Introduction to Elevator Shoes

What are Elevator Shoes?

Elevator shoes are also known as height increasing shoes, lift shoes or tall shoes. They are specially designed to invisibly increase the height of the wearer. The basic idea is to put thick insoles (lifts) , so that the wearer can get taller. (See “Inside Elevator Shoes” for more information.) Elevator shoes look normal from outside. Well designed elevator shoes are as comfortable as normal. It may take several days for wears to get used to it. Normally, elevator shoes increase 2.5-4 inches in height. There are 5 inches extra-height ones, but it will loose comfort and is more noticeable.

History of Elevator Shoes

You may raise the question “Who invented elevator shoes?” The history can be chased back to early 1500s when cowboy boots came out in Spain. Since 1700s, men’s footwear with Cuban heel became popular along with a brief resurgence in higher-heeled shoes for men.[1]

In modern life, people are more concerned about health. People with flatfoot feel uncomfortable when they wear normal shoes. Some of them try to put soft insoles inside shoes to make to more comfortable. Also, orthopaedic doctors sometimes recommend use thick insoles to help patient increase height. Later on, this kind of thick soft insoles became a shared secret within a particular group of people. Shoes manufactures started to design special shoes with thick insoles and keep the normal look and comfort. They call it “Elevator Shoes” or “Height Increasing Shoes”.

In the past, height shoes are only for men but in late 1990s, women’s elevator shoes came out. Although women can wear high-heel shoes or platform shoes to increase height, some women don’t want to show people they wear high-heels. Women’s height shoes usually come with flat, low or middle heels with a thick insole.

Inside Elevator Shoes

It seems simple to put thick insoles inside shoes but it’s not that easy to keep it comfortable and look normal. All the components need to be re-designed to achieve this goal.

A pair of tall shoes consists four parts:

Upper

The upper needs to be designed to accommodate the thick insole. There is more slope between the face and the post. Also, the post curve is higher than normal shoes.

Insole

This is the magic part to increase height. It can be made from plastic, cork, or foam. The front part is lower than the back part. There are different designs in the slope and curve to fit different feet.

Mid-insole

Because insole is usually made with soft and expensive material, it is easy to be worn out. The mid-sole provide some level of buffer between insole and outer-insole. It prevents the deterioration of your insole and provides aeration.

Outer-soles

The outer-insole helps keep the wearer from feeling uncomfortable and allows a natural instep. The natural rubber heels can be replaced by an ordinary heel.

Although the components of height shoes are different from normal, it looks just the same when they are assembled.

It is noteworthy that tall shoes and shoe lifts are different. Shoe lifts are separated thick insoles that can be inserted into any shoes. The disadvantages of lifts are that they need to be replaced every few months (due to hygienic reasons), they may be uncomfortable, and the larger-sized lifts may not fit in smaller sizes.[2]

Who is Suitable to Wear Elevator Shoes?

As we all know, there is no effective way for adult to naturally grow taller. Elevator shoes are designed for people who want to be taller effectively. They are for both men and women, though women’s are not popular. Also, if you are flatfoot, you should give it a try because most people with flatfoot feel more comfortable when wearing elevator shoes.

You can choose height shoes for long term wear or just for a special occasion. Some people choose to wear it for long term because they get used to it and they like the feeling of being taller. In some occasions such as wedding, it is important for a man to be taller, especially taller than “her”. People choose elevator shoes in these situations. Most people feel normal when they wearing height shoes but to other people, the wearer looks taller and more confident.

Who are Wearing Elevator Shoes?

You may not notice, but actually many people around us wear tall shoes including some famous men. For example, French President Nicholas Sarkozy, famous movie star Tom Cruise and famous venture capitalist Aviv Nevo. Over 1,000,000 elevator shoes are sold every year!

Table of Content

What are Elevator Shoes?

History of Elevator Shoes

Inside Elevator Shoes

Who is Suitable to Wear Elevator Shoes?

Who are Wearing Elevator Shoes?

Note: In this article, “elevator shoes”, “height shoes” and “tall shoes” are used interchangeably.

References

1. Wikipedia High-heeled footware, section “Men and heels”

2. Hudson’s Guide

Pyramid Vs Plate

As far as I can tell, the biggest difference between the food pyramid and the food plate is– nothing, just kidding! It seems that on the food plate there are less grains to eat. And, I do have to say that although food plate is a nice icon considering most of us eat our food off of a plate, it is nowhere as romantic as food pyramid. Think about it. Roll them over your tongue a couple of times. Now, which one connotes more romance? Food pyramid hounds down.

So, it seems less grains and more whole grains, at least half your servings of grains should be whole. However, it doesn’t really say how much grains you should eat. For that matter, the new food plate guide doesn’t say how much fruit or vegetables you should eat. It simply states that half your plate should be fruits and vegetables. Great! Now I know exactly what and how much I am supposed to eat. But wait, whose plate am I using? What size is my plate? How many plates a day? At least with the food pyramid we were given explicit instructions: serving sizes and amounts per day. Now what are we to do? Please help, I am American, I don’t like to do things on my own! I need to be guided, to be led if you will. You can check out the government’s site and read past the beginning pages, in all fairness, they do give guidelines on portion sizes, etc.

Seriously, the government is just trying to help. Tongue in cheek. And as educated adults, we know what to eat. We know what is good for us and what isn’t. If we’re trying to lose weight, we need to eat less and move more. If we want to be healthy/ier, we need to eat less processed foods and more natural foods.

