He will be in the studio on Saturdays and is available by appointment. He will be teaching the 10:00 mat class this coming weekend on March 26th.
I am very happy that Gerry is now a part of the studio family and know you will all benefit from his expertise and compassion.
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Thank you Sara for the opportunity to be a part of your Steering Committee and to have the honor of meeting and sharing with so many like minded professionals from the United States and Canada. We all share the same dream that someday soon everyone will have access to SAFE movement education whatever their physical condition. I strive to be the best representative I can of your methodology and spirit.
Thank you Robert Redford for having the vision to create Sundance. I have never been to a more beautiful place. There is an energy here that is magical. I can't wait to come back. It felt like coming home. Sundance is a gift to all who come to visit or live.
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I am teaching a workshop on modified exercise for osteoporosis at Congregation Agudat Achim in Schenectady, NY from 10:00am - 12:00pm
All are welcome! Bring a mat and towel to support your head if necessary.
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Interesting facts for anyone who needs an X-ray:
Dr. Oz had a show on the fastest growing cancer in women.......thyroid cancer. It was a very interesting program and he mentioned that the increase could possibly be related to the use of dental x-rays and mammograms. He demonstrated that on the apron the dentist puts on you for your dental x-rays there is a little flap that can be lifted up and wrapped around your neck. Many dentists don't bother to use it. Also, there is something called a "thyroid guard" for use during mammograms. By coincidence, I had my yearly mammo yesterday. I felt a little silly, but I asked about the guard and sure enough, the technician had one in a drawer. I asked why it wasn't routinely used. Answer: "I dunno. The patient has to ask."
Well, if I hadn't seen the show, how could I have known to ask???
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A big THANK YOU to everyone who calls and lets me know if they are going to miss a mat class. Even though classes are on a drop in basis, I appreciate knowing if you won't be able to attend because you are missed!
Have a wonderful day!
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Please drive safely if you have to go out!
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Beginning Tuesday, February 1st, I will be teaching a new gentle mat class for bone health that will meet weekly. The class is from 10:30am - 11:25am. This is in addition to the Saturday morning 9:00am class. If you have the time, take Steve's qigong class at 9:30am first. You will love the combination!!!
See you there.
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I just got home from the "Save Your Body Parts" weekend at Kripalu retreat in MA. It was AMAZING!!! I am looking forward to sharing all of the wonderful nuggets of information Yamuna and Vicki taught this weekend and am very excited to begin further training in anatomy and body rolling at Yamuna's flagship studio in New York. I can tell you that this is the hardest work I've ever done. It is uplifting and energizing and you will love how you feel. Stay warm and breathe deep!
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Due to the inclement weather ALL Pilates classes will be closed for today. Drive carefully if you have to go out.
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I have had many requests for another 'skele-toner' mat class at the studio and am looking at Tuesday mornings @ 11:00am. Please let me know if this time slot is convenient. I'm looking forward to this addition.
Stay warm this weekend!
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SAFE Pilates for Osteoporosis; “The Skele-Toner Workout” by Penny Shure.
• Learn how to take stress off of your bones in the constructive rest position. This position places the least amount of compression on the front of the backbone where wedge compression fractures occur. Learn how to strengthen the muscles that support the spine.
• Learn the triangular base of support for the soles of your feet in order to create a neutral stance, posture and gait.
• Learn how to walk and stand tall and stimulate bone building in your hips.
• Learn how to get on and off the floor and in and out of a chair safely.
• Learn the Pilates “scoop” in order to stabilize from the “powerhouse” and train your abdominal muscles without dangerous sit-ups and crunches.
• Discuss options available for fracture prevention through lifestyle modifications, specifically:
• Safe exercise options and modifications of activities of daily living to improve posture, core strength, flexibility, & balance
• Getting to know your body and your personal habitual movement patterns
• Ways of reducing emotional stress
• The importance of smiling, gratitude and being in the moment
• Weight bearing exercise: walking, dancing, hiking, modified Pilates, modified yoga, qigong
• Your diet
• Get enough sunshine and discuss vitamin D3 with your healthcare provider
• Drink enough water, avoid ALL soda, caffeine, alcohol, smoking
• HAVE FUN EVERY DAY!
• Review Pilates principles lying supine: stabilize, breathe, center, decompress, concentrate, full range of motion.
