Types of Stretching

Girl Stretching
Creative Commons License “PictureYouth” via Compfight

I borrowed a few books recently on stretching as I believe that our body flexibility is important to our health as well. This is the first time in my life I discovered that there are a few types of stretching, namely:

  1. Static Stretching: This is the most common stretching and it relies on basic stretching movements and muscle contractions. Its purpose is to maintain the body in good physical form and it is more appropriate for beginners and people who are not very active.
  2. Dynamic Stretching: This type of stretching often recommended for athletics as it increases energy and power to the muscles. It often relies on swinging movements done with a certain amount of speed.
  3. PNF Stretching: PNF stands for Proprioceptive Neuromuscular Facilitation. This type of stretching is widely used in therapy.

Stretching AnatomyThere are some books that you can buy and learn more about stretching.

One of these books is Stretching Anatomy by Frederic Delavier.

CHI Running Is Awesome!

Run free
Ken Douglas via Compfight

I’m feeling so great today waking up at 6am and went for my CHI Running routine (which I have lost momentum for quite a few weeks..). I feel so refreshing running in the park early in the morning enjoying the air and seeing groups of people doing meditation too!

What Is CHI Running?

To be frank, I never like running until I discovered CHI Running a few years ago. I went to borrow a book from the local library and never looked back since then. CHI Running is implementing the principles of Tai-Chi into your running style. As a CHI Runner, you will feel that the gravity is working for you other than working against the gravity. CHI Running is also called the Effortless Running.

Why CHI Running?

You may be surprised that most of our running techniques are not correct and it adds stress to our legs, knees and spine. This is why you heard frequent Runners complain about their knee problems. This is the reason why CHI Running is so welcomed by Professionals Runners in recent years. There are tons of testimonials from people who have adopted CHI Running into their exercise routines. The following are the some of the advantages of CHI Running:

  1. Reduce impact, stay pain-free. Normal running style focus on muscles. But CHI Running focus on core and your form of running, hence,you can run effortlessly without putting on stress to your legs.
  2. Improve your posture, core strength, and use gravity to make running easier.
  3. Make running a fulfilling practice.

My results!

After practicing CHI Running for a couple of years, running to me now is a relaxing and therapeutic experience.  Let me share this: If you are in the correct form (implementing the CHI Running techniques) while running, you will start to love running like never before!

If you are someone who wants to start exercising but feels that running is difficult, try grabbing a copy of the CHI Running book online at Amazon or local library. The official website is here –CHI Running is founded by Danny Dreyer.

Need an Instructor?

If you are living in Singapore and looking for an instructor so that you can learn much faster, contact Mr Tang (we call him Fish Tang, because he also teaches fish like swimming).

Take a look at the following video on some introduction on CHI Running:

Irritable Bowel Syndrome Cure

What is Irritable Bowel Syndrome?

Irritable Bowel Syndrome or IBS is a medical condition of the digestive system. It is characterized by recurrent loose bowel movements, constipation and pain in the abdominal region. Spasms or cramps may also be noted.

What causes Irritable Bowel Syndrome?

Age – infants are mostly affected by this condition and they are usually 6 months to 1 and 1.5 years old. This is due to the fact that this age group has a low fat intake, and because of this, the stool is rapidly passed through the bowel.

Diet – excessive fluid intake, diet pills and laxative abuse can speed up the colon movement.

Allergy or food sensitivity – can be from milk (lactose intolerance) or other food groups that irritate the stomach.

Smoking and alcohol use – both are bowel irritants that can cause IBS.

What are the signs and symptoms of Irritable Bowel Syndrome?

Abdominal pain – recurrent, can be moderate to severe kind of pain, with some cramps.

Stool – loose or watery stools and constipation may also be experienced.

Weight loss – due to constant loss of electrolytes.

Disturbed sleeping pattern – caused by pain and discomfort in the abdomen.

