Neck Pain And What To Do About It

Up to 90% of Canadians will suffers some sort of episode of back pain in their life. Even more people will suffer an episode of neck pain. There are many causes of this, and in today’s society of seated people, with chair-like postures, the incidence of neck pain has increased dramatically. The turtle neck posture has almost become the norm. It’s quite rare to see people with good posture, and when we see people with it, we take notice, since so many people are C-shaped through the whole spine, with head jutting forward, inches off its axis. The creates a terrible shear force on the discs of the spine.
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Breathing & Why It’s Important For More Than Living

One of the most important things I stress during our workouts is the proper breathing. Every single movement has a breath associated with it. You are either inhaling, exhaling, holding full (positive pressure), holding empty (negative pressure), or holding with neutral pressure.Breathe 1

It is only through proper breathing control can you ever hope to reach the revered “flow state” which I often speak of in class. That state where your breathing, muscular, nervous and immune system are all working together. You perform fluidly because the movements are well rehearsed.
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Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

yoga-carpet-tunnelRepetitive Strain Injuries used to be quite rare. Only those people that spent many hours a day typing, or working as cashiers, developed carpal tunnel syndrome. In the seventies and eighties it was mostly women that suffered from this. Now I see it in teens and adults with varying occupations. Society as a whole has become much more technology dependent. I write this, while sitting (at my standing desk), typing on  a keyboard, while occasionally checking my phone for messages and texting. We are definitely much more prone to overuse injuries of the hand, wrist, and elbow from all the time spent typing and texting. Unless you do some compensatory mobilizations and stretches you might find yourself suffering quite a debilitating injury.
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Why Aren’t You Losing Weight – Part 3

Losing Weight While You Sleep

What kind of coach would ever suggest that you sleep your way to weight loss? This coach! I am confident in saying it is one of the the most important factors in weight loss and overall physical and emotional health.

You must mBaby sleepake sleep a priority. I have been militant with my children about their bedtime. They routinely get 9-12 hours of sleep a night. If we are out with friends or family, I leave early to get my kids to bed, and so that I can go to bed shortly after. I may look like a party pooper, but I know my kids will be healthier, and I will be a better Dad, Coach and partner if I get quality sleep. It makes a world of difference in how I perform on a daily basis. Many think that just one or two nights of good sleep a week is not enough. Read more

Coach Kumar Rants on Energy Drinks and Electrolyte Replacements

If I see another person at the gym drinking Gatorade or Red Bull my head is going to explode. I feel like walking up to them and asking them if they just ran a marathon, or did World’s Toughest Mudder. In their defense, they have been brainwashed to believe that they actually need that sugar and salt laden chemical garbage. When people see well respected athletes advertising Gatorade it makes them think that it is a healthy drink option for the average workout, or something to chug down when you are simply thirsty at home. Lemon-lime thirst quencher has 38g of sugar – that is almost 10 teaspoons of sugar. Unless you’ve been exercising hard for more than a couple of hours, you simply do not deserve that drink. Yet, every gym and corner store is stocked full of this stuff. Pro athletes can benefit from these drinks, since their energy expenditure is so high, and they are losing quite a bit of salt through sweat in their training/game, but the average person is just not working out long or hard enough. I’ve recently come to the realization that you have to earn certain things like protein bars, and electrolyte replenishment drinks. Read more

Why You Have Knee Pain

Twenty years of suffering from Osgood Schlatter’s, two torn meniscus, 1 torn MCL, a large cyst, broken fibula and three knee surgeries. Suffice to say I know a thing or two about knee pain. There are a multitude of reasons why you may have knee pain, and I will spell out  just a few here.

The problem with most doctors and therapists is that they look at the knee as the source of the problem, when in fact the problem could be upstream or downstream.

Starting at the feet, tight plantar fascia and especially the Achilles tendon (which continues onto the plantar fascia) can create problems distal to the knee. You want to make sure you have supple plantar fascia and a flexible Achilles tendon. Try rolling a ball on the underside of the foot, and do this stretch for the Achilles. Read more

Why Aren’t You Losing Weight – Part 2

Weight Loss: It’s All In The Hormones

Until recently is was believed that weight loss happens when we burn more calories than we take in. Yes, weight loss arises when we burn more calories via exercise and activities of daily life than we consume. But there is another critical component often ignored; hormones. Men and women have different hormone profiles, and hormones change with different levels of fitness, body fat levels, stress, sleep and medications. Hormones, which are basically chemical messengers, control every single aspect of weight loss – from our appetite and cravings, to how well we burn fat and even where we store it.640_hormonal_imbalances2 Read more

Why Aren’t You Losing Weight? Part 1 (of many)

People struggle to lose weight. How many times have you been unsuccessful losing weight? It’s a billion dollar industry where food and supplement companies and quick-fix gimmicks prey on the hopeful. We all dream of a pill that would shed those last few pounds, whether it is 5 or 100; or the body wrap that melts fat away; or the one perfect exercise program. I discovered the hard way that bodies are made in the kitchen; fitness is developed in the gym.

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Perfect Posture: The Best Posture is Your Next One

Good posture is rare these days. You used to hear parents telling their kids to sit up straight, or stop slouching. But now, with parents’ posture being so poor, they lack the awareness and knowledge to pass this onto their children. As a result, neck, back, and shoulder pain are commonplace in both children and adults. All children have perfect alignment in Kindergarten, which is mostly play-based. Then, by half-way through Grade 1, which is a lot of sitting, children’s running gait is forever changed. Their Achilles tendon shortens so much, some permanently lose their natural ability to run. Read more

Components of Fitness – Be Selective to Get Results

At Peak Synergy Fitness we cover a broad range of the components of fitness. It is often helpful to understand this to be able to focus your workout and get the most benefit from them. Our workouts cannot hope to cover all 12 aspects in one class, but over the course of a week or two, we touch on almost everything. It is best to focus on only a couple in each workout. This is why we toggle between using mobility, agility, cardio and coordination based movements as part of our warm-up. Then our actual workouts are strength; and by virtue of intensity and pace, they are cardio-intensive as well. Here is my breakdown, which might be different than what you see elsewhere.
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