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HuffPOst Article regarding significance of posture on mental and emotional health May 21, 2015

Posted by jeffrooney in Depression and posture, Posture.
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Here is a good article exploring an often overlooked aspect of posture health – the corollary effect on mental and emotional health. For us posture therapists this awareness has been noted for years of seeing from experience the connection between the posture profile and emotional profile. The weakness of the article in my opinion is the opportunity is not taken to mention specific disciplines dedicated to posture health like The Egoscue Method or PTX Therapy and others, referencing only general things like strengthening the back and yoga instead. That said it is worth a look and reports some very relevant research on the matter.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/edith-ismene-nicolaougriffin/sit-up-straight-the-menta_b_7338440.html

Rolling out PTX Therapy – a new way to access posture alignment therapy January 21, 2015

Posted by jeffrooney in Muscle and Joint Pain, Pain Relief, Posture Alignment Theray.
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PostureprofilesWell it takes a new year to get to things sometimes. I am happy to announce my collaboration with a new effort in the promotion of posture alignment therapy that is aimed at getting it out of the closet! Welcome to PTX Therapy!

This is a project that was years in the making and specifically the brainchild of John Lemme and his cohort in the enterprise Carol Gamboa. All of us who have studied to be posture therapists just plain want to see this out there more. We know first hand, in my case over a ten year span, of witnessing countless people overcome many painful maladies with their own efforts with the guidance of this therapy option.

This effort with PTX has two components. One is already familiar with those who have embraced posture alignment therapy from therapists trained under the Egoscue Method umbrella. This is one on one therapy where the therapist guides a client to reach their goals in overcoming muscle and joint pain to resume an active life.

The other and new component is called PTX Virtual Therapy and this is a very inexpensive web based platform that many individuals and companies are embracing as a way to access this unique approach to resolving musculoskeletal problems with individualized exercise therapy. It treats the whole body, gets at the underlying structural cause of pain and allows for simple updating of condition and getting new routines til goals are met.

I invite you to try it for yourself. Give it a go and let me know how it works for you. As always I am available for one on one sessions at my office, your home or by Skype. Now you have new options for getting aligned, out of pain and ready to embrace this new year!

When to say no to your doctor – article in Mens Journal September 21, 2014

Posted by jeffrooney in Aging, Brain Health/Body Health, Medical reform, Preventive health.
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Here is a great resource for the question of when to say yes and when to say no to a doctor. There are really good resources mentioned in the article as well as analysis of how our med system stacks up to other wealthy nations. I suggest tucking it away and using the resources mentioned for those thorny times (that we will all have) when you have to ponder the efficacy of your doctors advice or prescriptions.

http://www.mensjournal.com/magazine/when-to-say-no-to-your-doctor-20140919?mc_cid=41edea1b7e&mc_eid=137cdaa26b

Great interview with Egoscue’s Brian Bradley September 18, 2014

Posted by jeffrooney in Egoscue.
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Here’s a thirteen minute interview with Brian Bradley, a 23 year veteran of the Egoscue Method and Vice President of the company. Give a listen and see if it resonates. Get in touch with me if it rings true to your situation.

More on the Perils of Sitting and the Posture Solution April 30, 2014

Posted by jeffrooney in Egoscue Method, Movement, Posture, Posture Alignment Therapy, The Human Body, Uncategorized.
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On my website I have a short article called “Achy From Sitting Too Much – Try These Exercises” about the problems associated with too much sitting in our society and beyond. I just came across a very detailed account of this problem in an article at Mind Body Green where it publishes an info graphic from FastCompany. Both websites are new to me but I am glad to see this problem get more attention. See below:

Just from the time I wrote the article a few years ago to now things have apparently gotten much worse in this regard. See how your own experience stacks up to these statistics in the info graphic.

In my article I point out that the “design requirements” of our human body are not at all met by the preponderance of sitting, computer use and so on. Our bodies get bent out of shape as muscles are disused and our bony frame misaligned, causing us much grief.  Hey, we evolved as upright beings after all! This all reveals the need to give the body the physical stimulus that is lacking in the sitting posture.  The exercises at the bottom of the article are examples of using posture alignment therapy developed by Pete Egoscue to do just that. Give them a try and tune into the muscles that are being used throughout. This routine won’t solve all your problems but give a sense of using postural muscles meant to get daily use. Feel free to contact me if you need more specific input.

In the meantime – stop sitting so much and get more active, your body will love you for it!

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From Mark Sisson – 15 Reasons to Sprint January 22, 2014

Posted by jeffrooney in Athletic training, Fitness, Posture, Weight Loss Research.
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From Mark Sisson – 15 Reasons to Sprint

I am in agreement with Mark. Good thing about him is he always backs up his arguments with pretty good data. This is really a simple way to add a whole lot to your fitness and well being without lots of time commitment – it is the regularity that counts.

