Health Essentials

As originally seen in “Bodyfit” magazine – Oct 2012 

The inside scoop to keep you in peak condition

Hunched over a desk all day, or lugging around a heave handbag? Your back might be under a lot of stress and strain. Luckily there are ways you can strengthen your spine…

Start the strengthening process at home with some ballet-like stretches in the shower. lt may seem strange, but while washing your armpits lean over to the side and bring your rib cage closer to the top of your pelvis. Hold this for around 15 seconds and then switch sides. Next, while brushing your teeth, stand with what you feel is good posture by holding your shoulder blades back towards your spine, shoulders away from your ears, rib cage floating over your pelvis and tummy muscles gently engaged. These positions get
your posture set for the day ahead by using your own strength to pull your shoulder blades back, open your chest and get your core muscles firing. All these elements are important if you’re after better posture at your desk or hunched over a keyboard.

stand tall
Posture and core strength can be improved throughout any exercise or movement you do. The key positions to remember while active, whether you are at the gym, swimming or doing a brisk walk, is to retract and depress your shoulder blades before you begin your exercise. Hold this position while you’re moving, then gently tighten your abs, by pulling your belly button back to your spine

go for a walk
At work you can focus on strengthening your back and stretching your chest during these desk breaks. Try standing in the corner of a room or a doorway, and placing your forearms and hands on the walls. Then, step through into the corner with one foot or through the doorway, keeping your abs engaged and your elbows below shoulder height. Allow your chest to stretch and lengthen your collarbone.


View the original article here

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Charlene Hutsebaut

Charlene Hutsebaut is a Canadian Personal Trainer and corporate wellness speaker working in London. Charlene wants to help you become the hero in your own healthy story! She was a Life Fitness - Top 10 Global Finalist in the Personal Trainers to Watch Competition 2015. Charlene was the only UK woman to make it and 1 of only 3 women in the top ten. She brings her passion for the outdoors to the core of her workouts. She aims to make wellness achievable for everyone, with or without a gym membership. Her love of fitness started early, at age 3, on her first pair of ice skates. Since then, she has completed degrees in Physical Education and Education as well as studying Athletic Therapy. She is a Stott Pilates instructor and has Functional Sports Nutrition Academy Levels 1 & 2. She has logged an impressive 15,000 PT hours in her 24 years of experience. Charlene’s training is a cutting edge fusion of pilates foundations, mind-body connection and traditional weight training. Charlene trains at the St. Pancras Hotel Spa, or outdoors, in Mother Nature’s gymnasium. When she isn’t training or making fitness videos, Charlene runs corporate workshops, and is the featured expert in Psychologies Life Labs and Monarch Airlines in-flight magazines.

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