Foam rolling part 2: 6 exercises you didn’t know you could do using your foam roller!

We’ve previously shown the many benefits in using foam rollers as a form of self massage, or myofascial release, to reduce adhesions and improve muscle flexibility. But there are also many other exercises you can perform using your roller to improve joint mobility and challenge your core strength! We commonly prescribe these exercises within our physiotherapy exercise classes, but here are 6 of our favourites you can try at home. They might even be a bit nicer than your usual foam roller choices!

FOAM ROLLER EXERCISES

Thread the Needle

Start in four-point kneeling position with your roller next to one hand. Reach your other hand up, twisting with your upper back and keeping your shoulders relaxed. Don’t strain your neck, but follow your fingertips with your eyes as far as you are comfortable doing. Gently thread this hand underneath your body, rolling your hand along the roller to increase a gentle stretch in this direction. Repeat 6-10 repetitions each side.

Arms on roller

With your spine supported vertically along the roller, draw in your core lower abdominal muscles (belly button gently to spine), reach two arms up overhead, and back to shoulder height. Repeat 5-10 repetitions. Try also alternating by taking one arm up while the other arm goes down by your hip, or opening your arms out to the side. Repeat 6-10 times. Ensure you keep breathing gently and keep the core engaged – it will help your back stay still and keep you on the roller!

 

Core + leg lifts

Great core strengthening exercise. Keep your spine vertically along the roller with your head supported, gently draw in your core muscles, and try and lift one foot up to table top position (90 degrees at hip and knee). Keep the roller as still as you can while you return your foot to the ground. Repeat alternating legs 5-10 times each.

Bridge feet on roller

To increase gluteal and hamstring muscle strength, as well as pelvic stability. Squeeze your bottom muscles, gently lift up, slowly peel down with your spine. Repeat up to 10 times.

 

 

Wall shoulder flexion/arm raises

Standing about 30cms back from the wall – start with the roller at your wrists, about shoulder height. Keep your chin in and shoulders down, and gently roll the roller up the wall as it moves towards your elbows. Maintain your posture as you roll back down to starting position. Repeat up to 10 times. Try this with theraband around your forearms for added shoulder strengthening.

 

4 point diagonals

(hands or knees – or both! – on roller)

This is a great core and postural strengthening exercise! Start in hands and knees with the roller under both hands. Switch on your core muscles by gently drawing in your belly button towards your spine and make sure your spine is straight (not dipping down with your lower back or curving with your upper back). Tuck your chin in gently to ensure your head is in alignment with your spine also. Maintain this position as you extend one arm. Repeat keeping your upper body still and extend one leg. Progress by doing one arm and opposite leg at the same time! Alternate sides. Perform up to 10 repetitions of each.

Please call or book online to see one of our physiotherapists.

 

This post was written by Megan Esdale, Physiotherapist and Clinical Pilates Instructor at Stafford Physiotherapy and Pilates. 

8 Simple Pregnancy Exercises

Pregnancy and giving birth have been recently described as the physical equivalent of running a marathon. With this in mind, it is important to try and stay as fit as possible during your pregnancy. And it’s not just pregnancy and birth; once baby arrives there will be a lot of carrying and lifting that can place additional strain on your neck and back.

Here are 8 easy exercises to do at home to support you through pregnancy, birth and beyond! Perform 3 sets of 10 of each exercise. If you experience any pain during the exercises please stop and consult your physiotherapist.

 

< Wall Squat

Using a fit ball, lean against the ball resting up against the wall. Look straight ahead. Make sure your feet are hip width apart.

Squat down to 60 degrees at your knees. You should still be able to see your toes.

If you don’t have a ball, lean directly up against a wall.

 

Calf Raises >

Lean against the ball resting up against the wall.

Rise up and down on your tip toes.

If you don’t have a ball, use a table for balance in front of you.

 

< Wall Push Ups (ball optional)

Bend your elbows to bring your chest towards the ball.

Push away from the wall to straighten your arms. Keep your body straight.

 

 

Bridges >

Sit on top of the ball. Slowly walk your feet out so your head and neck rest on the ball.