Looking at the Choose My Plate, did you know that 100% real fruit juice is considered a serving? As is 100% real vegetable juice. So, don’t mix in anything, just get out the ol’ blender and whir away at any fruit or vegetable you don’t want to sink your teeth into! It works for me and cabbage. Choose My Plate also states there are five subgroups for veggies (which for the life of me I can’t find on their site), such as legumes versus starchy veggies. Beans and peas are mature forms of legumes, and they are similar to meats, poultry and fish. Good news for our vegan and vegetarian friends because they do count as a substitute for those. Also, good news for meat eaters and veg’s alike, they are also good sources of dietary fiber and nutrients. They swing either way, it’s a win/win situation. Meat eaters, the recommendation is to eat at least 8 ounces of cooked fish per week. Sorry sushi and sashimi lovers!

Everyone needs dairy, and I don’t know why. I am sure that when we were hunter/gatherers we didn’t sit around milking cows or goats for that matter. But as we evolve, so does our knowledge and dairy is good. Period. However, low or non-fat dairy is highly recommended. All fluid milks count, which is good to know for us cereal eaters. Yet, there are a few favorites, sadly, that have no calcium value: cream cheese, cream and butter. Good news though, ice cream is a good source of calcium, but loaded in solid fats and added sugars. There’s always a downside.

Lastly, my friends and fellow conscious healthy food eaters-oils. They are not a food group, but they do provide essential nutrients. Foods that are naturally high in oils: nuts, olives, some fish and avocados. Avocados, this is what the Greeks meant when they coined the term “ambrosia,” food of the gods. A hint on olives, my son loved black olives, I say loved because one day he ate three cans and became incredibly ill, I guess it was all that oil. So, enjoy your healthy foods, but remember everything in moderation.

Stove Buying Guide

Stoves are one of those appliances which are essential in any household. Buying all your meals outside can be costly while microwaving everything may be unhealthy. There are a wide range of stoves to choose from. But before buying a new stove from your local appliance store, there are some things you have to consider first:

  • Gas vs. Electric. Some houses have a gas line to connect to the stove while others don’t. Check if you have this option at home. An electric stove, on the other hand may cost a lot in terms of electricity consumption. You may also want to consider a combination stove which has both a gas and electric option if in case you run out of gas or the power is out.
  • Size. How many burners do you need? If you live alone, a single or double burner may be enough. However, if you have a larger family, you’d need more burners. Also consider where you’ll be placing your stove. If you’re getting a large stove, ask the attendant for its dimensions and see if it will fit the spot you have at home. Imagine how inconvenient it would be to take home a lovely new stove only to find out you don’t even have enough space for it!
  • Ease of use. Knobs, buttons and settings which are self-explanatory are incredibly important in a stove since it can be a source of overcooked food, or worse, fires. A manual and controls which are clear should be some of the considerations to keep in mind before buying a stove. You should also check if the grates or drip pans are easy to remove for cleaning and if the oven door can be opened and closed without too much effort.
  • Added features. There’s a type of stove for almost any cooking need. Setting aside the basic stove and oven, there are more features you might want to consider. With one-touch options, you can preheat the oven, cook time-specific dishes, and add a minute to the timer and so much more with just one touch of a button. Timers, beepers and remote control features are also available in some models.
  • Reviews. Before deciding which stove you want to take home, have a look at some online reviews to see if there are any potential problems you may face in the future. These are problems which you can’t possibly foresee while you’re choosing a stove in the store, so reviews are helpful guides for users of the same model. Some reviews also specify what they might have done wrong, so you can avoid making the same mistake they did.

A stove, much like a car or a reliable sofa, can be a lifetime investment. A well-maintained stove can last for several years, even if it’s being used more than thrice a day. Before committing yourself to any one stove, exhaust all your resources to find the perfect fit. And don’t let yourself be convinced to buy a super high-end stove by a smooth-talking salesperson. Stick to the basics and pick a stove within your budget that has all the features you want.

Go Green With a Pressure Cooker

Remember when you were young and you went to Grandma’s house for Sunday dinner, watching the old pressure cooker on the stove hissing and venting, wondering if this was the day when it would send the contents across the kitchen. Well thankfully technology and construction methods have moved on a great deal since then. Modern day pressure cookers have a lot more safety features than their old counterparts as we found out when we decided to purchase one.

There is no escaping from the global warming issue, it’s with us in news bulletins, posters, magazine articles in fact every where you turn.

All the reports are telling us to do what we can to cut down on our usage of fossil fuels and carbon emissions.

After reading a lot about pressure cookers online we were convinced they were a winner for us and the environment and here’s why.

Fuel saving

Pressure cookers are more efficient than a traditional cookware, this mean a much quicker cooking time which translates into less energy used. Some manufacturers claim a figure of up to 70 per cent faster. Over a year this equates to a really good reduction on your energy consumption, which also means less damage to the planet.

More healthy for you

Because the food is cooked in a fraction of the time and at higher temperatures than normal, food is much less likely to lose its colour and flavour. Vitamins that are lost or diluted through normal cooking with much larger quantities of water are retained in the food.

Less time spent in the kitchen

Quicker cooking means less time spent in the kitchen which was another plus for us. We both have jobs and cooking used to be the last thing we wanted to come home to. However that has now been reduced thanks to the time saved by the pressure cooker.

