The benefits of yoga – more than just being flexible

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How yoga has spread

The benefits of yoga have been around for a very long time. Remarkably, yoga dates back at least 5,000 years. It has its origins in Northern India.

It passed through many different stages of development before it reached its modern format.

Introduced to the West as late as the 19th and 20th Century, it gained real prominence when a Yoga school was opened up in Hollywood in the late 1940s.

But why is it so popular today?

Benefits of Yoga

Benefits of Yoga







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Staying Flexible – Why it is important to maintain flexibility

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How flexible are you?

Staying flexible or improving your flexibility is vital in many ways. But do you know how flexible you are?

It helps to know how big the gap is between where you are now, and where you should be.

It is also important to find how flexible you are in different areas of the body. Of particular significance is mobility in the hamstrings, shoulders and the lower back.

A commonly used way to measure the flexibility of the lower back and hamstrings is the sit and reach test.

The safest version is the back saver sit and reach test.

Most gyms will be able to offer you a flexibility test, but if this is not an option, try this.

Lying on your back with your legs out straight. Lift one leg into the air and see how far you can reach up your leg. It is important to keep your back and head on the floor. It’s best if you’re at least able to touch your shins. In time see if you can work toward being able to touch your toes.

But why bother? Why is flexibility so important?

Staying flexible

Staying flexible

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Spine-health – the backbone of your well-being

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The importance of your spine

Spine-health is central to your sense of vibrant health.

The spine is an amazing thing and serves a number of different functions in the body.

Of course, it is the core of the skeleton, and central to all sorts of movement. A spine that doesn’t move freely will restrict movement, and almost invariably leads to some sort of chronic pain.

In addition, the spine provides stability and support and acts as a useful shock absorber.

But of the utmost importance, is its role in acting as a protective channel for the spinal cord and nerve roots. All the neurological signals (except cranial signals) pass through the channel of the spine, and its health is at the center of a fully functioning neurological system.

So how can you best take care of it?








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Feeling and looking younger – What actually works?

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What makes us look older?

Looking younger is an age-old quest, but there are some obvious signs of aging that are familiar to us all.

These might include thinning hair, age spots, wrinkles or bags under the eyes.

But there are also a number of more subtle telltale signs that hint at aging. For example, the descent of cheek fat away from the eyelid fat compartments will lead to the exposure of the bony rim of the lower orbit that gives a sad or tired look.

And quite surprisingly, we lose height as we age, you can be as much as half an inch shorter in your later years. Which can make us look less statuesque.

We are not concerned here with the quest for eternal youth, but rather look at subtle ways you can look and feel more healthy and vibrant.

Looking Younger

Looking Younger







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Running Preparation and Recovery – Warming up and cooling down

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How to make the most of your running

Making the most of your running involves making sure your running preparation is spot on. How you warm up, how you stretch and how you recover all matter in terms of the long-term enjoyment of your runs.

The body is highly adaptable and durable and can cope with the strain and pressure that running can cause. However, it does require that you take all the necessary measures to stay injury free and healthy.

Managing and maintaining your body in a way that helps prevent injury pays dividends long-term (even though it can be tempting to skip warm ups and cool downs sometimes!)

But what is involved, and why are the start and finish of each run so important?

Running Preparation

Running Preparation









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Neck pain – How does osteopathy help

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What are the typical causes of neck pain?

Neck pain can ruin your day and even disrupt your sleep.

And besides that, it is never fun to walk around the office looking like an extra from a Frankenstein movie!

Obviously, there are a variety of reasons why you may be suffering, but there are some particularly common causes.

If you have had an injury or whiplash you will almost certainly be aware of the cause. But other factors such as a poor sleeping position, bad posture (especially at your desk), and pinching a nerve can all cause problems.

More often than not, neck pain will subside in a few weeks. But as part of Osteopathy Awareness Week, we look at how you can use osteopathy to help alleviate the condition and bring you some much-needed relief.

Neck Pain

Neck Pain









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Cracking Joints – Are they anything to worry about?

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Cracking Joints – Why do they make that noise?

At some point, you may have noticed a loud popping noise coming from your knees when you kneel down. Or perhaps you have experienced cracking joints in other areas such as the back or neck or ankles.

When it happens it can be quite disconcerting. But do bear in mind that it is relatively common.

It is not always caused by the same thing. Sometimes it can be attributed to the movement of tendons over the bone. On other occasions, it is related to a sudden release of gas bubbles from the fluid that lubricates your joints (known as synovial fluid). This tends to happen when the joint capsule gets stretched out.

On the whole, you are more likely to experience this popping sound in the joints as you get older. This might be related to the fact that cartilage tends to wear down with age, meaning that tendons are more likely to rub over bone.

But should you be concerned?


Cracking Joints

Cracking Joints









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How to get rid of back pain – what actually works?

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The common mistake when dealing with back pain

How to get rid of back pain?

When your back is bothering you, that is all that is on your mind. But there is a world of difference between temporary relief and solving the problem long term.

The traditional wisdom was to get plenty of rest and pop a few painkillers, and intuitively this feels right.

When you have back pain you can feel scared that any movement might cause further damage. Not only that, but the quick release of painkillers can come as a much-needed relief.

But recent research is changing our thinking. It turns out that in most cases, more movement is what is needed (not less), and that painkillers are being relied on too heavily.

So what actually works?


How to get rid of back pain

How to get rid of back pain










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The best mattress for back pain relief

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How you sleep is so important

The best mattress for back pain relief? If you haven’t asked yourself this question, maybe you should.

Let’s face it, for optimal health, you should be sleeping for about 8 hours a night.

In other words, a third of your time is spent in bed.

If your body is not properly supported during this time, it is no surprise that it can exacerbate aches and pains from the day.

We take a look at how you should decide what type of mattress is right for you.

Best mattress for back pain

Best mattress for back pain








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