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Hi, I'm Alexandra Ellis, an anatomy loving body-nerd who enjoys breaking down complicated body concepts to help you maximize your performance for pain-free living.

Read my entire story here.






Fascia-nating Fascia (video)

Did you know that if you removed everything from your body that was not connective tissue, you’d still basically look the same? One major component of connective tissue is fascia, the gelatinous body wide web that forms the living seams, structures, protection and repair system of your body (Jill Miller).

fascinating fascia ae wellness what fascia is and how it works

How your body moves or doesn’t move, heals or doesn’t heal and your physical structure is all dictated by the health of your fascia. But how much do we really know about this living soft tissue scaffolding?

Check out this episode of Anatomy with Alex where I dive into the details of Fascia-nating Fascia! read more…

The Care and Keeping of Your Balls

So you just got a new pair of therapy balls, now what? If you’ve been rolling with foam rollers, lacrosse balls, softballs or another sport-specific ball, you have definitely made an upgrade towards investing in your health, but there are a few things you should know about Yoga Tune Up® and The Roll Model Method® therapy balls that I sell on my site.

These therapy balls are made of a natural rubber – which means they will develop an amazing amount of grip, grab and give, but will also lose these qualities if left exposed to the elements. The natural rubber is similar to any other rubber product in your home – if left in direct sunlight, they will dry out. Once the rubber has dried out, it will not be able to have its grippy texture restored. While I have had a student file the surface of her therapy ball with a nail file, the grippiness is not what it used to be and the pliability and give of the ball did not return.

care and keeping of your ae wellness therapy balls

I recommend storing your therapy balls in an opaque gym bag or closed container where they will not be exposed to direct sunlight or the elements. I use a simple nylon zippered bag to store my therapy balls and they have withstood the test of time (all the therapy balls are going on 2+ years. read more…

Injury Update: I’ve been Maestrofied

In my previous article, Injury Whack-A-Mole, I shared a knee injury I’ve been dealing with for a few months. After finally taking my own advice, I escalated my treatment approach and went to see a Physical Therapist. But not just any Physical Therapist: C. Shante Cofield aka The Movement Maestro.

How did I determine that it was time to go to a PT? Well, to be 100% honest, I should have gone back in November when my knee first started hurting because it would have avoided me months of pain and the compensation patterns that I developed to work around the injury.

I still don’t know what happened, at some point in November(ish) of last year, my knee began to cramp when I flexed it past 90˚. At first, it was only when I would bend my knee and sit for an extended period of time, like when I was sitting on the floor and working. Then, it started happening anytime I bent my knee, including sitting at the kitchen table. read more…

Does Research Have All the Answers?

I am a constant seeker of knowledge and information but one of the side effects is that I often stumble over something that is in direct conflict with what I previously thought to be true.

This happens all the time – and everyone’s opinion and viewpoint on any given topic (or ten!) is constantly evolving.

Even in the world of research and science, opinions are always changing as different researchers and labs “discover” something new. Here’s the thing about science, you never begin (nor will you get funding for) an experiment you don’t already know the answer to. The hypothesis is the answer you are hoping to prove, so of course, the study will lead people down that direction. And once the study is completed, if another lab and research team cannot get the same results when replicating your study, it isn’t considered sound. read more…

3 Things To Do Right Now for Your Back Pain

Did you know that approximately 80% of Americans experience at least one episode of back pain during their lifetime? It’s one of the leading causes for missed days of work, school and decreased productivity. The traditional treatment route includes ice, heat and pain killers, but what if you could alleviate the pain in the comfort of your own living room?

Even the medical staff at the UCLA health center is beginning to consider alternative treatments to help save patients time, money and keep the appointments books of the spine specialists clear for cases that really need it. They found that 70% – 90% of patients with back pain improve with seven weeks of conservative treatment (ice, heat, position that relieve the pain, etc).

Expensive scans and MRIs can sometimes complicate the issue, as they can reveal structural issues that are unrelated to the current pain and a prescription for painkillers can lead to a downward spiral of opioid abuse (and major constipation, but nobody talks about that). read more…

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