#FitnessFriday – Dancer Hip Stretch

This simple, yet effective hip stretch, will help ease tightness and discomfort to increase mobility. Ideal for dancers and goalies, add this exercise to your warm-up routine!

1. Start with your left foot pointed forward and planted into the ground. Right foot will be on a box or step with the foot pointing forward. Standing tall with your legs straight, arms will be straight out to either side of you, and your hips pointing forward. 

2. Rotate your arms so that your torso turns and faces the wall (like you are giving it a hug). As you do that, point your hips straight so that they are facing the direction of your left foot, and rotate your right foot on the box so it is also facing the same direction of your left foot. 

3. From this position, bend your knees, keeping your hips back and only go as far as you can that is comfortable. 

4. Slowly come up from that position, rotate the arms and legs back to the starting position and repeat. 

5. Then switch so the right foot is forward and planted into the ground, and the left foot is on the box.

#WednesdayWorkout – Shoulder Pulleys

Pulleys are an effective shoulder mobility exercise to help improve range of motion with stiff shoulders.

1. Sit upright with 2 hands on the rope/belt at shoulder height
2. Pull the right arm down towards your leg, letting your right arm slowly raise up. Go to a comfortable position where you feel a gentle pull but no pain. Then return to the start position.
3. Repeat by pulling left arm down after this.

Try for 3 sets of 15 repetitions, stop if there is any pain!

#GrilledCheeseSandwichDay – Cauliflower Crusted Grilled Cheese Sandwiches

Cauliflower Crusted Grilled Cheese Sandwiches

Ingredients

  • 1 medium head of cauliflower (raw), cut into small florets and stem removed
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
  • 1 tsp Italian herb seasoning
  • 2 thick slices of white cheddar cheese (you can also use shredded cheddar cheese)

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 450F. Place cauliflower into food processor and pulse until crumbs about half the size of a grain of rice.
  2. Place cauliflower into large microwave safe bowl and microwave for 2 minutes.Your cauliflower should be soft and tender (and hot!).
  3. Stir cauliflower to mix up the bottom and top cauliflower. Place back into the microwave and cook for another 3 minutes.  Remove and stir again so that all the cauliflower cooks evenly.  Place back into the microwave and cook for 5 minutes. At this point, you should see the cauliflower is starting to become more dry.  Microwave for another 5 minutes.  Cauliflower should still be slightly moist to the touch, but should look dry and clumped up.
  4. Allow cauliflower to cool for a few minutes. Then add in egg and Parmesan cheese.  Stir to combine until smooth paste forms. Stir in seasoning.  Divide dough into 4 equal parts.  Place onto large baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Using your knuckles and fingers, shape into square bread slices (about 1/3 thick).  Bake cauliflower bread for about 15-18 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from oven and let cool a few minutes.
  5. Using a good spatula, carefully slide cauliflower bread off of parchment paper.Now you are ready to assemble your sandwiches.  You can do this a few different ways.  You can either cook on the stove top as you would normally cook a grilled cheese. You can also place sandwiches into toaster oven and broil for several minutes (5-10) until cheese is completely melted and bread is to toasty.  If you don’t own a toaster oven, you can also do this in the oven.

Recipe and Photo Credit: Kirbie’s Cravings

 

Top Tips to Get Kids to Eat More Vegetables!

Top Tips to Get Kids to Eat More Vegetables!

By Olivia Hart, B.Sc. Nutrition and Dietetics

  1. Set an example.

By far the best predictor of a child’s eating patterns is those of the parents! If vegetables and healthier food options are not promoted or seen being consumed by the parents, it’s tough to expect your kid to take to them. Kids eat what they know, and they won’t ask for special treats or meals if they don’t know it’s an option!

  1. Get them involved in the process.

Children are going to be way more interested in a meal they’ve helped prepare. Letting your kids pick two things to cook for dinner and have them help with the washing and preparing of the food — this can make them far more excited to eat it! Take them to the farmers market or the grocery store and let them pick one fruit or vegetable for each color of the rainbow, they’ll be so excited when you use their chosen fruit or vegetable for their meals!

  1. Educate.

When trying to get a child to try something new, it may be helpful to tell them a few of the health benefits that food can have for them. For example — these carrots will help you to see better, or this spinach will help you to have strong bones! This makes vegetables seem like they’ll give you super powers and who wouldn’t want to eat that!

  1. Enforce the “try five” rule

Many studies show that a child who initially rejects a food must be exposed to it at least 5-10 times for the food to be accepted. The “try five” rule means you must try this food at least 5 different times before you rule out that food! The more exposure to a food the more accustomed our taste buds become to the flavour and eventually you may like it!

  1. Get creative and a little sneaky.

Get creative and learn some recipes that sneak a ton of fruits and vegetables into the diet. Things like smoothies, pasta sauces, even muffins! Here’s an awesome recipe for spinach muffins that taste delicious and are super nutritious from one of my favourite bloggers S Runs For Cake. https://srunsforcake.com/spinach-muffins-2/

 

 

Book a free consult with Olivia by calling (905) 339-2333 or email her at oharty@dynamichealthandperformance.ca

#FitnessFriday – Front Plank

The front plank is an isometric core strength exercise that involves maintaining a position similar to a push-up. Follow our tips to ensure an effective, proper abdominal bridge for maximum effectiveness!

