Cupping therapy is an ancient form of alternative medicine in which a therapist places special cups on the patient’s skin for a few minutes creating a suction seal. The suction and negative pressure inside the cups helps to loosen muscles, encourage blood flow, reduce inflammation, and sedate the nervous system. It has been shown to help with back and neck pain, stiff muscles, anxiety, fatigue, migraines, rheumatism, and even cellulite.
While this form of therapy has only become popular in the United States in the past few years, it can be found in some of the oldest medical textbooks of the Western world including the Ebers Papyrus which was written in 1550 BC. Cupping was used by Hippocrates in ancient Greece for internal disease and structural problems.
A standard cupping treatment at Definition will start with a palpation evaluation while applying a small amount of lubrication to the treatment area. Next the cups will be placed and the air will be pulled out to create the required amount of suction. Cups may be left on the area for 5-15 minutes depending on how many prior treatments the patient has had and the amount of soft tissue in the area. Some larger areas (trapezius, hamstrings) respond well to a treatment called moving cupping where the cup has a lessened amount of suction and is dragged over the soft tissue areas helping to flush out toxins, lactic acid or stagnations.
Using the manual pistons on each individual cup, the pressure is released and the cups are removed. The therapist will then use some Swedish massage strokes to flush out the fluids and toxins loosened while the cups were in place. A final hot towel will be placed on the skin to cleanse & relax the opened pores. This whole process can take 30 minutes to an hour depending on the part(s) of the body being treated.
After a treatment, there may be some circular markings or bruising on the skin. These marking are painless and will generally go away within a few days after treatment.
Schedule your cupping appointment today!
Why Everyone needs a Coach
Everyone, at some point in their lives, can benefit greatly from working with a professional coach. You may be stuck in a rut in your career, need a different set of eyes in the gym, or be at a turning point in your life and need some guidance. It doesn’t matter the situation; a great coach can help. Recently, people have expressed some surprise when I told them I had hired a coach, even though this wasn’t the first time, which kind of took me back.
“Why WOULDN’T I use a coach? I have some of the same roadblocks and issues as everyone else!”
Curious, I started looking at the real reasons someone would hire a coach and there are 3 fundamental keys that an experienced, professional coach can bring to the table.
The first is the most obvious and the one that is mentioned the most.
Accountability– The knowledge that someone has scheduled a time to meet with you, or is going to call you asking if you got a task completed, or just send a text seeing how you are doing, can move mountains for most people. This alone can be worth the cost of any coaching. While I won’t deny the importance of this point, I think it is clear to everyone so let’s move on, shall we.
The second is what I will label Freedom-
Let’s face it, you are busy and have a ton of stuff to worry about…the kids…work… did the dog piss on the rug? So here is a tip, find a coach you trust and who aligns with your goals and thinking and let them to do their job. Personally, it is my job to worry about the health and wellness of others all day, so it is refreshing for me to put that responsibility of my fitness into someone else’s hands. I don’t have to worry about my workouts or my nutrition, just stick to the plan and trust the process.
Now not everyone thinks like this or functions like this but this is a very liberating act in itself.
The third reason, we’ll just call it Leaving the comfort zone, really resonates with me.
A coach will make you do the stuff you don’t want to do, but probably need the most and will see the most benefit from. The biggest feedback from people when they hear I have a coach is, “Why do you need a coach? You can do all this stuff, you can design programs, you’ve been doing this over a decade, how are they going to help?
Excellent question!! …….the answer is simple.
When I design programs for myself, it’s filled with stuff I like to do, not the stuff I probably need the most. The coach will have the bigger picture in mind, and not only help you see it, but help you get there in the shortest amount of time. Shorten the learning curve. The biggest ROI possible.
So what do you think? What would be a reason YOU would hire a coach or mentor? What would you look to gain from working with a coach?
Created By Patrick Murphy
Who is this guy?
My name is Patrick Murphy, and I am an admitted coffee snob, former chef, and full-time fitness
My fitness journey started as a little guy (actually the littlest guy) on hockey rinks in Boston, MA.
Growing tired of getting tossed around and spending more time on my butt than on my skates, I
sought refuge in the high school weight room. Even though I had no idea what I was doing, I
quickly noticed that the changes were much more than just physical, with the mental and
emotional effects being profound. This lesson would stay with me throughout my life, and it is
something I try to instill in all my clients.
