Campus Commons PT - July 2019

LIMBERING UP

FOR YOUR NEXT ROAD TRIP Even though road trips offer you a break from the monotony of your office, the stiffness in your muscles and joints that comes from sitting

FOR THE NECK Reach your left arm over the top of your head and touch your right ear. Then, gently pull your head to the left and hold it there for 15 seconds. Repeat this process with your right arm. FOR THE CHEST Stand in front of a door frame with one hand pressed on either side and your elbows at 90-degree angles, then lean forward. This will cause your chest muscles to open up. Hold this position for 15 seconds. You can do a similar stretch by bending downward while keeping your hands on your car door in front of you, stretching your entire upper body. FOR THE HIPS While you’re driving, a good way to prevent sore hips is by making sure your knees are

slightly elevated above them in your seat. Once you have the opportunity to stop, try doing some hip flexors. Kneel on one knee, slowly push your pelvis forward, squeeze your shoulders back, and open your chest. Hold this position for 15 seconds, then repeat while kneeling on the other knee. FOR THE LEGS To stretch out your hamstrings, place your right heel on a small step. Extend your arms upward, and then lean your upper body forward. You’ll feel a pull in the back of your upper leg. Once you’ve done this for about 15–30 seconds, repeat the process with your left heel. The road may be long, but that doesn’t mean you have to feel it in your muscles. If you stop every couple of hours and take some time to limber up, your body will thank you.

in one position for too long can follow you onto the road if you’re not careful. Whether in front of a laptop or behind the wheel, taking the opportunity to stretch and exercise on your summer road trip is a great way to prevent the soreness from following you back to the office. Here are a few stretches to keep in mind for the next rest stop.

PREVENT GARDENING-RELATED INJURIES GETTING OLDER DOESN’T MEAN LOSING YOUR GREEN THUMB

There’s no summer activity quite like gardening. The emotional satisfaction of looking out at a beautiful bed of flowers or vegetable garden is hard to top, and the physical benefits aren’t bad, either. You can expend between 150–300 calories a day gardening, and while the joy of having a healthy, vibrant garden won’t diminish, the physical activity does start to take a toll as we age. To keep gardening all summer long without soreness and injury, follow some of these tips. STRETCH PROPERLY Different gardening activities, such as bending, squatting, and raking, work different muscle groups. By targeting these groups with the proper stretches and exercises, you can better prepare your body for a day of good, hard work. For bending, try bird-dog exercises, which will strengthen your abs, back, and legs. For squatting, try chair squats, which will strengthen your glutes, quads, and hamstrings. For raking, try countertop pushups, which will strengthen your core, shoulders, and arms. PACE YOURSELF When you garden, try to get into a rhythm of warming up, working, and resting. It’s easy to lose track of time once you get started on a

project you want to see through, but it’s important to change your position or activity every 20–30 minutes. Make sure to take short, 10-minute breaks in between each

task. If you keep that pace throughout your gardening time, you’ll be less likely to overwork certain muscles and start your next day feeling sore.

OPTIMIZE YOUR GARDENING SPACE Part of the joy of gardening is making your garden look exactly how you want and accommodating the space to meet your physical needs. You can garden in raised beds to avoid bending down to tend your plants, or cultivate vines along trellises or fence posts to relieve some pressure from your back and knees. You can even get ergonomic tools, kneeling benches, or other products specifically designed to make gardening easier for seniors.

We wish you a safe and fulfilling summer outside, but if you are injured from working out in the yard, give Campus Commons a call.

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