By the way, he doesn’t mention it but I will. If your body is properly aligned there is even more bang for the buck. Every step becomes part of your therapy when your joints are stacked properly. If for example, a knee or hip position is out, sprints may be objectively “good for you” but won’t feel that great, especially afterward. So with that caveat check out Marks post for more reasons why sprinting and interval training in general is a good practice. If you are wondering about your own alignment see my earlier post about how to evaluate your own alignment. Let me know what you find.

News About “Death by Food Pyramid – Marks Daily Apple December 11, 2013

Posted by jeffrooney in Dieting, Food Industry, Nutrition, Weight Loss Research.
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News About “Death by Food Pyramid – Marks Daily Apple

I generally respect the blog Mark’s Daily Apple by Mark Sisson and today he is announcing the publication of Denise Minger’s new book “Death by Food Pyramid”. It is on my list to read! Take a look and see if it will make your list.

The Stories Feet Can Tell! November 20, 2013

Posted by jeffrooney in Egoscue Method, Foot pain, Gait, Posture Alignment Therapy.
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TalkingFeetI have been offering a series of workshops lately using themes from the book Pain Free by Pete Egoscue. It is an excellent primer on The Egoscue Method he developed to address all manner of chronic pain issues ultimately caused by structural mis-alignments and body wide  imbalances.

The most recent was called “The Stories Feet Can Tell” and revolved around the chapters on feet and ankle problems.

I started off the workshop with asking everyone attending to share a specific foot or ankle condition they have or had and why they attended. I found it amazing that so many conditions would be present from just a small number of people(6 participants) regarding a relative small area of the human body.

The stories feet can tell indeed. Here was the line up:
Plantar fasciitis
Corns
Bunions
Hammer Toes
Ankle sprain
Pain on the dorsal(top) side of the foot
Flat feet
Excessive foot abduction (feet in duck footed position)
Bone spurs
Distorted toe positions
Foot numbness

We started off simply and had everyone just stand up in bare feet and close their eyes. I asked where do you feel the weight at your feet? Is it symmetrical or heavier to one side? How about at each individual foot? Is the weight on the ball, heel or one edge of the foot? Then people walked and tuned in again.

Only one out of the group felt relative balance from side to side but she also felt differences in where weight was bearing from foot to foot.

The main premise of all these conditions, as Pete explains well in his book, is that to the greatest degree, these maladies stem from improper weight bearing at the feet and also an improper foot strike sequencing during walking, hiking and so on. Further, that very often these problems at the feet are telling a larger story of body wide imbalances that become reflected in abnormal gait and load bearing.

The easiest example to explore is bunions. Instead of a full use of the foot in heel-ball-toe off the weight is bearing on the inside of the foot and toeing off over the big toe. And this outward positioning of the foot (or feet if it is bilateral) as one walks has its origin in a mis-aligned hip joint position.

Many of the attendees talked of trying to get help via medical attention and how that approach leads to separating the foot from the biodynamics of the rest of the body. For example, I have seen many times where the collapsing of the foot arches comes from way above when the knees are collapsing inward such that now the weight bearing at the feet and ankles forces a falling of the arches and a falling inward of the ankles.

After testing the weight bearing in bare feet we had everyone place their hands behind their head and pull their elbows back and then walk. Almost everyone noticed a dramatic difference in the weight at their feet. Several were able to notice more evenness from side to side or a change in how the weight distributed at the foot (more even and using more of the foot than just one edge). So again this illustrates how the whole body and even spine alignment can affect the way our feet function.

PFbook

The bulk of the time in the session was devoted to using the foot strike routine in the foot chapter for all manner of foot pain conditions and then for one person with an ankle sprain the routine in the ankle chapter. It was great fun exploring how these feet of ours can get the brunt of our body’s imbalances.

So it seems we could write not just a story but a whole book by the tales feet can tell! Do the  balance test for yourself and let me know your results!

The Future is Bright September 3, 2013

Posted by jeffrooney in Uncategorized.
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Please include attribution to joinmosaic.com with this graphic.

The End of Fossil Fuels

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Here is a nice illustration of gains being made in transforming the electric grid around the world from fossil fuel based to renewable based sources.

Ten Easy Ways to Check Your Posture Alignment August 20, 2013

Posted by jeffrooney in Egoscue Method, Posture, Posture Alignment Therapy, The Human Body.
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You may be new to this idea but it is quite likely that if you have muscle or joint pain the ultimate cause is your posture alignment. This is the first in a series of posts I will make about this subject. My idea here is to help to facilitate your ability to become the driving force in evaluating posture and knowing the steps to be taken to change it and hence resolve the source of your pains or physical limitations.

