Hi everyone, Catherine here! It’s almost time for the Easter break and I know so many of us are making the most of the extra days off and getting away from the usual routine!  While a holiday is always exciting for rest/adventure/relaxation (insert your preferred holiday type here!), we want to help you make the most of it.

Often holidays find us doing activities that are unusual, sleeping in different locations and using our brains in different ways.  All of this will impact the way your body feels. As part of our regular approach to helping your body feel great, we will often use muscle releases and sleep positions that are specific to you. Make sure these come on holiday with you! Here are my top homework tips for the holidays:

Chances are you’ll be sleeping on a mattress very different to your usual one.  It may be fluffy and luxurious, or it may be a blow-up air mattress. Either way ensuring you set yourself up well for sleep is one of the best ways to keep your body happy with the changes in activity. Find a position that lets your upper traps (muscles at top of shoulders) and lumbar erector spinae (muscles either side of the lower spine) be soft and squishy – think raw steak. Remember it may be different to your usual sleep position!

Things you can change:

  • Space between the knees – add a pillow (try both thick and thin)
  • Angle of the hips – aim for less than 80*
  • Height of head – change the height by changing number of pillows or fold a towel smoothly then slide that within the pillow. The towel gives you more options for height and they are usually more available than a spare pillow on a trip away.
  • Read through http://www.barefootphysiotherapy.com.au/learning-centre/sleep-positions/ for more details.

Whether you’re driving, hiking, drinking cocktails or reading a book – the load on your glutes is going to be different to normal.  Glute releases will help keep your hips and low back ready for whatever you throw at them! Grab a tennis ball, lacrosse ball or similar and have a roll around your glutes (the fleshy part at the back/side of the hips).  When you find a spot that gives a bit more resistance stay on it for 60-90 seconds before repeating with another 2-3 spots.  You can do this leaning against a wall or lying on the ground.

If you would like more specifics before you head off – book in for an appointment and we’ll help set you up for holiday success! I hope you enjoyed my first BLOG post about top homework tips for the holidays? I would love your feedback, so feel free to email me: catherine@barefootphysiotherapy.com.au with your comments.