Back Pain and Tight Hips…

Lenny Variano   
Dec 06
      Back Pain and Tight Hips…

We spend so many hours of our day sitting. This in turn has
an extremely negative effect on our hip flexor muscles. Sitting
for long hours causes the fibrous tissues encasing our joints
to thicken resulting in limited ROM (Range of Movement).
Sitting actually puts more than double the amount of pressure
on our backs and even more so if you are slouching or leaning
forward to work on a computer. To loosen your hip muscles,
an exercise called a Frog pose can help relieve some of the pressure.
Placing your knees on the floor, spreading your legs apart and
sliding your forearms forward while keeping your feet touching
each other can stretch these often neglected muscles.

–taken from Muscle/Performance Magazine–  

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Paying for the Subway with Cans…

Lenny Variano   
Dec 06

Istanbul has come up with a new way to replenish their version of a metro card.
It is particularly aimed at those who are a little short of cash. A person can receive
money on their card simply by inserting a bottle or can into a special recycling
machine the city has set up. The Turkish economy is suffering and recycling is not
an idea that is popular. However, this will help alleviate two problems. The machine
will also have a device that will record the highest number of items by a particular
person and as a reward they will be given a small prize (theater tickets etc.) in addition
to their replenished card. The city plans on having 100 of these machines installed by
the end of 2018. This idea is extremely popular with college students who are often
challenged financially.

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Why are Squirrels always Digging?

Lenny Variano   
Nov 29

Every so often a new study is conducted on squirrels.
It is usually done in Central Park where there is an
extremely high concentration of these little creatures.
The study not only involves their number and color
but also their habits. It seems that there is a great deal
of thought that goes into their daily activities. They are
masters in the art of deception. Squirrels will actually
plant a fake nut which could be a rock if they feel they
are being watched by another squirrel. They also engage
in what is called ”spacial chunking”. That is they arrange
the planting of their nuts according to size, type of nut
and even according to their nutritional value. They are
able to record all these facts by rubbing each nut on their
cheeks to let off their scent. These little guys plant in
patterns they are able to follow throughout the winter to
make sure they meet all their dietary needs.

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Music makes the world go round…

Lenny Variano   
Nov 15

Every culture has developed their own special sound of music. Music has been a part of our lives ever since the dawn of civilization. Why is this so and what if any are the benefits of making music a part of our every day life? Studies at Cornell University show that music in the workplace increases productivity by encouraging group cooperation resulting in more positive decisions. Music can lower the stress hormone cortisol which has the same benefits as message therapy. Listening to a favorite piece of music enhances a physician’s accuracy during surgery. It has also been shown to have a positive affect on a patient’s recovery time. Upbeat music can result in an increase in creativity according to a study done in the Netherlands. It is often referred to as “a type of legal performance-enhancing drug” because it has been shown to motivate runners, bikers and endurance athletes. Listening to their favorite power song gave them that extra boost to continue and reach their goals. The National Sleep foundation has found that listening to soft music before bedtime will lead to falling asleep faster, waking up less during the night and waking up more relaxed in the morning. Research is now showing that music helps the body release the antibody immunoglobulin-A which helps in combating viruses and bacteria. It can reduce the sensation of pain in those suffering from fibromyalgia and can increase the comfort level of patients going through cancer therapy. Music can revive memories in patients who have shown little signs of awareness to previous attempts of stimulation such as those suffering from Alzheimer’s. So put on some tunes when you awake, or are cooking or just want to lie back and close your eyes for a few minutes. It will give your body, especially your heart, a shot of revitalization.

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