+Part Two: Coaches, Chillax!

I love the phrase, “Chillax!”  My son, Jackson, first introduced it to me when I was resorting to some desperate attempt to bring order to our home by alphabetizing the food in the cupboard.  This phrase bounced me out of my intensity.  I think it might help our coaches sometimes.  First, let me thank the men and women who volunteer their time and bring their passion and commitment to the fields and courts that our children come together on.

My husband, Dr. Steve, (people ask me if I call him Dr. Steve at dinner and I answer, “No, then I call him Your Highness.”) has participated in the coaching system for years and I see what a commitment it is and appreciate these coaches greatly.  I also want to encourage all of them, including my husband, to recognize that they have a responsibility to the safety of these children.  They can make a huge difference in the sustainability of the athletes in their tutelage.  I actually value winning a lot and can appreciate the zealousness which some coaches approach the courts and fields.  I also have the “mom ability” to redefine what winning means.

A winning coach teaches children the importance of team, of being decent to other players regardless of team.   A winning coach teaches gentle firm discipline and bringing your best forward.

These children are growing habits now and are watching us all as leaders.  Encourage them to listen to their bodies.  Do varied warm-ups and strengthening.  Make them listen to their young and developing bodies.  They are scared to admit injuries and weaknesses for fear of being ridiculed, dismissed or worse (in their minds) -not allowed to play.  At this stage of their athletic development, they NEED to learn to tape, stretch and strengthen.  They need advice and guidance on creating sustainability and peak performance that comes from listening and respecting their bodies.  Help them, coaches.  Make winning not just about this short time, this little season, but about a long life of learning and respect that goes beyond the playing fields and into the fields of their future companies and families.

Coaches: want more info on strengthening, lengthening and taping young athletes? Call our office and we will help you!

Stand Tall: May is Correct Posture Month!

Self-Test for Posture Problems

The following tests will help you determine your posture status:

The Wall Test – Stand with the back of your head touching the wall and your heels six inches from the baseboard. With your buttocks touching the wall, check the distance with your hand between your lower back and the wall, and your neck and the wall. If you can get within an inch or two at the low back and two inches at the neck, you are close to having excellent posture. If not, your posture may need professional attention to restore the normal curves of your spine.
The Mirror Test – (Front view) Stand facing a full length mirror and check to see if:
1. your shoulders are level
2. your head is straight.  Look at the bottom of your ear lobes.
3. the spaces between your arms and sides seem equal and your arms rest at your sides.
4. your hips are level, your kneecaps face straight ahead
5. your ankles are straight.  Your feet are pointing straight ahead.
(Side View) This is much easier to do with the help of another or by taking a photo. Check for the following:
1. head is erect, not slumping forward or backwards
2. chin is parallel to the floor, not tilting up or down
3. shoulders are in line with ears, not drooping forward or pulled back
4. stomach is flat
5. knees are straight
6. lower back has a slightly forward curve (not too flat or not curved too much             forward, creating a hollow back).

What does perfect posture look like?

Your head, chest, hips and feet are in a straight line.

From the side, you can easily see the three natural curves in your back;
From the front, your shoulders, hips and knees are of equal height;
Your head is held straight, not tilted or turned to one side;
From the back, the little bumps on your spine should be in a straight line down the center of your back as you stand and when you bend over.

Obviously, no one spends all day in this position. But, if you naturally assume a relaxed standing posture, you will carry yourself in a more balanced position and with less stress in your other activities and better overall nerve function.