Starts December 1st
Let’s be honest, the holidays are tough to stay on track. Parties, good food, late nights, and busy schedules make for an uphill climb over the month of December. We are here to help keep you focused and maybe a little motivated during this challenging time of year. Take part in our 12 Days of Fitness! From December 1st – December 31st we challenge you to get to the gym for your workout at least 12 times. Everyone that visits the club 12 times within this period will be entered into a drawing to win a free month of dues, personal training, and massage. The drawing will take place on Tuesday, January 3rd, 2017.
Not sure what to do while you are here? Keep an eye out for fitness tips, mini workouts and healthy recipes from our fitness staff and nutritionist!
For more information please contact Fitness Director, Jacob Luckey, at email@example.com.
November News & Events
drawing, fitness, healthy recipes, massage, mini workouts, Personal Training
The piriformis muscle lies deep to the gluteal muscles in the buttocks. It is an important lateral rotator, the position your leg is in while kicking a ball with your instep, and a essential stabilizer of the pelvis. Because of its importance in our mobilization and balance, it is not only used in vigorous exercise and sports, but also in activities such as getting up from a chair or walking. We are constantly putting demands on this muscle, yet because of the depth and location many are unaware they have a tight piriformis.
If this muscle remains tight it can irritate surrounding structures, such as nerves, which may result in pain. This pain can show up as low back pain, buttock pain, or pain running down the back of the leg. Other symptoms may include numbness, tingling, or a decrease in sensation in those areas.
Perpetuating factors include sitting for extended amounts of time and sitting with your legs crossed, quite common with the desk work and travel demands of todayʼs world. Climbing stairs, squatting, or running might exacerbate the discomfort our tight piriformis might be creating. This can be a frustrating cycle… we want to exercise because we sit all day… but when we sit all day, our tight piriformis might make certain exercises uncomfortable.
Talking with your personal trainer, massage therapist, yoga instructor, or another member of your self-care team, can help you build a great plan to keep your piriformis in good form. Static stretching, foam rolling, hydrotherapy, trigger point therapy, and myofascial release, are all great treatments for a tight muscles. Donʼt let your piriformis cause you to lose form, chat with your team and learn what you can do to help it!
Fitness Advice, Fitness Department, Health News, Lifestyle, Massage, Running, Workouts
exercise, Gluteal Muscle, glutes, Health Team, massage, Piriformis, running
If you have taken an interest in your body, or taken steps to learn about it, you may have heard about fascia. Or, you may have heard the term myofascia, the fascia specifically interwoven, supporting, and involved with the muscle tissue. Perhaps a ʻfascial stretchʼ was mentioned before or after your yoga or Pilates class. Chatting with your trainer or physical therapist, you may have heard the word mentioned while he or she explained a specific movement or function of a muscle group.
According to Merrim-Webster, fascia is connective tissue sheet that covers or binds structures of the body. It is a whole network that supports the structure of your body and is throughout, not just on the bottom of your foot where you had that painful plantar fasciitis years ago. Simplified, if you peel an orange, take a look at the matrix of white membrane. In this example, the white membrane is our fascia and the orange is our whole body. All that membrane is providing support for the tiny pockets of juice, then organizes the pockets into segments, then binds the sections, and wraps it up into a sphere.
Because fascia is located throughout every area of your body, it is important to pay attention to this tissue. In areas where this thickening of fascia occurs, such as the iliotibial tract, or IT band, it is essential to keep the tissue movable and adaptable. Sometimes immobile tissue can become uncomfortable or painful. Many athletes find that foam rolling the IT band on the outside of the thigh, gives them relief from knee, hip, and sometimes back discomfort. Rolling a small ball on the bottom of the foot keeps the fascia in a pliable state–reducing the chance that painful plantar fasciitis will return.
This is also one of the many reasons why massage is so helpful in recovery and in general well being. It stretches and mobilizes the fascial tissues of the body, creating a happier you!
To find out more about fascia and how our Massage Team can help you, contact our Massage Director Jessie Jo at firstname.lastname@example.org. To book your next appointment with Ivy, you can do it online as a member or by calling the Club at 206-443-1111.
Fitness Advice, Health News, Massage, Sports Conditioning
discomfort, fascia, helpful, iliotibial tract, IT band, massage, Rolling
The combination of certain activities – especially running, hiking and cycling – followed by sitting for long periods of time, can contribute to tension in the front of the hip, and pain in the low back. Have you had a day of activity, followed by a long drive home? Or had a great run or ride, maybe an intense spin class, then sat for hours at the desk? The hip flexors are in a shortened position while sitting, tighten, and then the nagging pain in the low back will often follow. Those muscles in the crease of your hip can actually get so tight, that they stop other neighboring muscles from working. The deep glutes can stop activating when walking. If this pattern continues, not only can your bottom become flat and flabby – AND WHO WANTS THAT – but back pain or discomfort generally follow. Our posture, while standing or walking will change. The top of the hip bones are pulled forward, which increases the curve of the lower back.
