Better Kinesiotape Results!

I love using kinesiotape for different things, from reducing swelling, to helping retrain the body. It is a tool that can be applied at home to help with different aspects of training, but remember like other modalities, it’s not a fix all!

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This is a photo of a kinesiotape tape job I did for some joint line swelling I had after a hard weekend of snowboarding. This was taken 4 days and 5 showers after application and still looks pristine! It ended up lasting another day and half before I removed it to use a different type of tape job. Here are some tips to make your kinesiotape more effective and last longer!

1. Make sure the area you are going to tape is clean shaven.

2. Make sure it is clean of lotions or oils- best to do after a shower and use rubbing alcohol or alcohol swab to clean area and let dry.

3. DO NOT TOUCH the sticky side of the tape with your fingers! Lay it in place using the backing.

4. Make sure your anchors are well placed; rub the backing over the tape to warm up and activate the glue.

5. Tape typically lasts 3-5 days depending on movement, showering, and application.

6. If there’s any pain, discomfort, or itching/reaction to adhesive; discontinue use. 

That’s it! A kinesiotape job done well will help get you back to the activities you enjoy most! Feel free to comment or get in touch if you have any questions! And don’t forget, bookings are available for in office kinesiotaping from the professional ; )! Happy taping all!

The link of the cuff

It’s summer which means volleyball season! I’ve had a lot of friends doing volleyball and other over head sports and talking about shoulder pain! I’ve noticed that most know of the “rotator cuff” but are unaware of what it actually consists of. I’m here to drop a little knowledge so you can know your body better, and therefore take better care of it! The rotator cuff is actually a set of 4 muscles that work together to move your arm and shoulder while keeping it in its proper place. The muscles that make up the “cuff” are: 1. supraspinatus- this muscle abducts or raises the arm and stabilizes the humerus. 2. infraspinatus- this muscle externally rotates the arm (think open the door) and stabilizes the humerus. 3. teres minor- this muscle similarly externally rotates the arm and stabilizes the humerus. 4. subscapularis- this muscle internally rotates the arm and stabilizes the humerus. All of these muscles originate on the scapula, aka shoulder blade, and insert on the humerus. They are referred to as one group, the “rotator cuff”, because of their similar attachments and action of stabilizing the humerus, but each muscle also has it’s own action. This makes them all separate but come to work together in order to allow your arm to move as freely as it does! Hopefully this helps you better understand your body and know what’s going on with it! #themoreyouknow

Hydration Station

It's finally starting to feel like summer which means more sun, more heat, and more sweating! Sweating is your body's way of cooling itself and regulating it's core temperature. As your body sweats, it loses fluid, which is essential to your body being able to function. Hydration is a very important subject matter that is easily forgotten or put off because of other things happening in our lives that only comes to the forefront when we are exercising, sweating, or feel thirsty. When you start to feel thirsty, your body is already starting to become dehydrated.

One of the times we should be more concerned about our hydration status is during exercise. As you exercise, you use your muscles to generate heat and your body creates beads of sweat that evaporate and pull heat away from the body in order to maintain an appropriate core body temperature. In order for our body to be able to function at optimal levels, it requires fluid in order for muscles to function and for your body to create sweat. According to Sports Dietitians Australia, " As dehydration increases, there is a gradual reduction in physical and mental performance. There is an increase in heart rate and body temperature, and an increased perception of how hard the exercise feels, especially when exercising in the heat. Studies show that loss of fluid equal to 2% of body mass is sufficient to cause a detectable decrease in performance (that’s a 1.4 kg loss in a 70 kg athlete).Dehydration of greater than 2% loss of body weight increases the risk of nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and other gastro-intestinal problems during exercise." So it is important to pay attention to fluid intake and hydrate based on your activity level. Water is the best option to stay hydrated, but as we do more prolonged and vigorous activity, we may require fluids with things like electrolytes and carbohydrates. These fluids can include sports drinks such as Gatorade or Powerade, which replace fluid and salts that are lost as the body continues to sweat.

It is also almost more important to be aware of your hydration on a day to day basis. It is best to constantly stay on top of your hydration throughout the day in order to prevent dehydration in the first place. For best results, your body requires a certain amount of fluid to function at a basic level that can be determined by taking your current weight in pounds and dividing it by 2 and drinking that amount of water, in ounces, throughout your day. For example, a 150lb person should be drinking at least 75oz of water per day as a starting point. Then, if that person were to exercise or drink anything that is a diuretic, such as coffee/caffeine, alcohol, soda, most teas, then they would need to follow these things up with an equal amount of water. This means that if you drink two 8oz cups of coffee without adding anything else in to the mix, that same 150lb person would now need to drink 91oz of water for that day! 