• Meeks Method “Fab 4”
• Supine mat work into footwork
• Sidekick series for hip strengthening
• Prone extension work
• Quadruped wrist strengthening
• Standing balance work into
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Enjoy the snow and drive safely if you have to go out...
Happy birthday Mom!
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It looks fine to me outside....Classes are ON this morning. See you soon!
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I hope everyone's New Year is off to a good beginning.
Good luck with all of your dreams and resolutions. Remember not to push yourself so hard into new habits that they become too much to take on. Changing habitual patterns either in movement or thought takes patience, practice and perseverance. It CAN be done. Remind yourself each day what your goals are and give yourself rewards regularly when you accomplish them. Positive reinforcement works for all of us!
Be grateful for the chance to create your new habits each day and you'll see them materialize faster than you ever thought possible.
Happy January! (my birthday month by the way)
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I was born 3 months early in 1962. I weighed a little over a pound and spent the first 3 months of my life in an incubator never being touched by my parents. I just lay there under warm lights and I'm sure with the arms of my guardian angel around me keeping me alive. I am very blessed. I am not blind or in any way neurologically or physically impaired. I wonder about the emotional implications of not being held or nursed as an infant and will always be grateful that my 2 sons were born healthy so we were able to bond instantly through touch and nourishment. I realize that the miracle of life was given to me twice at birth since the statistics were not in my favor.
Because of this gift of life and health I have long felt that I have an added responsibility to take the best care of myself physically, nutritionally and spiritually as I can. I try my best. Some days are better than others.
So, what is something people would probably never guess about you? Something to ponder as the new year approaches...
Love & Light,
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I met Penny when she came to Kripalu to take a workshop with me in May 2009. To say that she is the most fabulous, intuitive teacher of movement (for someone with no formal training in anatomy, kinesiology or the like) is a definite understatement. Penny intuitively understands the human body and is able to convey that message to others in a very soft, yet convincing, way. It has been and, hopefully will continue to be, a delight to work with her. You are indeed fortunate to have such a teacher come into your lives and she is fortunate also for you.
Sincerely Yours In Good Bone Health,
Sara M. Meeks, P.T., M.S., G.C.S.
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Special thanks to Lisa Greene for supplying all of the beautiful studio decorations and helping me decorate, Sue Flansburg and Deborah Lane for contributing gift baskets, Cindy Crounse for designing and donating the exquisite 65 Roses necklace, and my husband, artist Steven Cosimano for donating his artwork. This wouldn't have been possible without all of your kind work.
What a wonderful way to spend a Sunday afternoon!
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Pilates is important because it teaches you how to move your body from the inside out. When modified via the Meeks Method it also becomes SAFE for those of us with bones at a higher risk for fracture. (osteopenia or osteoporosis) Pilates is not just about strengthening. It raises our awareness of lengthening as we move. Concentration, breathing, flexibility, balance and posture improve and we learn to appreciate our center of gravity and how we move through space.
The exercises I teach remain rooted in the classical method with the elimination of all flexion based movements and a strong emphasis on the Meeks approach from working in the positions of least to most compression on the spine. Remember gravity causes the bones in our spine to compress. This can cause back pain and ultimately compression fractures in 50% of women over 50 and 25% of men over 50. We are working to take that pressure OFF of our spines!
After beginning in the supine position and releasing the all important psoas muscle that supports our trunk like spokes on an umbrella, connecting the top of our body to the bottom, we are ready to gently strengthen and elongate our muscles. We sprinkle in some relaxation and breathing exercises as we go, spend some quality time getting to know the range of motion in our feet and toes and eventually end with standing.
We test our balance and transition our Pilates mat work into an upright position which adds the benefit of being weight bearing. Weight bearing work sends vibrations directly to our bones signaling them to get stronger. We practice walking through space in correct internal alignment before we leave to hopefully take this new training for our bodies into the most important phase: OUR DAILY ROUTINE!
Remember, Pilates was never meant to be all that you do. Pilates itself is the foundation for initiating correct movement patterns and healthy postural habits that will keep you standing tall and remaining strong throughout your life.
As we approach the end of 2010 and get ready to welcome the new year, make a pact with yourselves to stand taller and really learn how to take care of your bodies by exercising SAFELY! Remember, movement heals not just the body but the mind and spirit as well.
Plus, it's really fun!
