Circle Of Thought

How To Use A Stability Ball

Stability Ball

Stability Ball

You know that big round ball you see in gyms and say to yourself “Hmm I wonder what you use that for?”

Well that big bouncy ball is a balance ball; otherwise known as a stability ball, exercise ball, swiss ball, or fitness ball. The purpose of the ball is to help improve strength, cardio, stability, endurance, and balance.

In Sophia Breene’s article she gives 20 effective stability ball exercises that will help your lower body, upper body, and core. To see the exercises click HERE 

To experience that big bouncy ball call Lavanga Chiropractic for times on our stability ball classes!

Bench Pressing and Upper Body Muscle Activation

  • bench pressing

To efficiently develop muscle mass and strength while bench pressing muscular activation is essential. Authors at the European Journal of Sport Science sought out to discover the effects of muscle activation during bench pressing at various degrees. The degrees being, 0, 30, 45, and -15. If greater or lesser angles can enhance muscle activation, then those result will enable lifters to plan successful exercise programs.

What they found was that at a bench incline of 30 or 45 degrees the result was increased muscle activation, this provided insight into effective adaptations in the benches angle to optimize strength and tone. The concluded that “the present investigation demonstrate(s) the importance of considering the effects of muscle activation throughout different time points of the contraction/lift as variations may be evident…in an effort to optimize a resistance-training program with the goal of improving muscle strength and development of the pectoralis major, it would be beneficial to include horizontal bench press and an incline bench of 30 degrees.”

The study consisted of 14 resistance trained participants who undertook 2 training sessions. The first session they were asked to complete a one rep max. For the second session they were fitted with electrodes to assess the activation within muscles. They completes 6 reps for each of the four angles at a resistance of 65% of their one rep max. Effects of the angle of the bench were noted and the duration of muscle contraction and the contraction phase of the upper and lower pectoralis major, anterior deltoid, and lateral triceps brachii were observed.

If you have any questions regarding upper body muscle activation or are experiencing upper body pain, contact Lavanga Chiropractic today!

Massage Benefits: Wellness You May Not Know About

  • Massage Benefits at The Lavanga Group

Sometimes the relaxing period of time after getting a massage makes us forget that a regular massage benefits our health!  The most noticed benefit is the relaxation that follows immediately – you will even be asked to sit up slowly and take a glass of water before you are on your way out.  Massages are a great way to reduce stress and bring back tranquility and peace to your life – even if it is only for a short time during the actual massage.  The more unnoticed massage benefits include help for the following conditions:

  • Anxiety
  • Digestive disorders
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Headaches
  • Insomnia related to stress
  • Myofascial pain syndrome
  • Paresthesias and nerve pain
  • Soft tissue strains or injuries
  • Sports injuries
  • Temporomandibular joint pain

Types of massage

Swedish massage is a gentle form of massage that uses long strokes, kneading, deep circular movements, vibration and tapping to help relax and energize you.

Deep massage is among the more common.  This massage technique uses slower, more-forceful strokes to target the deeper layers of muscle and connective tissue, commonly to help with muscle damage from injuries.

Sports massage is similar to Swedish massage, but it’s geared toward people involved in sport activities to help prevent or treat injuries.

Trigger point massage focuses on areas of tight muscle fibers that can form in your muscles after injuries or overuse.

You masseuse can identify which form of massage will be best suited for your needs.  As with all other forms of pain relief and exercise, be sure to check with your doctor before you start a new regimen.  Read more about massage benefits here.


To enjoy massage benefits The Lavanga Group has to offer, and to schedule your massage, contact Lavanga Holistic Center today!  Now through February 14, 2015 single massages are only $59.00 or schedule a couples massage for $119.00(a $30.00 savings!).  What a great way to reconnect and simply be with your loved one!

Motivate Yourself To Get Fit

  • Get Fit

Finding your motivation to get fit can be difficult.  With busy work and family schedules, many of us tend to have a lack of motivation when it comes to fitness.  In order to maintain a healthy lifestyle, it’s important to make time in your schedule for physical activity.  With summer right around the corner, now is the time to start motivating yourself!  Check out these tips on how you can started:

  1. Be committed to a routine!  Researches state that working out regularly creates intrinsic motivation, which is critical for staying with a long term routine.
  2. Create a friendly competition with your family or friends.  To help keep you and your loved ones motivated to get fit, make a friendly wager!
  3. Enjoy working out with a supportive friend, family member, or significant other to help you stick to your fitness regimen.
  4. Find a workout you enjoy doing.  This will make getting motivated easy.  Try different classes, working out in the gym, or running outside.  The options for workouts are endless!

If you need help getting motivated, contact The Lavanga Group to schedule an appointment today!

Get Motivated to Run

  • Run

Getting motivated to run can be really difficult.  Many of us have a love/hate relationship with running.  The challenge lies with starting.  The key to making running a hobby starts with making it apart of your schedule.  Incorporating running into your daily routine benefits your health and overall happiness.  Check out these tips on how to get motivated to run:

  1. Run with family and friends.
  2. Write it down or set a reminder on your phone.
  3. Find a mantra that will help you remember why you started to run.
  4. Talk with other runners to share tips.
  5. Reward yourself!
  6. Don’t think all or nothing.  One mile is better than no miles.
  7. Remember the health benefits!
  8. Cut yourself some slack…it’s ok to take a day off!
  9. Make your goals prominent.
  10. Running should be something you enjoy doing, so remember to have fun!

