Archive for April 2007

Consistency

April 28, 2007

I wanted to pass along the story of a client whom I find very inspirational. Patty lives in Houston and has several grown children who are either physicians or are completing medical school. For years, Patty was very interested in medicine and thought going to medical school sounded like a great idea. In fact, she told me one time “I think medical school would be fun.” Now I can come up with a lot of different adjectives to describe what the experience of medical school must be like and ‘fun’ is NOT one of them.

So guess what Patty did? Yep, she applied for and was accepted into medical school! We started working with her prior to her beginning this new phase of her life. She made great progress restoring her postural health, increasing function and decreasing symptom but I was concerned how she would hold up under the rigors of medical school. From everything I hear, time becomes as critical and scarce a commodity as is water in the Sahara. But every time we saw her for subsequent visits (and yes, she would drive to Austin for each one), she was doing really well. And she was having an absolute blast in medical school!

Well, she was in a few weeks ago and she said something that really impressed me. Since she started with Egoscue over a year ago, and while she is “enjoying” the experience of one of the most challenging fields of study known to man, guess how many days she has missed doing her full menu? That’s right, zero. She has not missed a single day!!

I talked to her about this once and she admitted that she did have to get more efficient in managing her time, but she found ways to make it work. She realized that if her body broke down on her there was no way she could handle all the sitting and studying required to complete this program. She rigged up some equipment to hold her textbooks so that while she was doing Supine Groin Stretch she could study! She had ample opportunity to make excuses for why she could not do her menu every day, but instead she made the decision that this was as important to her health as brushing her teeth and she committed to doing her menus every day. It’s funny, in life when you make a decision and are committed to it, you find ways to do things you might have thought were impossible.

Patty is reaping the health benefits of this commitment and it’s allowed her to be able to devote herself to her studies without having to fight through pain to do it. I’m really proud of her and I find her story inspiring, and I thought some of you might, as well.

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Using RSS to simplify your life

April 27, 2007

You’ll notice over to the right a link you can click on to subscribe to this blog using RSS. For those of you who know what that means, you know the power of this. For those who don’t, this post is for you.

RSS is basically a very cool and powerful way to automatically stay on top of those things that are of interest to you. It’s kind of hard to explain from the ground up in just a few words, and I am probably ill suited to make the attempt but that’s never stopped me before and it surely won’t now, either.

Basically, much content on the web that is regularly updated is formatted as “feeds”. This can include blogs like this one and most others, or news sites. Then you can get “feed readers” that can “subscribe” to those feeds and then automatically tell you when there is a new entry. So, for example, let’s say for some crazy reason you actually like coming back here to read my random rantings. Some days you come back and there’s a new entry. Cool. Some days you come back and I haven’t gotten off my butt and posted anything new. Bummer. You just wasted your time checking here for nothing.

This is where RSS makes your life easier. You download and start using a feed reading application and in it you subscribe to this blog. And any other blog you read, or any news site. The feed reader application will then automatically inform you when there is an update, and it will directly link to it so you can quickly and easily read it.

I’ll give you an idea of how I use RSS. I use a Mac and one of the most popular and powerful Mac feed readers is called NetNewsWire. In it I subscribe to literally about 100 different feeds. For example, I grew up in Tucson and love my Arizona Wildcats, so I subscribe to the Arizona Daily Star’s sports page. I get EVERY headline from the sports page of that day listed in my feed reader and I can take about 15 seconds and select the ones I want to read and they are then automatically displayed with the full text. I don’t have to go navigate to the site and manually and visually search to see if there’s anything I’m interested in. It’s all delivered to me. I have a folder I created called Health that subscribes to the feeds of several different publications, including the New York Times Health section, Yahoo News’ health section, and Reuters Health eLine. It would take me a fair amount of time to navigate separately to each one of those websites, but my feed reader brings it all to me automatically.

I HIGHLY encourage you all to check this technology out. If you enjoy getting information from the web, navigating to sites manually is like sipping water out of a glass. Using a feed reader is akin to pumping it through a firehose. You can process FAR more information FAR more quickly and easily.

Here’s a nice link that summarizes RSS. Check it out, and if you have novel ways of using RSS technology or a favorite feedreader you particularly enjoy using, let us know about it!

http://www.feedburner.com/fb/a/feed101

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A few miscellaneous thoughts

April 23, 2007

I created this blog a little less than a month ago or so and it’s very cool to see that we’re getting visitors who, presumably, are actually reading some of this stuff! So to those of you visiting this site, welcome!