Lift and lower your hips, squeezing your bottom.

If you don’t have a ball, rest your shoulders on your couch.

 

< Bicep Curls

Sit on the ball or a chair, feet flat on the ground.

Hold onto a small weight (1-5kg) and bend your elbows to bring the weight up to your shoulders.

 

Side Arm Openings >

Lie on your side with a pillow supporting your neck, your arms out straight and palms together.

Breathe in, then as you breathe out lift your top arm in a sweeping motion above and behind you. Follow your arm’s movements with your head. Inhale as you return to the original position.

 

 

< Horsekick

Start on hands and knees. Draw tummy in towards spine. Look down at your hands.

Slowly lift 1 leg towards the ceiling, keeping your back and hips still.

Stop if you feel nauseous or experience any pelvis pain.

 

Sitting Balance: Leg and Arm Lifts >

Sit on a ball or chair. Slowly lift one foot off the floor without moving your hips sideways.

Intermediate: Lift your leg and the same arm.

Advanced: lift your leg and the same arm holding onto 2kg weight.

 

 

 

Please call or book online to see one of our physiotherapists.

 

This post was written by Lucy Beumer, Sports and Exercise Physiotherapist and Clinical Pilates Instructor at Stafford Physiotherapy and Pilates. 

 

Foam rolling part 1: stretch and roll your way to mobility

Whether you are a regular walker, building up to your goal running event, or just looking to increase your exercise levels in general, it is important in any exercise regime to make time for stretching and strengthening exercises to reduce risk of injury.

Foam rolling involves rolling along the length of a muscle group, or using sustained pressure to a particular area. This is a way of using self-massage, or myofascial release, to effectively reduce adhesions between tight underlying muscles and connective tissue or fascia. It is a great means to help improve muscle flexibility and joint mobility. In addition, foam rolling increases blood flow to area, which can improve recovery of muscles and reduce delayed onset muscle soreness. It is a useful tool in training as part of your warm up or cool down, as well as after work to reduce postural tightness. There are plenty of different options for foam rollers, with varying firmness, smooth or jagged surfaces, and different lengths. Smooth, longer rollers are great as they can be used for a great variety of core and strength exercises also.

 

FOAM ROLLER EXERCISES

Here are some examples for mobility exercises, try rolling throughout each muscle group for 30-60 seconds, and repeat each exercise 1-2 times through. If a portion of the muscle is particularly sore you can sustain pressure to this point (but modify how much pressure you use by pushing up with your hands or other leg!). Remember to also use sustained stretches as part of your cool down and recovery for all of the big muscle groups used for running (calves, hamstrings, quads, glutes).

 

Calves

Roll up and down along the length of the calf muscle, you can apply downward pressure with your other foot if desired.

 

 

 

Glutes

Sustain pressure or roll up and down or side to side. You can use the mid portion or edges of the roller.

 

 

Quadriceps

Roll up and down from hips to knee.

 

 

 

 

Iliotibial band

Roll from just below the bony point of the hip (greater trochanter) to just above the knee. Moderate your pressure using your hands and other foot – this one can be sore!

 

 

Pecs along the roller

Sustain this stretch for 20-30 seconds. Vary your elbow position to stretch through different muscle fibres. Make sure you don’t push into any shoulder pain with this exercise.

 

 

Thoracic spine extension

Support your head and neck with your hands, lift your bottom a little, slowly roll from the top to the bottom of the shoulder blades.

 

Please call or book online to see one of our Physiotherapists.

 

This post was written by Megan Esdale, Physiotherapist and Clinical Pilates Instructor at Stafford Physiotherapy Centre. 

How to stay active in winter

The temperature is dropping, you’re eating more hearty, carby food and you need loads of layers to stay warm… Winter is sometimes the hardest time to get motivated to stay active, particularly if you’re an early morning, outdoors kind of exerciser! We asked our physios what their favourite way to keep moving is through the cooler months.