Your pressure cooker should last for years given the right treatment, If you want to give pressure cooking a go make sure you read all the instructions first, this is vital. The manual will acquaint you with all you need to know about your cooker and any precautions the manufacturer recommends you follow. There are planned maintenance routines to follow and while this is usually pretty minimal it’s an essential task.

Custom Plastic Card – Some Important Details For Business Owners

If you’re considering implementing a custom plastic card for your UK business’s customers, here’s some information about features that you might want to consider.

Hot Stamp Printing

The most common way to put information on a customized plastic card is via the hot stamp process. An engraved metal plate is heated and applied to the card, which is overlaid with dry ink. This process creates the familiar printing and logos seen on plastic discount cards or plastic membership cards. You even can order plastic business cards hot printed with an eye-catching metallic foil.

Numbering, Bar Coding, Magnetic Striping and OCR

Consecutive numbering is the most basic way to differentiate cards from each other. A variety of bar code formats also is available for custom plastic card printing. Magnetic striping is more expensive and comes in low or high density. 3 tracks are available for magnetically encoding information on custom plastic cards. OCR is a process where a special pre-printed image on a plastic card is scanned into a format that can be used by computer on computerized cash register.

Embossing

You’re probably familiar with the raised lettering that appears on a custom plastic ID card. This embossing is done by a mechanical process that combines heat and pressure to create the raised lettering or design on the card. For a finishing touch, embossed letters are often tipped with a contrasting ink or foil during the plastic card printing process.

Panels

Many cards carry the cardholder’s signature on a panel for comparison at the point of purchase or security checkpoint. The panel can be clear or white and may contain personalization that’s handwritten, typewritten or generated by a computer.

A custom plastic card is a distinctive and cost-effective way for UK business owners to recognize and reward customer loyalty.

The Top 5 Most Effective Plank Exercise Positions

Ranked as one of the top exercises that target the core, particularly the oblique abdominal muscles, the  plank  exercise rises above the rest in simplicity, efficiency and practicality.  Planks  are mentioned in almost every top 10 article discussing core muscle workouts. It does not require equipment or any other special contraptions to perform. If you have a body, you can do the  plank  exercise.

The basic concept of the  plank  exercise is to assume a well-balanced (or isometric) stationary position while contracting certain muscles or muscle groups and holding it for a particular length of time. While the concept may seem simple, it has been proven to be very effective in exercising and strengthening your core muscles. The Transverse Abdominis, the muscles the lie deep beneath the obliques that wrap around your spine to protect it and give you stability; the Rectus Abdominis – extending along the front of your abdomen and is more commonly known as the “six-pack” muscles; the Erector Spinae or the muscles that run along your lower back up to your neck; the External Obliques or the “love handle” muscles around your waist; and the Internal Obliques which is located under the external obliques. These muscle groups are all involved in performing  plank  exercises properly.

But the benefits don’t end with these core muscles, as variations of the  plank  exercise are n fact total body workouts as they strengthen not only your midsection as described above but also your upper-body muscles (including the pectoral and serratus muscles) and lower-body muscles (such as the quadriceps, tensor fasciae latae and sartorius).

And as the  plank  exercise helps stabilize your hips and spine, it also improves your posture and helps prevent and even correct postural defects.

It is also a very efficient exercise for reducing stress. When muscles tighten and tension develops, exercise can stretch and relax them; and in the process, improving your mood and mental well-being. Finally, if you feel like you eventually will be want to get into a more physically rigorous workout regimen, this exercise will strengthen your core and provide a stable platform to workout from. Which is always a good idea from a back safety and workout efficiency standpoint.

Convinced that you’d like to give it a try? Here are the top five basic yet very effective  plank  exercises people use every day to help get you started:

1. BASIC  PLANK  – Lie face down on the floor (use a mat or do this on a carpet or rug) as in a push-up position. Then bend your elbows and place your forearms closely on the sides of your chest down on the mat pointing forward. Using your forearms and toes, slowly raise your self while keeping your whole body perfectly straight with no part of your body sagging or bending leaving only your toes and forearms touching the floor. Maintain this position initially for about 10 seconds, then increase the length of time in 10-second increments until you’re eventually able to do this for as long as two minutes. Remember to keep your head relaxed and facing the floor and to focus the tension around your midsection while doing this.

2. BASIC  PLANK  Variation – if you find it too hard to do the above basic  plank  exercise, start with this simple modified version: Instead of lifting yourself up with your forearms and toes, lift yourself using your forearms and knees instead. But as in the original version, remember to keep a straight line from your shoulders down to your feet to make this exercise work.

3. LEG LIFTS – Using the same position, this time slowly lift one leg up about 7-8 inches off the floor, keep it up for two seconds then slowly put it down and do the same with the other leg. Do three sets with about 10 reps per set.

4. ARM LIFTS – Again, from the original basic  plank  exercise position, slowly shift your weight on one arm and carefully lift the other arm, extending it in front of you for 2-3 seconds before slowly going back to the original position. Then repeat the same sequence with the other arm. If you’re feeling really adventurous, try the arm & leg lift.