Wishing you peace, love and light,
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Happy, Healthy, Prosperous New Year!
See you in January. The studio will be closed December 24 thru January 1st.
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First, I've been practicing how to slow down. No, this doesn't really slow down time but it calms me down and helps me to really prioritize tasks, be in the moment and get perspective on just that, TIME.
As the end of the year approaches and everyone's busy, hurried schedules collide I find that taking time to do nothing but breathe and be grateful (where the perspective comes in) is helping me cope. The older I get the more I think I am beginning to understand this crazy game we all are playing called life. I think it is about being present in each moment and whether it feels good or bad, trying to find the positive and focus only on that. There will always be situations that present themselves that are extra challenging. Now I try to accept the "present/gift" of those situations, color them with loving kindness and send them back where they came. Doing so seems to create more TIME to focus on the joy. And isn't that what the holiday season is all about? Focusing on the joy! So I'd like to wish everyone a joyous holiday season filled with TIME to re-connect to your own spirit and to those who are lucky enough to be a part of your lives. Peace and Blessings to all of you!
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My first session with Ellen was amazing. To be honest, the studio although charming was very intimidating for me. The equipment looked like it belonged in a torture chamber and I had no idea what to expect or what I was capable of. I had been dancing since I was 5 years old so I've always had a pretty strong core but lacked flexibility. I have also had a head forward posture due to years of poor training along with emotional stress and abuse throughout my life. I had no idea that this first session was the beginning of a whole new chapter for me.
Nothing profound really happened that morning. I was taught the basic mat from hundreds to teasers. We then went to the reformer which I loved but couldn't imagine how anyone could ever learn to use. Fortunately Ellen not only got her training from Romana but still traveled into the city each Friday for private lessons with her so I was getting an excellent start to my Pilates education.
I left my first session with a newly scheduled weekly Pilates appointment and feeling like I sparkled! I felt tall and invigorated with more energy than ever. I was breathing better and smiling a lot. I told everyone I could about this great Pilates class but I couldn't tell them exactly what it was or even what I did because I didn't really know. I just knew that I felt really good and couldn't wait to get back into Ellen's studio.
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AS YOU STRENGTHEN YOUR CORE AND IMPROVE YOUR POSTURE YOUR SPIRIT IS STRONGER TOO! EMOTIONAL WOUNDS BEGIN TO HEAL AND YOU GAIN THE INNER STRENGTH NEEDED TO RIDE THE WAVES OF LIFE'S BIG KAHUNAS!
Joseph Pilates was a genius and I will be forever grateful to him for developing his method of exercise that has made such a difference for me. In case you don't know Mr. Pilates lived from 1880 - 1967 so this work can in no way be considered a fad. I can go on for hours on the history of the method but for the purposes of this blog and how Pilates can change/save YOUR life too, I am going to get more personal...
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I love September. It seems like a new beginning. Everyone gets back into their routine which hopefully includes taking good care of yourselves. Taking stock in yourselves as a New Year approaches. Following along in the personal wellness list tradition I want to remind everyone about the importance of staying hydrated!!!
I can't stress enough how important it is to drink enough water everyday. The general rule is that you should drink your body weight in ounces of water daily. If you also drink beverages with caffeine or alcohol that are dehydrating then you need to drink extra water. I find too that if you eat a lot of sugary snacks that day that extra water helps to flush out your system.
Remember our bodies are 70% water and we need to keep them hydrated, healthy and happy. Simply a glass of water will help relieve stress, back pain, headaches and remember too; our bodies sometimes confuse thirst for hunger so drinking a glass of water can help keep your favorite jeans fitting just the way you like!
As the fall approaches I know things get busy with a new school year beginning for you or your children and frequently many other changes. Use this time to get organized and think about 1 thing you can do to stay healthy and REALLY IMPORTANT HERE... Stay HAPPY! Start your day with a glass of water and keep your water bottle with you as the day goes on. That's what I do. You'll surprise yourself. It's easier than it sounds once you get into the habit of staying hydrated.
Good Luck and Happy September 1st!
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I am also now certified in the Meeks method, level 1 as an osteoporosis exercise specialist.
I will continue to strive to be the best teacher I can be through continuing education and studies. Thank you to all of my clients, teachers and angels helping me out on my personal journey!
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See you soon. Have a wonderful day!
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Smile, Breathe, and Have a nice day!
