Terre Pruitt's Blog

In the realm of health, wellness, fitness, and the like, or whatever inspires me.

  • I teach Nia, yoga and stretch! SIX group classes a week!

    Nia: Tues and Thurs at 9 am

    Yoga: Tues at 10:30 am and Thurs at 6:00 pm

    Stretch: Thurs at 10:15 am

    Please see my website for details! I sub for the City of San Jose and the YMCA so check my website for dates and times!

    I am also available for private Nia / yoga / Personal Training!

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Posts Tagged ‘exercise ball’

Opening Up The Back With A Stability Ball

Posted by terrepruitt on October 15, 2015

You might have read a few of my post where I say that my back is bothering me.  Well, one way I relieve the pain is by rolling it out on a foam roller.  I wrote about that in my post Rolled Out My Back Pain.  A bit ago, I did that method and it was not working.  I kept trying it and trying it.  It didn’t make sense that my back was not “cracking” back into place.  If you have ever had a pain, especially back pain, it might have had you thinking about it.  As you go through the day, it draws your attention because, well, it hurts.  So I was thinking about it and trying to examine it from a sensation perspective.  As I moved through the day it would bother me.  I began to get the feeling that it was compressed.  Whether my bones were compressing against each other causing the pain or the bones were pressing on a nerve or something, I don’t know.  In fact it has been so long ago that this happened, I don’t even remember what it felt like EXACTLY.  But my sense was that it was compressed.  That would have explained why rolling on it, trying to crack it and compress it more was NOT working.  It was not relieving the pain.  So then I thought, what if I expand it?  What if I open it up?  Ideally, an inversion table would be great!  But, I don’t have that.  I remember one time I tried hanging off of our breakfast room table but it is difficult to relax doing that.  The idea that the table is going to flip over does not help me relax.  I decided to try my stability ball.

It is a little smaller than would be optimum, but it works.  It takes a lot of concentration to be able to relax the upper part of my back – because that is where it felt jammed up – and not go so far as to allow my head to rest on the ground.  My stability ball is not that big.  I had bought a big one, but I traded it with my co-worker (at the time) because the one she bought was smaller.  The ideal size for a stability ball when you plan on doing exercises on it, is to be able to sit comfortably on it with feet on the ground and your thighs parallel to the ground.  Well, my knees were below my hips on the big one and her knees were higher than her hips and the switch allowed us the proper size.  So mine is perfect for sitting on and doing exercise, but it is not so great to lie prone on.

I did post a stretch where I lie on it on my back, Stability Ball Stretch.  Mine is a good size for that.  It is a good size for everything else, like I said, it is the right size, but just kinda small for hanging over it face down.

But it worked.  My back didn’t need to be cracked with pressure it needed to be opened up.  So now when I get a sense that my back is getting out of whack, I sleep with my roller.  I have a round one and a half round one.  But if my back hurts before I try the sleep relief, then I hang over the ball.  If that doesn’t work, then I roll on the foam roller.  To begin with, I try to be very careful because I don’t want to be in pain.  My wonderful friend that helped me with my back is gone so I need to make sure I don’t get to the point of needing her help.  I need to be able to “fix” it myself.  And not letting it get out of adjustment is the best help.

As I mentioned in my foam roller post, I am not recommending anyone do this because I don’t know your particular back situation . . . so I can’t say if this would be good for you or if it would help.  But I am saying, “Ahhhhhhhhhh!”  It helps me.  It is a different sensation than hanging over from the hips and letting your head help stretch your back.  The ball rounding out the back really seems to open it up.  And whatever was going on in my back, that did the trick!

Do you have a stability ball?  What do you use it for?

Posted in Misc | Tagged: , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

Wahoo! Nia!

Posted by terrepruitt on June 29, 2011

Yeah, I get excited when I have a Nia class.  I love to teach Nia.  I love to get up in front of a class and show them anyone can move and have fun.  So with that in mind, the fact that I have a Nia Class this morning, I will be back to let you know about the Ten Minute Workout.

With yesterday’s post assisting you with ideas on how to do the ten exercises without the exercise ball, the resistance band, and the BOSU, maybe you’ll join me?  Why not try it for ten days?  It’s ten minutes.  Ten exercises, ten times, in ten minutes, for ten days.  Now the ten minutes is the time frame, so if you can do more than ten exercises go for it.  Well, what do you say?  Got ten minutes?

________________________________________________________________________________________

June 29, 2011 at 6:00 pm

Ok, DONE!  And it was pretty funny.  I had been out today in my MBTs and I decided to practice the Nia routine Sexi in my MBTs.  So after that, I decided to do the ten minute workout in my MBTs.  Ha.  Fun-ny!