5. SIDE  PLANK  – Lay down on your side this time, with your elbow resting right beneath your shoulder and your forearm extended in front of you. Slowly and carefully lift your body on your elbow, still remembering to keep your whole body straight. Keep this position for about 10 seconds before slowly lowering yourself back to the floor starting at your hip. Repeat this sequence three times before switching to the other side of your body.

Mind your breathing when doing the above  plank  exercises. They work best with deep diaphragmatic breathing – inhaling deeply through your nose filling your stomach with air and slowly exhaling through your mouth.

These five basic  plank  exercises are a great way to introduce your body to this highly effective yet very simple exercise routine and are the foundation of any personal trainer’s core workout pyramid.

Business Plans – The Main Components That Go Into a Business Plan

“Have Business Plan or Bust”

More than ever, it’s vital to have a plan for your business. And, I’m not speaking about having a marketing strategy just for when starting a new enterprise or making use of it for a business loan. Every business, new and established, must periodically re-evaluate their current plan to see if targets are being met or if they’ve changed and what the brand new strategies are.

Without planning and a strategy, an organization is simply “guessing” and has nothing solid with information on paper regarding the business’ successful attainment of goals.

Do You Know What a Business Plan Really Is and Does?

Many individuals have no idea what a business plan’s purpose actually is. That is the largest reason why people have so much difficulty writing them.

In a nutshell, such plan is about results. Your plan is a direct reflection of your purpose.

The long clarification of what a business plan is: any plan that works for a business to forecast what may be ahead, allocate resources, focus on key issues, and put together solutions to problems as well as opportunities.

Now, a ‘start-up’ plan these additions:

  1. A summary about what the enterprise is and does.
  2. A mission assertion that lets employees, clients, and lenders understand your ethics and goals.
  3. An inventory of keys to success.
  4. A market evaluation to determine who your opponents are as well as public demand for what you are promoting.
  5. A break-even evaluation to seek out out when you might recoup your funding into the business.

A start-up plan for your small business will certainly settle any doubts as to whether or not to pursue beginning a business you take into consideration, but will also serve as your roadmap to take you to the next levels of growth.

Your plan will rely greatly on your specific business. The bottom line is to make your marketing strategy and business plan match your purpose.

Case Studies of Business Plans

With no plan, you don’t know where you’re going and you don’t know methods to get there.

1. Case Study of a Massage Therapy Business: Take the case of a therapeutic massage instructor who had a group of 30 students. Of course, every student’s dream was to graduate and begin their own massage therapy business. But there was a big problem: they graduated and thought they’d simply get clients with business cards and people would flock to them. Only TWO out of the 30 students went on to start out their own businesses. You see, whereas the rest might have mastered therapeutic massage strategies, they weren’t educated in business, let alone create a plan.

Now let’s take a look at how three companies created their plans according to their purposes:

1. Case Research of a Bicycle Frame Manufacturer (manufacturing): A high-end bicycle frame producer that caters to bicycle racers would need to set themselves apart from mountain bike producers and cyclists. As a result of how aggressive racing has become more popular, their plan contains how they may add extra workstations and designer-builders to increase its capability for customized frames. Their plan would additionally go on to explain how they’d use current leased space to make more room for the workstations. Plans are also laid out as to how additional tools for the workstations will likely be obtained.

2. Case Study of a Computer Training Company (service): A certified pc trainer with intensive experience is seeking to increase his enterprise to supply on-web site corporate training and managing coaching and upkeep operations for a large laptop corporation. In an effort to accomplish these objectives, he plans to build on his experience by creating a group of courses designed specifically to help small companies successfully use the preferred business software program packages.

3. Case Study of a Vending Cart Enterprise (retail): A fast-food vending cart enterprise proprietor operates his business on an indoor/outdoor basis. The indoor food cart sales have increased in high-rise business buildings in his downtown area. Consequently, this owner would like to borrow $1 million so as to increase operations by way of the acquisition of extra vending carts. He has an excellent relationship with three banks so, therefore, he simply needs to add a supplement to his current plan because the banks have already got his financial information and know his intended buyer base.

Now that you understand more what a business plan is and does, it’s time to start out….

Writing the Plan for Your Business

So, what are the obligatory elements in a business plan and what order do they go in, right? The how-to’s on that topic are a lot better addressed by an eBook or business plan template where you can ‘fill in the blanks’.

Other locations you possibly can search for steering and run searches for online are (“b”=business):

  1. Sample enterprise plans
  2. B-plan outline
  3. B-plan examples
  4. Free b-plan template
  5. B-plan software programs

You can additionally search for books on Amazon.com and videos on YouTube, as well as web-based plan information, one one of which being, How to Write a Business Plan.

Simply remember: a business plan reflects your purpose and gives you and others a map to follow to get your business to where you want it to go successfully.

Office Handrail Systems

Commercial buildings are designed for public use and this opens many opportunities for the use of these handrail systems. Almost every commercial building likely has bathrooms that are equipped for the handicapped. This application involves the use of handrails for grab bars in the toilet areas.

Handrail systems can be used to limit access to certain areas of the building as well as to border handicapped wheel chair and walking ramps. They are suitable for outside installations and applications as well. They can be painted or left in the standard stainless steel finish.

Office handrail systems can be used to guide traffic flow as well. You will see this application in the maze of handrails located in your local bank lobby. You know the ones I mean…they have the “enter here” sign at one end and the “wait here for next teller” sign at the other end with many turns between. You will see these used in the lobbies of theatres, train stations, bus stations, etc and they are sometimes used in conjunction with turn stiles for entry and traffic control. You might see these indoor handrail in the lobbies of large medical practices for the check in or check out purposes where multiple practitioners are seeing patients. School cafeterias can also incorporate handrail systems into their traffic control program to control the flow of students during the meal times.

