Monday, October 27, 2014

Scapulohumeral Rhythm

Hi All!

More educational ramblings to share... 

In teaching group exercise, and more frequently in Crossfit, I've experienced and seen many shoulder injuries. What may cause these injuries is weakness in the middle trapezius and serratus anterior. Most group classes and Crossfit include tons pushing and pressing movements without tons of pulling to counter balance all the anterior work. Even pull ups cannot address the lack pulling alone, but including seated rows, band rows from high and low angles, as well as scapular stabilization exercises can greatly reduce the risk of injury for group class and Crossfit participants. To further understand the shoulder joint, below is a description of the relationships between various parts of the shoulder and the muscles involved in upward rotation of the scapula, as well as the description of one shoulder condition that inhibits healthy movement patterns. 

Scapulohumeral rhythm describes the coupling of shoulder girdle movement with arm movement, Muscolino also states that the motion of the clavicle is also required; therefore perhaps a better name would be “scapuloclaviculohumeral rhythm” (2011). Two separate joint actions that must occur simultaneously are called coupled actions. In the case of the shoulder, only a small degree of movement can occur solely at the glenohurmeral (GH) joint, so when the shoulder moves, movement occurs between the clavicle of the shoulder girdle and the sternum at the sternoclavicular (SC) joint and between the scapula of the shoulder girdle and the rib cage at the Scapulocostal (ScC) joint. A scapular force couple is produced by the trapezius and serratus anterior muscles in upward rotation of the scapula (Donatelli, Ruivo, Thurner & Ibrahim, 2014). Upward rotation of the scapula occurs in arm elevation, for this movement to happen with a full range of motion the shoulder must be healthy.

Having the condition known as “frozen shoulder,” or adhesive capsulitis, may result in the failure of the scapular force couple because of pain and stiffness that can inhibit normal movement at the shoulder joint. Although the cause of frozen shoulder is unclear, it is characterized by the process of thickening and contracture of the capsule surrounding the shoulder joint (Soviero, Gucciardi, & Geraci, 2008). When a client is experiencing frozen shoulder their mobility will be greatly reduced, particularly in external rotation and overhead movements. The three muscles that are traditionally attributed as upward rotators are the upper trapezius, lower trapezius and serratus anterior. Due to the complexity of the shoulder joint, there are many conditions that may cause force couple failure, but frozen shoulder can be treated with low load stretching, end range tensile stress, and progressive loading (Donatelli, Ruivo, Thurner & Ibrahim, 2014). Most often frozen shoulder will be improved through treatment and then scapular motion can be reassessed to see if there are other factors inhibiting force coupling such as forward head posture, rounded shoulders or hyperkyhposis.

1) Muscolino, Joseph E. (2011). Kinesiology: The Skeletal System and Muscle Function.  St. Louis, MO. Mosby, Inc., an affiliate of Elsevier Inc.

2) Soviero, F., Gucciardi, S., & Geraci, A. (2008). THE FROZEN SHOULDER: UNKNOWN AND KNOWN KNOWNS. (English). Capsula Eburnea, 31-14.


3) Donatelli R, Ruivo R, Thurner M, Ibrahim M. Masterclass: New concepts in restoring shoulder elevation in a stiff and painful shoulder patient. Physical Therapy In Sport [serial online]. February 1, 2014;15:3-14. Available from: ScienceDirect, Ipswich, MA. Accessed October 23, 2014.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

My Flight Attendant Voice

This post is for Mike M and all the folks who come to my classes and think, "Geeze it's like she's reading a script," or "Hey, she'd make a great flight attendant, she talks just like one!"

