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MZZCHIEF's Photo MZZCHIEF Posts: 9,410
12/9/12 5:03 P

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Thanks Brigit for youtube! I haven't gone yet (will after I type this), but it really does sound like something I could benefit from!

I agree Pet, about yoga and the spine.

Getting on the youtube now!
Thx to you both... have a fun day!

: )
Mzzchief






Edited by: MZZCHIEF at: 12/9/2012 (17:12)
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PETALIA's Photo PETALIA SparkPoints: (83,858)
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12/9/12 3:53 P

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Every yoga asana/posture is about elongating the spine. For example, when doing a forward fold it's better to bend the knees in order to make a long spine rather than keeping the knees straight and hunching in the shoulders and rounding the spine. I am constantly telling myself to keep my shoulders back and down and have my spine as long and straight as I can. I often need to modify the posture by having bent knees or using blocks or a strap in order to attain a straighter spine.

I second the Pete Egoscue "Pain Free" book. He seems so wise. I have used his exercises while contending with a long and drawn-out injury.

HOUNDLOVER1's Photo HOUNDLOVER1 Posts: 8,358
12/9/12 1:02 A

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MZZCHIEF,
just saw this thread now and share in the desire to do push-ups. I'm getting better at bench presses but for me the fly is harder and I have to progress very slowly to not have to deal with tendinitis in my lower arm. I know I will get there but it may take me half a year until I can do any real push-ups.
Concerning the spine, I wonder if you have seen the books or website by Pete Egoscue. It's a physcial therapy/balance restoring type approach that uses gravity-based exercises and the chapter in his book "Pain Free" on back pain may be very helpful for you. This method is very empowering. It helps people to restore balance (front to back and right to left) to their body. This can be very helpful for many sports where uneven muscle development leads to an increased risk of injury or a reduction in performance.
Some info about this method is available here:
www.youtube.com/watch?v=617ArdaCc6I

Here is a link for exercises for the lower back:


Here is another link that has some exercises:
www.youtube.com/watch?v=VNTU4-ojHXE

The Egoscue method has been very helpful to me to correct muscle imbalances that I had had for many years but that were having a negative effect when horseback riding, where balance is extremely important for effective cuing of the horse and it also helped my running technique, keeping me completely injury free.

Birgit

You can talk to God all you want and that's great, but the changes happen when you start listening to him.

BE THE CHANGE YOU WANT TO SEE IN OTHERS.




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MZZCHIEF's Photo MZZCHIEF Posts: 9,410
12/8/12 3:55 P

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Thx, Pet!
I did some lat pulldowns today on one of the machines after Core and Yoga today.
I'm thinking I will start with that machine and add things as my back gets stronger.

About the Zumba... it will really put some motion in your ocean!
The trick is not to get discouraged... I was a classic case of "frozen pelvis", absolute no Elvis or Hula gene in me at all! Soooo sad! hahaha

I started out with a Zumba instructor that was heavy on the choreography/footwork... whose moves weren't hmmm, I guess I'd say as physical/athletic?

The Y added more Zumba and I took a class with another instructor.
What a difference!
Different music, beats, moves... just a lot of fun, with plenty of room to "personalize" your moves. There's a "core" of regular songs/dances that she plays in each class with set choreography.... so you're not caught up in the "what comes next am I doing this right am I going to run someone over"trap.. you can just move with the music.
My smile gets just as much of a workout as my body in her class... which I think is a valuable and overlooked feature to fitness, the sheer joy of movement.

Prolly more than you wanted to know... ha bu there it is!
Have a fun weekend...

: )
Mzzchief

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PETALIA's Photo PETALIA SparkPoints: (83,858)
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12/8/12 11:41 A

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Wow MZZCHIEF, you do loads of good stuff! Off hand, I don't know what particular asanas would be good but I bet an internet search, YogaJournal online, or even SP's Yoga Lovers team could help you out. I don't use the machines very much myself or practice kettelbells, yet. I like reading all the good attributes of Zumba you wrote about. I always wondered...

MZZCHIEF's Photo MZZCHIEF Posts: 9,410
12/8/12 10:28 A

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Petalia.. which yoga moves in particular do you think have helped you most?

Yoga has been a lifesaver for my spine.

Believe me, I know how important a straight, flexible spine is to health... and everyday posture, inclusive of sitting at the computer.
I look with envy at those who with long, beautifully straight spines... they're everywhere... but I'm stuck making the best of it with my crooked one. LOL

Sorry... should have mentioned what I already do. Pilates, yoga, 30 minutes of core class 3xs a week, flexible strength training(a mix between Pilates and Ballet with light weights, movement and a 9 pound body bar), walking, free weight lifting (weights kept under 12 pounds), step aerobix and most recently Zumba.

I don't use the machines or kettle bells.
Yet.
Would appreciate some advice on which machines would be best for building the back, shoulders and arms... starting weight to use, etc.

