It’s time for some VerticAlign results. Meet Kelly:
Kelly is a successful business owner but with her thriving business, she works long hours at her desk. She had intense neck pain that would often debilitate her, interrupt her sleep and slow her down in staying active. She tried massage and chiropractic care, but would get only limited short term results.
Kelly completed 2 rounds (16 weeks) of the 8 week custom coaching program, and not only did her pain decrease considerably, she learned a lot about her body and was able to progress her workouts and see some incredible visual results as well.
She didn’t lose much on the scale, but her improved posture made her look more tone and lean.
Kelly was one of the most committed VerticAlign’s clients. She did her routine every day. She would also ask in depth questions during her video sessions to make sure she was completing her exercises effectively. We are so impressed with her results!
So they say “work your glutes”. In fact, I personally say it often. I’ve even ventured to tell you that working your glutes is more important that working your abs. Read more about this here. Today however, I want to focus on a specific glute muscle.
Lately, I’ve been super focused on the gluteus medius. This is located on the side of the hip. The muscle helps the other glutes with their functions (external rotation, hip extension) but it also has a solid role as a muscle stabilizer. Working this muscle is very important for a variety of movement symptoms:
Do your feet pronate (flat foot) and/or are your knees sore? Work the gluteus medius!
Do your hips shift side to side excessively when you walk? Work the gluteus medius!
Do you have a hip that sits higher than the other side? Work the gluteus medius!
You get the picture. Sometimes an “inactive” gluteus medius can cause havoc on the hip alignment and can create a pain that radiates down the body into the back, knees, ankles and feet.
Now this exercise is unique. It feels odd. You won’t know what to do with one of you arms. But check it out below and then I’ll give you some tips:
Here are my tips:
Stand against a wall. Your inside leg will be lifted into a 90 degree angle. Your inside shoulder should be touching the wall and your inside hand can rest on the lifted leg.
Make sure you are standing in good posture. The standing leg should be very straight. Your bent leg should be pushing into the wall.
You will be working both glutes. However each leg will feel different in how it is working.
Hold this position for at least 1 minute on each side.
Give this Wall Stork exercise a try and tell me what you feel. One client told me her weak glute woke up and she felt it tingling. Another client got so fatigued on one side she was able to immediately identify which glute was weaker. We are all different, so tell me how it affects YOU.
Please comment below and tell me how this feels in YOUR body!
It’s a common alignment problem: ROTATION. Rotation issues can cause dysfuntion such as hip pain, back pain, and knee pain. Where does it come from?
Who knows exactly. Maybe you crossed your legs the same way every day for years on end. Or your dominant hand/leg has taken over your non-dominant side, creating a natural rotation in the body. A shorter leg can cause these issues, as well as something simple like sleeping on the same side for years on end.
It’s important to figure out what is causing the rotation. However, even more important, is to learn exercises that will bring you back to balance.
When I’m working with a client who has rotation, I address it one of two ways, and a visual assessment helps me to determine which approach would be the best solution.
Some clients present their rotational imbalance in their thoracic spine (the midback area). A strong dominant hand, or consistent purse carrying or backpack carrying on one side, can exacerbate this problem. For exercises to address this problem, you can try this stretch:
Often times the rotation actually presents heavily in the hips. This is sometimes causes by leg length discrepancies, excessive leg crossing, or by sports such as golf or baseball.
For hip imbalances, I introduce a new exercise based on an old yoga posture. I call it Wall Triangle, and it can be a powerful exercise when done correctly.
1. Stand against a wall with the right heel against the wall. Externally rotate the left leg and place it 2 to 3 feet out to the side with the left foot parallel to the wall. (check it out: my foot is NOT parallel in this picture. My left foot needs to be turned out more. Shame on me!)
2. Make sure both glutes are against the wall. Bring the arms out to a T position, placing the head, both shoulders and hands against the wall.
3. Lean the upper body down to the left as far as you can, keeping the hands, shoulders and glutes up against the wall.
4. Use your abdominals to stabilize and hold this position for 30 seconds to 1 minute .
Now, I must CAUTION YOU! This exercise can be very challenging to hold and can create some powerful change in the body. If you are feeling any discomfort, back out of the exercise and try holding a shorter period of time, or don’t lower your upper body down too far. The most important piece of this exercise is the glute alignment on the wall, and the feet and leg positions.
You can watch a quick video description here:
Give it a try and please comment below on how it felt. I read every comment and respond to every email I receive!