Office handrail are designed according to your specifications and are made of heavy gauge stainless steel tubing and brackets with a 32-grit brushed or satin polished finish. The system boasts of a robust plug-together construction that can be combined with wood, glass inlays, stainless steel sheets or stainless steel mesh to create your own do it yourself design. Professional installation is not necessary.

Essentially, indoor handrail are used to provide safe and secure grip in areas of potential hazard. They can be used to guide the flow of people in areas of heavy pedestrian congestion, or to limited access to certain areas of your building, or they can be used to set off a particular focal point in the d├ęcor of your home or office. Do you have a need for an office handrail in your place of business?

Learn Why Glass Balusters Are Popular

Decorative railings can add a lot to a property. This is why many people like glass balusters, since they are both appealing and functional. You should get to know a little about this decorative option before you decide whether to take advantage of the benefits of this product.

Glass balusters are often installed in areas that would benefit from strong railings. For example, you might want to increase the safety of your deck or porch by adding this kind of railing, making it difficult for anyone to fall off the platform. This type of product is surprisingly durable, so you can rely on its strength. Even if you have no platforms that are higher up, you can install this kind of home addition since it can be useful when you need to separate part of your property from another area. Railings of this kind may not be as strong or tall as the typical fence, but they can be just as functional when it comes to gating off your property.

At the same time, glass balusters are transparent, so they do not ruin your view like metal or wood might. When you want to keep views unobstructed, or simply keep the area looking as natural and untouched as possible, clear material is recommended. When you are avoiding putting up a big wooden fence or other product that might ruin your view from your deck or porch, you should consider glass balusters instead to get all the benefits of a regular fence without the drawbacks.

This type of home addition can add some value to your property. It tends to look nice, and it makes it clear you have done some work upgrading your home. This way, when it is time to sell the house, you may get a little more interest in it. Even if you own a business, you may find adding glass balusters to the property can enhance the look, thrilling customers who want to enjoy views from the land without being blocked by a large fence. Plus, this item simply looks elegant to many people, helping your property remain memorable to them.

No matter why you are looking into getting these kinds of railings for your property, you should start looking for a company that sells and installs them. You need a professional for the job if you want the result to look as good as possible. Just look for an experienced installation team, and then sit back and enjoy the outcome.

Different Kinds of Balustrades

Balustrades are commonly used in offices, homes, buildings, porches etc. A Balustrade is basically a railing, which includes an entire row of balustrades. They are widely used for staircases, terraces and porches. They enhance the beauty and outlook of your area.

You can find different kinds of balustrades in the market. There is a huge variety available in different kind of materials that it gets difficult for someone to select the best among the available options. They are also used in apartments having balconies and for external stairs of huge buildings.

The most important thing to keep in mind while selecting a balustrade is the security. You can always select the most beautiful one, but make sure it fulfils all of your needs and provides security for the area that you want to use it for. There are different kinds of balustrades, and they are available in various materials such as steel, wood, glass, stainless steel and wire.

You can also get custom made designs in your favourite material for the balustrades. While selecting a balustrade, you should always keep in mind that it complements the area. Whether you are selecting it for the porch or staircases, it should look good. Following are the most famous and popular kinds of balustrades that are mostly used in homes, offices and other places:

1. Steel Balustrade:

Steel Balustrade is one of the best options when it comes to buying balustrade. It is very reliable and beautiful. You can find them in any shape or design that you want. You can get them custom made according to your own requirements. You can also get steel balustrades in a lot of designs; or you can opt for a plane staircase or terrace railing if you plan to keep things simple.

2. Timber Balustrade:

Timber Balustrade looks extremely beautiful and elegant. It gives the entire room a beautiful look and, at the same time, it is very durable. You can get them in any shape or design- whatever suits your requirements.

3. Glass Balustrade:

Glass Balustrade is something that changes the entire look of your porch, staircase or wherever it is used. It is not very safe but it looks outstanding, regardless of being used indoors or outdoors. It can be used in residential and commercial areas both. It is not very reliable like wooden or steel balustrades; however, you can go for it if you want to give your home a beautiful look.

Getting a balustrade is not a very difficult thing. All you need to do is to decide the budget first and then start looking for it according to your needs. With all the material and variety available in market, you can surely find something that exactly matches your requirements. Do keep in mind that every kind of balustrade has its own advantages and disadvantages, so you have to make sure that you are investing in the right thing.

Moving Up

A common misconception about buying a bigger home is that you should get more land. What is also important is that you can build up as much as you can build wide. Having a second, third or even a fourth storey in you home will increase the size of your home in a very dynamic manner and will give you that much needed space that you have been looking for. This is why you should be buying a bigger home.

When you trade up in Los Angeles, be sure to check the attic. It should be well insulated and ventilated for the varying degrees of heat and cold often felt in the coastal states. Having an attic is more than just having storage space, it is actually one more room you can use in the house. Attics make good recreational or reading rooms thanks to its high elevation from ground level. This keeps the noise level down and gives you that sense of peace and quiet away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.