What will help, when this imbalance occurs? One stretch that is particularly helpful is a lunge, with the back knee down, sometimes know as the “lizard pose”. Ask one of our massage therapists, trainers or instructors to help you with this. Something else to try is to lay face down on a mat, with a lacrosse ball underneath you, positioned on the front and side of the hip. This can be a little intense, or uncomfortable at first, but if you are consistent, and try it for a few minutes every day, the hip flexors will loosen.
The best solution of all is to get a therapeutic massage session. There are a couple of assisted stretches that will target the front and side of the hip, as well as deep tissue and fascial techniques, that will really make a difference.
Try all three – stretching, self-care with the lacrosse “torture” ball, and a professional massage. Why live with that nagging pain? With some focused effort, one can really make some changes, and start moving freely again. Thank you for reading this,
Licensed Massage Therapist
Seattle Athletic Club
Cycling, Fitness Advice, Lifestyle, Massage
back pain, glutes, hiking, hip flexors, massage
Jessie Jo here, Director of Massage at the club, and I have an important announcement to make in regards to our senior staff members; Julie Bacon and Maryann Kuchera. If you have ever had a massage from one of these two gals then you know what I am about say. They are amazing assets to us down here at the club and without them- I am not sure where our department would be. They really are both rock stars and solid rocks for us.
Julie Bacon started here at the club not long after it opened in 1982. She came to us already well steeped in the industry and has gone on to be a legend in the massage world here in the Pacific Northwest and beyond. Maryann arrived on the scene about a decade after in 1992 and has spear headed many things for our department. Including chair massage, and the addition of a second massage room.
Because of their tenure here at the club and dedication to the field of massage we have decided to put them in their own tier, Master Massage Practitioners. Julie and Maryann’s rates will be going up $10 per session as of January 1st, 2015. This is a way for us to recognize their dedication and commitment to us, here at the club. As well as a method to help them as they mature into leaders of our community and educators for us about our bodies!
The rates for all other practitioners here at the club will remain the same moving ahead. We have established that after 20+ years at the club, it’s a good thing to reward the service and loyalty to all of us.
If you have any questions or concerns, I am always available here at the club.
club, Department, Julie, Maryann, massage, Practitioners
Hydrotherapy, or water therapy, is the application of water to promote healing. All three forms of water (liquid, steam, ice) can be used therapeutically.
Advantages to hydrotherapy are:
- It is almost always available.
- It is easy to learn and perform.
- It is painless and has no ill side effects.
- It is inexpensive and can be done at home or at the gym.
The goal of hydrotherapy is to improve the circulation and quality of blood. This is important because blood delivers nutrients to and removes wastes from tissues and organs. If circulation is poor or slow, healing nutrients cannot be delivered and toxins cannot be removed, which causes degeneration of the tissues and organs. By improving the quality of blood, more nutrients are available for cells to use and toxins are managed more efficiently.
General therapeutic uses of hydrotherapy include:
- Pain and swelling of injuries
- Elimination of toxins
- Improve immune function
Hydrotherapy treatments include the following:
Baths & Showers
Baths and showers can be healthy and healing. A hot bath or shower can encourage relaxation, reduce stress, and flush out toxins. Adding essential oils or herbs to the bath can enhance the therapeutic benefits. Cold baths and showers can be energizing and stimulating. A rinse of cold water after a hot shower can invigorate, boost the immune system, and improve blood flow.
Hot Foot Bath
A hot foot bath is the immersion of both feet and ankles in hot water for 10 – 30 minutes. It is an excellent way to draw blood from inflamed or congested areas of the body. Indications for use are foot and leg cramps, sore throat, cold, flu, nausea, insomnia, and chest or pelvic congestion.
The compress is an application of a cold compress to an area that is initially cooled by the water and then warmed by the influx of blood to the area. It is an effective therapy for sore throat, cold, flu, and sinus congestion when it is administered to the throat or feet. When the feet are treated, it is also known as warming socks or wet socks treatment.
Contraindications for Compress
Skin conditions irritated by moisture.