As I moved into the working world, keeping fitness in the forefront of my life again became
paramount. I worked my way up through the ranks of food service and made it to assistant chef
and even won “Best of Boston” in 1999. The reality was late nights, tons of stress and constant
food were killing me, literally. The gym was my only release, and a welcome one at that.
Moving to Florida in 2003, I knew I needed to leave the restaurant business or else I wouldn’t
make it out alive. I knew I had more to give and more to share with people. So I turned my
passion for fitness into a career.
THIS IS WHERE YOU COME IN!
*Do you have a sport or activity that you are really into and would like to improve your
performance in? I can help! As a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist I can create a
custom program designed for the demands of your specific sport or activity.
*Are you struggling with making time for yourself while juggling a busy career and
family/friends/social life? I’ve been there. Trust me. I take pride in simplifying what you actually
need….and I’ll give you a hint, you don’t need to live in the gym to get amazing results.
With 13 years of experience training people of all ages, backgrounds and goals, I am confident
that we can create a solution to your overall health goals, so come visit me and let’s talk about
your options…..and if you were to happen to bring me a delicious local coffee, your first workout
might be a little easier. Maybe.
Hey there, I’m Sebastien! Whether it’s kicking a soccer ball, throwing a football, or swinging a tennis racket, sports have always been a great way to release energy. As I grew up, injuries mounted and becoming a professional athlete no longer seemed like a possibility. Doctors were reluctant to help me and I was not able to continue with sports in high school. Although it was difficult to deal with at the time, in hindsight it shaped my current life.
This ordeal made me realize I want to help people as a future profession. My passion for sports led me to get my undergraduate degree in Applied Physiology and Kinesiology from the University of Florida. From there, I enrolled in the University of North Florida’s Doctorate of Physical Therapy program. My goal is to be an expert on the human body and how the body goes through the healing process.
Another result from discontinuing sports was my newfound passion for playing the guitar. I love classic rock, blues, and jazz. When I was no longer able to continue running every day, I picked up the guitar. Over time, I taught myself to play songs I enjoyed, and learned to develop my own style. Today, I can’t imagine a day that goes by where I haven’t indulged in some sweet melodies on the guitar.
To bring this full circle- my experiences have helped me understand the importance of balance in life. Everyone has their own unique reasons for exercising. The key is to understand what your goal is, and how to provide the necessary balance to maximize your potential and surpass your goal!
We all know we need quality sleep, that it is essential and that most of us need more of it. Do we know the sleep essentials? What happens to us when we don’t get enough of it? What happens to our mental and physical states when we are getting adequate amount of sleep, in comparison? Do we know how to get to sleep faster and optimize the precious hours we do get hitting the pillow? Hopefully by the end of this short read we can open your eyes on the importance of closing them (see what I did there)
First let’s establish what “adequate” sleep is. For anyone over the age of 18, 7-9 hours is considered an appropriate sleep range, and the time needed goes up as age goes down because younger children, toddlers and newborns need more sleep to develop body systems properly, although many parents will argue that a newborn doesn’t sleep anywhere near the 12-14hr range associated with this age. Clearly most us fall below this baseline, and the effect of continuously falling short of our necessary hours of sleep can wreak havoc on our minds and bodies. Starting with the immediate effects on the brain, let’s review the impact that lack of sleep has on our daily lives.
Lack of sleep can result in cognitive dysfunction to varying degrees. Consistently being short even 1-2 hours per night can interfere with learning and concentration skills. An interesting thought, considering that during my senior year at the University of North Florida, my classmates and I were averaging a solid 3-4hrs of red bull soaked sleep a night. On a more serious note, this can be a problem as many teens fall considerably short of their requirement which can lead to difficulty with memory and retaining information in school.
