Jolene Faught: Movement is Medicine | Focal Upright

Jolene Faught: Movement is Medicine

June 6, 2017  |  Focal Team  |  Categories: Health

Women’s Health and Pelvic Rehab Therapist Jolene Faught treats people with chronic pelvic and lower back pain, which means that none of her patients can tolerate sitting or standing still.

Neither can Faught. The PT has launched pelvic programs on both coasts, in multiple orthopedic clinics, and in her own private practice. Now she’s getting her doctorate and living life as a busy mom to two young boys.

How does she do it all, you ask? “When the blessings of life become abundant (i.e., life is busy) we need some easy tricks to fit in all the good stuff,” Faught says. “Nutritious food is by far the best medicine for our bodies. A close second is movement.”

We know the common benefits of exercise: cardiovascular health, endurance, metabolic function, weight loss, brain health, mental health…(the list goes on and on). Here are Jolene’s strategies for fitting in exercise, stretching, and focused breathing throughout the day:

Stretching Tips:

– While showering, stretch your arms upward and out, as though reaching for both sides of the rainbow.

– For a morning boost, get on your hands and knees and try a cat / cow and downward dog.

– Every time you send an email or wait for an upload/ download, breathe deep and stretch your arms overhead. Also try calf, quad, or hip rotator stretches. Hold these low-level stretches for up to 5 min.

Breathing Exercises:

– For stress management, take slow belly breaths in and out to regulate the nervous system. I recommend 6 seconds in, 6-8 seconds out, while trying to keep the chest still and quiet. Repeat for 5 breaths, 5 times per day or as needed.

– Try calm breathing at nighttime. While breathing deep, rub the belly (think of gently rubbing everything back up north after gravity has been weighing it down) for 5-10 minutes before bed.

Strengthening Tips:

– While brushing your teeth, stand on one foot. Be tall and stable, and take deep breaths. Hold 1 min. per side.

– Work your core. At stop lights or in lines, perform pelvic floor lifts and holds, alternating with breathing exercises to calm or invigorate the body.

– Squat 10-50 times before every meal. Make sure to position feet about shoulder-width apart.

Moving more:

– Sneak in walking as much as you can. Assist your kids to the bus stop, walk the dog, park at the far end of the parking lot, and have walking meetings with colleagues.

– Just have fun! If you have kids, run and play with them outside. A spontaneous dance party never fails :).