Sandra

Winter is a great time to walk! There are no excuses as it’s not too hot (and in Brisbane I think we could say not too cold too!) and it is a quick way to warm up if you are cold. Don’t forget you can drive to a more scenic place (in the mountains or by the water) or a flatter area if you live near hills and your knees or back hurt on slopes. If you want more of a challenge, drive to somewhere that includes hills or stairs. Of course, you can also walk in shopping centres if you feel vulnerable (to falling or dogs) when outside, or if it’s windy or rainy. Go by yourself or grab a buddy (for extra incentive) or a group. Add a nice sit and chat at the end as an enticement!

Sandra showing how to stay active in winter
Sandra walking her lovely lab, Suzie.
Megan

Running is a great way to warm up. The temperatures are cooler which means faster times and you don’t have to start at 5am to avoid the heat and humidity of summer. Parkrun can be a great motivation for free timed 5km runs at 7am every Saturday all over Brisbane (and around the world). There are also many fun runs held at this time of year, including Jetty2Jetty and Bridge2Brisbane.

Ally

I second running. There is nothing better than cooler temps for a nice brisk run. My other favourite winter activity is hockey. Team sport a great motivation to get out of the house and catch up with friends whilst exercising. It’s hard to bail in favour of staying snuggled up on the couch if it means letting your team down!

Lucy

Yoga is my favourite winter exercise. It can be done at home, at a studio or outside if you prefer and the weather permits. There are many local studios and online apps to help get you started. Classes range from easy to hard depending on how hard you want to work but, either way, you’re guaranteed to warm up! I also enjoy the mindfulness aspect of this form of exercise.

And of course…

We couldn’t forget Pilates-inspired exercises as another great way to warm up throughout winter. You can exercise indoors with our highly trained physiotherapists and keep strong ready for spring, or get working on that summer bikini bod! Join one of our Physiotherapy Exercise Sessions, or contact us for private Pilates classes.

7 Tips to reach your goals this running season

As the days are finally starting to cool down, the winter running season is fast approaching. Whether you’re a weekend park runner or training for a marathon, it’s important to prepare your body and prevent overuse injuries that could stop you running for the season. Here are Ally’s 7 top tips to help you get through the season without time out due to injury.

1. Start training early and often

It’s ideal to get out for a run at least 3 times a week if you are training for an event. Aim to do 2 shorter runs and a third longer run, increasing these distances as you get closer (and fitter) to your event.

2. Warm up

It’s important to slowly increase your heart rate and generally loosen up your joints in preparation for a long distance run. Start with a few minutes of walking progressing to easy jogs including acceleration and deceleration over 100m. Finish your warm up with dynamic stretching rather than Static stretching. Dynamic stretching has been shown to better prepare your muscles giving you more power and a lower injury rate than static stretching.

3. Stretch cool down

A stretch cool down helps to flush out lactic acid and restore normal muscle length. Conclude your run with 5 minutes of gentle aerobic exercise (fast walk, slow jog) with deep breathing to return the body to its normal resting rate. Follow this with long static stretches i.e 30 second holds, 3 repetitions. Think gluts, hamstrings, quads, hip flexors and calves.

4. Hydrate and get appropriate nutrition

See our dietitian Regina Tilyard to help you fuel your body appropriately pre-during-and post exercise. Always consume 2 litres of water daily, but increase this if you have exercised.

5. Take 2 rest days before the event

If anything, do a slow, very short 15min run to burn off nervous energy but definitely don’t set out for a long, hard last-minute training session. You will only fatigue your body and then underperform on race day and potentially be at risk of injury when you try to push harder.

6. Include strength and core stability training

Endurance athletes can be prone to overuse injuries of the lower limb. You can help safeguard yourself from these tendon injuries of the hip knee and foot by staying strong. Include 3 strength sessions a week of squats, lunges, heel raises, glut bridges, balance and abdominal exercises. If you are inexperienced in these types of exercises, or already suffering pain in your hip knees or feet consult one of our physiotherapists.

7. Get enough sleep

6-8 hours before exercise is ideal to allow the body to repair and prepare for exercise. Not enough sleep and you could already be fatigued before your event! This puts you at risk of a muscle tear, especially when trying to power up that hill that always seems to be in the last kilometre before the finish line!

