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Our Muscles of Independence!
As we move around doing our daily routines, we don’t think much about what muscles and bones we are using. Probably only an anatomy geek or a Yoga Teacher would think about things like that! But, let’s take a moment and look at and appreciate our “Muscles of Independence”!
I heard this phrase from Rhonda, a Yoga Teacher in Chicago, and I loved it right away and use it often to make a point about muscle strength as we age. Look at these anatomical drawings and you can see how important these groups of muscles are to giving us a life of freedom and ease. They assist us in getting up off a chair, climbing steps and yes…. every day walking about! As we age, these muscles can get weak because we may skip the stairs and take the elevator instead, or we may get that snazzy power chair or scooter that moves us around.

These muscles support our bones and joints, so when they get weak from under-use, our bones and joints get weak too.  If your knees, hips and/or ankles are creaky, wobbly or achy … you might think about strengthening the muscles that support them. Below is an easy way, every day, to get strong legs again!
Go Forth into this World!

While You are At It!
I call this category of Yoga “While you are at it!”  Which means while you are doing some mundane chore… do something good for your body.  Most people brush their teeth at least twice a day for two minutes or so.  While you are brushing your teeth, sit in a chair or go to a wall, bend your knees and hold that position.  Make sure your ankles, knees and hips are aligned vertically as you are strengthening and reinforcing your muscles for proper alignment and body mechanics while holding strong.
Start with 10 seconds and work slowly (no superman or superwoman efforts required) and eventually you will be strong enough to hold it for two minutes!
I promise you will notice a significant improvement in your knee health, walking and climbing ability and your overall mood! Give it a try!

I also have some “While You are At It” movements for when you are taking a shower or washing dishes.  Stay tuned!

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