To Stretch or not to Stretch? The Benefits of the ‘RIGHT’ Stretching.

I only have to bring up the word ‘stretching’ with some of my colleagues in the therapeutic and fitness industry to generate lively debate.  Something that we have all thought was a good thing to do is now in question.  Truth be told, there is a lot of contradictory research out there and no solid

proof of the advantages and disadvantages so it’s no wonder there is confusion.  What is clear is that we have many joints and muscles in our bodies and even more confusingly, many many different stretching protocols each with a number of pros and cons, so where does one start when considering a regular stretch routine? Continue reading To Stretch or not to Stretch? The Benefits of the ‘RIGHT’ Stretching.

Carl Watts – The Experiment Session 3

It has been 6 weeks since I last saw Carl, which is not ideal given the momentum we are trying to achieve ( my fault as I have been off on holidays!) but Carl has been busy training and following his homecare advice so I hope that this has continued to keep him moving in the right direction over the holidays.

We get chatting and Carl feels that he has started to stiffen up over the last few weeks.  Not only has it been Christmas and New Year, Carl has had moving house to contend with!  Lifting and moving heavy boxes is definitely not part of the homecare advice JCarl was pleased to find that although he feels a little stiff he did not put his back out which would have previously been a necessary consequence of the activity of moving. 
In other good news his neck/shoulder pain has subsided and he found that the Kinesio taping to hold his shoulder in position was a great re-education tool for his body to realign itself.  The icing on the cake – Carl claims his golf is as good as it has ever been! Great news when only 2 months into the new regime.

Treatment

Reassessment was kept to a minimum today so as I could give Carl as much hands on work as possible to keep progress moving in the right direction.

On touch Carl’s pectorals and biceps have relaxed substantially.  I can work at a deeper level and work through some of the trigger points at a deeper level.  Again we worked on getting Carl’s thoracic region firing by doing some proprioceptive work in this area.  It is clear that this area is still a problem area for Carl and we need to increase the strengthening work over the coming weeks.


Carl’s quads and deep hip flexors are still tight but respond more quickly to soft tissue work allowing us to release the tension more easily. Again we need to continue rebalancing Carl through the hip to help get his glutes, hamstrings and core working equally hard.

Homecare

We discussed and reviewed Carl’s current training plan in the gym to ensure that the exercises he was doing were not exacerbating any of the postural issues we are trying hard to correct. 

It is clear that Carl is still favouring exercises that work his quadriceps.  We discussed how he could change what he was doing in the gym to focus on his glutes and hamstrings more and also with some specific exercises for Carl to focus on in the coming weeks.

In terms of the upper body Carl has been doing exercises that should work through his shoulders and thoracic region but he.  On demoing for me how he executes these exercises it was clear that Carl’s starting position and release for each exercises may be the issue and he is engaging a lot more pec than back.  It shows the importance of having a Personal Trainer or fitness professional just check what you are doing now and again to ensure that you are targeting the right muscle before you work yourself into an injury or imbalance!

Next Steps

Continue with same homecare exercises but with a greater awareness of posture and what muscles are being engaged.   I am keen that before our next session we sit down with Andy Traynor to look at how Carl’s swing is progressing.  Are we seeing a difference in his swing now that his body is realigning? Update coming soon.