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As far as feedback on the Posture Perfect!TM class goes, it has not only met my expectations, but exceeded them! There are several reasons I enjoy the class... 

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The Sequoia Advisor

IN THIS ISSUE                                                        September 1st 2013

  • Sit Less... Stand More... Live Longer
  • Make Your Home Both Greener and Healthier
  • Upcoming Events... Workshop Series... There's No Place Like Home 
  • Osteoporosis Support News... Yoga Nidra and Safe Senior Yoga
  • Posture Perfect!TM  Give Us a Try... First Class FREE

Feel Better... Live Better

Sit Less... Stand More... Live Longer
By Woody McMahon

Too Much Sitting is Not Good
A recent study on the effects of prolonged sitting has confirmed what
we already intuitively know.
Sitting too much, a.k.a, a sedentary lifestyle
is just not good for your health or longevity. The landmark study that was
conducted in 2009 says the following and I quote,

"prolonged bouts of sitting time and a lack of whole-body muscular
movement are strongly associated with obesity, abnormal glucose metabolism,
diabetes, metabolic syndrome, cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk and
cancer as well as total mortality and "are" independent of moderate to
vigorous-intensity physical activity."

What does all this scientific "mumbo jumbo" mean?

Move It or Lose It
In a nutshell, the researchers found out two things. First, your relative risk
for health problems (the ones mentioned above) goes up. The more you sit the
greater your chance of chronic illness and disease. Also they found that long
periods of sitting can actually neutralize the health gains that you receive
from regular exercise.

Spending less time sitting can significantly improve your health and
reinforce your exercise efforts. Researchers also found that for "each 1-hour
increase in sitting time watching television increased the prevalence of the
metabolic syndrome in women by 26%, independent of the amount of
moderate to vigorous-intensity physical exercise performed. This was
approximately the same quantity of decreased risk (28%) of the metabolic
syndrome that was induced by 30 minutes of extra physical exercise."

What This Means to You
The authors have discovered an important premise when it comes to your
health and activity levels. They agree that exercise based physical
activity improves your health in many ways. No one argues this point any
more. What they were also able to show was that non-exercise activity was
as important to your health as structured exercise. Examples of
non-exercise based activity include using the stairs, housework, walking
to the copier or bathroom and walking instead of using a car. The authors
found that the more non-exercise activity incorporated into your daily
life, the less chance you have of developing the diseases mentioned above.

When You Exercise, Do Not Sit
Unless you are forced to exercise sitting because of severe balance or
leg problems, don't. When you sit, the compressive forces on your spine
are multiplied 100 fold. Combine the sitting position with say an overhead
press and you are creating a potentially dangerous situation inviting
vertebral fractures. This is especially true if you are over age 50 or
have been diagnosed with osteopenia or osteoporosis. The best solution is
to stand for a majority of your exercise program. That way you will be
improving your balance and core strength with each and every exercise and
sparing your spine.

Activity Substitutions Can Boost Health
The authors of this study are NOT saying that you should stay in constant
motion during the day. Sleep, resting and daily naps are all still very
good health practices as is participating in a regular exercise session.
What they are suggesting is that your health can be significantly improved
by just moving a little bit more during the day. They also say that when
creating a healthy activity plan, it is important to look at activity levels both
outside and inside a structured exercise plan. So to maximize your
health, try these simple activity substitutions:

1. Climb stairs rather than using elevators and escalators .

2. Take a 5 minute active break such as going to the copier or the
    bathroom every hour during sedentary work.

3. Walk to the store or to lunch rather than taking a car.

4. Rake leaves rather than use a leaf blower.

5. Shovel snow instead of using a snow blower.

Finally, remember to include 150 minutes of moderate-intensity physical
exercise a week. That comes down to about 30 minutes, 5 days a week.

