In honour of International Women’s Day on Sunday 8 March, we’ve asked our female team members to share their top women’s health tips. Read them, put them into practice, and reap the rewards!
Fill your own cup
You can’t pour from an empty cup! With the increased demands on, and pace of, women’s lives, women are increasingly placing everyone and everything first, before taking care of themselves. Self-care is so important, and something more women need to invest in. Make sure you schedule some much needed ‘me time’ in your over-scheduled life. Book a massage to unwind and enjoy the release of dopamine and serotonin produced by the nervous system.
Mariana Stamatopoulos, Practice Manager & Remedial Massage Therapist
Limit high heel wear
High heel wear pushes your centre of gravity forward, especially through the hips and lower back. The body then has to counteract that shift in centre of gravity, by ‘arching’ backwards to maintain balance. This can cause excessive pressure through the lower back and knees.
Swap your handbag
Try to swap your handbag on each shoulder regularly and keep it as light as possible. Repetitive load on the same side can create imbalances contributing to neck, shoulder and back pain as well as headaches.
Naiha Sahota, Physiotherapist
Don’t rush your postnatal recovery
After giving birth women tend to want to get ‘their bodies back’ too soon. The process of reconnecting with your body after childbirth should be done in your own time as every body is different and has gone through a different experience giving birth. We recommend returning to your Pilates practice no sooner than 6 weeks after giving birth to ensure adequate recovery time. And this is just a guide; if you’re unsure check with your practitioner before returning to exercise.
Luisa, Pilates Instructor
Love your gut
Most of us associate a distended stomach and ongoing digestive issues with gut health, however, with many of us struggling to maintain the rhythm of modern life and with our propensity to suffer from stress and anxiety, our gut troubles have never been so bad.
A healthy gut helps us beat the bloat, aids in the digestion and absorption of the nutrients from our food and contributes to us maintaining a healthy weight. Most importantly, your gut has a substantial impact on your immune system.
One of the simplest ways to begin working on your gut health is to eat 30+ different plant-based foods every week. I know this seems extreme, but these can come from fruits, vegetables, beans, nuts, seeds and grains. These foods provide fibre to fill us up and feed good gut bacteria and help balance blood sugar levels. To increase your diversity, add fresh herbs to all your dishes, sprinkle salads with sesame and pumpkin seeds for extra crunch, snack on a handful of mixed raw nuts, include orange sweet potato, pumpkin, button mushrooms and cauliflower in with your roasted veg. Eat your way to better gut health and experience all the benefits of improved sleep, increased energy, glowing skin and a clear head.
Tara Doherty, Nutritional Therapist & Health Coach
Exercise your brain
Always remember this…at any age, in any shape, your brain is the sexiest organ in your body.
Also, be proactive with seeking advice for women’s health concerns. There are many interventions available which can vastly improve your quality of life. You don’t need to suffer in silence.
Peony Fernandes, Women & Men’s Health Physiotherapist
Look after your foot health
Women are more likely to experience plantar fasciitis than men, and up to 10 times more likely to develop bunions, due to factors including pregnancy and poor footwear choices. To address any symptoms and for advice on appropriate footwear as well as strengthening exercises (because we’re not giving up our heels!), a podiatrist should be your first port of call.
Louise Anderson, Podiatrist
Practise good posture & embrace what makes you ‘you’
Tall and try to slump to bring yourself down to others’ height? Stand straight and embrace your Amazonian height! Wear well fitted, comfortable bras and don’t try and hide your breasts by slumping your shoulders forward. If wearing high heels, be aware of pelvic tilting that accentuates the lumbar curve. When there is a chance, tuck your pelvis in for lumbar relief and stretch calves back out at the end of day.
Also, have other women’s backs and if all else fails, have a massage.
Sana Kurban, Clinical Remedial Massage Therapist