These are some basic ideas to get you thinking about how much water you should actually drink throughout the day. Most people are well below what could be considered a functional level of hydration. As you begin to give your body the fluid that it needs, you will begin to notice a difference in energy level, cognitive function, and athletic performance. This is because your body requires fluid for the majority of it's functions. I always remind my clients to drink a lot of water after getting a massage because during a massage we work the muscles like you would during exercise and also release toxins that have been pent up in muscles, which all require fluid to help flush and rehydrate your system. Not to mention, hydration post massage and exercise greatly reduces DOMS, Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness. Soreness occurs because your muscles create a biproduct when they are used, which is commonly referred to as lactic acid buildup, that will linger for days if you don't rehydrate your body. This is also particularly important for us here in Colorado! We are at a higher elevation and dryer climate than most places. This means we lose fluids quicker than climates with more humidity and require more water intake. Increased water intake helps mitigate headaches and fatigue associated with an increase in altitude that out-of-state-travelers tend to experience when they get here. 

Our bodies are meant to function and be used, but the more you know about them, the more you can take care of them! I hope this gives some insight on your body that you are able to take with you and incorporate into your daily life. You only get one body and one life, take great care of it and it will do amazing things for you!

 

References

Sports Dietitians Australia. (2009 June) Fact Sheet Fluid in Sports. https://www.sportsdietitians.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/Fluids-in-sport.pdf

Gift Cards!

Hey guys! I actually got with the times and figured out how to give gift cards online!! Go to https://squareup.com/gift/AE16AN67K9QJK/order and choose your design, the amount you would like to give (they are pre set for the cost of my 30-min, 60-min, 90-min, and new patient appointments), and just enter in your info and the gift receiver's info. Then it will take you to the next page to enter in your payment info and Wa-La! All set to go!

I am also more than happy to help if you need so don't hesitate to contact me at 406.498.0483 or pin.pointmassageco@gmail.com

Stretching-The Truth

I know you've heard it time and time again from your coach, trainer, massage therapist, or even your friend- "stretching is good for you". But why is it so good? Working in the industry of helping bodies, there a few things that I have learned that, I hope, will help answer this question for you. 

First, a little background. Muscles are attached to bones by tendons and can only do 2 things: contract and relax. The body has so many different sizes, shapes, and orientations of muscles so that it is able to move the bones of skeleton in the direction you want them to go. This is a complicated process of thinking, sending signals down nerves, and a chemical release in order to stimulate a muscle to "fire" and shorten. It's not something we think much about, but a lot goes in to one little muscle fiber contracting. So taking all that into consideration, think of how often we use our muscles to do things everyday. You are using muscles as soon as you wake up in the morning until you go to bed at night, even at rest while you are sleeping, so isn't it a wonder we don't have more muscle issues!

Now, what to do about all this tension? Help them! Stretching is one of my favorite ways to keep my body feeling at it's best. There is a big difference between going for a run and immediately sitting back at your desk or in the car and gong for a run with a post stretch before getting back to the daily grind. When muscles move they create a bi-product that will linger in it's fibers, we've heard this commonly referred to as lactic acid. Stretching helps move bi-product fluids out of the muscle, allowing room for new, healthy fluids to come in to repair and heal. Why do we care if the muscle is healthy? A healthy muscle functions better, allows for more range of motion and flexibility, doesn't allow for a plethora of trigger points to accrue, and overall makes you feel better and more functional. 

Funny that I am writing about stretching in a massage blog, right? Fun fact: massage and stretching go hand in hand! They work in similar fashions to help keep muscle tissue healthy, which is why some massages include stretches. A massage therapist needs to use all the tools in their knowledge belt in order to help the client with the aches and pains they are coming in for. This is the goal! Us massage therapists want you to be a healthy body, which sadly means that you don't always need us and we might not get to see you as often. But we are here for you when something new arises or you need a friendly reminder of what your body is supposed to feel like and how to help it! We love seeing clients feel better and be happy! So keep up the stretching and feel free to ask any questions you might have about it or anything else!

Whip that Butt into Shape!

After a minor hiatus due to trying to work during the Easter holiday while trying to spend time with family resulting in forgetting my computer at my parent's house for the week, I now present Gospel #3! As low back continues to be on the rise in our society, I want you guys to know why and how to alleviate this unrelenting epidemic. In review, we have talked about Iliopsoas and Quadratus Lumborum being major contributors to dysfunction, we continue the trend with muscle group #3: Glutes! Everybody knows about gluteus maximus, that big booty muscle, but do you realize that there are actually 3 glute muscles that all act on the hips/pelvis that affect your posture! Here are the glutes in all their glory; gluteus minimus, gluteus medius, and gluteus maximus.

So why do we care about these guys and how they affect our bodies? They act on the pelvis and the femur for glute max by way of hip extension, like a straight leg raise to the back, and hip abduction, or leg lift directly to the side; for glute med, again is abduction of the hip and prevention of hip adduction, which is when you squeeze your thighs together; and glute min, again is hip abduction along with internal rotation of the hip. Ok so now we know what they do, how does that affect your low back? If your glutes are constantly shut off from hunching forward, slouching in your chair, or essentially just not using them your posture becomes reliant on the hamstrings. You are leaned forward from the entire combo of shortened Iliopsoas, lack of QL and lack of glutes that you end up putting your whole upper body tilted forward and overworking the hamstrings to keep you upright! So moral of the story, get that booty in shape to improve posture and give those hamstrings a rest! To strengthen and work these guys out think about the actions we went over and apply it to what you know about exercising. Hip extension and abduction exercises are the ones to focus on with things like table top fire hydrants (left) and hip extensions (right) to really focus on this muscle group. I hope this info helps you guys be more informed about your body, how it works, and what to work on when you're hurting! Feel free to respond, email, or call with any questions (all the info is on the contact page)! Get out there and (t)werk that booty!

