Top Tips

Back Pain

If you have to carry a bag in your hand, carry it on the same side as your back ache. This works the muscles more on the non-painful side.


On the green, try to avoid putting your ball into that silly little hole, thus avoiding straining your knees each time you bend down to pick it up!

When pulling a trolley, try to alternate which arm you are pulling with to even up.

Pull the trolley with your thumb facing away from the body and your palm facing forwards. If you initiate the pull from your pinky side of the hand and arm, this will help keep your shoulders wide and down and your chest open.

Imagine the smile across your chest if you had just played a hole in one!

After and during the game hold the shank of the club (grip/handle facing down) and do some opposite swings to balance the muscles in the torso and spine, ie swing left handed if you normally play right handed. Just a few is all you need.

First Aid

If you feel joint pain, including the spine, try applying a cold pack rather than a hot pack. Heat feels nice but increases inflammation.

How to make your own cold pack!

If you have not bought an ice pack from Bridgeham Clinic or you have run out of frozen peas, then soak a tea towel under the cold tap, wring it out, fold it up and place it in a plastic bag into the freezer/freezer compartment of your fridge. It won’t be long before it is nice and cold ready for you to use!


How do you sit when watching your favourite movie/TV programme?

If you notice you are sitting with your legs twisted up to one side use the adverts as a mind jogger to swap sides or to reset into a more ideal sitting alignment.

If your shoulders are feeling tense, shrug then up to your ears and then imagine them melting back down like a bowl of ice cream left in the sun.

When you are sitting, check if both your feet are flat on the floor and you are balanced evenly on both sitting bones – then imagine a helium filled balloon is attached to the crown of your head via a thread of cotton.

What happens when you walk up hill or up the stairs?

Try keeping upright whilst walking up the stairs or when going uphill. This will avoid straining your knees and will also tone your buttocks!!!

(Axial Elongation cue) When moving the spine, never sacrifice one side of the body to lengthen the other side of the body (e.g. when bending forward to lengthen the back of the body don’t collapse the front of the body)

When bending forward, always keep your knees soft (to prevent over stretching the sacro-tuberous ligaments).


Determination and stoicism won us two world wars but doesn’t need to carry on in the garden.

Listen to your body and when it is time, take a break!

Think about repeated/prolonged movement patterns (raking/digging) and if you can, have different jobs on the go so you do not get stuck doing the same thing. A change can be as good as a rest!

Several light loads in the wheelbarrow are better than one really heavy load that ends up finishing you off!

Alternate your gardening jobs!

Plan how to combine them in your gardening session.

Find jobs at a low level = weeding whilst kneeling on all fours. At a medium height = wheel barrowing, pruning, watering, digging. At a top height = pruning, tying up bean poles/climbers

When you’ve had a major gardening session, reward your body with 5-10 minutes of gentle Pilates exercises (such as beachball arms, backstroke, spine curls, diamond presses, cat stretches).

Aswell as alternating your jobs, alternate your hands and legs…try weeding with the trowel in the opposite hand!

Dig with the opposite foot on the spade!!

Use the watering can holding the opposite way!!

It will be a bit like patting your head and rubbing your tummy the opposite way to which you are familiar! You may be slower initially but your brain will be challenged and you will be introducing balance!!

Parents and Grandparents?

Do you notice you always carry/hold your child on the same hip?

Not easy to think about this when you are busy! So when you are standing still and chatting swap the child to the opposite hip or to the facing forward squared off standing position.


Try holding the hoover in the opposite hand!

Try dusting/wiping down the surfaces with the opposite hand!!

Check your standing position whilst washing up at the sink!!

Notice your breathing whilst doing your chores?? Ensure you are not holding your breath!!


Check your start position…think alignment!

How heavy is the load?

Use an out breath as you lift!

Keep the object you are lifting close to the centre of your body.

Keep your spine tall and bend your knees!


How do you breath?

Notice your posture when you are stressed, angry, anxious or nervous? Notice your breathing too.

Notice your posture when you are happy, loving, calm and peaceful. Notice your breathing too.

Did you know we can choose to breathe consciously too!

Breathe in happy, loving, calm and peaceful oxygen through the nose!! (kids like to choose which colour this is!)

Breathe out stressed, angry, anxious and nervous carbon dioxide through the mouth (feel your body release tension and maybe choose a colour for this too!)

Breathing can bring us to a mindful and present place within our self which can be a really positive starting place to deal with the challenges life brings us.

If in doubt breathe! The breath always comes first. Breathing!


Position your rear view mirror so that it reminds you to sit tall!

When holding the steering wheel place the emphasis on your pinky side of the hand to keep your elbows relaxed and your shoulder blades sliding down into the seat back with a width across the chest and collar bones! Can you smile across your chest?

Please drive carefully whilst applying these ideas!! We are not suggesting you think more about body awareness than driving!! Be safe!

“Breakfast like a King, lunch like a prince and supper like a pauper”










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