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1. get 7 hours of sleep
2. wake up early enough to walk
3. drink fresh carrot-apple juice in the morning
4. write down my thoughts in a journal before I speak to anyone
5. take my vitamins
6. drink enough water
7. practice Pilates exercises
8. do my Karen Voight workout
9. check on my goals & visualize positive outcomes
10. practice QiGong healing sounds before bed
11. this is actually the first thing I do each day upon awakening. I thank God in a prayer that goes 'I am grateful to you source of all that lives and exists for restoring my soul with compassion, great is your faithfulness, Amen.' This is a Hebrew prayer that gives me great comfort and spiritual strength.
These all help me have a happy, pain free day. I don't always get them all done but I try my best. I have more energy and I think my family likes having me around better because I am happier and less stressed when I take care of me... It's taken some practice to allow myself to take this personal time but when I do I find that life in my world flows along gloriously.
Now, no one in my family but me would thrive on my wellness list so I don't try and encourage them to. Just because these activities work for me doesn't mean they will work for you. That is the personal part. What I can tell you for sure, is that once you find the magic ingredients to your own list (and it will feel like magic because you are functioning so much better) simply follow this list to the best of your ability everyday. Once you begin to make yourself your number one priority you will feel better and life won't seem like such an overwhelming job. It shouldn't be about the effort of getting through each day but the joy. Life is a gift and it is our personal job to make each day the best we can for ourselves through our unique perspectives.
Good Luck!!! Let me know how this works for you.
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What is a 'Personal Wellness Plan'? For me it is a list of between 3 and 10 tasks that I try and make a habit of DAILY that I know will make me feel better and have a good day. This is personal because my list won't necessarily be what helps you and yours may not help me. Part of making your list is a journey into self discovery. WHAT makes you happy and brings you joy? It is a good idea to have one item on your list that you can't physically accomplish but forces you to use your imagination. See yourself fulfilling one task in your mind's eye. For example I love to be at the ocean but I live in Albany so I like to imagine the beach. The sand on my feet, the sound of the waves and the smell of the salt air. Never underestimate the healing powers of your imagination and creativity at work. If one of your daily objectives is to go for a 30 minute walk but you didn't get outside that day then imagine yourself doing the walking. Try to get all of your senses involved. Smell the fresh air. Feel the breeze against your skin. See the colors of the sky and trees. Listen for sounds of nature around you as you imagine yourself on your walk. Our bodies are 70% water. Try to feel the fluidity in your gait as you move effortlessly on your walk. Of course if you're actually able to go for the walk that day then Please allow yourself to experience all of these sensations. Don't use your walk to go through a mental list of what you need to do next...Try to be in the moment as you perform each task on your wellness list.
Another important part of the list is being grateful for the opportunity to complete each task. For example when I am walking I am thankful for the ability to walk and that I have made the time in my day for such a healthy choice. You get the idea. Don't take anything for granted...
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We all get used to doing simple things the same way all the time. Start to think about how you go about your simple ACTIVITIES OF DAILY LIVING and change them.
Put on your shoes or lace them up different foot first.
Put on your shirt a different way.
Brush your teeth with the other hand.
Take a different route to work or school.
It's the simple things that I want you to try and change in order to stimulate your brain in a different way than normal.
IT IS IMPORTANT TO CHANGE YOUR HABITS...
See if your memory improves by doing this. I think it will...
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The studio is finished and our new room is beautiful. The fireplace makes things extra cozy and everyone is thrilled with our new, peaceful space.
Beth Foster is teaching NIA classes on Tuesday evenings and Sunday mornings. She is fantastic and so are her classes. Come and see for yourselves...
Dr. Oz says if you want to live to be 100 than practice qi gong! Need I say more? Steve is teaching Thursday nights and Saturday afternoons here and is also available for individual sessions so what are you waiting for?
I am now practicing the Healing Sounds daily and I consider this AS important as my daily Pilates practice.
The cd's are in production and I hope to have them available soon for everyone to purchase. For now look me up on www.sellaband.com for more information, sound clips, pictures, and soon a music video of the "heel-toe" song!
Best in bone health and good posture!
Peace and Light,
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The construction is in progress for our studio expansion so please forgive our "growing pains" while the work is going on. It's very exciting to see the progress and I hope everything will be done by the middle of January.
