Wellness

Exercise and Bone Health


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Osteoporosis is Latin for “porous bone”.  It is a condition with no outward symptoms, that causes the bones to become weak and fragile.   Bone is a living growing tissue.  When we are young we gain more bone than we lose until the maximum density at about age 30 is reached.  After about age 35 a loss begins, Prevention and treatment can involve weight bearing exercises.  Risk factors include being female, being older, family history, low body weight, alcohol intake and smoking.  Certain race/ethnicities are generally believed to be at a higher risk.  Other risk factors are hormonal stage of life, poor diet such as low calcium and vitamin D levels, and infrequent weight bearing activities.  Recent research suggests that eating foods rich in calcium is a better method for increasing your intake that only supplements. Different calcium supplements are different forms, and some are best taken in conjunction with other vitamins and minerals.  The majority of the population does not get the recommended amount of calcium.  When this happens than your body will use the supply from your bones to support the other functions that it is needed for.   Overall digestive health is important to the absorption of the mineral as well.  Certain medications can be contributors to bone loss, certain illnesses that can impact digestion and absorption can contribute as well.  For more information on risk factors and bone mineral density testing visit Osteoporosis Canada.  On of the  fracture prediction tools available that have been tested in the Canadian population :WHO Fracture Risk Calculation Tool (FRAX®) for Canada

It is possible to reduce your risk of developing osteoporosis through a healthy lifestyle. Exercises that focus on balance training are beneficial to reduce the risk of injury.  If you have osteoporosis there are there are movements and exercises you should be aware of to minimize injury.  Basic bone health for all individuals includes regular weight bearing and resistance type exercise as well as adequate vitamin and mineral intake.

https://osteoporosis.ca/https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/chronic-diseases/osteoporosis.html

Fitness, Wellness

Why Water Fitness?


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Water exercise is a great way to stay active, regardless of your current activity level, age and body shape.  It is low impact and thus easy on the joints, supportive of being in an upright position, and decreases the concerns of overheating.  Moving in the water could be for the purpose of increasing resistance and can be made to be challenging for more advanced exercisers.  Movement in the water can make use of buoyancy, hydrostatic pressure, viscosity and cooling properties and can be used to help a body be less weight bearing and is useful for those seeking rehabilitation from surgery or injury.  It is also an option for special populations such as pregnant women, those who are very overweight, have movement restrictions or disorders, or have been sedentary.  The amount of benefit provided by buoyancy for exercise depends on the depth of the water.   In the situation of recovery this could mean changing where you are positioned in the water during the healing process.  Hydrostatic pressure – the pressure exerted by fluid to an object can provide benefits for persons with swelling due to injury, edema from pregnancy, or cardiac concerns.  Any edema or swelling of a joint is decreased as the pressure forces fluid inside the body to increase movement.    The viscosity of the water molecules provide resistance in every direction.  Your body must exert muscular force much greater to push through the water than through the air.   There are other different variables to consider as well, for those who have certain movement disorders, it is recommended to exercise in warmer water.    If you have never tried water exercise before, consider the benefits of improved cardiac health, improved body composition, reduced stress through exercise, (and also if you are concerned about an injury, joint problems, loss of balance, etc.)  improved musculoskeletal fitness.  As with any fitness plan talk to your healthcare provider before getting started.  I can offer guidelines, resources, and recommended programs.

Wellness

3 Cheap Ways to Workout


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Walking Workouts

walking_fitness

We all generally walk during our day and increasing the number of steps you take per day and the efficiency of your walk may be more simple than you realize. Walking is one of the best exercises on the planet as it costs nothing and is readily available to most people. Simply walking for just 10-15 minutes increases cardiovascular function, aids muscle strength in the hips, legs and core and may help to reduce stress. Simply add in a few walking lunges or a short jog every 10 steps.

Body resistance training

Body resistance exercises require no equipment whatsoever and can be just as challenging as hitting the gym. Working out at home has never been easier. Perform floor exercises such as push-ups, bridge exercises and leg lifts to strengthen and tone your tummy, thighs, glutes and core. Standing routines to exercise your heart and lungs with a home-based cardiovascular workout and overhead activities such as shoulder presses and arm raises, to strengthen and tone the upper arms, back and shoulders.

Skipping

Skipping is an extremely popular exercise among athletes and trainers. In fact, it may well be one of the most efficient and convenient exercises for fat burning. Studies show that skipping for 30 minutes can burn over 300 calories, compared to cycling and swimming which came in under 150 calories. The best part is, even if you don’t have a rope, moving your arms in a skipping fashion can still be effective. If you are just starting out with skipping, begin at a level that you are comfortable with and slowly increase your time and endurance over time.

 

Wellness

Arthritis & Exercise


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A common barrier to exercise and fitness is having an ailment such as arthritis.  Arthritis is one of the most common causes of physical disability among Canadians. The term arthritis refers to more than 100 different diseases that affect areas in or around the joints.  Although the risk for arthritis increases with age, people of all ages can be affected.   It can mean slight levels of discomfort to severe pain with or without movement and can limit movements and thus activity.   When one limits their amount of activity is can also mean that they are limiting components of fitness.  They can have difficulty in range of motion, and flexibility, have a harder time being able to complete aerobic activity, and have increased difficulty with balance.  This means that aside from the joint pain, it can also impact the persons overall health.

Arthritis-related pain and disability affect many aspects of life including daily activities, leisure, work, sleep quality and thus energy and stress level, finances and social activities.  Thus physical disuse can have a dramatic effect on strength, cardiovascular function, mobility and physical as well as mental health.

Too little exercise can cause muscle weakness, pain and stiffness.  With physician recommendation, most people will be advised to undertake some additional form of physical activity.  Properly designed exercise as well as a healthy weight is an integral part of the management strategy for arthritis.  Program goals in general for arthritis are to: restore or maintain the joint range of motion, relieve stiffness, restore or maintain muscle strength, interrupt the chronic pain cycle, improve or maintain cardiorespiratory endurance and to maximize pulmonary function, improve posture and body awareness, promote relaxation and enhance quality of life.

https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/chronic-diseases/arthritis/arthritis-facts-myths.html

Exercise and Arthritis Course- DSW Fitness, HK