Elevating also means keeping the house coordinated. You can opt to leave the first floor as a receiving area for guests. This keeps nosey friends and relatives from going upstairs and invading your private space. Just ensure that there is a bathroom they can use in the first floor. This also gives you more security.

Having rooms in the upper floor means that you can get more sunlight and air as it is more likely that the windows of the rooms upstairs are not blocked by trees and shade. This helps save you money on electricity and ventilation.

Of course, having upper floors also means that you will have stairs. Coordinate with your architect carefully if you want to have the stairs adjusted of modified. Having stairs that conform to your climbing posture is very advisable. This helps you from accidentally falling and from straining yourself when you are stepping up or stepping down. If you are living with people with disabilities, particularly those with locomotive problems, then consider adding safety features to the stairs and giving them a room in the first floor. Pets should also be considered when having stairs since they do not use steps the same way humans do. Pets also age and will eventually have trouble climbing so make sure that you have provisions for them as well.

The space that stairs consume should be used carefully, always have adequate headspace for climbing and be sure to have a good support in the landings of stairs. The area below the first staircase is often used for storage so that no space is wasted. Finally, get good   banisters .

 Banisters  give the stairs their aesthetic value and are also your foremost safety feature; the best made  banister  have great designs and good grips. Being able to reach and hold on to your  banister  should be concern when you are moving about in the house. This is because after you get used to being in your house, holding on to your  banister  becomes second nature to you. Now that you have got that down, it is time to remember that buying a bigger home means going up.

Getting Better Grades With Tutoring

There is nothing harder on a parent than to see their child suffer in any way. We all want our children to succeed and achieve their dreams. We don’t want our children to be ridiculed by their peers. If your child is struggling to succeed in school there is a great opportunity for getting better grades with tutoring. Have you considered that the reason your child uses homework excuses is because he/she can’t handle the stress of working on something he doesn’t understand? If your child is not goofing off in school and has a genuine need and agrees, hiring a tutor is one way to help him/her out.

Finding a tutor for your child should be a decision based on what is best for your child, input from you and your child as well as consultation with your child’s teacher to discuss your child’s learning strengths, weaknesses and style. A tutor can not only teach the material, but can also give your child suggested ways to do homework more efficiently, approaches or tricks to test taking, motivation and an assessment of the child’s learning style.

Tutoring Pay Rates

The rates paid to tutors for their services are not regulated, so there is no way to judge what you will have to pay. If the tutor has a high degree of education, they may charge more than a college tutor might charge. Setting yourself a budget and deciding where you can cut corners may be necessary to ensure that you can pay for the tutoring. A professional tutor, because of their experience, will likely be more able to adapt to your child’s learning style/difficulties than a tutor that you hire from a college.

How to Find a Tutor Online

If you search online, you’ll find many sites with a list of tutors in your town or city. These sites will have the tutor’s contact information available for you to use. The site will have somewhat of a biography of the tutor, listing the tutor’s education, grade levels they want to teach, etc.

Another option would be to check your local college or university website to see if they have students available that offer tutoring services. The rates charged by college students may be lower than those charged by professional tutors and there may be an agreement in place between your child’s school and the university or college. Some schools may assist with the payment to the tutor.

There are also companies that specialize in tutoring. They have a big online presence and their sites are full of information on the types of tutoring being offered at their location.

All of the choices above are great to use as a tutor finder and have a lot of information to enable you to make the right decision for you and your child. Imagine your child getting better grades with tutoring because the tutor was able to get through to your child using a different style of teaching. How will that positively impact your child’s and your life?

Flip the Switch: Quit Living in the Dark

Wondering minds want to know:

If God really exists, why would he make it so we would fail? Why would He set us up for the fall? Why would He make it so we cannot come near to Him and make it necessary for a death sacrifice in the first place? If He is truly a “good God,” then why are there consequences of not obeying Him?

People say that it’s not fair for God to send people to hell. The fact is that hell exists because God exists. He doesn’t want us to go to hell (life without his presence), but if we refuse to live in his presence, then that is where we go. It’s like saying the light has a thing against people so they stay in the dark, yet we neglect to flip the switch on so the light can shine in our lives. First, it is necessary that we get an understanding of what “hell” really is. The bible’s various references to hell or Sheol is likened to a lake of fire (later referenced in Revelation as the final destination of Satan), but doesn’t say it is actually a fire. Hell, in essence, is what we define as the lack of the presence of God. We could be living in hell right now, but we still have access to God’s presence. We still have access to God’s favor, but one day we will be stuck where we are.

God is the Light of the World. God is all that is good and loving and just. I’m not talking about the cuddly teddy bear God that some proclaim Him to be. Just look at what happens to those who oppose Him and His People, claiming that their light shines brighter than His, throughout the Old Testament. Maybe we might ask, “what changed between the Old and New Testaments about God?” Nothing changed about Him, but everything changed about us. Jesus’ payment for our sinfulness not only cleansed us so we could survive and live in His presence, but it also gave us dominion over our own bodies and choices. In other words, He gave us the power to flip the switch and keep it on. Now, how does that relate to the light and darkness? Let’s ask ourselves a question: How do we know the darkness is the darkness? By the presence of light. In fact, scientists say that darkness isn’t the presence of darkness, but the absence of light. So then, the darkness exists because the light exists. Without the light, however, we would continually live in the dark. The bible tells us that the darkness is recognized as dark by the revelation of the light. We wouldn’t know darkness was darkness without being exposed to the light.

