Health-E-News. May 2007 - empowering you to optimal health.
What do Tiger Woods, David Duval and more than 75 percent of golfers in the PGA have in common? They all sing the praises of chiropractic. But you don't have to be a professional golfer to benefit from chiropractic. Amateur golfers also reap the performance-boosting rewards of regular chiropractic care.
|Chiropractor Tom LaFountain, left, holds an ice pack on Tiger Woods' back as they walk down the 11th fairway during the better-ball matches at the Presidents Cup Friday, Sept. 23, 2005, at the Robert Trent Jones Golf Club in Gainesville, Va|
Here are some tips to improve your golf game:
- Focus on Posture: Proper posture — both on and off the course — is key to avoiding golf related injuries and improving your game. For instance, a level back swing is dependent on proper posture. A back swing is actually two motions in one: the up/down movement of the arms and the rotation of the body — both directly dependent on spinal health. That's why a healthy spine is so vital to a golfer's game. If the spine is out of alignment, the swing will be out of alignment.
- Cancel the Cart: Here's a simple way to dramatically improve your fitness level: Choose to walk the course, rather than rent a cart. Walking elevates aerobic activity, increases stamina and boosts immunity: maximizing athletic performance and warding off injury.
- Stretch before you start: Why is stretching so important? Because jolting stiff muscles into action triggers muscle strain and vertebral subluxation.
- Listen to your body: Before reaching for a pill to ease post golf soreness, consider this: Doctors of Chiropractic don't believe pain should be masked with possibly hazardous medication. Instead, they focus on the source of the disorder, restoring alignment and motion to the spine with chiropractic adjustments.
- A Chiropractic Checkup: Your Ticket to Golfing Success. To be at your best, schedule a Chiropractic check before a game to ensure your spine is moving properly. Having spinal joints that are moving optimally ensure years of enjoyment playing the game you love.
8 Ways to Reduce Workplace Stress
Feeling frazzled at work? Answer any of the following questions in the affirmative and you're in dire need of help when it comes to managing workplace stress. The good news is there are a number of ways to reduce on-the-job stress. Try them out and see if your workplace headaches subside.
Signs of Workplace Stress
- Do you feel overwhelmed by the amount of work you do each day and/or by the complexity of that work?
- At the end of a workday, does it feel as if you've accomplished little, or that what you did accomplish was done in a rushed or unsatisfactory fashion?
- Does it feel as if projects keep "piling up" on your desk, no matter how hard you try to catch up?
- Does your workday feel unstructured, disorganized and out of control?
Eight Easy Solutions
- Plan your day. Create a "To Do" list, and cross off each item as you complete it.
- Prioritize. Prioritizing your tasks from most to least important will keep you focused on what really matters.
- Don't be afraid to say no. If an "extra" project comes across your desk, consider your current workload and priorities first.
- Do it right – if not, you'll end up spending even more time correcting your mistakes.
- A little at a time. When faced with a challenging or time-consuming task, don't try to complete it all at once.
- Evaluate how you're spending your time. Keep a diary of everything you do for three days to determine how you're spending your time. Look for time that can be used more wisely.
- Take a break. If you're feeling overwhelmed, take a break. It can be a short one during the workday or a longer one, like a two- or three-day vacation.
- Don't be afraid to ask for help. If you're having trouble managing your workplace stress, don't be afraid to talk to your boss about it.
Aerobic Exercise Significantly Benefits People with Low Back Pain
Aerobic exercise quells low-back pain (LBP), say scientists. The analysis enrolled 40 patients with chronic LBP. As part of the experiment, 20 subjects participated in a 12-week high-intensity aerobic exercise program. A control group of 20 subjects received a conservative physical therapy intervention. The researchers monitored pain, disability, psychological strain and serum cortisol concentrations in all subjects. The exercise group enjoyed 41% reduced pain, 31% reduced disability and 35% reduced psychological strain. Exercise did not appear to influence cortisol levels. No changes in any of the parameters measured were evident among patients in the control group.
Physical Therapy – February 6;Epub.www.ptjournal.org
Wheeled Shoes Raise Safety Concerns, Say Chiropractors
With the popularity of wheeled shoes on the rise, doctors of chiropractic are expressing concerns about safety, both for the children who use them and others who must dodge children skating in crowded shopping centers and parks.
The shoes, most recognized by the dominant brand name, Heelys(R), resemble normal sneakers but have removable wheels in the heels. Although parents have purchased more than 4 million pairs of the popular shoes, some malls and schools have banned Heelys(R) due to safety concerns.
"Parents should be concerned about Heelys(R) and other wheeled sneakers because of the potential for head, wrist, elbow and ankle injuries due to falls, as well as the possibility of injuries due to altered gait patterns," says Dr. Steven Conway, a member of the American Chiropractic Association from Athens, Wis. "When wearing the shoes on a surface that isn't skatable, children must walk on their toes. This altered gait forces their posture into unnatural positions, and if worn regularly for walking, this could potentially cause strain on growing bodies, especially in the foot, ankle and lower back."
Conversely, when skating in the shoes, children are forced to put their weight on their heels. By doing so, they can easily lose their balance, putting them at a higher risk for falls and resulting injuries to the back of the head, elbows and wrists. Because many children consider Heelys(R) to be shoes rather than athletic gear, they fail to wear the proper safety equipment -- which can be especially dangerous when children fall on slick tile or cement surfaces.
The American Chiropractic Association offers the following safety tips when wearing Heelys(R) and other brands of wheeled shoes:
- Always wear the proper safety equipment including helmets, wrist guards and protective pads.
- Use the shoes for recreation only -- not for regular wear -- and always remove the wheels when walking in the sneakers.
- Do not allow children to wear the shoes in crowded malls, near busy streets or other areas where collisions with other pedestrians -- or worse yet, automobiles - could occur. Urge children to be aware of their surroundings and mindful of fellow pedestrians.
- Remind children to be aware of how their bodies feel. Pain is a sign of a problem.
- If an injury does occur, remember RICE - rest, ice, compression, and elevation. Ice the injury for 10 to 15 minutes, then remove the ice for about an hour and reapply. Using ice will help reduce the pain and inflammation.
American Chiropractic Association http://www.acatoday.com/
Another Reason to Avoid Trans Fats
Are you aware of the latest "bad word" in the dietary dictionary? Trans fat has been added to the list of ingredients to avoid. Trans fats are liquid vegetable oils that are transformed via a process called "hydrogenation" into solids at room temperature. This chemical process transforms healthy vegetable oils into unhealthy fats that have been shown to raise LDL cholesterol.
In today's world of processed foods, more and more non-animal products contain hydrogenated fats/oils, a source of trans fats – which actually cause your body to make more cholesterol. Foods that contain trans fats include margarine's, vegetable shortening, partially hydrogenated vegetable oil, countless fast foods (especially French fries), and most commercial baked goods (crackers, donuts, potato chips, etc.).
The good news, if there is any, regarding trans fats is that as of 2006, the Food and Drug Administration required that food manufacturers list amounts of trans fats on the nutrition information labels of products. You've probably also noticed that increasing numbers of manufacturers now make it clear that their products contain no trans fats.
In addition to increasing the risk of heart disease, new research suggests trans fats may be related to increased infertility. Findings indicate that women who consume a mere 2 percent of total calories from trans fats have a doubled risk of ovulation-related infertility.
Whether you're pregnant, plan on becoming pregnant, or simply care about your health and the health of your loved ones, check nutrition labels for trans fatty acids and hydrogenated oils, and look for "fully hydrogenated oil" on products that claim to be "trans-fat-free."