On another note, we began production on our CD series through Indian Ledge Records. The Skele-toner audio mat class to build strong bones will be available for sale soon. 10% of profits will be donated to the National Osteoporosis Foundation.
Make 2010 the year you re-commit to yourself! Pilates is the perfect way to begin. Class sizes will soon be increasing due to our newly renovated space...Currently mat classes are offered Thursdays @ 9:30am and 5:00pm and Saturdays @ 10:00am. A specific osteo mat class is offered on Saturdays @ 9:00am. We will be adding more classes in the future.
Whatever your fitness level, come have fun and be part of the Pilates Playground family!
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There is still a 9:30am mat class that morning if you are available.
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We will be adding more qigong with Steve and osteo-tap will be back!
Also in the works is a NIA class with Beth.
Keep checking in for dates for our opening celebration in the New Year!
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Look for more goodies from Deb each week for you and the special people in your life...
Deb also creates one of a kind gift baskets and beautiful theme oriented party favors.
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There WILL be classes on New Year's Eve. I hope you'll be there. What a great way to usher in 2010!
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The studio is closed today due to inclement weather. Just a reminder that if Guilderland School District closes than so does Pilates Playground.
Drive safely and stay warm!
Thank you for your understanding.
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1 1/2 cups fresh or frozen cranberries
3 tablespoons thinly sliced green onions
2 tablespoons fresh orange juice
2 tablespoons honey
1 tablespoon water
1 tablespoon finely chopped green bell pepper
1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro
1 teaspoon sugar
1/8 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 habanero pepper or 1 serrano chile, seeded and minced
Dash of black pepper
To prepare salsa, place cranberries in a food processor, pulse 3 or 4 times until chopped. Combine cranberries, onions, and the remaining ingredients is a small bowl. Cover and refrigerate. Yield: 1 cup (serving size 1/4 cup)
Calories 60 (2% from fat) FAT 0.1g; PROTEIN 0.4g; CARB 15.8g; FIBER 0.7g; CHOL 0mg; IRON 0.3mg; SODIUM 76mg; CALC 9mg.
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This Thursday is Thanksgiving. I have so much to be thankful for. My children, family and friends and of course my Pilates Playground family! Thank you all for being such a big part of my life and for making each day of seeing and teaching all of you something I look forward to very much!
As most of you know things have gotten much busier at the studio and away. I travel to New York most Tuesdays to teach clients in the city and am busy working on the studio's first educational CD. This will be ready early in 2010 and I'll keep you posted. I can't wait to share the music with you!
As the holidays approach we will be adding some unique and special gift items to help you with your shopping ideas. Also ahead are some select and special workout clothes that will soon be available for sale in the studio.
A reminder that the studio will be closed from
Wednesday through Saturday of this week. We re open on Monday, November 30th. Have a lovely holiday!
Lots of Love and Light from my family to yours!
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ADVOCATES FOR BETTER BONE HEALTH ON CAPITOL HILL
FOR WORLD OSTEOPOROSIS DAY
Local resident visits Senators Gillibrand and Schumer and Representative Paul Tonko on
Tuesday, October 20, 2009 to raise awareness of osteoporosis and bone health
Albany, NY October 26, 2009 — On October 20, 2009, Penny Shure visited her Members of Congress as part of the National Osteoporosis Foundation’s (NOF) World Osteoporosis Day activities. NOF’s Strong Voices for Strong Bones on Capitol Hill event brought together patients and health professionals from across the country to raise awareness of osteoporosis and bone health in Congress.
Penny Shure owns Pilates Playground, Healing With Movement in Voorheesville, NY which specializes in modified Pilates for Bone Health and The Meeks Method. She runs the Albany support group for the NOF through her studio and provides osteoporosis education, prevention and management information for the community.
During her visits on Capitol Hill, Penny represented the views of the osteoporosis community including patients, family members, those at risk for the disease, health professionals and others who work with those living with or at risk for the disease.
“This is an issue that is close to my heart. My mother, brother and I all have osteoporosis. My mom has had multiple fractures and has lost inches. My grandmother had osteoporosis. It runs in families but quite often goes undiagnosed until later in life. It is important to me to teach everyone I can about the lifestyle and exercise modifications that can not only prevent the progress of this debilitating and silent disease, but can actually re build bone and increase height. I have grown an inch! All of my clients have seen improvements in posture, flexibility, strength, breathing and range of motion. People are getting stronger and standing taller with these exercises.”
