Wow. That's the first thing I can say after my ReaLine session with Naomi.
ReaLine sessions with Naomi really fall under the mantra "less is more." We focused on small movements of the gluteus maximus and gluteus medius to activate it for hip extension rather than my quadriceps. Focusing on the source of the imbalance through small movements designed to target specific muscles was harder than it seemed. Controlling the muscles used in squat required mental focus and a mindful approach to the exercise rather than simply relying on muscle memory to complete the exercise.
It quickly became apparent that my biomechanical issues derived from using the quads to perform the actions the glutes are designed for. Retraining my muscles to activate--and focusing on keeping the quads from firing--was challenging to begin with, but came easier with time.
Repetitions of small, specific exercises were designed to get me to perfect the muscle movement without any weight, so that I would store the muscle memory. Adding weight came later, and it was much easier to focus on the correct movement angles and positioning by using just the Realign devices.
I noticed changed immediately: I felt my piriformis releasing during my first session as Naomi focused the exercises on hip extension. Previously, I'd only felt the same release from my hips after an intense, 90-minute deep-tissue massage focused on the hips and IT bands. The same sensations of opening and free movement were apparent partway through the first session, continuing on throughout the day as I went for a longer-than-usual run. Similar results followed each successive session.
The ReaLine devices greatly facilitated getting in touch with how movements felt in my body. Feeling the gluteus medius activating during an exercise was neat: I'm much more in tune with the smaller muscles in my body after sessions with Naomi. The smaller muscles are now moving more naturally and in alignment thanks to time spent with the ReaLine devices and in Naomi's studio.
Naomi is a wonderful trainer, down-to-earth and explains both biomechanics and anatomy in easy-to-understand terms. I encourage anyone with repetitive injuries, and anyone looking to improve their body awareness to book a session with Naomi. My hips have opened and released years of tension and misalignment and I'm excited to see what I can achieve being in proper alignment!
I am a 69-year-old, reasonably fit and active woman. I have scoliosis on my right side, and my right foot turns outwards at an abnormal angle due to a leg and ankle fracture almost 50 years ago. The rest of my body has been compensating for these deformities for a long time. Some of the compensations created postural and movement problems throughout my adult life, including a bow-legged walk. When I would try to stand with my feet parallel and pointed straight ahead, my whole right side from leg to back felt pulled and strained as if I were forcing the leg into a very pigeon-toed position. By early middle age I started to experience intermittent knee and back problems, forcing me to give up tennis and other activities that I enjoyed. With the help of regular massage therapy, physio and heavy-duty orthotics I was able to keep active with walking, swimming, biking and hiking; however, I found that walking was becoming more and more uncomfortable with age. I knew that a lot of the problems stemmed from the bow-legged walk and poor standing posture, which exerted undue pressure on my knee joints. I thought this could not be helped due to the structural deformity of my foot turning outward, which made it seemingly impossible to align my knees over my feet.
When I started training with Naomi, I learned that by focusing my mind on alignment work I could correct my faulty alignment in spite of my deformities. This involved cultivating control and strength in certain muscles (hamstrings, glutes, core, hip flexors) and developing proper posture and movement habits. After the very first session with the Realine "leg press" equipment, I was amazed to find that I could stand comfortably with my feet parallel and pointed straight ahead. My walk wasn't bowlegged. I could even stay balanced standing on my right foot alone with the toes pointing straight ahead, which I hadn't been able to do since the fracture. It seemed like a miracle. Of course these "miraculous" effects wore off after a few hours; but each time I trained, the effects lasted longer. After about 2 months of weekly sessions with Naomi and her special Realine equipment, I was able to walk and stand naturally all the time with correct alignment and both feet pointed straight ahead without discomfort. The angle of the foot itself hasn't changed in the resting position; but when standing and walking, my mind and all the relevant muscles now work together naturally to keep everything properly and comfortably aligned over the foot. After almost 50 years of incorrect compensation I still have lots to work on, but now I feel much more confident about avoiding joint and mobility problems as I age.
When I first read about Naomi and the ReaLine® Training, I never heard about this concept before but I thought I would give it a try and I am glad I did. I have had neck issues for many years and whenever I would walk a lot, carry heavy loads or do high-intensity movements, I would feel the pain and tension in my neck at the end of the day. After having 9 sessions with Naomi, she has taught me how to rethink how I hold my body and what muscles to use so that my neck is not taking on all the load. I have definitely felt an improvement and am thankful to Naomi for bringing the ReaLine® Training to Vancouver.
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