smoking. We are living in a world where sitting, inactive, all day long, can kill your back, neck, spine, pelvis, knees, hips, shoulders and feet. But you need to work at your computer! While a sit/stand desk is an option, you can still find yourself sitting far too long.
So… you need a chair that can minimize the negative effects of sitting..
Luckily…. I found one for you! In the past I have recommended the Gaiam Ball Chair. I’ve been using the ball chair for years, but I like this one better and have swapped it out at my own work station.
Introducing the ErgoErgo Active Sitting Chair:
I love this chair for a few posture specific reasons. First, the backless design forces you to sit up straight and not lean back to get lazy. I also enjoy being able to spread my knees wide and feel unlimited to move my body in the lateral range of motion (no arms rests in the way!).
When you sit on it, you will find the chair tilts forward a bit. This places the pelvis into an optimal position versus in the rounded (posterior) position which I find to be dreaded for the lower back.
When I used to sit on the ball chair, I found myself crossing my legs inappropriately and hunching over. On the ErgoErgo, this is not possible! The “active” part of the sitting won’t allow you to sit for too long in an incorrect position.
Now let’s talk more about the “active sitting” part of this amazing chair. The goal of this is to create movement in our day. This product does this and makes it fun and interesting. You can rotate your pelvis in circles, side to side, back and forth. AND do it while keeping your hands on the keyboard the whole time. It felt amazing on for my spine. I found myself sitting in better posture for hours on end because I didn’t have to sit STILL.
To get a good idea on how the chair works, check out my youtube channel here. I’ve demonstrated how this chair moves.
Now, to the one CON of this product: the height. Unfortunately, unlike the ball chair where you can blow up the ball, the ErgoErgo chair cannot be adjusted for height. This doesn’t matter for me since I have a sit/stand desk and therefore can adjust my desk to the height that I need. But for the average consumer who has a fixed desk height you will want to make sure you can sit on this chair and still have your screen at eye height and you elbows flexed at 90 degrees for proper hand/keyboard alignment.
The ErgoErgo website claims that the chair shrinks a little when you sit on it; It therefore adjusts to average “chair” heights and can accommodate sitters from height 5’0” to 6’4”. To be honest, I find it hard to believe that this chair, without the normal ability to move it up and down, can fit this huge range comfortably. However I do believe that if you fall in the 5’5” to 6’0” range you should be able to make it feel comfortable.
Like with any new desk product, you’re gonna want to ease into the use of it since you don’t want to shock your body and make it sore!
There is a kid version of the chair You bet I will be ordering one for my kid, and wishing we could install one into every classroom in America. Why do some kids have a hard time sitting still in class? Largely because their little brains and bodies were not meant to! This chair gives them the freedom to move and counteract the effects that sitting and technology are having on their little postures.
I am in love with this chair and can’t wait to hear what you think. You can order it here and I hope it gives you the freedom to get more activity and postural alignment into your sitting day.
In health and good posture,
PS. What does your current chair look like? Feel free to send me a picture of you in your chair for my analysis! Especially if it’s fun and unique like the ErgoErgo…
Has anyone ever told you that your pain is a result of your stress or emotions? Maybe your logical mind decided to ignore their comment, because, well, you decided that this “emotions cause pain” stuff is all a load of crap. If I can be super honest with you, I’ve been told this before, and I didn’t believe it at all.
Well, I didn’t think it was crap, I just thought to myself: “there is NO WAY this pain is just in my head.”
Because, that’s what that means, right? If your emotions impact your pain, then it must mean there is something wrong with the way you think, and as a result feel. It means that there is no knee issue, or back spasm, or cervical spine issue like your doctor says there is. Some might think that people who think their emotions rule their pain must be “alternative” or “quacky”.
But let’s think about it logically. When you are nervous, sometimes you get a topsy turvy stomach, right? Ever been caught in a lie? Ever find yourself sweating much when you were? Or how about that time your uncle was admitted to the hospital for what you thought was a heart attack, but luckily ended up being an anxiety attack. Phew!
Let’s face it. There is absolutely a link between your emotions and how you feel. I deal with pain with my clients on a regular basis. I spend a lot of time looking into solutions to help my clients on every level. Today I bring one of my secret weapons to you.
Emotional Freedom Technique (AKA EFT or sometimes called “Tapping”) is a powerful tool that helps you deal with emotions that are exacerbating your pain. In fact you can use EFT for a variety of self help issues (financial freedom, food self-control). Today we are only focused on how you can use EFT to help minimize pain.
So what exactly is EFT? Watch this interview with my guru Kim Cook (www.TheBodysEnergy,com) where she explains the technique, how it works, and even takes me through a 3 minute EFT sequence.
Let me break down the interview for you so you know what to listen for:
1:27: Kim explains how EFT works from a scientific perspective.
2:33 She highlights some research on acupressure from Harvard Medical School and links it to the benefits of EFT.
3:55 Kim shares a personal story about a client who reduced his post-surgery pain by 50% in under 15 minutes.
9:47 Even heard of “chasing the pain”? Kim explains what this is and how it works.
10:13 We review the meridian tapping points and explain exactly how to hit them.
13:26 Kim and I use EFT to reduce our pain!
After you complete watching this video you will want to start tapping yourself. I’ve put together an “EFT” tapping script cheat sheet that you can get sent to your email inbox by entering your information at the bottom of the email. This cheat sheet tells you exactly what to say when you are tapping on certain meridian points in your body.
I’ve used EFT for a few years now, and let me tell you, it works. It has helped me reduce pain, calm anxiety, and helped me make stressful and important business decisions. I use EFT in the middle of the night when I can’t sleep. It’s even helped my 9 year old daughter to feel more confident sleeping on her own. I only share the information with you that I think is ultra valuable. This technique is as powerful as they come.
Sure, you might feel odd giving it a try. But feeling weird and trying something “alternative” is far better than living in pain.
Don’t you think?
Comment below and let me know if you’ve ever tried EFT. I’m always surprised to hear that more people have heard and tried EFT than I think.