So first things first. You get to  use your own eyes, and perhaps those of a friend or partner to help. So often when people come to see me for a first appointment for posture alignment therapy they are surprised to see from the evaluation pictures things they could see by  looking in a full length mirror! Knowing what to look for really helps. What I am looking for are asymmetries and distortions from the common standing anatomical posture of the human form(see below). We are not talking brain surgery here. Two eyeballs and a reasonably functioning brain will suffice.

Freddie

So slip off your shoes, wear a pair of shorts and a tank top (guys can slip off your shirt, females can use a sports bra if you like).  Lets walk through ten easy steps at determining your posture. Take a piece of paper and jot down your findings.

1 – So just stand up, gently march in place. Stop and look down at your feet. What are they doing? Are they both pointing in the same direction, is one off to the side, etc.? Does one foot seem more forward than the other

2 – Still in the same standing position. Close your eyes and take note which foot bears more weight. Secondly, where in each foot do you feel the weight, at the forefoot or heel. Don’t think about it just jot down your immediate impression.

3 – Next take a look at your knees. Are you bowl legged or knock kneed? Are the knee caps pointing in the same direction (imagine your cars headlamps – they should be pointing straight ahead like that). When looking down does one knee look more forward than the other?

4 – Now take your thumbs and place them both on the very front edge of your “hip bones” the boney protrusions at the very front of your pelvis. You may have to dig around for them but I am talking about the very front not the top edge. In any case it is like you are hugging your hips with thumbs facing forward. Now look gently down. Do you see one side of the pelvis going more forward than the other? Now look in the mirror. Is one hip higher? If you have sciatica this could be a big part of the reason.

5 – Now look at your hands. Do you see the back of the hands forward, are they different from side to side? This is a major indicator of shoulder position. Is one hand more forward and also is one lower than the other when you look in the mirror?

6 – Now looking at the shoulders, are they level? Is one more forward relative to the other? Are you able to lift the arms up toward the ears easily and evenly from side to side? If not is it less easy on the side that is more rounded forward?

7 – You still with me?! Now if you noted that you felt more weight on one side at your feet versus the other now take a look at your upper body. Is the upper body leaning more to that side? If you have foot, ankle, knee or hip problems a big component of the solution is getting the upper body more symmetrical so that the load bearing is more even to the lower extremities.

8 – Now lets note what the head is doing. Most of us in our culture have a distinct forward head that is not our birthright. To check this have your friend view you from the side or simply stand with your heels, butt and shoulders to the wall. Now take note of what effort it takes to position the back of the head to the wall. If when you do that the head seems to point your eyes upward your head is significantly more forward.

9 – Next pull out a chair and gently get yourself on the floor. Put both legs up on the chair with knees hip width apart. Scoot your butt right up to the edge of the chair so that your hips and knees are at 90 degrees. Here we can clue into a number of things. One, what is your immediate feel to your backside, is it even on the floor or different from side to side? If you noted earlier that one side of the pelvis was more forward than the other side does this correlate. Next, is your low back or lumbar spine have an arch or is it flat? This will likely tell you that your pelvis is either tipping too far forward or tipping back and is not in its neutral position. This deviation can be at the root of many problems.

10 – Lastly, lets get you up and walking. When you walk are the feet doing the same thing? Just walk your normal pace, taking note of your sense of balance. Now take your hands and put behind your neck and pull your elbows back. Walk again. Any difference in how you feel. Is it easier or harder, better or worse balance? If it seems to give you more balance, why do think that might be?

Well there you have it folks. You just went through some of the paces I use to evaluate clients posture in a session. I do more than this but I want you to see that it is straight forward and common sense oriented. Any asymmetries noted (and they may surely add up and have consequence) are part of the big picture of your body’s stature and the framework for how your body functions or doesn’t function. They will tell the story of your body and why things are going awry. At bottom this could well be the explanation for hard to treat conditions that have been illusive to the medical and even alternative medical community. It may be hard to fathom nowadays but in many ways taking note of what a persons knee cap is doing is a window into the status of a hip joint dysfunction, without X-rays and MRIs.

Let me know what your findings are and if this helps to connect the dots between whatever your pain condition is and what your body is doing. Now if it looks pretty disturbing don’t jump off a cliff, just get ready to do some work to change it! Muscles move the bones. So if they are putting them in the wrong place the right physical input can put them in the right place, if not ideally, at least to the point of giving you the best possible functioning body so that you can enjoy your life.

Stay tuned for more on posture as the source of many common pain conditions, limitations and effects on athletic performance.

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