Health: Post Flight Checklist for Healthy Joints

Staying seated for a long period of time in a hunched position simply doesn't do the body any good. The whole notion that 'you must undo what you do' definitely applies here.

After a long flight, it's typical to feel your body glued down and stuck. In this case, it's important to get some movement back into your body. Here's a quick full-body sequence you can try out. The focus here on these was slow and controlled.

1. Neck – Prone Neck Rotations (x5/direction)

2. Spine – Segmental Cat Camel (x5)

3. Shoulders – Side Lying Windmill w/Reach (x5/side)

4. Hips – Pigeon to Half-Kneeling w/ Reach (x5/side)

5. Ankles – Ankle Rockbacks (5x/side)

6. Global – Alternating Greatest Stretch (x5/side)

Here's the full video tutorial and post:

Training: Simple Travel Hotel Workout

It's important to stay active when you travel. However, that doesn't mean that it's absolutely necessary to find the nearest gym and get a full 1-hour workout in (if that's your thing though, go for it!).

If you're looking for a quick 20-minute workout to complete in the comfort of your travel hotel room, give this full-body routine a shot. All you'll need is a resistance band.

This full-body workout is quick, easy and built for all fitness levels. The goal here is to perform 15 reps of each exercise in this entire circuit with 30 seconds of rest between each exercise. After 1 round through, take a 30-60 second break, and then repeat for a total of 3 rounds.

1. Band Deadlift

2. Push-Up

3. Band Seated Row

4. Band Hip Thrust

5. Band Squat

6. Band Shoulder Press

7. Squat Jump

8. Band Bent Over Row

9. Band Thruster

10. Band Chest Press

Here's the full video tutorial and post:

Recovery: Post Car Drive Stretching for Cranky Hips

If you spend a lot of time driving in the car, it's typical to feel some crankiness in the hips and low back. Here's a quick stretching sequence to perform to open up the hips and get them feeling good again.

Goal: Complete 3 total rounds of this sequence below.

1. Spider-Man Stretch – The emphasis here is to complete 1 rep by creating as much full-body tension for a small window of time (5-second hold) and then relax into the stretch for 5 seconds. Complete 5 reps of this contract-relax sequence on one side, and then repeat on the other side.

2. Hip Couch Stretch w/ Reach – This is a classic hip opener stretch that always feels good. However, I like to add an overhead reach to get more bang-for-your-buck, and to truly get a stretch on the anterior hip complex musculature per the true anatomy of that region. Complete 5 reps on one side, and then repeat on the other side.

3. Reverse Lunge w/ Assisted Reach – The goal here is to use the short-term range of motion won over from the previous two drills, and to now incorporate a movement pattern into the mix. Complete 5 reps on one side, and then repeat on the other side.

Here's the full video tutorial and post:

Recovery: Post Beach & Long Walk Stretching for Cranky Ankles & Feet

The best part about traveling is that you get the opportunity to walk around all day, explore places, and take in some awesome scenery. While walking is a great form of physical activity and health on numerous levels, it does take a toll on the ankles, feet and calves, especially when performed at high volumes.

It's important to provide quality stretching and recovery strategies to these areas. Whether taking a long stroll around town or a long walk on the beach in the sand, here's a short sequence to get those areas feeling good again.

Goal: Complete 3 total rounds of this sequence below.

1. Finger-Toe Weaving – The emphasis here is to wedge your fingers in between your toes, and then try to create more space throughout the entire duration of reps on each side. It's important to create space and win over some 'real estate' in these areas to get them both feeling and moving well again. You're going to assist the foot with the hand as you move into dorsiflexion and plantar flexion—that equals 1 rep. Complete 5 reps on one side, and then repeat on the other side.

2. Half-Kneeling Ankle Mobilizations – This is a great drill to get some mobility back into the ankle joint. Be sure to keep the front foot entirely flat the entire time. You should feel increased motion in the ankle, in addition to a gentle stretch in the Achilles tendon, soleus muscle, and calf muscle. Complete 5 reps on one side, and then repeat on the other side.

3. Classic Runners Stretch – I never shy away from the basic, simple drills, because they always provide results. Let's take the classic runners stretch on the wall, and jump it up a notch by using a rolled up towel (or similar type of wedge). This will help to provide a deeper stretch to the entire lower leg complex. Complete a 30 second hold on one side, and then repeat on the other side.

Here's the full video tutorial and post:

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Matthew Ibrahim is a Boston-based Strength & Conditioning Coach with a strong passion in athletic development, sport performance, and context-rich assessment protocols to enhance performance output and build a foundation of resilience. Over the years he has worked with youth and high school athletes, collegiate athletes, and members in professional sports in the NHL, NBA, NFL, MLB, and UFC. His professional work has been featured in major publications such as Men’s Fitness, STACK Media, and The PTDC. A highly sought-after resource and thought leader for strength coaches and sports rehab pro’s alike, he has consulted with the likes of EXOS at Google Headquarters, the Boston Celtics, and dorsaVi Technology.

He is quite active on Instagram (@matthewibrahim_) and routinely posts about training, performance and recovery. Follow along here:

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Tim DiFrancesco, PT, DPT, ATC, CSCS, spent 6 seasons as Head Strength & Conditioning coach of the Lakers and is renowned nationally for his evidence-based and scientific approach to training, nutrition and recovery for athletes and fitness enthusiasts.

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