 

This post was written by Allyson Flanagan, Physiotherapist and Clinical Pilates Instructor at Stafford Physiotherapy Centre. 

5 Steps to reduce your headaches

Stafford Physiotherapy and Pilates neck treatment by Allyson FlanaganIf you suffer from headaches or migraines, you’re certainly not alone. It is estimated that 1 in 20 people do! In many cases, the pain in the head actually stems from issues with the upper spine and neck. This is why around 80% of people are able to get headache relief through physiotherapy treatment.

We’ve chosen to train in the Watson Headache® Approach, allowing us to assess the joints of the neck and their potential involvement in head pain. Here are 5 tips from Allyson, Physiotherapist and Clinical Pilates Instructor, on how to reduce your headaches. You can also download this handy cheatsheet to refer to later.

1. SEE YOUR PHYSIOTHERAPIST

You might wonder why your physiotherapist is treating your neck for headaches. Research at the Watson Headache Institute has found that issues with the top 3 neck joints and very first cervical disc can impact the brainstem, leading to pain in the head. With specific assessment and treatment of these 3 joints and muscles we can desensitise the brainstem therefore reducing and even resolving many headaches.

Combined with some simple home exercises, good posture, heat or ice, dry needling or segmental needling your Physiotherapist is well equipped to help headaches and migraines.

2. CORRECT YOUR POSTURE

Sustained forward head positions or ‘poked chin’ positions commonly aggravate headaches. Have a think about the ergonomics of your workspace and how you sit throughout the day and talk to your physio if you need guidance.

3. SELF MOBILISATIONS OR PRESSURES ON THE UPPER NECK JOINTS

Sustained pressure on certain joints of the upper neck can stop a headache in its tracks. Your physio can teach you these!

4. HOME EXERCISES

We can help prescribe some appropriate at-home exercises to help. This simple exercise that can help relieve a headache.

Stand with your back against a wall, with a pillow behind your upper back.

Gently retract your chin keeping your head level. Then use the space between your thumb and index finger to apply pressure to your chin. Hold for up to 20seconds or until the headache subsides. Repeat up to 5 times in a row.

5. SEE YOUR GP FOR MEDICATION

If your headaches or migraines have been around for 3 months or more, it may be worth talking to your doctor about migraine preventative medication. These medications, if taken at the very first signs of your migraine, can stop the full attack.

DID YOU KNOW

A forward head position can increase the stress on the upper neck joints, as it increases the perceived load of the head from 5.4kg to 27.2kg! You can reduce this by:

  • Sitting with your head centred on your shoulders
  • Using a pillow under books, tablets and iPhones so you don’t have to look down
  • Correcting your workstation set up

New Year, New You: Pilates + Dietitian Packages

Health, fitness and body shape are amongst the most common topics for new years resolutions. Most people have a goal to make positive change in one or more of these areas! This year, we’ve decided to put together some packages to help you do just that!

Our New Year, New You packages offer a strong foundation to kick off 2019 with a bang while learning sustainable exercise and diet habits with the help of our qualified team.

NEW PILATES PATIENTS PACKAGE

Lucy Beumer | Physiotherapist at Stafford Physiotherapy treating pilates clientThis package is designed for new Pilates patients. It doesn’t matter whether you have never done Pilates before, or if you’ve done loads of Pilates at other studios; we create an individualised program for you, incorporating an appropriate level of challenge and the best exercises to help you meet your goals. This package includes:

  • Initial private Pilates consultation + musculoskeletal assessment
  • Private Pilates follow up session
  • Private consultation with accredited practicing dietitian
  • 4 Pilates classes within a 4 week period (check our timetable here)

$450 (valued at $557)

Any existing physiotherapy patients will receive an additional 15% off

 

EXISTING PILATES PATIENTS PACKAGE

Clinical pilates | Brisbane Physio | Stafford Physiotherapy Centre | Sandra DayThis package is designed for patients who have done Pilates with us previously and would like to return. Perhaps you got busy, were on a budget or decided to try another type of exercise; there’s no judgement here and we’d love to see you back in the studio! This package includes:

  • Private Pilates reassessment
  • Private consultation with accredited practicing dietitian
  • 10 Pilates classes within a 12 week period (check our timetable here)

$500 (valued at $605)

 

DETAILS

Initial private Pilates consultation

In this one-on-one appointment we assess your body, including any existing or previous injuries. Before your next appointment we use this information to develop your personalised Pilates program, ensuring that it is safe and that it addresses your needs for maximum benefit.