I normally just do the workout in bare feet.  So shoes — MBTs in particular — provided different sensations.

You may recall I bought the MBTs because (I’ve always wanted them but couldn’t bring myself to spend that on shoes) I thought they would help me re-learn how to walk properly.  Rolling through my entire foot.  I was thinking that I could do longer lunges in my MBTs because I could be on the ball of my foot but really rolled to the ball of the shoe.  Well, that went as planned.  I did the lunges as I originally thought when I put them in the workout.

MBTs on the BOSU . . . . different.  It definitely engages even MORE muscles.  I had thought of that too when I thought to do the workout with them on.  What I didn’t think about was how I would notice the shoes when doing the V sit up.

Anyway . . . I’m done.  Just wanted to let you know.  I think I should also confess that I almost skipped it today because I had a tentative phone appointment.  But I decided that I could do it even after that.  But it turned out that feel through so I just did it.  I mean, c’mon, it really IS only ten minutes.

Posted in Ten Minute Workout check-in | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments »

Without a ball, a band, and a BOSU

Posted by terrepruitt on June 28, 2011

If you are going to embark on doing the Ten Minute Workout, you can do it without a ball, a band, and/or a BOSU.  You definitely don’t need those things.  I would think if you were planning on exercising at home you would have at least one set of dumbbells.  The issue might be that your dumbbells are too light. Since I do not know your fitness level or your goals, please keep in mind that I am speaking in general and that YOU are responsible for your health and well-being.  With your goals established you need to use the proper weight.  The following information is to give you ideas on how to do things differently than originally proposed in the Ten Minute Workout, but you are responsible for doing things safely.  If you have questions on what to do to help you reach your goals let me know.  Listed are the exercises of the ten that required either a stability ball, a resistance band, and/or a BOSU.

Keep in mind it all depends on what you want the results to be.

(#3) – Squats:  You can do squats standing on the ground.  The BOSU added the extra element of having to balance.  If you don’t have a BOSU and you still want to work on balance while you do squats, you could try doing them on an inflatable pool float.  Be careful!  But you will notice that standing on something with air in it makes you have to balance more than just standing on the ground.  If you think about it that is what a BOSU is.  It is just plastic filled with air.  If you don’t have something inflatable you can stand on, you can still get a little balance work in by holding something somewhat heavy in one hand.  Or even try a bottle of water and let the water slosh around.  Do five, then switch hands.  Or you could just close your eyes.  You would be amazed at how much that throws off people’s balance.

(#4) – Triceps kickbacks: For this you don’t want the weight to be too heavy.  You should be able to complete the ten, but not necessarily too fast or easy.  And don’t have the weight be too heavy that you have to swing it to get the movement done.

(#5) – Hamstring curls:  With this you can either lay on your stomach and put a weight between your feet/ankles and pull your feet back to your butt.  Down to the ground and back to your butt.  Or you can stand and “Kick” your butt, one leg at a time.  (Yeah, the same move we used to do in Jazzercise.)

(#8) – Push ups: Use the ground instead of the BOSU.  Or something higher (STABLE coffee table, stair, whatever works and can be incorporated into your “gym”) than the ground if you prefer

(#9) – Bent over lateral raises: I actually like these better with a dumbbell.  Remember that the details about your shoulders still apply.  Hold a weight in each hand, bent over slightly and with a straight back, and open and close your arms.  This weight will probably need to be less than the one you are using for your biceps curls.  But again, it depends on YOU and your goals.  That is not a definitive statement, just a general one.

(#10) – Stability ball pass:  Well, without the ball it is really just a V Sit-up.   Lay down raise your legs while rising up with shoulders and arms to meet your legs.  You body forms a V.  Arms over your head while you lower upper body and legs to the ground.   If you don’t have a stability ball you would always try using a different ball, but that is up to you.  Either way it is a V sit-up.

Does that help?  Remember the basic form of the exercise still applies; straight back, only forearms moving, etc. or whatever applied to the original exercise.  I am not aware of what equipment you have but there is always something to do without any equipment at all.  Even without dumbbells.  Body weight exercise are great.  If you have any questions let me know.  ALSO, please feel free to SHARE what you do use or what you workout with.

Posted in Hamstrings, Ten Minute Workout (Posts) | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Stability Ball Pass

Posted by terrepruitt on June 25, 2011

This is number 10 in the Ten Minute Workout or number one if you are doing the set from number 10 to number 1.  The Stability Ball Pass is basically a sit up, but you are adding your legs into the mix.  So it is a V sit up.  You move your body to form a V.