To find out more information about motivation, contact The Lavanga Group today!

Exercise With Lower Back Pain

  • Exercise

Lower back pain can take a toll on your body.  Patients who often suffer from lower back pain believe that resting will help them heal.  However, regular exercise may help reduce and prevent lower back pain.

WebMD suggest the following exercises to help strengthen your back: pilates, aerobic exercise, lifting weights, bridging, pelvic tilts, knee to chest, bird dog, press-up back extensions, wall sits, and hamstring stretches.  Research shows that these exercises strengthen your back.  Staying active helps to support your spine and relieve back pain.  WebMD states, “Some exercises can aggravate back pain and should be avoided when you have acute low back pain. Partial crunches can help strengthen your back and stomach muscles. ”  If you’re experience lower back pain, avoid the following exercises: toe touches, sit-ups, and leg lifts.  Because some exercises may contribute to your lower back pain, make sure to consult with your healthcare professional about which exercises to try and which to avoid.

If you are suffering from lower back pain, contact Lavanga Chiropractic to schedule an appointment today!

Happy People Do These Things Just After Waking to Ensure a Good Day

  • Happy Morning Person

Have you ever noticed the “happy morning people” and thought to yourself – UGH how do they do it?!  It is hard to find a relationship between morning people and their average hours of sleep/night.  Some folks say they slept “too long” and they are drowsy all day; others don’t get enough sleep and drag for hours. The suggested eight hours is not very attainable for most working adults.

Simple adjustments to your morning routine can drastically change your mood for the entire day!  This article explains the eight things happy people do in the first 5 minutes of their day.  Imagine just five minutes improving your mood every single day – then you can be one of the “happy morning people”.

How Chiropractic Helps Improve Circulation

Did you know that regular chiropractic care can improve the body’s circulation?  Many people think of chiropractors as only “back doctors”. Although it is true that chiropractors spend a good part of their day treating neck and back pain, the whole body benefits from regular chiropractic care. One of the body’s systems that may improve with chiropractic care is the circulatory system.

Blood flow to the brain, as most people can imagine, is critically important. Nausea, dizziness, fainting and migraine headaches can be caused by reduced cerebral blood flow (called hypoperfusion). Reduced circulation can damage your brain’s cells, due to the reduction of nutrients and oxygen. Decreased blood flow can also lead to an increased risk of cell death, stroke and dementia. Cerebral hypoperfusion may cause other disorders as well, including hearing, visual and spatial problems.

A recent study published in the Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics has shown that there is an association between vertebral subluxations, neck pain and cerebral hypoperfusion.

The study was performed on 45 people who had chronic upper back pain, neck pain, or both. The study subjects were examined and assessed for neck pain by using a standard scale, the Neck Disability Index (NDI).

Subjects’ brains were then scanned using single-photon emission computed tomography (SPECT), which creates imaging of the brain’s blood flow. Patients were also examined to determine the number of vertebrae that were out of alignment.

Subjects were consequently put into one of three groups, based on their NDI scores: mild, moderate and severe.

Continue Reading Here

Poor Desk Posture Can Cause Headaches

  • headaches

Headaches have the ability to creep into your workday when they are least appreciated.  Most jobs require the use of computers, which means people are spending countless hours in a fixed position for the better part of their day.  Sitting in this fixed position may be the cause of throbbing headaches.

Dr. George B. McClelland explains that sitting in a fixed position for long period of time can increase joint irritation and muscle tension.  The American Chiropractic Association reported that 95% of headaches are primary headaches—such as tension, migraine, or cluster headaches.  In other words, spending hours in this fixed position is most likely triggering your headaches.  While working hard at your desk for hours, your joints and muscles in the neck, upper back and scalp become stiff.  With that being said, here are a few tips to avoid headaches while at the office:

  1. Take a break—if you are sitting down for most of the day, try to take a break every 30 minutes to one hour and stretch!
  2. Exercise—this can help relieve the pain caused by headaches
  3. Avoid clenching your teeth—clenching your teeth can cause additional tension in your joints
  4. Drink more water—dehydration leads to headaches

While these tips may be helpful while at the office, they may not solve the problem entirely.  Further steps can be taken to help relieve the tension in stiff muscles by seeking chiropractic care.  It is important to tell your doctor if you are suffering from primary headaches because they can help find a treatment that is best for you!

Find out what The Lavanga Group can do to help you manage your headaches today!

Staying Active With Back Pain

Back pain can be very painful which can make it difficult to do even simple tasks.  Staying active can help you recover faster from back pain.  Michael Melton, the CEO of, states that those engage in physical activity while experiencing back pain will heal faster than those who are inactive.

Working out at the gym is not your only option—you can stay active while having fun!  Try playing a game of tennis with your neighbor or going to the batting cages.  Going to the park is one way for parents to stay active and spend time with their children.  Setting time aside to get exercise is not always easy.  Try to make it into a habit–this way you can heal from your back pain and prevent future pain.  Another simple way to incorporate physical activity into your daily routine is by walking your dog around the neighborhood.  Any physical activity is better than none.  In addition to healing back pain, physical activity contributes to your overall health.  A study found that, “Leisure-time physical activity improves mood and quality of life and prevents social isolation and loneliness.”  Whether or not you are experiencing back pain, staying active is beneficial to your health.

To learn more about how you can stay active while experiencing back pain, contact the Lavanga Group.