Private Pilates follow up session / reassessment

In this one-on-one session you learn your tailored Pilates program and how to use the Pilates equipment included in your program.

Private consultation with accredited practicing dietitian

Your one-on-one consultation with our consulting dietitian Regina Tilyard will involve:

  • Discussing your current dietary patterns, and other factors that relate to nutrition and health (e.g. other health conditions or health goals, budget, work, lifestyle factors, stressors or barriers).
  • Setting realistic nutrition goals related to what you want to achieve and how you want to achieve it. These can be focused on the scales, or may simply involve feeling healthier and less lethargic, increased confidence, or incorporating new foods/recipes for yourself and your family.

You’ll go home with:

  • Specific dietary strategies, such as introducing new foods or recipes, swapping foods or finding alternatives, and/or developing techniques to address any emotional eating or food cravings.
  • Tailored and personal dietary education to increase your knowledge of food and nutrition, including written resources and tools.
Pilates classes

After learning your customised Pilates program in your private Pilates session, you’re ready to join our small group Pilates classes. Our classes are fully-supervised by a Pilates-trained physiotherapist, with a maximum of three other people who are all doing their own Pilates program.

 

If you’re ready to book, or have any questions, please call us on 3857 5815.

 

Terms and Conditions

Full payment is required at the time of your first appointment, which must be before 28 February 2019. Pilates classes must be completed within 4 weeks (New Patients Package) or 10 weeks (Existing Pilates Patients Package). If a refund is requested, any used portion of the package will be charged at full price, with the balance being returned. Appointments subject to availability; early bookings recommended to secure your preferred date and time. 

 

How to fit in exercise over the festive season

Silly season is well and truly upon us. In amongst all the festive fun, exercise often falls to the bottom of our priority list. Here are some tips to help you fit in some exercise and maintain your fitness at this busy time of year.

Focus on quality over quantity

Even a short 5-10min workout done well is better than no workout at all! Always focus on technique rather than the number of reps you do.

Snap up opportunities to get in some incidental exercise

Park further away from the shops and get some extra walking in. Take the stairs instead of the lift or escalator.

Use your body weight rather than gym equipment

There are plenty of body weight exercises such as squats, lunges, calf raises, push ups that can be done without needing to fit in time to actually go to the gym.

Combine play time with exercise

Get the kids involved and go cycling, walking or swimming with your kids. It’s fun AND great exercise.

Set your alarm earlier

Get up just 10 minutes earlier and go for a short walk. Mornings are the coolest time of the day and great for clearing your head.

Turn off the TV or use the ad breaks to exercise

Most TV shows have at least 15 minutes of ads within an hour of TV. Utilise this as workout time! We can give you some simple stretches and exercises that can be done in the lounge room if you’d like!

Plan ahead and make it a date!

If you know you’ll be busy in the morning, plan time in the afternoon for exercise or vice versa. Locking in a set time will help you commit.

Make your Christmas catch-up a ‘walk and talk’

Grab a coffee with your bestie and go for a walk. That’s multi-tasking at its finest!

 

We will be open over the Christmas/New Years period, with a number of Pilates classes running each day (public holidays excepted). Click here for more details or here to book online.

12 days of Christmas gift ideas

…Gifts for a fit, healthy and pain free 2019

The countdown to Christmas is most certainly on but, if you’re like us, you’re still scrambling to finish the Christmas shopping. We’ve pulled together a list of perhaps unexpected, but very useful, gift ideas that we have available at Stafford Physio. We’ve got a number of budget-friendly options suited to secret Santa gifts too!

