Friday, November 30, 2012

Frog Plank

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Do You Really Have Osgood-Schlatters?

Over the last few years I've seen several kids that come in with knee pain that have been told they have Osgood Schlatters.  Osgood's, classically, has been an enlargement of the tibial tubercle with inflammation of the tendon below the knee.  This is attributed to because of extreme growth spurts with overuse activity.

To me this has become another catch all phrase Doctors give to parents when their kid complains of knee pain and there doesn't seem to be ligament/meniscal damage and they are 8-14 years old.

Often these kids have very tight peroneal muscles.  These are the side of the calf.  This can be accompanied by tibialis anterior tension, but not necessarily.  After releasing the peroneal muscles, better tib/fib joint movement is created.  Better alignment between femur and tibia is also achieved and well as dorsiflexion tends to improve.  Kids this young are like plastic and when the right things are in place and the right things are no longer tight, it doesn't take long before proper biomechanical function is achieved.

Kids are pain free running around again.  So the next time you hear of a kid with knee pain that has Osgood's, check the peroneal group and see if releasing the muscle and restoring tissue quality improves function and diminishes the knee pain.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Triceps: Upper Body Shock Absorber

As a biker, whether you consider yourself a roadie or mountain biker, the triceps are a very important muscle to develop strength in.   The stronger your triceps are, the more absorption capability they have. Just as the quadriceps are to runners for absorption, the triceps are the bikers shock absorbers.

If the triceps lack sufficient strength to do this, often bikers will complain of upper back spinal pain.  The impact has to go somewhere.  If not absorbed through the triceps, the spine will take more of the brunt.

There are several easy ways to go about this.  The standard push up, while simple is highly effective.  Throw in some isometrics at various angles as well as some slow eccentrics and you will have most of your bases covered.  The only addition would be to ad some type of kickback or skull crusher type exercise to hit the long head of the triceps.

As the regular mountain bike/road bike/cyclocross season winds down and you start planning your off season training, (unless your part of that crazy fat bike, winter riders) add in some triceps work to help build better upper body shock absorbers.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Friday, November 23, 2012

Tibialis Anterior Fascial Release

Try this for improving dorsiflexion. Improving function of the big toe. If you get a jamming feeling on the front joint line of the ankle.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Emily Deans: What Not to Eat for Good Mental Health

Here are my notes from Emily Deans talk.  Again, the video is worth watching, but in a time crunch here are my cliff notes.  I've been following Emily's blog, Evolutionary Psychology for almost a year.  Cool stuff.

Avoid trans fats.  They are banned in the US.  Denmark banned earlier and cardiac deaths dropped very dramatically.  A food item can have .49g of trans fats and be allowed to be labeled "0 grams" trans fats.  Dirty pool I say.  Some foods like Pop Secret popcorn and Long John Silver, still have lots of trans fats in them.

Brain is 60% fat by dry weight.  Good fats and bad fats are fighting it out in your body.  Trans fats displace omega 3 fatty acids in your body.  They are already in short supply with the modern diet.

Depression, bipolar and ADHD all linked to low omega 3's.

Most interesting to me was the fructose malabsorption part.  The small intestine GLUT5 transporter doesn't take up the fructose efficiently leading to more fructose in the lower intestine.  Feeds the bad bacteria.  Gas, cramping, loose watery stools.  High correlation to inflammation, low Serotonin, and depression.  30-50% of European decent have this issue.  15% of ethnic population.  Wheat has something called "fructan" that will act just like fructose in the body.

Emily Deans, M.D. — What Not To Eat for Good Mental Health from Ancestral Health Society on Vimeo.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Brain Improvements from Certain Foods

Here is a pretty awesome video.  I've summarized some of the key points below if you don't want to watch.  Very interesting.

"What foods make my brain work best?" by Seth Roberts, PhD from Ancestral Health Society on Vimeo.

He started taking flax seed oil every day.  Worked up to 4 tablespoons.  Found that his balance increased.  Tried other types including Olive oil.  Didn't have the same effect.  When he quit the flax seed balance got worse.  He also found out that his gums improved dramatically.  This was also documented by other people that had similar experiences.

Found that pork belly fat improved sleep quality, duration and speed at which he fell asleep.  He had more energy the next day.

Stumbled upon butter and found that 4 tablespoons a day improved his arithmetic testing.
Addressed the belief that although possibly helping cognition, he was killing his cardiovascular health. (butter is bad for your arteries/heart)  By chance he had taken an Agatson test before all the butter.  It was 38.  One year later, after eating 4tb of butter a day, the Agatson test was now a 29.  Most people get worse by 20% per year.

Big improvement in brain function is possible, and often the the brain dysfunction is invisible. Improvements in other systems as such as inflammation, circulatory are possible as well.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Oral Receptors Drive Performance

One of the first times I took an Applied Kinesiology class as a chiropractic student, I was amazed/dumbfounded/cynical at what I thought was a parlor trick, oral influence.  One of the things you do is place a substance/vitamin in the mouth under the tongue and test a muscle or movement.  If it improves, in theory your body "liked" the substance and there can be justification that your body needs it.

This past year I did some more work with AK and again came across this phenomenon.  This time the whole class tested standing body rotation.  Standing with the feet planted firm, arms straight out in front as if you're pointing a gun.  You rotate as far as you can to the right and to the left without moving your feet.  You keep doing this several times until your end range of motion (ROM) is achieved.

Then we tested 4 different products.  Many people had no improvement.  Many people responded to one or two.  I was almost trying to will myself not to show improvement.  In fact I would have preferred to show no improvement.  I'm cynical.  I put the substance under my tongue (not ingested) and immediately improved about 6 inches each way.  Not only improved, the ease of motion with which I hit my end range was dramatically different.

I went searching for answers and there is some pretty remarkable research being done in the last few years.  Most notably this study done with cyclists.

Carb sensing in the human mouth: effect on exercise performance and brain activity. 

Essentially they took a carb solution and put it in cyclist mouth.  They tested performance and it improved.  They hooked them up to an MRI and saw what the brain did in response to having the carb solution in the mouth.  Again, this was not ingested.  The MRI showed certain parts of the brain light up with activity.  They concluded that there are some unknown receptors around and under the tongue that are at this time unknown.  Pretty awesome.

The product that I improved on was called Dynamic Greens.  It for some reason helped my thoracic rotation.  Will it help yours?  I have know idea, but it continues to help me move just a bit easier.  But, the old put this in your mouth and lets test your (fill in the blank) may have a little more validity then I used to give it credit for.