Penny is currently producing a CD of children’s songs to teach bone health and good posture at a young age. She believes that encouraging healthy habits early will ultimately prevent osteoporosis in many adults. “It is the childhood and teen years when bone is building and getting stronger. I think of this as building a bone savings account to last a lifetime! What you do before the age of 21 directly effects how your adult bones will carry you through life! This is why diet, exercise and lifestyle modifications learned early are so important.”
Osteoporosis is a disease in which an individual’s bones become weak and are more likely to break. One in two women age 50 and older and nearly one in four men will break a bone because of osteoporosis in their lifetimes.
There are 44 million Americans living with or at risk for osteoporosis. More than 3 million New York State residents are estimated to live with or are at risk for osteoporosis. But osteoporosis is largely preventable and treatable through a bone healthy lifestyle.
Everyone in our community can incorporate simple steps in their daily lives to help prevent osteoporosis and improve their bone health. The National Osteoporosis Foundation recommends the following steps for better bone health:
• Get your daily recommended amounts of calcium and vitamin D.
• Engage in regular weight-bearing and muscle strengthening exercise
• Avoid smoking and excessive alcohol consumption.
• Talk to your healthcare provider about bone health and find out if you are at risk for osteoporosis.
The National Osteoporosis Foundation is the nation’s leading voluntary health organization solely dedicated to osteoporosis and bone health. Its mission is to prevent osteoporosis, to promote lifelong bone health, to help improve the lives of those affected by osteoporosis and related fractures, and to find a cure through programs of awareness, education, advocacy and research. For more information on osteoporosis and bone health, contact NOF online at www.nof.org or by phone at (800) 223-9994.
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October 20, 2009 Washington, DC office of Congressman Paul Tonko.
Roberta Biegel, Senior Director of Public Policy and Government Relations for the NOF and Penny Shure, patient rights advocate after meeting with the Congressman to discuss provisions for osteoporosis prevention, education, funding and patient access to dexa testing as part of health care reform.
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Osteoporosis is a systemic skeletal disorder with compromised bone strength that predisposes an individual to increased fracture risk. This is important because people are developing this silent and deadly disease at an alarming rate. Half of all women and ¼ of all men over the age of 50 will suffer an osteoporosis related fracture in their lifetime according to the National Osteoporosis Foundation (2005). That adds up to 10 million Americans living with osteoporosis and an estimated 34 million with low bone mass, putting them at risk for osteoporosis and bone related fractures. The statistics on recovery and quality of life post fracture are alarming and are raising many red flags as to the efficacy of how the current healthcare system can best deal with this disease. On average 24% of hip fracture patients over age 50 die within the year following their fracture. The functional and emotional impacts of living and dying with osteoporosis cause devastating consequences and fear in patients and their families. In my opinion, these numbers are unacceptable and can be greatly reduced through lifestyle modification, specifically exercise, nutrition and how we approach our activities of daily living.
Although many of the risk factors for osteoporosis are non modifiable, there are a wide range of dietary, lifestyle and exercise modifications that enable people to both reverse and prevent bone loss. I teach these exercises at my Pilates studio in Albany, New York and practice them myself. Everyone has improved their posture (some of us have grown taller!), and increased their flexibility, strength and range of motion. It is both remarkable and wonderful and I see proof on a daily basis that movement heals.
It is my dream to teach children worldwide through music and movement the healthy exercises that will strengthen their erector spinae muscles, encourage proper gait, core control and good posture. I believe that if we teach our children alignment awareness now that we will help them to develop healthy habits that will carry them through life standing tall, walking fluidly, and sitting up straight. This will improve bone health, aerobic capacity, attention in school, and increase energy levels and productivity. Their bones will remain strong into old age, chronic back and muscle pain will decrease, people will maintain active, fulfilling lives as they age, and healthcare costs will be greatly reduced. The cost of postural awareness exercises is nominal compared to the cost of post fracture treatment!