Castor Oil Pack
Castor oil has been used therapeutically for hundreds of years, both internally and externally. Castor oil applied topically has many beneficial effects and can be used for almost any malady. The castor oil pack is a simple procedure, yet it can produce wonderful results. Physiological effects of the castor oil pack include, but are not limited to: stimulating the liver, increasing eliminations, relieving pain, increasing lymphatic circulation, improving gastrointestinal function, increasing relaxation, and reducing inflammation.
You can buy castor oil at most any pharmacy or grocery store. Apply liberally to the area to be treated, such as the abdomen. Place a flannel fabric or tshirt (something you don’t mind gettin oily) over the area and place a hot water bottle or other heating device over the fabric. This is a great thing to do just before bed, as the heated abdomen is very relaxing!
Athletic, club, health, massage, Seattle, spa, therapy, wellness
Janice Eng returns to the Seattle Athletic Club Downtown massage team! For those of you who have not been at the club for over two decades, let me introduce Janice Eng. Janice started here when the club first opened in 1982 and was the person responsible for hiring our infamous Julie Bacon on board as well.
Janice has been in the field of bodywork for many years – graduating from the Brenneke School of Massage class of 1980 and receiving a BS from Bastyr in 2001. Janice has gone on to study many modalities of wellness including counseling, neurolinguistics as well as non-violent communication. She also teaches communication skills in prisons and as workshops to those who are interested.
The style of massage that Janice currently provides is very relaxing. She has many skills in the energetic realm of bodywork such as; Reki, Body Talk and Thought Field Therapy. Janice also gives a very nurturing Swedish relaxation style of massage.
Janice is available Sundays 10:00am – 2:00pm and Mondays 11:00am – 3:00pm. To book an appointment with Janice please call the front desk at 206-443-1111 or access her schedule through the member reservation link at www.sacdt.com.
club, health, massage, Reki, relaxation, Seattle, spa, Swedish, therapy
Hip joint restrictions can lead to back pain, leg and knee pain as well as neck pain. It can also lead to injury due in part to improper body mechanics during workouts attributed to limited range of motion.
Whether you cycle, run, play squash or lift weights, the benefits of massage and stretching should not be underestimated. If you have restriction in the hip joint you are working against yourself, your movements are playing tug-of-war. With tightness in the back of the hip you have to pull harder with your hip flexors and your abs to bring your leg forward. Restrictions in the front of the hip leads to back tension and too much external rotation on your kick back. It can also cause knee pain due to the pressure pushing the quad over the knee during squats and lunges because the hip joint is not dropping down and back as it should.
Keeping your hip joints unrestricted will help you perform better and keep you from getting fatigued as quickly.
Health News, Massage
Athletic, club, gym, health, massage, muscle, Personal Training, physical therapy, recovery, Seattle, Training
There are many ways to stretch: static, static with pulsing, active release, reciprocal inhibition, and activated isolated stretching (AIS). There are many people who don’t like the old-school static stretching, so let’s look at that last one, which can help give you a small strength increase while you lengthen your muscles!
How does AIS work? Let’s say, for example, that you wanted to stretch your calf. You would sit on the floor with your legs straight in front of you and a yoga strap, belt, or similar object. The first thing you do is try to move your toes toward your kneecap, making note of how far you can move it. Then you put the yoga strap around the ball of your foot and try again to move your toes toward your kneecap, but this time when you reach the limit of your movement you gently pull on the strap to move your foot just a little bit farther.
You should do that twelve times, and when you’ve finished you would not only have stretched your calf muscle, you would also have strengthened your anterior low leg. Two birds with one stone!
For more information, pick up the book “The Whartons’ Stretch Book” by Jim and Phil Wharton.
Fitness Advice, Health News, Massage
club, gym, massage, Seattle, stretch
The time has come for those New Year resolutions to be enacted in full-effect! This is the best time of year to get connected with our amazing massage staff here at the SAC, start off the year off on a “good- well-massaged foot”. I tell most of my clients to listen to what there bodies need as the best guide to tell when they are due for a massage. For some, that is once a month and others, once a week.
We all need some good endorphins every so often, I tend to keep a bar of chocolate in my bag at all times and get a good massage every 2-3 weeks. It helps keep the cortisol levels down and the levels of serotonin and dopamine elevated. Researchers have also found increased levels of oxytocin and white blood cells!
If you are looking for a good New Year resolution, getting regular massage definitely fits the bill! If you have any questions about massage or the SAC’s massage staff, feel free to ask questions! Contact Jessie Jo Egersett at email@example.com or 206-443-1111 ext. 276. To book a massage just talk to our friendly front desk staff or go to the Member Reservation link at www.sacdt.com.
Fitness Advice, Massage
gym, health, health club, massage, muscle tension, relaxation, Seattle, spa, sports, treatment