Would you like to reduce stress and improve your bone health but
don't know where to start?
I provide an easy to follow program called
Be Bone Strong! that helps improve your bone health, posture, balance
and strength while reducing fracture risk. Contact me anytime for a
no cost consultation at 703-628-2880 or send an email to

Make Your Home Both "Greener" and Healthier
by Woody McMahon

Chemicals in Your Home
Your home can be a potentially unfriendly mix of volatile organic
chemicals (VOC's) like formaldehyde, molds and other contaminants. The EPA
has identified as many as 900 VOC's inside homes coming from clothing,
furniture, paints and carpets. These VOC's can also be released into your
home from fertilizers, glues, plywood, fiberboard, particleboard and
certain types of insulation Another source can come from some
disinfectants, antibacterial soaps and even beauty products. You spend
many hours in your home so you want the environment to be as healthy as

Healthy House Plants
Bill Wolverton, an environmental scientist and retired senior researcher
at NASA, has been studying the air cleaning effects of indoor plants for
about 25 years. He has found that certain indoor plants can remove harmful
chemicals as well as molds, viruses and bacteria while increasing oxygen
levels. In an interview with PBS, he said, "We're wise to use plants. Much
of our furniture is made of synthetic materials; there are pollutants in
carpets, bedding – even mattresses."

Nature's Air Filters
Plants are ‘nature's living air filters' that can literally suck out
these pollutants absorb them and break them down." There is a
misconception that plants are bad for people who have allergy and asthma
symptoms. Interestingly, Mr. Wolverton's research has shown just the
opposite. Plants actually remove allergic irritants helping symptoms
rather than increasing them.

How Do Plants Keep Air Clean
In the soil, plants have natural colonies of "friendly" bacteria growing
on their extensive root systems. To make food as a plant grows; it absorbs
chemicals, airborne microbes and carbon dioxide through the leaves and
releases oxygen in return. The bacteria, viruses and VOC's are transferred
to the root system where they are destroyed by the bacterial colonies. The
benefit of houseplants is their ability to increase oxygen levels while
reducing harmful levels of contaminants.

How Many Plants Do I Need?
NASA research showed that generally two 6 inch potted plants per room was
enough to provide a dramatic improvement in air quality. The larger the
plants the more air they were able to clean. NASA also found certain
plants are better air cleaners than other. Here is a list of beneficial
plants you should have in your home.

Healthy Plant List

- Spider Plant (Chlorophytum comosum)

- Lady palm (Rhapis excelsa)

- Areca palm (Chrysalidocarpus lutescens)

- Ficus alii (Ficus macleilandii)

- Peace lily (Spathiphyllum sp.)

- Golden pothos (Epipremnun aureum)

- Arrowhead vine (Syngonium podophyllum)

- Bamboo palm (Chamaedorea seifritzii)

- Dwarf Date palm (Phoenix roebelenii)

- Rubber plant (Ficus robusta)

- English ivy (Hedera helix)

For more information on Bill Wolverton's research on healthy house plants
go to

Try these healthy lifestyle changes for 30 days. Feel what it is like to be
a part of the health solution rather than a health burden. If you need
additional suggestions and advice on living a healthier lifestyle, email or

call me for a no cost consultation, at 703-628-2880 or send an email to

Upcoming Events and News

Workshop Series... There's No Place Like Home
Your home is our castle and you want to stay there as long
as you can. One of the big life decisions is whether to stay
in your home or live in a retirement or assisted living community.

Recent research has shed some light on the darker side
of retirement home living. Everything from higher costs to the
loss of personal freedom and independence has been examined
in these recent reports. These reports say that living in a
retirement center is not as easy or glamorous as one might

On November 7th, Pat Williams of Graceful Care and I will
begin a four part workshop series entitled
There's No Place Like Home that will show you how to benefit
by staying in the comfort of your own home. 

Watch this newsletter for times, dates and registration information
coming soon.

Posture Perfect!TM Classes Continue in Arlington
Our Posture Perfect!TM classes continue in Arlington and we are taking
names for our next beginner class that starts in mid September. You may
take your first class for FREE giving you an opportunity to try the class
without risk. To register please contact Woody McMahon at
703-628-2880 or email to

The class address is:
The Rock Spring Congregational Church
5010 Little Falls Road
Arlington, Virginia 22207

Please wear comfortable clothes and bring a towel, a bottle of water
and an exercise mat if you have one.

Rock Spring Congregational Church currently offers a Yoga and Tai Chi
class at their church. Posture Perfect!TM will be a nice addition to those
two offerings.

