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Core strengthening videos: daily routines for a healthier back

In her inspiring life story, Jo Malone says that life is about conquering things. In her journey from growing up in a council flat and struggling with dyslexia to being a world-known, innovative perfumer, she’s had to conquer limitations over and over again. Similarly, the dancer and actress Leslie Caron had to overcome seriously challenging times in her life. At age 90 she says that her military discipline is most important: “I do my exercises every day. Discipline is everything in life, I think, if you want to live a long life, which I am trying to do”. (Dessert Island Discs, 18/2/22)

We all have challenges, but creating our own meaningful discipline and healthy habits can help us through. When you have back pain, what you do every day will count: avoiding the movements that hurt, and including practices that benefit your back. This blog focuses on core strengthening in particular, as it is an essential part of your journey to a healthier back. Especially if you don’t know how to start with core strengthening, this blog is for you!

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Self-care tips for a healthy back

If you feel exasperated with nagging back pain or tight shoulders and neck, this blog is for you. These self-care tips for a healthy back demonstrate simple practices to release tight muscles and strengthen core muscles. While feeling stronger and more flexible on a physical level is a good start, no good back care programme is complete without breath optimisation and relaxation. After all, the mind and body are intrinsically linked, so repetitive and mindless exercises are not sufficient to deal with back pain. If you would like to learn more about back care, read to the end of the blog to find out about my new 5-week back care group class, starting this April.

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Mother’s Day Yoga Special

Whether you are a mother, father, grandparent, aunt or uncle, today’s yoga is for anyone in need of a nourishing and uplifting yoga session. It’s nourishing because caregivers give so much of their time to others that self-care is often put on the back burner. This session is also meant to be uplifting because apart tremendous love and joy, motherhood can bring exhaustion, fears, worries, guilt, and having to let go. Therefore, this Mother’s Day Yoga Special centres on the heart area: stretching chest muscles, strengthening and lengthening the upper back, it mobilises and engages an area that can often be held quite tightly.

Let’s move and breathe deeply.

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Three yoga shortcuts to find inner peace

We are living in difficult and worrying times. As if the global pandemic, the rising cost of living and the environmental threats were not enough, there is now also a shocking war to worry about, quite nearby. The macro situation may come on top of a personal challenge in your life. How can we stay calm and clearheaded when it’s far easier to be agitated and stressed? The ancient yoga philosophy says that inner peace is always within us. Although it can get clouded by fear, anger and worries, our inner peace is always there. Accessing this sanctuary regularly helps us gain mental clarity and emotional balance. There are many yoga tools that can help us reduce overwhelm, fear and stress, but this blog will focus on three yoga shortcuts to find inner peace.

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Prioritising neck care

Looking after our neck is never a prime concern until it starts to hurt. I found this out the hard way last year, when I felt tingling going down my arm all the way to my thumb. I now know that prioritising neck care is essential, because alongside the lower back, it bears the full force of wrong postural habits. The neck is a vital passage between the head and the rest of the body: the breath, blood, nerve impulses and nourishment all have to pass through this delicate structure. At the same time, the small cervical vertebrae and muscles have to carry the heavy weight of the head and move efficiently. Let’s have a look at how the neck is structured, what can go wrong, and what we can do to look after it now. 

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Yoga tips to stay healthy and well

“40 and falling apart” was the first blog I ever wrote. It claimed that at 40, your body starts telling you what you’ve been doing in your life. Little did I know what 50 was going to bring! At 50, I have to use my yoga practice to support my body, rather than the other way round. Attention to posture has become important, same as upper back and neck care. With this blog, I’d like to give you some tips to be the healthiest version of you. These yoga tips to stay healthy and well will not make you stand on your head or bend like a pretzel. This is yoga for better blood circulation, deeper breathing, better balance and mobility, and less stress. It is yoga that helps you feel more confident and happy. 

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New Year’s resolutions for a healthy back

Have you made resolutions to look after your back health this year? Maybe you decided to slouch less, buy an ergonomic chair for your desk, or invest in a back care programme to strengthen your back and core muscles. You may even be considering yoga therapy as a way of looking after your back and general health. The advantage of yoga therapy is that it also offers relaxation and breathing exercises to calm the mind. This is essential, as stress may be the cause as well as the result of back pain. With this blog about New Year’s resolutions for a healthy back I would like to give you an easy, daily routine to improve your spine’s mobility, release tightness, strengthen your abdominal muscles and relieve stress. It’s not the only way, but it’s a good start.

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Fun ways to find focus and calm this Christmas

Here we are, after almost two years, still immersed in a pandemic. This second time round over Christmas, it may feel a bit harder to find joyful activities, laugh and have fun. Being healthy, and surrounded by family or friends is our greatest blessing. But as we enter our second Christmas with restrictions, let’s focus on finding pleasure in small things. Without concerts, plays, parties, travel and restaurants, these small pleasures give us a different source of joy. They are also simple and fun ways to find focus and calm.

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Morning yoga routine for a healthy back

When faced with a health challenge such as back pain, what you do every day counts, and how you start the day is very important. Starting with a morning yoga routine prepares your back in the best possible way for the day ahead. If you think about it, you already have a morning routine: the way you get out of bed, move to the shower and eat your breakfast all involve movements that may or may not benefit your back. This article will walk you through a morning yoga routine for a healthy back. You can do this practice every day to maintain a pain-free, flexible and strong back. These movements are suitable for general lower back stiffness and mild back pain. Doing the movements in coordination with the breath will also soothe the nervous system and set you up for the day with a calmer and more focused mind. 

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Yoga therapy for Spondylolisthesis

If you’ve been diagnosed with spondylolisthesis, you may feel at a loss of how to manage your back pain. If you were doing yoga, a back specialist probably told you that yoga is not a good idea. After all, many yoga practices would aggravate spondylolisthesis. While this may be true of a general yoga class, yoga therapy could be just right for you. The right exercises, relaxation and breathing would help you manage and relieve even such a complicated back condition as spondylolisthesis. Choosing yoga therapy for spondylolisthesis means that you can profit from all the physical, emotional and mental benefits of yoga. On top of that, you learn which movements and positions can help your back, and which should be avoided. Everyone is different, and it’s best to get a yoga therapy programme for your particular health condition. However, this blog aims to give you a head start with some general indications.

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