 

Day 1: Wheat bags and stick on heat patches

Using heat is one of the best ways to relax tight muscles, reduce joint stiffness and improve flexibility! Applying heat promotes healing by increasing blood flow to an area, and reduces pain by soothing sensory pain receptors and blocking pain signals to the brain. Our microwaveable wheat bags come in a great range of colours and sizes for neck (rectangle), back (square) and shoulders (wrap over shoulders and cover upper back). Heat in the microwave for a couple of minutes (depending on your microwave strength) and mould to your sore area for 10-15 minutes for instant relief. Our physiotherapists commonly recommend using heat for sore necks, stiff backs and relieving tight muscles. A great gift idea for mum or nanna, any students or hard-working relatives!

Sizes available: Neck $25; Back $39; Shoulders $58

Sitting in the car for long holiday trips? Try one of our stick on our heat patches for longer lasting heat ($2.50, single use)

Day 2: Rock tape

Need an idea for that hard to buy sibling, tennis-mad uncle or injury-prone dad?

Rock tape is a type of kinesiology tape, or elastic strapping tape, that has the ability to stretch lengthways. We often use this tape within our physiotherapy treatments to provide joint and muscle support, encourage normal and full range of movement, and improve flow of fluid or swelling, which is great for all types of injuries! Rock tape is comfortable to wear, allows you to move freely and lasts up to 5 days. It comes in a great range of colours and sizes, so you can match your team uniform or Christmas day outfit!

Drop in to purchase a roll ($22) and ask one of our physiotherapists about how to apply safely.

Day 3: Theraband

Gift your love ones the ability to be strong for Christmas! Theraband is a type of resistance band used for strengthening a wide range of muscle groups, and can be used for general exercise, post injury and rehabilitation, sport specific and Pilates type exercises. We stock a range of colours which vary in resistance, so drop in and ask one of our physiotherapists which colour would be appropriate for you or your secret Santa’s goals. We can also give you some exercises to go with it!

Resistance difficulty ranges from yellow (lightest) to red, green, blue and black (most difficult).

$5 per meter, or purchase a pack with each colour for $20

Day 4: Spikey balls and pocket physios

Can you think of someone who is always tight? Loves to exercise? This is the gift for them!

Spikey balls and pocket physios are perfect tools for doing self-massage or trigger point release, which is a great way to relieve pain from tight, sore muscles. Trigger point release involves applying a sustained pressure to, or gently rolling over a tight band or “knot” within a muscle. This helps to reduce pain, improve flexibility, and increase blood flow to the muscle. This can be very effective for a wide range of muscle groups, including hamstrings, gluteal muscles, shoulder, lower back and calves. At Stafford Physio we have exercise sheets to guide you with getting the most effective and safe use out of your spikey ball or pocket physio.

At just $10 for a range of sizes and colours, this is the perfect stocking filler!

Day 5: Pad pods

Is there someone in your family who is always on their phone, ipad, kindle or has their head in a book? Gift them the gift of good posture (and a pain free neck!) this Christmas, with one of our Padpods.

A Padpod is a pyramid-shaped beanbag designed to hold your phone or ipad while you are operating it, which helps to keep the screen at a comfortable angle. This effectively improves the user’s posture and alignment, reducing incidence of neck pain and injury. Padpods can be used in a range of positions, whether sitting on your lap, lying in bed, or placed on a table or desk, which means they can be used anywhere too! Perfect for work or home, or those with longer car or plane trips planned over the holidays. The Padpod holds all devices, including your phone, ipad, cookbook or novel, making it great for all ages. In a range of great colours (hence reducing fights over whose belongs to who) come in and grab one for yourself, and your loved ones.

Padpods are $29

Day 6: Pilates socks

Does someone in your family love Pilates? They will love you for gifting them a pair of our fabulous Pilates grip socks!

We currently have a great range of sizes and designs, ranging from animal print to stripes and spots as well as neutral colours, in sizes small, medium and large. These socks have non-slip grip which is perfect for safe exercise on our equipment, or any exercise where you are in bare feet, even for floor mopping days! Plus you can never have too many pairs (to match all of your active wear outfits, of course!).