Sleep deficiency can also cloud the decision-making process and grind creativity to a halt. This can be a huge issue at the educational level, and in the workplace. While it is true that some can grind and burn the midnight oil to get that big project together just before the deadline, the reality is that if the project had been given proper attention with full rest, the final product might have been better than expected. (see current writing)
The brain controls emotions as well, of course, and these can also be affected greatly by sleep loss. You may become short-tempered and moody, becoming easily agitated over unimportant or unnecessary issues. It could see its way into relationships with family, friends and significant others (who may also be suffering from lack of sleep, as sleeping with another person is one of the most disruptive things we can do to our personal sleep patterns). Long term loss of sleep can also mimic the symptoms, as well as lead to, clinical depression. Anxiety and even feelings of hopelessness and suicide are all possible side effects of severe chronic sleep deprivation. (What a happy article Pat, thanks!) Now we’ve gone over some of the mental issues that can arise due to lack of sleep, let’s talk about how your body reacts to it. A consistent lack of sleep creates an increase in the stress hormone, cortisol. To keep the science part simple, higher levels of cortisol can increase fat stores. Combine that with a decrease in leptin production, a hormone that tells your brain that your stomach is full, and you have a recipe for storing fat and overeating. This can sabotage even the best training efforts and diet, and is a huge reason sleep deprivation is a major risk factor in obesity. Your immune system is also compromised. Think about it, when you do get sick what does your body want most? Shut down, sleep, fight off infection, recover. If you can’t/don’t sleep, the illness lingers and you feel like dog poop for a week.
So, we know what happens to our mind and body when we don’t give it enough sleep, so what in the world can we do to improve the sleep that we do get? Glad you asked.
First we will start by getting your bedroom ready for sleep. Let me preface this by saying, if it is possible, the bedroom should be used for two things, sleep and sex. Sorry, that’s it. If, due to living situations, the bedroom must double as your office or dining area, so be it but I would try to change that as quickly as possible.
Bedroom set up in no specific order:
1) Get it cold, 65-68 degrees is fantastic. Use fans if you can’t regulate your own air conditioning. This tells the body that it’s time to sleep.
2) Get an old-school alarm clock, like without a digital, light emitting face, and keep your cellphone out of the bedroom. I know, crazy talk. In fact, no electronic devices besides the clock at all. No TV, no tablet, just no. Trust me on this one, falling asleep to CSI re-runs isn’t the way to optimal sleep. ***Bonus tip, when you wake up you won’t be able to instantly jump on social media and ruin the day before it starts!
3) Get that room black hole dark. Buy blackout drapes, cover the windows with blankets, whatever. Just get it as dark as possible as any light that sneaks in will tell your brain that it’s time to wake up.
4) This one is tough for some, but Fido can’t sleep in your bed. I know…that face though…. but no. Every time our fur children get up and move around, which is a lot over the course of the night because they have been sleeping all damn day while you’re working to buy kibble, they can take you out of your deep sleep. I’ll bet that they wouldn’t mind their own comfortable bed anyway. Little spoiled fur child.
5) Invest in high quality bedding. You spend a lot of time in bed, make it as plush and comfortable as possible. 6) Lastly, your mom was onto something when she was yelling at you to clean up your room. As we opened with, the bedroom should be for two things and those two things only. A messy, cluttered room doesn’t help with either of them. Clean it up, junior.
Now that we have your sleeping area set up perfectly, let’s focus on you, specifically.
1) Try to get off your technology at least 1-2hrs before going to bed. Electronics emit light that keeps our brains in “awake” mode, never giving it a chance to wind down. If you must use a computer at night, I suggest an app such as f.lux, which will dim the computer screen to warmer, softer colors so the transition to sleep is easier.
2) Make late meals lighter. Digestion is one of the more energy consuming activities in the body, so if we eat a huge meal closer to our bedtime, the body will be working to digest food instead of being in resting mode. In addition, taper drinking down as frequent bathroom trips will disrupt sleep patterns.
3) Avoid caffeine and alcohol. This should be obvious, but I must make sure it is clear. Even if you’re an old coffee head like myself, cut caffeine way down in the afternoon and try not to have any in the evening. You may think coffee isn’t affecting you anymore or that alcohol will help you sleep, but I can assure you that neither is enhancing the quality of your rest. 4) Exercise earlier in the day. When you train, you release those wonderful, feel good endorphins that make you feel indestructible. Unfortunately exercise also releases the previously discussed cortisol, so try to finish up your workout at least 2-3hrs before your normal bedtime.