I have created this CD in an attempt to raise awareness in all of our communities as to the need for early intervention when it comes to preventing osteoporosis. This was stressed by the National Institute of Health Consensus Development Panel on Osteoporosis Prevention, Diagnosis and Therapy. March 7-29, 2001. JAMA 2001. They concluded that “The bone mass attained early in life may be the most important determinant of skeletal health later in life. Modifiable life-style factors can play a significant role in influencing peak bone mass. Maximizing bone mass early in life offers a critical opportunity to reduce the impact of bone loss related to aging.” They went on to stress a list of issues and concerns that need to be addressed as part of directions for future research in osteoporosis management which included: “Strategies to maximize peak bone mass in girls and boys., The most effective method of educating health care professionals and the public., The cost-effectiveness of programs encouraging bone health., and The long-term effects on health, function, and quality of life.” My music addresses all of the above concerns!
In 2009 I served on the American Institute of Biological Sciences Peer Review Medical Research Program (PRMRP 2009) where I gave critiques of proposals submitted to the U.S. Army Medical Research and Material Command (USAMRMC) based on my experience as a consumer reviewer. During meetings with leading scientists and medical professionals who had convened from across the nation we evaluated and assessed the impact that successful DOD funding of these proposals would have not only on the military but the entire US population. In October I served on a patient panel for Eli-Lilly to help them get a deeper perspective on the effects of living and working with osteoporosis. We discussed the emotional and functional impacts on a patient and their loved ones of living with osteoporosis and brain stormed ideas the drug company could come up with to help on a deeper level than drug development. I spent World Osteoporosis Day, October 20, 2009 in Washington, DC visiting members of Congress as part of the National Osteoporosis Foundation’s “Strong Voices for Strong Bones on Capitol Hill” event that brought together patients and healthcare professionals from across the country to raise awareness of osteoporosis and bone health in Congress. Although we urge the government to get more involved in patient access to testing, education on osteoporosis prevention, management and lifestyle modifications as supported by the NIH, there is so much we can do as individuals to support our own health. We can and must be pro-active. Of all I have accomplished this year, I believe my most effective way of helping so far though has been teaching one person at a time these simple and effective exercises.
My experience in movement education through dance, Pilates, the Meeks Method and over years of working with children and adults of all ages has guided me as I’ve written these songs. As an NOF support group leader and osteoporosis patient myself I have developed insight and awareness into this disease. I hope that my music and the projects that grow out of it will enable me to reach out to a much larger group, specifically the children. By the time kids reach adulthood it’s too late. We have to act now to build strong and healthy bones early. It’s like compounding interest in a savings account. You reap the benefits if you start early!
I am so happy to share these songs with all of you! To all of the children, parents, teachers, health teachers, gym teachers, dance teachers, physical therapists…..I hope they make you smile and have fun singing, dancing, and walking along with them. All of you “skele-toners” out there: Keep moving, keep toning your bones and sending them good vibrations! Let’s eliminate osteoporosis together by setting good examples for our kids. We have to learn the modified exercises ourselves too. So sing along and make the changes in yourselves first. The grown-ups will feel terrific and everyone will feel and see a difference! Although the statistics are alarming with experts predicting that by 2025 the costs of living with osteoporosis related fractures will have surged to approximately $25.3 billion (NOF 2008), the importance of prevention cannot be overstated. Together we can halt the progress of this disease.
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***Just a reminder that the studio will be closed Thanksgiving week. Happy and Healthy Thanksgiving to all of you and your loved ones wherever they may be.
It's easy to overindulge with the holidays upon us. Try to remember your healthy habits. I find that if I keep a written schedule for my personal workouts that I am more likely to stick to the program!
Plan your workouts on your calendars and make yourself come first!
Make sure you stay hydrated by drinking lots of water. You'll be less likely to over eat.
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However, believing that Pilates should not be taught in gyms is tantamount to suggesting that the alphabet only be taught in private schools.
Pilates is meant to be the foundation upon which all of our movement patterns, activities of daily living and athletic performance are based. Everyone benefits from doing these exercises daily. Think also of the positive effects on health care costs if people were taught to do these exercises as a part of their pro-active regime to promote good health. A Pilates class is a small price to pay in comparison to post surgery or post fracture care and of course the high cost of living with back pain that millions endure. Imagine the savings in health care spending if everyone practiced the Pilates method and more specifically the Meeks method in combination which is what I teach!
It is imperative to maintain the integrity of Pilates by demanding classically trained, knowledgeable and compassionate instructors. Gym owners must understand and not trivialize the depth of this bodywork for the safety of their clientelle and the reputation of the method.
This should be the standard they strive for.
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