Exercise: The key to wellness and healthy living
sIt is a well known fact that physical activity and/or exercise have many benefits. Some of the benefits of exercising regularly include helping with weight control, prevention of health conditions/diseases, improved mood, boosting energy levels, and promoting better sleep. Exercise is also a key component in the prevention of numerous injuries. Certain exercises have been shown to reduce and prevent many sports, work related, or repetitive strain injuries. As well, full recovery from an injury is unlikely to occur without some component of restorative exercise. Finally, exercise has also been found to be effective in older populations for preventing falls as well as maintaining mobility and independence.
Work place injuries are a common occurrence and for the most part, are preventable. For example, if someone works at a computer, or their job involves regular lifting, a few simple stretches and strengthening exercises can go a long way to prevent stress and strain on the body. A physiotherapist can recommend an exercise program to minimize the development of bad posture or poor work techniques.
While recovering from an injury, doing specific exercises during the correct phase of healing can decrease recovery time and allow for proper healing. Exercises are not meant to be painful, rather they should be quite comfortable and easy to do. Many exercises help to decrease pain, increase movement and strength, and improve balance. Activity is then geared to the return to functional activity, whether it be a sport, regular work duties, or just to live life without pain or restriction. Physiotherapists are skilled in developing exercise programs based on your injury or pain and your phase of healing.
Exercise programs focused on seniors are on the rise, since staying active can prevent the onset of many age related health concerns. In addition, exercise has been shown to increase bone density thus decreasing a senior’s risk for fractures. Another key area of focus with seniors is fall prevention, where the importance of maintaining flexibility, increasing balance and strength has been shown to be effective. Many retirement homes and community centres are now offering falls prevention classes.
Whether you are looking at preventing injuries or recovering from one, exercise should be an important component to consider. With the help of a health care professional, an exercise plan can be developed based on your current needs. Setting long term goals and working towards them is a great way to start exercising, and making exercise fun and simple is a great way to ensure compliance.
Do you have any exercise goals or injuries you want to prevent, based on your occupation?