The Healthy View
Last week was Canadian Mental Health Week, so this week, we’ve included some ways that have helped us stay happy, healthy, and informed. Physical distancing can be very isolating, but this is something we are feeling and getting through together. It is important to us that we reach out to our community while we are unable to see each other in the Clinic. Whether through calls, emails, virtual sessions, or this very blog, we want to stay connected with you.
Please feel free to contact us at (416)-865-0903 or by email.
Stress and Diaphragmatic Breathing
Presenter: Joanne Ukposidolo, Physiotherapist and Certified Pelvic Floor Therapist, Sport Medicine Clinic
These are challenging times and we may have been placed in positions that have caused us to pause, adapt, and pivot. So, how do we prepare for the long game, how do we not only survive but find a way to thrive in periods of uncertainty? Our upcoming webinar will be focused on managing stress and our autonomic response; “fight-or-flight” vs. “rest and digest”; and how diaphragmatic breathing is essential to alleviating our physiological stress response. We will practice active breathing techniques, variations, and progression exercises in order to build a stronger, more tenacious self.
What you'll need: A yoga mat, a pillow, a present mind
Time: 40 minutes
How you breathe greatly effects your overall physical performance and mental acuity. Let us set you up for success. Take a moment and enjoy a gorgeous full breath. Your body and mind will thank you. To learn more, join us for Joanne’s webinar on Stress and Diaphragmatic Breathing! Stay tuned for sign-up details.
The Perfect Snack: Meag's Energy Balls
by Meagan Brown, Athletic Therapist, Sport Medicine Clinic
With the ongoing isolation we can likely all admit we have opened the fridge one too many times. Hopefully that means reaching for something healthy but during lockdown there is nothing like a little pick me up and that could be anything! Instead of grabbing that unhealthy snack, try making something simple but delicious that will immediately give you that satisfaction you have been looking for in just one bite.
- 1 cup quick oats or whole oats
- 1/3 cup ground flax seeds
- 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips or cocoa nibs
- 1/2 cup natural peanut butter
- 1/3 cup agave nectar, honey, or maple syrup
- 1 tbsp chia seeds
- 1 tsp vanilla
- Optional: 1/3 cup shredded coconut or protein powder
Mix together. Chill for 30 minutes then roll into balls! Keep refrigerated or freeze for later.
Hot Tip: Make a double recipe because they are bound to go quick!
Nature Never Disappoints
by Joanna Speller, Physiotherapist, Sport Medicine Clinic
As we just celebrated Canadian Mental Health Week and May is National Physiotherapy Month, I thought I would pay tribute to both. We know that our mental wellbeing affects our physical state and the same in reverse.
Over the last few weeks, I have reacquainted myself with my neighbourhood, walking sometimes twice a day to clear my head and organize my thoughts. No matter how cold, dark, or miserable it is outside, I push myself out the door, down the street at dawn, and start walking.
I am fortunate enough to live near a Waterfront Trail which normally is busy with rowers at this time of year. Instead, I am now paying attention to the number of water birds: swans, ducks, and baby geese filling the water space once occupied by boats. The lilacs are starting to bud and the daffodils are in full force. People are fishing. The sun is coming up earlier and the sunsets are beautiful.
Walking helps me unravel my brain and settle my nervous system which is frequently in high gear these days. I focus on what I am seeing, hearing, smelling, and the sound of my feet hitting the ground. When my brain takes me back to worrying or planning for the future, invariably I stop paying attention to what is happening in front of me and start overthinking. When I become aware of this, I concentrate on my breathing rhythmically, taking a deep breath in, and a slow breath out until I am back in the moment listening to my feet on the pavement.
When you find yourself feeling tense in your neck, have a headache, cannot sleep, have poor digestion, or cannot stop thinking, it’s time to go for a walk just for the sake of walking. Try to stay in the moment and when you catch yourself wandering away from what is in front of you, pay attention to your breathing and carry on. When you arrive home, you will not be disappointed.
To ensure the health and safety of workers, we should all be aware of the correct order of PPE donning and doffing. With more businesses set to open, Briana forwarded this article that provides the proper steps of putting on and removing Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).
Is there a topic you'd like us to feature in a future "Healthy View"? Email us.