Warrior's Temple: Part One

Is your body a kick-ass warrior temple?

Gruelling combat routines, hours of strength training in the gym and your daily cardio schedule that drives your lungs to bursting point! Sound familiar?

Whether you are on the Warrior Masterclass journey or in the throes of an intense training regime for the British Stunt Register are you making sure you are taking the time to look after your number one asset?

For those dreaming of a long career in the screen action industry, your body is your priority.

Issues of back injuries are on the rise and this is not just reserved for the over 40’s, more common in recent times is the rise of medical treatment needed for twenty-somethings to correct poor posture and resolve ongoing back pain.

The modern lifestyle lends itself to poor posture, heads hung over phones, iPads and laptops and shoulders pulled forward and rounded from the miles we spend behind the wheel of our cars and sedentary jobs. Training in screen action and the skills needed for a long and successful career as a performer will only add further strain on those precious Warrior Temples.

I have taught Pilates for over 9 years and as a sports massage therapist for elite athletes, competitive and ex-professional sports people, I urge you to review your posture and the balance of your overall training.

Did you know that the spine is 40% stronger when posture is correct and the spine sits in a neutral, optimal position? Yes, I know it is very difficult to hold perfect posture while lunging at your opponent as a Hoplite, but applying the principle of good, well-balanced posture during your gym workouts and warm-ups will only add to the overall benefit of strengthening your core.

Simple techniques, such as keeping your eye line up as much as possible, chin parallel with the floor, rolling your shoulders up toward your ears, slowly moving the shoulder blades back into position nice and flat against the rib cage, this will then stretch and open the chest nicely.

Now lift up through the upper spine whilst retaining a natural curve in your lower back. Bingo good posture!

Have you straightened up in your chair yet? Think of the film star on the red carpet, pulling everything in around the waist and standing chin up like a Marvel superhero for that perfect press photo.

Then there’s the breathing, poor posture will automatically result in poor lung efficiency, you need to breathe deep to the back and sides of your lungs. In Pilates, we teach you to inhale through the nose and exhale through the mouth. Yoga has many different styles of breathing, but all encourage a full deep breath.

When we are breathing correctly in good posture, our core engages. That means all the deep muscles that grip and scaffold the spine engage, allowing the peripheral major muscle groups to simply do their thing and hold firm AKA complete inside and out, rock hard core strength. This will reduce the chances of injury and improve long-term balance and posture.

I can not emphasise enough how much a Yoga, Pilates or Body Balance class will improve your long-term health and fitness levels. I am sure there are many Warriors out there that are nodding their heads, basked in this knowledge already. However if you haven’t tried one of these classes yet, trust me, start thinking about it, it can only improve your performance and increase your career longevity.

If you need any advice on techniques, stretching, or what classes would be right for you, don’t hesitate to get in touch with me at the office, where I’ll be more than happy to offer help.

You can check out our full list of course dates right HERE!


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