This voice or style of delivery I've apparently developed was unintentional, but hilarious to me because I can't help it. Anyway, I haven't been blogging much because I'm in a Exercise Science Graduate program that requires a lot of reading and writing (as I type I should be doing homework, but I needed a little time away)! All of this studying is making the flight attendant voice more unavoidable when I teach classes. In fact, I was proof reading one of my discussion posts aloud and caught myself using the voice. Since the post was flight attendant voice worthy I thought I'd share.
As a Yoga Instructor I talk about posture and breathing with class participants to try to improve their Yoga experience. Individuals who are new to Yoga often find it difficult to maintain steady breathing in poses because they are unfamiliar with having their body twisted or compressed in ways that makes breathing feel constricted. For example, in Cobra Pose (prone with spinal extension, with knees and ankles contacting ground, but hips, chest and shoulders lifted)  it can be difficult to maintain full breaths because of the constriction that may be felt in the abdomen and chest if the head is fully lifted and cocked back.
The constriction new practitioners feel is real as inspiratory ventilation requires an increase in thoracic cavity volume (Clark, Corn, & Lucett, 2008, p. 47). When lying prone and creating a back bend or spinal extension as experienced in Cobra Pose the thoracic cavity is put in a compromised position relative to the anatomical position. In addition, often in Cobra pose the head is cocked back therefore potentially compromising some of the respiratory passageway such as the Pharnyx and Larnyx.
This is one example of how body positioning (posture) can affect breathing. I encourage all of my clients to practice Yoga because it helps them understand anatomy in a practical way. When they understand how the cardiorespiratory system functions with the kinetic chain we can began implementing more advance concepts like lifting with the Valsalva maneuver thereby increasing rigidity of the entire torso to support heavier loads (Baechle & Earle, 2008, p. 85). Incorporating more advanced concepts and teaching clients about the human body helps to keep them safe and consistently progressing in their training.
Clark, M.A., Corn, R. J., & Lucett, S.C. (Eds.). (2008) 3rd Ed. NASM Essentials of Personal Fitness Training. Baltimore, MD: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.
Baechle, T.R. & Earle, R.W. (Eds.). (2008) 3rd Ed. NSCA Essentials of Strength and Conditioning. Champaign, IL: Human Kinetics. 
If you want more exercise science/school stuff I'll keep sharing or if you just want to read stuff in your best flight attendant voice I'll share for that reason too! 
One a side note, in what Yoga pose do you find it hardest to breathe?

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Stuffed Bell Peppers...


Ingredients:
1/1/2 cups cooked grain (brown rice, quinoa, millet)
1/3 cup crushed almonds or walnuts
1 lbs cooked ground turkey, beef or pork
1 onion, finely chopped
1-2 cloves garlic, finely minced
4 celery stalks, finely chopped
4 bell peppers (green, red, or yellow)
2 teaspoons olive oil or ghee
salt to taste

Directions:
       1.  Sauté onion and garlic with oil for 1 minute.
       2.  Add celery and sauté for 3 minutes.
       3.  Mix with remaining ingredients, except peppers and crushed nuts.
       4.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
       5.  Cut off tops of peppers and scoop out insides.
       6.  Steam peppers until slightly tender.
       7.  Fill each with stuffing and top with crushed nuts.
       8.  Place in casserole dish with 1/8 inch water, bake in oven for 30 minutes and serve.


Adapted from Healing with Whole Foods: Asian Tradition and Modern Nutrition, by Paul Pitchford.

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Meal Prep

Do you meal prep for the week? Or a couple days at a time? I try to every week because it saves us money and time. It also saves us from over eating or eating food that's less than good for us. My clients often ask what's the easiest way to eat well so I'm going to share what works best at our house.

Butternut Squash sauteed with zucchini, Broccoli, and Tuna
Every weekend I cook a protein source (chicken, turkey, beef or pork mostly) steam veggies and cut up tons of veggies and fruit. Honestly it takes me no more than an hour to do everything. I package up 8 lunches and put all the other stuff (extra protein, veggies, and fruit) in big containers. We use the leftover meat and veggies through out the week to make dinners and the cut up fruit for snacks smoothies.

Our lunches normally look something like this:




Salsa Verde chicken with Quinoa, Broccoli and Pineapple
Salad Toppin's
Throughout the week our dinners consist of quick things like salads topped with protein and veggies with homemade dressing, quesadillas or healthy nachos, Tilapia with veggies with rice, green protein shake smoothies and omelettes. We both work late so our dinners are always quick and easy, but if I didn't meal prep we'd be eating take out (spending lots of $) or oatmeal (boring!) every night!

In my fridge you'll always find a big tub of chopped veggies, cooked and drained beans for salad and more. The best part about prepping is that if you have everything prepared in the fridge there's no reason that you can't eat well and when you're too exhausted to cook there's always something to eat, just throw everything in a bowl and you can create healthy meal like the ones below!

