Hi, I'm Doctor Jo, a licensed Physical Therapist and Doctor of Physical Therapy. I hope you enjoy my video demos of stretches & exercises for common injuries and syndromes. If you have a question, just ask! Be safe. Have fun. And I hope you feel better soon.

Achilles Tendinopathy Stretches & Exercises

These Achilles tendinopathy stretches and exercises will help loosen up and strengthen the Achilles tendon area. Tendinopathy is when tendonitis becomes chronic. It is what happens after the acute phase and can be very painful.

The first stretch will be using a step. Make sure you hold onto the rail or something sturdy when stretching on the step. Put the ball of your foot on the edge of the step so your heel is easily hanging off. Relax your heel down until you feel a stretch in the Achilles and calf area. If you need to push your body down some you can. Hold this stretch for 30 seconds and do three of them.

The next exercise is a heel raise off the ground. Stand with your feet about shoulder width apart, and come up on your toes as high as you can. Try not to lean forward, but bring your body straight up and slowly come back down. The coming back down is very important. This is the eccentric movement, and sometimes is harder to do. Push off as much as you can so your heel leaves the ground. Start off with ten and work your way up to 20-25.

Now will be balance with movement. Stand on one foot, and stay close to something sturdy to use as a target. Slowly reach forward until you touch the counter top or chair. You don’t have to touch anything either, you can just reach forward. Start off with 10 and work your way up from there.

The last exercise will be a sideways movement with a slight squat. Keeping your feet forward, step out to the side. As you are stepping out, bend slightly into a squat. Make sure you stick your bottom back so your knees stay behind your toes. You can go to one side 10-20 feet, and then come back the other way. If that becomes easy, you can use a resistive band wrapped around your ankles or your thighs to make it more challenging.

Related Videos:

Achilles Tendon Stretches

Achilles Tendon Rupture Stretches & Exercises

Cilantro Lime Chicken with Avocado Salsa

This cilantro lime chicken with avocado salsa is full of fresh zesty flavors that are sure to make your taste buds happy. It’s a great meal for a summer cookout, and the avocado salsa is also delicious on chips! For this and other great recipes, visit Joyful Healthy Eats.

Make sure you get the ripest avocados you can find for this recipe. If they aren’t quite ripe enough, there are a lot of “tips” on the internet to quickly ripen them, but we just wrapped them in aluminum foil and threw them on the top rack of the grill while we cooked the chicken. Naturally ripe will always be better, but this did the trick!

More Make It! Taste It! Rate It! Recipes:

Old-Fashioned Buttermilk Doughnuts

Brookies

IT Band Syndrome Stretches & Exercises

These IT Band Syndrome stretches and exercises can help relieve pain and increase flexibility in your IT (ilotibial) Band. When the IT band is tight, it can cause a lot of problems in your hip and knee including hip bursitis and patellofemoral pain syndrome.

For the first stretch, take the foot of the leg you want to stretch and cross it behind your other leg. Then take the arm on the same side and bring it up and over your head. Now stretch the area by pushing that hip out to the side and hold it for 30 seconds. Do three of these.

Now you are going to do a hip hike exercise. Keeping your body upright, lift your foot slightly off the ground. Hike your hip straight upwards. Try not to lean over while doing this. Your hip is going straight up and down. If you want more range of motion for this, you can stand sideways on a step and drop your foot off when coming back down. Start off with 10 of these and work your way up to 20-25.

The next exercises and stretches will be on the ground. This stretch is a very intense stretch and will hurt some people. If you have a noodle or foam roll, lie on your side with the injured side down on the roll. Gently roll/pull your leg up and down from the hip to just past the knee. Start off with 30 seconds and work your way up to a minute.

Roll over onto your side with the side you want to work on top. The top leg is going to stay straight and pull your toes up towards you. Keep your body in a straight line as well. Try not to let your leg come forward. Also, keep your hips up towards the ceiling, perpendicular to the ground. This is going to work your hip abductor muscles. Start off with 10 of these and work your way up to 20-25.

Finally, you will do a clamshell exercise. Still lying on your side, bend both knees slightly forward. Try to keep your hips perpendicular to the ground with the top hip towards the ceiling. Slowly lift the top leg up and out, like a clamshell opening up, and then slowly back down.

Related Videos:

IT Band Stretches & Exercises

Hip Bursitis Stretches & Exercises

Cervical Spondylosis Stretches & Exercises

Cervical spondylosis is a general term for age-related wear and tear of the spinal discs in your neck. As the discs dehydrate and shrink, signs of osteoarthritis develop and degeneration happens. This can cause achiness and soreness as well as decreased motion in the neck.

First start off with some gentle neck stretches by turning your head from side to side like you are looking over your shoulder. This is neck rotation. Hold it for about 10-15 seconds, and go back and forth about 5 times. Next you are going to take your ear to your shoulder on each side. Make sure you are not shrugging your shoulders up. This is side bending. Hold it for about 10-15 seconds, and go back and forth about 5 times. Now bring your chin to your chest and then looking up towards the ceiling. This is neck flexion and extension. Hold it for about 10-15 seconds, and go back and forth about 5 times.

Then you are going to do isometric exercises in each direction. Basically this is when you activate the muscle, but you are not moving it. You can do this by gently pressing into your hand in each direction. Hold each one of these for 3-5 seconds.

Now place your hand under your thigh to keep your shoulder down, then side bend your head to the opposite side and gently put pressure with your other hand to get a stretch through your trapezius muscles. Hold these for 30 seconds and perform 3 times on each side.

The final stretch is going to be for your levator scapulae muscle. This is the muscle that is used when you shrug your shoulders, and they can get overworked when you are stressed out. Take your arm on the side of the pain and place it above and behind your shoulder. Then take your opposite arm and place on top and slightly behind your head. Look down towards the opposite knee of the pain and apply gentle pressure for a good stretch. Hold these for 30 seconds and perform 3 times on each side.

Related Videos:

Neck Pain Stretches & Exercises

Neck Spasm Stretches

Cush Comfort Standing Mat Review & Standing Stretches

The Cush Comfort Standing Mat is a great floor mat to help fight against standing fatigue. It's great for any work area where you stand a lot on a hard floor, and it's especially useful if you have a job where you stand all day. 

Purchase the Cush Comfort Standing Mat in our product store.

In this video, I also show you 3 simple stretches you can do while standing. They can also help relieve standing fatigue if you stand a lot in one place while working, cooking, crafting, etc.

Research trials and studies done on the Cush Comfort Standing Mat have shown it can reduce up to 80% of the fatigue associated with standing on a hard, flat surface.

The Cush Comfort Mat is made of high-quality materials and features three layers for maximum comfort, support, and high-rebound durability… and it feels great when you stand on it, even in bare feet!

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