Zumba, which I used to consider to be a "blow off" dance class, has been wonderful for restoring flexibility in my lower spine and hip area.... as well as exercising the core as you work your body in ways that you don't in other classes. That is if you actually "do" the moves, build up a good sweat, and don't "sleepwalk" thru them.


Appreciate everyone's input.
thx

: )
Mzzchief



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PETALIA's Photo PETALIA SparkPoints: (83,858)
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12/8/12 7:37 A

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You've got specifics and I'm no expert. I do have a few thoughts. Both plank and pushups require a great deal of core strength. Sure, arms, too, but core strength and balance are big. Perhaps you might work on abs/core strengthening. Yoga is all about elongating the spine. In every posture, that physical aspect, that of having a long spine, is the most important. I practice a hot, power yoga in which every class devotes a section to non-yoga asana core work. Some sort of yoga, something gentle, might help you with spine straightening and lengthening and core strength, too. After a year of intense practice, I grew a couple of centimeters. I must have been pretty compressed in my spine. Many yoga practitioners have experienced something similar. The more I think about it, the more practicing some sort of yoga makes a great deal of sense to me for spine dilemmas. A good teacher, one who is knowledgeable, does no harm, and is gentle would be important to find. I bet you could not only develop core strength and do pushups and planks, but relearn how to use your entire body as a whole with emphasis on elongating and straightening your spine. Could be fun as well as effective. I wish you lots of luck.

LAMOURA's Photo LAMOURA Posts: 18,691
12/8/12 12:36 A

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Sorry about your funds...I would try the crunches and bench press. Have you gone unto these two sites.... www.collagevideo.com/ and this one www.totalfitnessdvds.com/ and see what kind of workouts would help you? You can also contact these two places and ask them about different workouts that would help you achieve your goals? emoticon

www.collagevideo.com/searchresults.a
sp
x?type=all&search=back


Edited by: LAMOURA at: 12/8/2012 (00:39)
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MZZCHIEF's Photo MZZCHIEF Posts: 9,410
12/7/12 11:56 P

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Thanks you two for your advice!
A physiotherapist is a fabulous idea, unfortunately I don't have the funds.

: )
Mzzchief

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LAMOURA's Photo LAMOURA Posts: 18,691
12/7/12 2:33 P

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Lying down crunches would help your core get stronger whiile supporting your back and the bench press will increase your upper body strength...combining both exercise might do the trick. But maybe check in with a physiotherapist and see what they would recommend. emoticon

Edited by: LAMOURA at: 12/7/2012 (14:33)
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BOBINVA's Photo BOBINVA SparkPoints: (89,739)
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12/7/12 11:12 A

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I am at a loss to help you, particularly with respect to the physical conditions you mentioned. I would check with someone who practices sports medecine to get a better idea of the actual phycsical limitations and help find some stength exercises for your stability. What you might try is a bench press machine, where you sit in one position and your arms are at a fixed width while you push forward. It does not address the stability issue, but will help strengthen the muscles for push ups.

Bob


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MZZCHIEF's Photo MZZCHIEF Posts: 9,410
12/7/12 10:24 A

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I am curious if anyone else has this problem, and which muscles I can exercise to fix it in a position I am capable of maintaining(like on my back, standing, etc), so that I can build up to doing a push-up, or hold a plank. And not look like an inch worm while doing it! ha

Contributory to this problem.. I have mild scoliosis and kyphosis (humpback), neither which are obvious to the casual eye... well until I try to do something like a plank or push up.

Then my body's like a straight line, with a hump mid ribcage with the right ribs sticking up and out and a sway in my lower back. Its a definite "look at the mutant" look. LOL

I can't for the life of me get either two of these curves to flatten out.

When I was younger, I had moderate success holding a plank, but push ups have always been impossible. I suspect that the hump is now calcified and rigid, so that I can no longer voluntarily straighten it, which is what throws off the lower back resulting in sway. I don't have a problem with my lumbar spine, its still quite flexible, so I'm thinking in part its sway must be to compensate for the rigid arch of the thoracic spine.

Push ups and plank position both cause my chest earthward to collapse between my shoulders. I have very flexible shoulders which I believe are the result of my body having to compensate for an inflexible thoracic spine and life long fitness routines.

I'm able to do flys and presses on my back with 12 pound hand weights. but I can't seem to get past three reps of 10 with 12 pounds. Any suggestions for pushing that would be appreciated.

I'm thinking I'd need to lift more than that to do a push up, since my torso clearly is more than 24 pounds. So what other muscles should I be working to address the "collapsing chest" issue?

As a sideline to this, I seem to be unable to do a boat pose with my hands/arm straight out with my biceps by my ears... in the "superman" position. But I can arch high when my arms are in a T position.

I'm also able to do stuff like overhead upper back stretches, where you grab one hand with the other when you've got your elbow over your head pointing to the sky and both hands behind your back.

Any suggestions are welcome.
I realize this isn't a run of the mill problem... which is why I'm here asking for suggestions.
I'm stumped!
Thx!

: )
Mzzchief

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