"Pork Fried Rice"

Roasted Veggies with Balsamic and Parm



Too Tired to cook, throw everything in a bowl and top with Siracha


Happy 4th of July! It's a 3 day weekend for most of you so make a little time for meal prep and let me know how it goes!

Sunday, June 8, 2014

3 More Ways to Use Your Shaker Cups...

Do you have a shaker cup or blender bottle? You know those ones that have a little ball shaped whisk that floats around at the bottom? They look remarkably like the Tupperware quick shake my mom had when I was kid, but now they're fancy, colorful and most of all trendy. Even if you're not a protein shake slugging "gym rat" they're a great tool to have on hand. I use mine for slugging protein shakes, but also for a lot of other stuff too..

1. Salad Dressing... Homemade vinaigrette keeps well in the shaker bottle because of the air tight seal and it doesn't need to be to refrigerated so it can just stay in the cabinet until you're ready to shake and serve again, again and again.

Balsamic Vinaigrette Recipe

Ingredients:
1/2 c Olive Oil
1/2 c Balsamic Vinegar
1/4 c Apple Cider Vinegar
1/4 c Vanilla Balsamic Vinegar (flavor of your choice)
3 Heaping Tbsp Minced dehydrated Garlic
2 Tbsp Red Pepper Flakes
1/8 cup Braggs Amino Sauce
1 tsp Ground Black Pepper
1 Heaping Tbsp Savory Blend Dehydrated Herbs

Directions:
Combine everything in a large shaker cup and shake before serving. It taste better the longer the seasonings is soaking in the vinegar and oil.


2. Iced Coffee... After we're done with our brewed coffee in the morning I pour the leftovers into a shaker bottle and put it in the fridge for the next day. The next morning all you have to do is throw in a scoop of your favorite protein powder an you have a flavored, protein filled iced coffee. Chocolate is my favorite way to create a mocha flavor.

3. Fluffy Eggs... When I make eggs I really like them fluffy and the shaker cup is a great way to make your eggs or egg whites fluffy. Rather than whisking your scrambled eggs toss them in to your shaker cup and shake away. You can add your milk, salt and/or pepper to the shaker too!






Tuesday, June 3, 2014

What's for Breakfast?!

If I'm home Sunday's I normally sleep in til 7am, yahoo! Seth likes it when I make him breakfast so I try to make him something a little special when I can. This week I made him one of my favorite things with some extra toppings.

Banana and egg pancakes are super simple and delicious if you like bananas! Here's how to make them:

Ingredients:
Seth's Pancake topped w/strawberries, bananas, granola, PB and cinnamon.
2 whole eggs
3/4 cup egg whites
1 ripe banana
Cinnamon to taste
1 Tbsp Vanilla extract

Direction (Makes 2 Giant Pancakes):

1. Smash banana with fork in a medium mixing bowl.
2. Crack eggs and pour egg whites in bowl with smashed banana.
3. Whisk in vanilla and cinnamon until bubbly and well mixed.
4. Pour batter in prepared skillet heated to medium/high and cover for 2 minutes.
5. Remove lid and flip pancake, cook uncovered for another 2 minutes
6. Serve and top with anything you like, enjoy!

Can you see mine in the back? I put spinach in it...weird, I know.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Don't be a Bump on a Log...

Do you have a desk job? If so, do you make a conscious effort to get up from your desk and move?

I have this conversation with clients frequently  because even if you're exercising everyday you still need to get up and move throughout the day. Doing 30 minutes, even an hour of exercise before or after work is great, but then often at work we sit for 6-8 hours without moving at all.

The Washington Post just ran a great piece with an info graphic to help explain some of the hazards of prolonged sitting. Some of which include heart disease, colon cancer, brain fog etc. I understand that not everyone can be as active as they wish in their workplace, but there are a couple of really easy ways to move more without breaking a sweat or making your boss angry!

1. Stand up every time you take a drink.

2. Stretch your quadriceps every time you go to the restroom. If you're drinking enough water this should be several times throughout the work day.

3. Take the stairs rather than the elevator.

4. Set a timer and try these stretches at your desk every 40 mins.


Implementing some of things may not only reduce your risk for health complications associated with prolonged sitting, but you may also loose some weight! Read here for more info and a fantastic research article.