5) Overall try to create a bedtime routine. Take a hot shower or bath (the rise and subsequent fall in temperature will help enhance drowsiness), read for a few minutes (paperback please) and try to go to bed at the same time every night, and yes even on the weekends you party animal you.
Try implementing one or two of these tips at a time and monitor your sleep quality. Over time, as you see and feel your sleep improving, add a few more. I realize that sometimes getting “more” sleep just is not an option, but by utilizing some of these tips, you can make the precious few hours you do get as effective as possible in giving the body the rest and recovery it needs.
Action Certified Trainer
CPR/First Aid Certified
Haywood Settle is our newest addition to Definition Fitness. He will be interning with us during the month of September. He comes to us from New York City with a strong interest in fitness. Since 2009, he has not taken a week off from exercising! He is especially interested in resistance training, but enjoys all modalities of exercise. He describes himself as a caveman with an Iphone7, because he prefers old school methods. His self-discipline and passion for exercise, along with his grocery clerk job at Publix keep him very active while he is attending school at Keiser University. Haywood is currently working towards earning his A.S in Sports Medicine and then will go on to earn his B.A in Sports Medicine. He plans to use the knowledge he obtains from school along with his Action Trainer certification to get people into the best shape of their lives in an effective and safe manner.
How is stretching beneficial? Many people believe stretching increases your flexibility, loosens tight muscles, and prepares your muscles for a high intensity workout. This isn’t entirely true, maybe a little, but not really. If you stretch your muscles for a couple of seconds a day in hopes of achieving any of the previously stated claims, you’re in for a rude awakening. Your muscles don’t change, stretch, or grow in the course of a couple of seconds. Flexibility is determined by your nervous system’s tolerance to that range.
If you’re confined behind a desk all day then you may have short hamstrings. This is due to continuous contraction of the hamstring muscle. A result of this is experiencing tightness in that area. And No, the general ten second stretch a day doesn’t help solve your problem. Melissa recommends that you loosen those muscles up as often as you can. Instead of being trapped behind your desk all day you can sit with your legs straightened on the floor to give those muscles a break.
Is stretching pointless? No, you can still do short, frequent stretches that are within your range. This assists your body into exploring your movement ranges and then, very gradually, helps you become more mobile.
Definition Fitness of Jacksonville, LLC announced today that Dr. Robert H. Bodendorf, DMD will be discussing the power of the Gut on April 25, 2017 at their facility on 1950 San Marco Blvd, Suite 5 at 7:00 pm.
“I began developing an interest in trying to figure out what leads to true health when a critical family illness occurred in 2008, says Rob. All roads converged on gut health and the mind-body connection. I do not believe true health can be attained without healthy gut flora and the introduction of probiotic foods and the elimination of toxins in food that kill the microflora.”
Rob enjoys a discussion about why a healthy gut is important and will show how easy probiotic foods like sauerkraut and yogurt are to make. He is a graduate of the College of Charleston in 1980 where he majored in Biology and a graduate of the Medical School of South Carolina where he obtained his dental degree. Like many medical programs in this country, Rob’s formal education did not contain any classes about nutrition. He is self-taught and is excited to share his learnings and experience with you.
Definition Fitness of Jacksonville, LLC is a health studio committed to helping people move better, feel better, look better. Located in the heart of San Marco, the studio has served the community for more than ten years with state of the art personal training. More information on this free demonstration is available on their web page at www.Defintionfitness.com. Or you may call 904-398-6442.
Hi, I’m Pinky and I’m happy to be part of the Definition Fitness family! I was born in Thailand but raised most of my life in the US. I am a very active person, so much that my friends call me a hummingbird! I love playing all sports from baseball, tennis, to volleyball but currently I have been more focused on running, biking, dragon boating, outrigger canoes, and mud runs. I’m also the strength and conditioning coach for my dragon boat team.
I’ve been doing personal training for 11 years and I love every minute of it! There’s no greater satisfaction than helping others live a stronger and healthier life! I focus on getting the body back into balance so that everyday functional movements can be achieved with ease. With my medical background, I have a particular interest in working with anyone with medical concerns (joints, post-surgery, injuries, etc) and being able to regain mobility and function.
I’m excited to be part of this team and I look forward to helping everyone reach their fitness goals!