We blame God for this struggle between light and dark but neglect to recognize our own responsibility in the process. We ask, “how can a good god be so cruel?” when we should ask, “god is so good, so why do we keep living in evil?” One of our problems as selfish humans is that we are more prone to cast the blame upon others before asking ourselves what part we are of the problem. God tells us many times what we must do in order to enter into a relationship with Him: humble ourselves and recognize that we are the problem and subsequently that He has created a way out for us. We blame God for being so good and recognize the existence of the darkness and subsequently cast blame on Him for the darkness. This helps us ignore our role in our relationship with Him and thus ignore the blame that rests upon us. When have we ever cursed a light bulb for the darkness? How many times have we gotten angry at a candle for piercing the darkness? What craziness do we live then to be angry at God for using the Light to reveal the darkness in our lives and how foolish are we to refuse to step into the Light?

Meanwhile, God tells us that once we recognize that we are in the dark and admit it, we are then empowered to flip the switch, turn on the light, and live in His presence. We question God’s goodness because of the existence of hell but never question our own ignorance for not entering into heaven when it is freely available to us.

Planes of Motion – How to Balance a Training Routine

As a personal trainer and muscle activation technique specialist, my job is to keep my clients loose and flexible. Mobility and flexibility are integral part of any personal training program.

In order to achieve this, a good personal trainer would ensure that the training routine he/she designs is well balanced. When a training routine is well-balanced, muscle groups and movement chains are equally stressed. On the other hand, if one particular movement chain or muscle group gets overstressed, the nervous system will make an attempt to protect it by tightening the opposing muscle group. A good example of such phenomena is a guy at the gym that bench press 3-4 times a week, often to muscle failure. The body quickly learns that priority must be placed on the ability to press allot of weight at all cost. As a result, his posture will alter in response to the stress by shifting the shoulders forward. This shit can help him gain strength but this is often at an expense of stiff neck, poor shoulder mechanics and even pain at the lower back. Continual stress in such posture can yield more serious injuries, like a rotator cuff tear.

In the following article I will explain one the most important principles of a well-balanced personal training routine- planes of motion. I will also explain how planes are often be used by a personal trainer as a variable in an exercise routine.

Planes of Motion

Plane of motion refer to the direction your body, or limbs, are moving in. The three planes our body can move in are; segital, frontal, and transverse.

Segital plane. Segital plane refers to a front to back movement. An example of segital plane exercise would be a squat (fig 1). If you look at the squat all joints move either forward or backward.

Frontal plane. Frontal plane refers to a side-to-side movement. A good example of frontal would be standing hip abduction exercise (fig 2). One leg is moving to the side and the other leg is stabilizing in the same plane (interestingly, most personal training clients feel the burn on the standing leg more than the moving one).

Transverse plane. Transverse plane refers to rotational movements. A quadruped trunk rotation is a good example of rotational movement (fig 3). The axis of movement goes through the spine as illustrated. The axis represent a pivot around which the torso rotates about.

Planes of Motions as an Exercise Variable

These planes provide as an excellent exercise variable and are commonly used by a personal trainer. For example, if a personal trainer wants to train the mid section he/she could chose three exercises each EMPHASIZING three separate planes. The personal trainer can chose abdominal crunches as a segital plane exercise, side to side bending with a weighted bar as a frontal plane exercise, and standing cable rotations as a transverse exercise (fig 4). These three exercises can be run one after another in a circuit format and by varying the planes a personal trainer is likely to avoid over-stressing any one movement system with their client.

Notice that I have chosen the word “emphasize”. The truth is that most exercises will place force on more than one plane. The more complex the exercise, the more planes it is likely to affect. For example, the standing cable rotations (fig 4) exert force on the trunk in rotational plane. However, the hips are working in a segital plane. As the torso rotates, one hip moves forward and the other backward, further generating torque need to perform the exercise. So complexity of planes involved in an exercise can be used as another exercise variable. For example a personal trainer can choose to assign his/her client with one plane motion exercise like a segital dumbbell shoulder flexion followed by a standing dumbbell shoulder press with trunk rotation. Single plane exercises will usually isolate muscles and therefore they are more effective at building mass muscles. On the other hand, multi-plane exercises will integrate several muscles groups together so they are more effective at strengthening complex movements. Consequently, pairing the two allows a personal trainer to train the shoulders without over stressing them.

It is also important to notice that when you change planes you do not work different muscles but rather different sequence of muscles. For example, the psoas muscle is involved in all three trunk exercise I previously described. Psoas is a jack of all trades muscle, as it assists in side bending, rotation and forward movement of the torso.

Training Utility of Planes of Motion

So let’s think how we can us this concept to better train abs. I have often talked with people who would want to strengthen their abs because their lower back was in pain. So, they have chosen to do about 100 sit ups every day. There is a good chance that the body is tightening the lower back muscles, thus causing pain, to protect the body from going into that crunch position over and over again. In other words, the body has been overstressed in segital plane. I am not saying that abdominal crunch is a bad exercise. Abdominal crunch is a great exercise. What I am trying to say is that abdominal muscles do more than crunch and to effectively train them a personal trainer should choose exercises that work all movements these muscles are involved in. Here is a list of just a few common exercises in which the abdominal muscles are crucial in:

Squat (with bar) – assisting in maintaining neutral spine position

Side to side lunges – assisting in keeping the torso upright

Standing cable chest fly-the cable is pulling your torso back, abs cat to prevent this

Standing triceps extension (especially when leaning forward-cable is pulling body up abs are pulling the torso down)

Torso cable rotations -assist, along with back extensors, at keeping the torso upright.

