Whenever you read articles about someone living to 100 or hear Willard Scott announce them on the Today Show,.. one thing seems to pop up. Consistency.
They usually have simple habits that they follow regarding diet, activity, learning, socializing, and even vices. They are not prone to excess, they are prone to being consistent. This is an observation that can blind many due to its outright simplicity. Everyone wants some panacea, like yogurt, or green tea, or tai chi, or coral calcium, or minerals from glaciers, and so forth. This kind of falls in the face of common sense. It is the collective experience, and many ingredients that lead to a positive outcome.
Years ago I read an article about Gayle Olinekova, a Canadian Middle Distance Runner turned Bodybuilder/Marathoner. She had a followed a colorful journey to South Florida and found her performance was lacking. Through various athletes she was lead to Dr. Jack Kahn, a Chiropractor located near the Hollywood, Florida beach.
My wife and i were interested in improved performance and decided to visit him. He is one of the most charismatic, knowledgeable men I have ever met. He starts your visit with a two hour physical, observation of movement, physical adjustment, blood/urine tests, and finally vitamin and warm up recommendations.
His warm up advice and slight alterations in an everyday habit can save many people from back pain or a lack of mobility.
The first mistake I made while leaving Dr. Kahn’s office was tying my shoes. I folded one ankle over my knee bringing my foot closer to me to tie it. He scolded me and said to fold at the hips and keep both knees between the arms to maintain the proper range of motion. This simple trick can be used while kneeling or even folding at the waist while standing as you tie your shoes.
The second tool was the simple knee pull exercise. Every night before you go to bed, pull your knee to your chest in the following manner. With the left leg, grab your left knee with your right hand, and your left ankle with your left hand. Pull your toes back in a dorsi flexion. Rotate the femur or upper leg bone slightly to an externally rotated position. Hold for one second, then lower. Repeat this procedure with the other leg. Hold the right knee with left hand and right ankle with the left hand. Rotate externally ever so slightly with the foot dorsi flexed. Lower. Do one rep the first night, two reps the second night, and so on up to 15 reps per leg. This should take 15 days. This is as high as you need to go. Very powerful medicine.
These are two simple tools taught to me by the legendary Dr. Jack Kahn. A life long friend, and incredible man.