Growths or masses in the stomach or intestines – may cause an alteration in the bowel movement that can result to IBS.

How to cure Irritable Bowel Syndrome?

Change in the diet is one of the ways to test whether the bowel irritability is from food sensitivity or not. This may include eliminating milk from the diet for assessment whether it is simply lactose intolerance or otherwise.

In order to supply calcium to the body, calcium supplements may be taken and soya milk may be recommended compared to dairy milk.

Many foods or pills can be bowel irritants like diet pills and laxatives. Diet teas and other weight loss tablets are irritants because they speed up the movement of the intestines to empty the bowel right away.

A diet low in fat is recommended for irritable bowel syndrome. Eat small frequent meals instead of 3 huge ones. You may base your daily food intake with the aid of the Food Pyramid Guide.

Quitting the use of tobacco will greatly help in this medical condition. Tobacco contains chemicals that are harmful to the body.

Antidiarrheal medicines may be prescribed, as this reduces the motility (or movement). Another class of medicines called Antispasmodics may also be given to reduce abdominal spasms and/or pain.

If there are growths or masses found in the digestive track, this will be removed with the prescription medicines to eliminate it or this can be removed by surgical interventions.

How to lower blood pressure

What is Blood Pressure?

Blood pressure or BP is the force of the blood to the arteries. Each person of different age groups has a varying BP. There are many factors that cause this to shoot up or to lower down.

What are the factors that cause the changes in blood pressure?

There are many causes that contribute to blood pressure. One is environmental factors. It can be from weather changes (cold and hot temperatures), high and low altitudes.

Another cause of blood pressure changes are physical activity such as running, sleeping, stress or fear. Illnesses also contribute to rising and lower of the BP.

How is the blood pressure measured?

The unit of measurement of the BP is mmHg (millimeters mercury). Medical devices are used to measure the BP. This is called the sphygmomanometer and stethoscope.

The sphygmomanometer has a cuff that is wrapped around the arm (1-1.5 inch above the elbow). The stethoscope is placed on the space below the cuff and the fold of the arm. A valve is pumped until 180 mmHg (or depending on the protocol of the hospital). With this action, the cuff wrapped in the arm is tightened, and with a release of air in the valve, the cuff will loosen, and a reading heard from the stethoscope is noted.

In measuring the blood pressure there is what we call Systole and Diastole. Systole is the first beat heard, while Diastole is the last beat. Upon the release of the air, beats are audible through the stethoscope. For example, the first beat you hear is at 130 and the last is on 80 mmHg, then the BP of the person is 130/80 mmHg.

The BP normal values vary depending on the country and hospital policy. Therefore, with this normal values basis, we will determine a high or low blood pressure.

How to Lower Blood Pressure?

For elevated BP, there are many ways you can do to lower blood pressure with the aid of natural and medical remedies.

One of the most natural ways to normalize blood pressure is through lifestyle change. Diet plays a major role in this aspect. Cutting down salt and eating a balanced diet (based on the food pyramid chart) will lower down blood pressure.

Another contributing factor is weight loss. This will also lower blood pressure. Daily exercise is encouraged as well.

After performing the natural interventions and still having a high blood pressure, medical interventions will be done.

The medical interventions to lower blood pressure are medications and surgery (which is the last option). In determining if a surgical procedure is needed, the heart will be undergoing a diagnostic procedure to assess whether there is a blockage in the arteries. Blockage in the arteries means narrowing the passageway of blood that leads to the elevation of BP.

A class of medicine called Antihypertensive is used to lower down the BP. The main action of these drugs is to reduce the blockage and dilate the arteries to provide good blood circulation.

Surgical procedures like arterial dilation or removal of plaques on the arteries are the last option to lower blood pressure. This intervention is done when lifestyle changes and medications were ineffective.

Good blood circulation means living a healthy life. There are preventive measures we can do to avoid high blood pressure such as quitting smoking and complying to healthy diet and lifestyle.