Posture Perfect!TM for Spinomed Program
I have created a new companion back strengthening exercise program to
help anyone wearing the Spinomed orthosis. The classes include helpful tips
on getting the most from your Spinomed as well as exercise instruction that
helps strengthen your back, improves your posture and increases your balance.

Click Here to learn more about this exciting program.

Posture Perfect!TM First Class FREE

Instead of holding a monthly Posture Perfect!TM demo class, several
people have aasked if thy can just come to one of the classes. For a 
limited time, you can try your first Posture Perfect!TM class for free.

so please call Woody McMahon at 703.628.2880 or email to for more information or to make
your reservation.

The FREE Posture Perfect!TM class helps introduce you to the many
benefits of our safe and effective posture, balance and strength program
co-developed by Sara Meeks, PT and Woody McMahon, personal trainer.

Come and experience how each class can help strengthen your bones,
improve your balance, alleviate back aches and neck pains, improve
osteoporosis and teach you how to sit and stand-up straighter. 

The History of Posture Perfect!TM
When I developed the Posture Perfect!TM classes over 2 years ago, there
were no safe and effective exercise programs available for
"over age 50" adults.
Everywhere I looked there
were older adults in classes that used seated
exercises (bad for your back); machine style exercises (bad for your balance)
treadmills (a poor leg strengthener); and performed movements that
involved crunching, bending and twisting. (increases the risk of spinal

Posture Perfect!TM solved all of these problems by offering a safe and effective
approach helping older adults become more active. Each class
improves your
strengthens your bones,
enhances your balance, alleviates back
and neck pains, reduces fracture risk and teaches you how to sit
and stand-up straighter. 


We have several people in our current classes who are coming to strengthen
their bones
and over half of the others are interested in exercises and posture
changes to help make their backs and necks feel better.

Please call Woody McMahon at 703-628-2880 or email to for more information, class times and reservations.

Posture Perfect!TM Testimonials...
Posture Perfect's! momentum continues to grow. Here is a glowing testimonial
from one of our class members.

"Posture Perfect!TM class has not only met my expectations, but exceeded
them! There are several reasons I enjoy the class. The small class size
gives each of us extraordinary personalized training; your knowledge,
expertise, patience, and sense of humor makes me look forward to
coming to a class I thought would be only for 6 weeks; and I have
learned so much more than I expected."

"For example, I now think about my posture every time I sit, and just when
I thought I'd begin to have a hard time rising from sitting on the floor, you
taught me how to make it easier. I try to practice some of the balance
exercises a couple of times a week (I know, I should do it more often!).
I thank you for all I have learned from you so far, and hope to continue
this class for the foreseeable future!"

Click Here to read more about S.A.F.E. and effective Posture Perfect!TM

Continued Good Health,


Woody McMahon
The Sequoia Advisor

Sequoia Health and Fitness, Inc.
483A Carlisle Drive
Herndon, VA

Required Disclaimer: The material provided herein should not be construed
as a health-care diagnosis, treatment regimen or any other prescribed
health-care advice or instruction. The material is provided with the
understanding that the publisher is not engaged in the practice of medicine
or any other health-care profession and does not enter into a health-care
practitioner/patient relationship with its readers. The publisher does not
advise or recommend to its readers treatment or action with regard to
matters relating to their health or well-being other than suggesting that
readers consult appropriate health-care professionals in such matters. No
action should be taken based solely on the content of this publication. The
material and opinions provided herein are believed to be accurate and sound
at the time of publication, based on the best judgment available to the
authors. However, readers who rely on material in this publication to
replace the advice of health-care professionals, or who fail to consult
with health-care professionals, assume all risks of such conduct. The
publisher is not responsible for errors or omissions.

Copyright (c) 2006-2013 by Sequoia Health and Fitness, Inc.


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    A mindful and holistic approach to Fall Prevention, Balance, Full Body Functional Strengthening and Posture Exercises for All Ages! Our Science-Based Exercises are Safe and Appropriate for Your Ability. Our Exercises Help Improve Osteoporosis, Osteopenia, Fear of Falling, Balance and Strength Problems. Reston, Great Falls, Herndon, Middleburg, Arlington Sterling and Northern Virginia.

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