And I have a request to make of you. As you’ve probably been able to tell, I’m going to be covering a wide array of topics. I don’t want this to be just about Egoscue specifically. Between our awesome clients who bring things to my attention and my natural predilection for researching just about anything and everything, I come across info from time to time that I think may benefit others and I want to use this blog to share some of that. So the request is, if there is something you’d specifically like to see addressed, please use the comments to do so or feel free to email me directly at rick@egoscue.com. Obviously I can’t guarantee I can address everything requested, but I will certainly do my best.

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great Egoscue athletics video

April 21, 2007

Liba Placek is our esteemed director of athletics at the San Diego clinic. Those of you who know Liba know she’s just an awesome therapist and an even better person. Liba works with many of our professional athlete clients and has been profiled on FitTV and Sports Illustrated. Over the last year or so she has been working with one of the great relief pitchers in baseball, Trevor Hoffman, a sure thing for the hall of fame after he retires. Here is a video that shows a little of the work she is doing with him and some other players.

Go to this website and you’ll see a link that says “Top 5 the Natural”. Click on that, the segment on Liba and Trevor is about halfway through, so be patient as it loads.

http://mlb.mlb.com/mlb/video/twib/index.jsp

And here is an article in the San Diego Tribune about Trevor’s work with Liba and Egoscue:

http://www.signonsandiego.com/uniontrib/20060306/news_1s6padres.html

Also, here is a link to an article about Junior Seau published in Sports Illustrated that talks about his work with Liba. Great stuff.

http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2005/players/01/18/workout0124/

Remember, Egoscue isn’t just about getting out of pain. If you are an athlete looking to improve performance and become more injury-resistant, regaining your postural balance and full function is essential.

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Planet Earth

April 14, 2007

A friend recommended the series “Planet Earth” on the Discovery channel. Now mention a nature-oriented show to me and I usually start to go narcoleptic. I remember my parents making me watch “Wild Kingdom” many moons ago and thinking “OK, precisely how many times do I need to watch the lion get the gazelle?”

But I heard some buzz about this show so we recorded a few (thank goodness for DVR/Tivo).

Here’s my one word review: amazing.

Here’s my three word review: don’t miss it.

Seriously, this is a monumental work, epic in scale. They are showing thing about our world that no one has ever recorded before. I can’t even begin to describe it, you just have to watch it. And while I’m sure it’s very, very cool in regular TV, if you have HD, you will be amazed.

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Health and Personal Care Products

April 12, 2007

Most of the folks we work with in our clinics are concerned about all aspects of their health, not just their posture. We live in a world where we are surrounded by toxic substances: in the food we eat, the air we breathe, the water we drink. I’m not trying to add to anyone’s stress level, but here’s another category to consider: the personal care products you use.

How safe IS your shampoo or your toothpaste or the soap you use in the shower? Many people assume that such products cannot be marketed to the public without being tested for basic safety.

Wrong.

Check out this quote from The Environmental Working Group (www.ewg.org):

“Have your personal care products been assessed for safety?

Did you know: the government cannot mandate safety studies of cosmetics, and only 11 percent of the 10,500 ingredients FDA has documented in products have been assessed for safety by the cosmetic industry’s review panel.“

I started researching the ingredients in the products I was putting on my body and wow, it’s some scary stuff. My son had a body spray he used. One of the ingredients was butane. Are you kidding me? Tell me how that can possibly be safe to put on our bodies. Who decided THAT was OK?

Well, the answer is, the company trying to sell the product did. And no oversight was there to stop them. You simply cannot assume that just because you can buy it in a grocery store that it is not horribly toxic. But how do you figure this all out? How do you research these things?

Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you The Environmental Working Group (see link above). These folks do a great job or researching and educating people on exactly these kinds of issues. They did an incredible amount of research and put the data into a database that is accessible to all of us. The name of the project is “Skin Deep” and it contains a searchable database of thousands of personal care and cosmetic items along with their ingredients and assessments on their safety. I HIGHLY encourage you to check out the products you routinely use. You may be surprised at what you’re putting on and in your body.

Here’s the link to the Skin Deep website: http://www.ewg.org/reports/skindeep

Check it out, use it, and tell your friends.

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Your Story

April 10, 2007

In my last post, I shared some of my story and I talked about how the experience of pain can lead to an ultimately positive outcome. But that’s my story. I would love to hear yours. And I’m sure there are many others who would draw inspiration and encouragement from your story, too.

So, if you have a story to tell that you think would benefit others and you are willing to share it, would you please email it to me? I will post any appropriate responses here (without using your name) for the benefit of others.

And it’s perfectly acceptable if your story has nothing to do with Egoscue. This isn’t about Egoscue, this is about the journey, the dance we all do with pain. So whether you’re a client or not, whether you’ve ever done a single Egoscue ecise or not, please, tell me your story.

Email me your story at Austin@egoscue.com.

And thanks for sharing!

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