Drop in and pick up a pair or two for $17 each

Day 7: Foam rollers

Need a gift for someone that loves to run, ride, swim, gym or, well, exercise in general really?! We guarantee they will appreciate the gift of a foam roller!

An essential piece of home workout and cool down equipment, foam rollers are basically foam cylinders that can be used to slowly roll over a particular muscle group or area, such as the calves, quadriceps, gluteal muscles, or upper back. This is a great way to perform self-myofascial release (or give yourself a deep tissue massage), which breaks up scar tissue or adhesions between muscle and fascial layers. After a big run or training session at the gym, this helps to speed up recovery and reduces risk of injury. In addition, foam rollers are great tools for mobilising your upper back, stretching your chest, as well as a huge range of core strengthening and stability exercises. Pop in and see our physiotherapists for some examples of exercises and to pick up one for you and one for a mate!

We currently have a range of colours and sizes in stock: Short $20; Long $45

Day 8: Chi balls

Chi balls are soft, inflatable balls used in many of our Pilates and rehabilitation-based exercises. The small 15cm balls are infused with an aromatherapy fragrance corresponding to its colour. Using a chi ball is a great way to challenge your core muscle strength and control, improve mobility and provide spinal support, all with a range of exercises. Great little stocking fillers, your physiotherapist is happy to give exercises for any specific injuries or gentle general exercises you can incorporate into your home program.

Chi balls come in a range of colours and have instructions and tools for inflating, $20 each  

Day 9: Pilates program 10 packs

Is someone in your family a regular attendee at our Pilates classes or has always wanted to get started? Or are you looking for the perfect way to improve movement, increase strength, start exercising safely and just feel better? If so, one of our Pilates 10 packs is the ideal gift for a loved one, or a great hint to drop to your loved ones!

Stafford Physiotherapy Centre has been offering clinical Pilates for the past 7 years, with all of our physiotherapists trained in both Pilates assessment and teaching. We run small group 60 minute classes (maximum of 4 participants) 3-5 times a day from early morning (7am), mid-morning/afternoon, and evening classes, as well as Saturday mornings. We do an ensure an initial assessment and follow up one-on-one appointments prior to joining the classes, which allows us to assess any injuries, imbalances in muscle strength and flexibility, joint mobility, balance and core strength, as well as teach you how to effectively engage your core muscles. From this information we prescribe each person an individual program which we go through with you in the follow up session, and is then performed in a group class when you feel comfortable. The majority of the program involves exercising using a range of equipment, including our reformers, trapeze table, wunda chair, ladder barrel as well as smaller apparatus like swiss balls and foam rollers, with each participant in the class doing their own prescribed program. Click here for more information on Pilates.

We tailor your individual Pilates program to all ages, levels of fitness, injuries and areas of tightness or acute to chronic pain, and would love to chat to you about your exercise and health goals!

Pilates program 10 packs are currently $380 for existing patients, or $450 for patients new to the practice.

Initial assessment is $140 and follow up session $135.

Most private health funds will cover our Pilates appointments and group sessions.

Day 10: Anti-flamme massage cream

One of our most loved, long standing products is the anti-flamme cream. This cream has natural arnica oil with anti-inflammatory properties useful for massaging most muscle aches and pains. We often use anti-flamme within our treatments as it smells of lovely peppermint oil, and is a great consistency to massage with. Great for general joint aches and tight muscles on a daily basis or for specific sports injuries.

Priced at $20 for 90g tub, or $35 for 450g tub for true anti-flamme fans, this gift will be very well received!

Day 11: Flex-Ice packs

The freezer essential for all families, weekend warriors, elite athletes, and just Queenslanders in general is our flex-ice pack! Available in 2 sizes, these gel ice packs are easily mouldable and the best way to treat any acute pain or swollen area.

Applying ice (cryotherapy) works by reducing blood flow to an area, which is a great way to reduce swelling and inflammation and relieve nasty pain. Perfect to apply for any ankle sprains, swollen knees or after an acute muscle tear, we recommend wrapping the ice pack in a wet cloth/pillow case, and applying with the area elevated above the level of the heart if possible for 10-15minutes. Also useful to help cool down in 30degree+ Queensland weather!