All of these exercises will work the abs. HOWEVER the nature of the work the abs are doing will be different in each exercise. In some exercises the abs work as primary movers. In other exercises the abs are assisting at keeping stability, especially when a plane of motion is stressed in which the abs are not moving in (i.e. side to side lunge). Once again, the difference in how abs work in each exercise can be used as a variable that can be utilized as a variation to a training routine.

Conclusion

Why is this information important? Muscle stiffness, and eventually injury, is often caused by continual stress in a specific position or sequence of movement. For example, most people get stiffness in their neck and shoulders by sitting in front of computer for 40 hours a week. Another example is a runner who performs same movement, thousands times a week, exposing his/her body to the same profile of force (segital force loading). So, in order to avoid injuries, and order to keep your body well balanced and stiffness free- learn how to vary planes when working out.

An Amazing Journey – Leaving Fears Behind

Get Ready, Get Set, GO!

I am so amazingly blessed. I’ve been taking long walks the last few weeks in the beautiful Colorado Rockies. I want to drop a few pounds and firm up the ole thighs, but most importantly I’ve been spending quiet time with the Universe. Yes, I’m one of those folks who love to spend quiet time in the morning reconnecting to my Spirit. I want to clearly hear what I’m supposed to do and where I’m supposed to be and know if I’m on the right path. I have to do that in quietness.

Today, I was lead to take a different path. It was almost as if something or someone was urging me to get dressed hurriedly and to get going straight away. I jumped in my Jeep Grand Cherokee and headed west on I-70 toward the Canyon. Glenwood Canyon, in the mountains of Colorado, is one of the most breathtaking, spectacular places I’ve ever visited. It has always intrigued me.

I soon became frustrated. I couldn’t find the frontage road that was going to take me to the trail I believed I needed to walk. I made a quick call. “I can’t find the road,” I said annoyed. As my loving friend very patiently gave me directions, I whipped my vehicle around and headed toward my destination.

Minutes later I was standing right in the middle of some of the greatest art ever created. As I stood looking up, to my left and to my right were rugged cliffs with the rolling Colorado River twisting and turning below running between their divide. The train tracks, leaving their imprint upon the north canyon wall, were empty and silent; the bike and pedestrian path was deserted. All was silent except for my deep breathing and my heart beat.

At first, my heart was pounding. It was early in the morning and I was in the middle of nowhere. What if I see a bear, mountain lion or coyote? And then I thought worse. What if I see a human? There’s a tunnel up ahead. Is it dark? How long is it? What if there’s an animal in there? There’s no way out. Will it be more afraid of me than I am of it? This was some of my donkey-talk and mind chatter that morning. But, I convinced myself I couldn’t turn back. I couldn’t give into my fears and head back to my car and its perceived safety. I had to reach my destination-the next rest station only a few miles away.

In spite of my reasoning, I began to panic when suddenly I remembered these words and spoke them aloud, “I have not been given a persona of fear, I am powerful, filled with love and my mind is sound and clear.” I found my peace. My heart rhythm slowed and quieted. I stretched readying myself for the journey. Checking my water pack and re-tying my laces. I was set. I glanced up around me. I was ready to go-ready for an amazing journey.

As I walked between the majestic red, green and charcoal colored cliffs, I saw what appeared to be sentries standing guard watching over me. I was beginning to feel safe. Peace that passes all natural understanding began to flood into my heart and my mind. I picked up my pace. Though I had never taken this path before, I knew it was the one for me in the moment. There were incredible moments of clarity and spiritual presence along the amazing journey, but there were still sheer moments of high anxiety especially when approaching a blind curve. I knew, however, I was right where I was supposed to be and nothing, absolutely nothing, could harm me. A song came to mind. I began to sing. Before I knew it, I was coming into my destiny, Bair Ranch rest station.

Fatigued but vibrant, I found a bench and rested. I began to relate my morning walk to my daily walk in life. I clearly realized it was the unknown path that had totally freaked me out. It was the thought of the unfamiliar that was causing me to fear. What if I venture out in my new business and no one likes what I offer? How much money is it going to take? How long will it take before anyone knows who or where I am? What if my plan goes awry? Oh goodness, am I going to have to walk the unknown path alone? How long is it? Will it be dark?

I stood walking down to the river’s edge. With fluidity, crispness and clearness it babbled against the rocks it rushed pass. It seemed to say, “You’re not alone, you’ll be just fine. Enjoy the ride.” For a moment, I lost myself in the reflection seemingly riding the white rapids in a yellow raft resembling a life-preserver. I gazed up taking in my marvelous surroundings, once again. I felt free. I was exhilarated. At that moment, I realized an amazing shift had occurred. All the frightful, intimidating thoughts had been quieted. Right then I knew the reason I had been driven to walk the three miles in spite of my apprehension.

I took a deep breath, stretched once again readying myself for the journey home, now the familiar. Setting the pace I was off and going once again. There would be no trepidation on the road back. I smiled. I knew God was with me right in the midst of it all; right in the middle of my crazy journey that morning and always.