Ilipsoas

First of the 4 gospels for low back pain is Iliopsoas, and it's first on the list for a reason! The Iliopsoas can actually be broken down into two muscles, the Iliacus and the Psoas Major. They are often associated with each other because they have similar actions on the body along with attaching at the same spot on the femur; the lesser trochanter. Both muscles are hip flexors, which means if you attempt to touch your toes by bending forward, you are using these muscles to do it! 

Where the Iliacus and Psoas Major differ, is their origination points and the bones that they act on. The Psoas is the bigger, stronger muscle that connects the axial, or torso, part of your skeleton to your appendicular, or lower (in this case) limbs, while also connecting the front to the back, and the inside to the outside. The Psoas starts on the inside/front part of your vertebrae or spine and comes through your torso over the front of your pelvic bone to attach to the inner and upper part of your femur. This muscle is gigantor! It's amazing how much this muscle drives what is happening in the mid to lower part of your body. But why does it concern us when it comes to low back pain? I mean it isn't even hanging around on the back part of our bodies, so how can it affect it? This is one of the biggest questions I get when working on the Psoas, people are always a little baffled as to why I'm working on muscles through their abdomen in order to help alleviate low back pain. I know this can be hard to envision just hearing about it so look at the photo, study it, then imagine the muscle as it goes through your body.

Now that you have this envisioned, think about what you do all day and how often you use or shorten this muscle. If you have a desk job, you are constantly putting this muscle in a shortened positioned for upwards of 8 hours a day. As you slouch there in your desk chair, you continue to contribute to that muscle staying it's shortened position, which, in turn, contributes to your low back pain. It pulls your lumbar vertebrae forward and takes away that natural curve that is supposed to be in your low back. You have this big muscle pulling you forward and taking your body out of natural alignment. This changes the environment your back muscles are accustomed to which makes them freak out and yell at you that is expressed by your body as pain. Because this is such a large muscle, by working on it we are able to help alleviate that pain quickly and effectively with an ever increasing window of pain free days. 

The other portion of the equation, Iliacus, is a muscle that is a synergist to the Psoas Major. This means that both muscles help each other to do the same action. Iliacus starts on the inside lip of your pelvis and runs down through the front of your body to attach onto the same place on the femur that Psoas Major attaches. This muscle can add to the shortening of your hip flexors and exacerbate low back pain and also cause front hip pain and pain just below your glutes. These fickle little buggers are an evil team that come together to give you most of your low back pain!

Now what to do with this info? After reading through all the hubbub and getting the background of the muscles and how they work, you have a better understanding of why these muscles need to be worked on! By releasing trigger points and keeping these muscles stretched and elongated, you can greatly improve the occurrence of low back pain! Madness how just working on muscles helps your body return to it's natural state without the aid of surgery/pills/general invasiveness! I hope this info helps you guys be more informed about your body, how it works, and what to work on when you're hurting! Feel free to respond, email, or call with any questions (all the info is on the contact page)! Happy fixings!

"4 Gospels of Low Back Pain"

Contrary to the title, this post doesn't require any religious affiliation to follow; other than devoting to yourself to feel better in every day life! As a massage therapist, I can't tell you how many people come in complaining of low back pain. It is becoming more and more prevalent in today's society, but why is that?

One of the big factors playing in to low back pain is all the sitting we do throughout the day. When we sit down and stare at computer screens, tablets, and phones the tendency is for the screens to suck you in, literally. You end up slouching, hips sucked under, head forward, and belly crunched; this is not how the body was meant to do for hours upon hours on a daily basis. The body is meant to move and be active! It does wonders for your body when you get going and do at least some activity daily. A short walk on your lunch can be just the thing to get you out of the daily screen driven grind. Keeping muscles loose and moving, aka doing the job they're designed for, is the best way to keep yourself functioning and moving better!

You work hard and use the same muscles daily with bad posture, what do you do now? Here are 4 big muscles you can work through to release and stretch to help alleviate that nagging low back pain. So here we go, giving you muscular gold right here.

1. Iliopsoas

2. Quadratus Lumborum

3. Glutes (maximus, minimus, medius)

4. Hamstrings

Soak up those names, think about them, dream about them, and then continue reading my next posts for all juicy muscle details!

 

Recovery Time!

About to get my recovery on! Epsom salt baths are a great way to recover your muscles and keep you moving after those long, hard work outs! The magnesium sulfate is the "salt" part of the equation that helps your muscles relax, increases circulation, regulates blood pressure, and encourages proper elimination to decrease the prominence of DOMS ( Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness), a biproduct of our muscles working hard! 
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#stayhappy #stayhealthy #practicewhatyoupreach#helpfultipoftheweek 

@pin.pointmassageco