Drop in to ask our physiotherapists any specific questions and grab one to take home today!

Small Flex-Ice $10; Large $16

Day 12: Lumbar rolls

If you are travelling anywhere this Christmas, your lower back will thank you for the support of a lumbar roll! The most popular is our D-shaped lumbar rolls which have Velcro straps, meaning they can be fastened nicely to your desk chair as well as are portable for car and plane trips. The rolls work by fitting in the small of your lower back, or lumbar curve, supporting the muscles in this area and also propping you up into sitting in a neutral spinal posture. If you have a sore lower back or history of back pain or injury, we recommend you try one of these for any longer duration sitting. And remember that breaking up your journeys (in particular breaking up your sitting time), in addition to stretching and gentle exercise will almost always be a great help, ensuring you are ready for that backyard cricket match Christmas day!

D-roll shaped lumbar support $22

This post was written by Megan Tilyard, Physiotherapist and Clinical Pilates Instructor at Stafford Physiotherapy Centre. 

Slope ready: 6 exercises to prep for skiing

Are you escaping the heat and skiing overseas this summer? If so, now’s the time to get ski-fit!

We find that lots of people have ski trips planned for Japan and Canada over the summer months. And unfortunately a couple come back to us in March with injuries from their holiday. Now is the perfect time to get ready for your summer skiing so that you can make the most of it and escape injury-free.

Not to worry if you’re not hitting the slopes; these exercises will help tone up your legs ready for your summer beach trip!

Strengthening your legs prior to your ski trip is the best way to prevent injury and make the most of your time skiing. You might not be surprised to hear that knee injuries are the most common skiing injury. Here are a few exercises to strengthen those legs and prepare your knees for what’s about to hit them! Pilates is also great at building strength and we can customise your program to help get you ready for the slopes or any sport requiring leg strength. If you need further help, personalised exercises or would like to try Pilates, come and see our experienced physiotherapists.

bridging | bridge holds | best exercises for skiing BRIDGE HOLDS
  • Heels close towards bottom, squeeze bottom muscles and lift hips towards the ceiling.
  • Be careful not to arch your back.
  • Hold for 5-10 seconds
  • Do 10-1 2reps
  • 2 sets

 

wall squat | best exercises for skiing | ski stretchesWALL SQUAT
  • Leaning with your back supported on the wall, feet out in front and even weight in both feet.
  • Slowly slide down the wall into a squat (knees bent about 60 degrees or less if knee pain).
  • Hold this position for 5-10 seconds, and then push up through your heels with spine along the wall into standing.
  • Repeat 10-12 reps

 

 

squat exercise for skiing | best exercises to prepare to skiSQUATS
  • With even weight in both feet, slowly bend knees, stick bottom out like sitting back on a chair.
  • Keep your chest up tall. Knees bent no more than 90degrees. Watch knees don’t come forward over your toes.
  • Push up through your heels back into standing.
  • Do 10-12 reps
  • 2 sets

 

 

LUNGES
  • Standing with one foot forwards and one back
  • Both toes facing forwards
  • Lunge by lowering your back knee towards the ground then return.
  • Keeps hips square
  • Make sure front knee stays vertical and in line with your second toe.
  • Do 10-15 reps

 

 

 

single leg squat | ski exercises | stretches for skiing

SINGLE LEG SQUAT
  • Standing on one leg.
  • Keep hips square and level
  • Squat with bottom going backwards and chest forwards (like sitting on a chair).
  • Push up through your heels back into a standing position.
  • Do 10-12 reps

 

 

WALL STANDWall stand exercise for skiing | ski stretches
  • Standing tall on one leg, gently turn out other knee to push into the wall.
  • Raise this foot if you are able to.
  • Hold pressure at wall for 5-10-15 seconds.
  • Do 10-12reps

* You should feel this in the glute on your standing leg

 

 

 

 

If you have questions, or would like personalised exercises to help you prepare for your holidays, please call or book online to see one of our Physiotherapists.