1. Position your forearms shoulder width apart, bending at the elbow so forearms are pushing into the ground
2. Engaging your core muscles, curl your toes under your feet as you push your body up and try to hold yourself up in a straight line
3. Hold for 20-30 seconds and relax, if you are feeling shaky, start with 10-20 second holds instead

TIP:
To make it easier try holding a plank on your hands instead of forearms! Don’t round your back or hike your hips high, try to stay as straight as you can.

#WednesdayWorkout – Cardio Bike Intervals

Cardio Bike Interval training involves working out at higher intensities than you would in a steady-paced cardio workout.

Add these high-intensity intervals to your stationary bike workouts to help achieve a more efficient cardiovascular workout that improves the oxidative capacity of your muscles!

 

30 seconds fast then 30 seconds slow for 5 minutes

45 seconds fast then 15 seconds slow for 5 minutes

60 seconds fast then 30 seconds slow for 5 minutes

Make sure you keep your water with you to stay hydrated!

#FitnessFriday – The Halti C

Grab a BOSU ball and try this exercise that helps to release hip flexors and improve back extension and mobility. Following two hip surgeries, a former patient performed this effective exercise during his recovery.

 

 

1. Knees will be about the width of the BOSU (or stacked pillows) with our pelvis on the ball, and hands wide infront.
2. Starting with your nose pointed down towards the floor, slowly lift the chest up, trying to keep the hips on the ball. Take a nice deep breath as you go through the motion. Then slowly go back down to the starting position.
3. For an added challenge, when you lift your chest up, raise 1 arm at a time up slowly, trying to keep your weight even on the ball.

#WednesdayWorkout – 6 Way Shoulders

Few exercises engage the musculature of the shoulders as much as Six-Way Shoulders. This exercise helps maintain shoulder stability and range of motion; and combines lateral raises, front raises, and overhead movements into one exercise.

 

Step 1: Stand with your legs about hip-width apart and hold a dumbbell in each hand by your side. Bend your torso forward and bend your legs slightly so that your arms extend below your body with your hands facing each other as you hold the dumbbells.

Step 2: Exhale and raise your arms out to your sides with your hands facing down, squeezing your shoulder blades together during the movement. Do not round your spine or move your head forward. Then slowly come back to the starting position.

Step 3: From a standing position, palms facing up, curl your hands towards your shoulders and complete a bicep curl.

Step 4: As your hands finish the bicep curl at your shoulders, rotate your arms to the side so your elbows are inline with your shoulders and palms are facing forwards, dumbbells should be around ear level.

Step 5: From this position you will complete a shoulder press, lifting your arms above your head, touching the dumbbells together at the top, then coming back down to shoulder height

Step 6: From this position, one arm at a time is going to come forward in a punching motion. Punch the left arm out and then back in, and repeat with the right arm.

Step 7: After completing the 2 punches. Arms are going to come down in front of you so that your palms are facing your thighs. Arms are shoulder width apart, set the shoulders back and lift both arms at the same time to finish the movement with a front raise.

HINT: Keep your core tight and shoulders back the entire time. Start without any weights until you master the movement, and slowly add them in as you become more confident.

What is the Functional Movement Screen?

Understanding how and why we move helps us to improve. The FMS uses objective and validated standards to check the movement baseline and build foundations for lifelong movement success. Its streamlined system has benefits for everyone involved – individuals, exercise professionals, and physicians.

COMMUNICATION:

The FMS utilizes simple language, making it easy for individuals, exercise professionals, and physicians to communicate clearly about progress and treatment.

EVALUATION:

The screen identifies asymmetries and limitations, including areas that the individual may be at risk of injury.

STANDARDIZATION:

The FMS creates a baseline to mark progress and provides a means to measure performance.

SAFETY:

The FMS quickly identifies dangerous movement patterns so that they can be addressed. It also indicates an individual’s readiness to perform exercise so that realistic goals can be set and achieved.

CORRECTIVE STRATEGIES:

The FMS can be applied at any fitness level, simplifying corrective strategies of a wide array of movement issues.

The base line score will show any asymmetries or dysfunctional movement patterns that we can work to correct. You will be provided a report with our suggestions for improving your score. This assessment tool allows us to monitor progress and screen for potential imbalances that may be developing from training, and we can then work together to correct them.

This system is used by many Professional Sports organizations like European Soccer and the NFL in monitoring athletes throughout the season and as a tool to prevent injury.

If you would like more information regarding individual and team testing, contact the front desk at (905) 339-2333, or info@dynamichealthandperformance.ca.

Fitness Friday – Four Way Hips with Bands

1. Start with your feet shoulder width apart and a band around 1 leg.
2. Keeping your core tight, slide your leg back behind you and squeeze your glutes, just far enough that you feel a squeeze, tap the big toe on the ground, keeping all your weight on the supporting leg and then bring the leg back to starting position. Repeat 10 times.
3. Turn your body to the right, this time you will slide your leg out to the side, again tapping the toe but keeping your weight on the supporting leg so you feel the outside of your glutes activate. Repeat 10 times
4. Turn again to your right so you are facing the opposite direction to where you started. This time you will tap your toe in front of you, far enough that you feel the muscles activate but not so far that you are reaching. Then return to the starting position. Repeat 10 times
5. Lastly, turn once more to your right, this time taking a larger step away from the band with the supporting leg and pulling the opposite foot in towards the body, and back out again. Repeat 10 times
6. Switch the band to the other leg, and repeat the steps above.
HINT: Keep all your weight on the supporting leg, keep your core tight and stand up straight. You want your hips and legs to move, not the top half of your body.