Lie down on your back holding the ball between your lower legs more toward your ankles and feet, raise your legs with the ball still between them, at the same time bring your head, shoulders, upper chest and arms up to meet your legs with the ball.  Grab the ball and lower your upper body back down to the ground as your legs go down too.  While you are lowering your upper body down you are still holding the ball in your hands, your arms go over your head so the ball lands on the floor.  In this ten minute workout that is designed to be “one”.  Then lifting upper body while holding the ball to meet you legs, giving the ball to your legs and laying down again is two.  When you get comfortable and feel ready you can always call this whole thing “one” and do ten that way.

The ball and bringing you legs up might distract you from your upper body, but don’t let it.  Think of doing a regular sit up so your upper body is doing the correct movement, then add the legs with the goal of grabbing the ball.

As with all exercises squeezing all your muscles will help them work to their full potential.  If you want when you exchange the ball from legs to hands or hands to legs hold it for a moment with an extra squeeze.

So . . . does this make sense?  You got it?

Ok . . . .now you have details of all ten exercisesWhat questions do you have?  Do you want some explanation on how to do any of these with alternate equipment?  Or with no equipment?  Have you been doing the exercises?  Have you had any revelations or challenges?  Let me know.

Thank you.

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Hamstring Curls

Posted by terrepruitt on June 14, 2011

In putting together the exercises for a Ten Minute Workout, I wanted to get a quick “full body” workout.  I understand that this ten minutes might not target the ENTIRE body, but it gets most of it.  Plus I was trying to use the exercise equipment that I have.  I was bothered by the fact that I had these toys and I didn’t use them.  So I was thinking of exercises that utilized them.  Although, all of these exercises can be modified to be done without the equipment.  This Hamstring curl uses the stability ball.

Lie on your back with your calves/ankles on the stability ball.  Push your hips up into a bridge.  Pull the ball, rolling it towards your butt so your feet end up on it and your knees are up.  Then roll it out.  Your arms can be wherever they are most comfortable.  Arms can be used to help stabilize your body.  It could be at first that your body has a tendency to roll to one side or you feel as if you are going to tip over.  🙂  That is part of the exercise.  You are using your hamstrings to pull the ball back, but you might be engaging your arms a lot to stabilize your body as you learn this exercise.  Eventually your legs will be able to control the ball AND your balance without really USING your arms.

Each time the ball rolls towards your butt count that as one.

How is that for you?  What questions come up?

Posted in Hamstrings, Ten Minute Workout (Posts) | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments »

Terre’s Ten Ten in Ten

Posted by terrepruitt on June 2, 2011

Here is the Ten Minute Workout with some explanation.  Questions and comments welcome.

1 – Long lunges: lunge with a long step with a dumbbell in each hand down at your side then come back up to standing.  Each “step” is one.

2 – Biceps Curls: hold a dumbbell in each hand, keep upper arms still bring dumbbell to bicep and then down.

3 – Squats:  lower down as if you are going to sit in a chair then stand up while standing on the flat side of the BOSU.

4 – Triceps kickbacks: each hand holding one end of the resistance band, arms are pulled back with elbows back (past your ribs), pull the band back straightening the arm (only forearms move) while standing on the band on the flat side of the BOSU in a slightly bent over position. Keep a straight back.

5 – Hamstring curls:  lie down legs on the stability ball (the ball is about half way up the calf) and pull the ball back rolling it towards your butt and then roll it back out while in bridge position.

6 – Sit ups: knees up feet on floor lift shoulders off the floor, then lift more, somewhat more of a crunch.

7 – Triceps Extensions:  weights in hands behind your head (hands are close together or even holding both weights), elbows pointed to the sky, lift weights to the sky only moving at the elbow straightening your arms.

8 – Push ups: using the BOSU (round side on ground).

9 – Bent over lateral raises with band: each hand holding one end of the band, open arms out to side while standing on the band on the flat side of the BOSU in a slightly bent over position. Keep a straight back.

10 – Stability ball pass: lie down hold ball between your feet/ankles raise your legs holding the ball while rising up with shoulders and arms to meet your legs (as in a V sit-up) grab the ball bringing it over your head to the floor.  Lift up back up lifting legs and give the ball back to our legs. (Count “one” at each ball touch down)

As with ANY exercise or exercise program, be careful and be sure you are able to safely do the exercise you engage in.  If you need doctor’s clearance, be sure to get it.

Do ten repetitions of these ten exercises in ten minutes. Repeat if time allows.

What questions do you have?  Let me know.

Posted in Hamstrings, Ten Minute Workout (Posts) | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »