Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Guest Blog: The Fit Tutor on Breathing and Core Stability to Avoid Injury and Maintain Alignment

We all know exercise is an important part of a healthy lifestyle. As someone who is also a recipient of upper cervical care, I understand you may be nervous about how to exercise while protecting your spine and holding your adjustment. How can you perform daily tasks like carrying groceries or picking up something heavy without affecting your alignment?

As a personal trainer, I’d love to help you understand how breathing properly and bracing your core can help you stay safe and hold your adjustment in both exercise and daily life. First off, let’s start with the basics. Have you heard of diaphragmatic breathing? This is when you breathe into your belly instead of your chest. Obviously you’re still using your lungs, but you should feel and see your belly expand instead of your chest and shoulders rise. This is important to do whenever you perform an exercise, like a squat, or carry boxes into your son’s new dorm room.

In fact, you should practice this type of breathing until it becomes a habit. If you feel tight in your chest and shoulders all the time, how you breathe could be the problem.

The technique we’re discussing can be applied to almost any type of exercise or lifting movement, but let’s simplify it by focusing on the squat. You squat multiple times per day whether you are working out or not. Protecting your spine while breathing into your belly should be your #1 goal.

Here’s a play-by-play of proper breathing technique for a safer squat:

1. With your feet facing forward, pretend like you’re lightly screwing them into the ground by twisting them out. Your feet aren’t actually twisting, but this activates your muscles to properly support your hips so your spine can stay aligned.

2. Next, squeeze your butt to put your hips and pelvis in a good position to support your spine. 

3. Before you squat, you’ll want to stand up tall and try to ensure your head is over your heart, and your heart is over your hips.

3a. Open your chest and roll your shoulders back if you feel like you’re still slouching.

4. Brace your abdominal area like someone is about to punch you in the gut. This is called “bracing” and is crucial for protecting your spine.

5. Next, take a normal-sized breath using diaphragmatic (belly) breathing, while at the same time, keeping your core braced for the punch.

6. Hold that breath in and feel how it locks your spine in place. Hold it as you lower into your squat.

7. Exhale as you stand back up.

8. (Pro tip: think about squeezing your knees out as you stand back up)

If holding your breath on your quick descent down makes you nervous or lightheaded, you can always inhale on your way down, while bracing your abs for a punch and breathing into your belly. Exhale while standing back up. Following these steps will keep your spine locked in a safe place while doing things like picking up your kids or a bootcamp workout!

For most of us, belly breathing and bracing won’t come naturally, but your body and mind are brilliant. With some practice you’ll get the hang of these in no time, and you’ll start doing them on your own without even thinking about it! Practicing should improve your posture as well- hooray!

Protecting your spine and holding your adjustment are obviously priorities for upper cervical care patients. Exercise and healthy eating are also important factors to help your body function optimally, heal itself, fight inflammation and pain, and eventually reaching your goal of only seeing Dr. Chad quarterly!

I know health and fitness can be confusing and hard to prioritize in your busy schedule. I’ve worked hard to make nutrition easy to understand and implement and in creating safe, efficient workouts people can do from home in my website thefittutor.com. There, I’ve created three main sections to tackle the biggest challenges of getting healthy and in shape:


Let’s face it, dieting is the worst. My Nutrition Course makes healthy eating and losing weight easy to understand. In it, you’ll learn healthy habits that give you the freedom to be able to know how to eat right without needing a diet. You’ll understand what, when, and how much to eat for you - including your goals and body type! You’ll be empowered to make good choices and end yo-yo dieting forever. The 6 weeks of meal plans make getting started a breeze.


Strength training helps keep you healthy and is the best weapon against age-related weight gain. The Fit Tutor has several different strength training programs to choose from, based on your schedule and goals. Each exercise has its own video, which includes safe instruction and modifications to make it both easier and harder! You’ll not only learn proper exercise form, but the workouts are designed to get results. They can all be done at home or the gym since the only thing you need is a pair of dumbbells! It’s like having your own personal trainer wherever you go. And don’t worry, strength training won’t make you bulky, it should actually make you leaner!


If you’ve started and stopped healthy habits in the past, accountability can be a game changer. A great workout program is worthless if you’re not doing it! As your trainer and coach, I offer check-ins, coaching calls, and am here to answer your questions. I spend a lot of time working with my clients to help them overcome obstacles and carve out time in their schedules. Accountability is tailored to each individual so that it actually works, and you get healthier and finally reach your goals!

2 Weeks Free

The Fit Tutor is a membership site, so it’s like Netflix for your health. A membership costs as little as $11.99/mo, and you can cancel easily at anytime. If you want to give it a try, you can for 2 weeks free! You’ll get to try some workouts, start your first healthy eating habit, and get to discuss your goals and start an optional accountability plan with me! The site is geared towards women, but if you’re a man who’s looking to get strong and lose weight, I assure you my programs will get you results, and I have plenty of men as members!

As you’re working to get healthier, my programs are a great asset to help you along your journey. Having a coach in your corner to answer your questions and help you follow through is a breath of fresh air. I hate how confusing health and fitness has become, and my aim is to simplify it for you and your life with thefittutor.com.

Check out my site here, and fill out the contact form on it if you have any questions!

Stay aligned my friends!

Allison Lambert
Personal Trainer
Nutrition Coach
The Fit Tutor

1 comment:

  1. Allison is so knowledgeable about exercise, nutrition, and fitness. I highly recommend her!