In today’s modern society we do not participate in enough physical activity. So here are our top 5 tips on ways you can increase your physical activity every day!
1. Take The Stairs Not The Lift
It might sound obvious, but think of the extra amount of exercise you could get if you always took the stairs instead of the escalator or lift! Climbing stairs is a great form of cardiovascular exercise and increases the heart rate quickly. It will also help to strengthen muscles such as calves, hamstrings and glutes.
2. Use Walking As A Form Of Transport
When making a short trip that may only take two minutes in the car, why not make it a 10 minute walk? Not only does it increase your daily exercise but it is good for the environment and saves you money on petrol!
3. Social Exercise With Friends and Family
Most of the time when we catch up with friends or family we do something that involves sitting still and eating or drinking, such as going out for dinner, having a beer tramadol 50 mg online with a mate or going to the movies. Well why not try and incorporate exercise into your next catch up with a friend? Try activities such as going for a walk at a nice park, playing a game of tennis or golf or even try something new together like rock climbing!
4. Reduce The Amount Of Time Sitting At Your Desk
When sitting at your work desk, try setting yourself a reminder on your computer or your phone that will tell you to get up every hour to go for a quick walk around the office and do a couple of quick stretches. Studies have shown that breaking up the amount of time you sit has positive effects on your health as well as productivity. Also, why not use your lunch break to go for a walk rather than sitting in the tea room?
5. Clean The House!
Household tasks such as vacuuming, cleaning the bathroom and washing the dishes all require movement such as walking, stretching and lifting. This is great for your body and will help you to burn extra calories!
The benefits of stretching to increase flexibility are well known, but there are a lot of questions when it comes to the ideal way to stretch. This article attempts to address some of these questions to optimise your stretching program.
How Long Should I Hold a Stretch For?
A stretch should be held for anywhere between 15 and 30 seconds. Studies have shown that any less than this has little effect on improving flexibility and holding a stretch any longer than 30 seconds has no further increase in flexibility.
When Is The Best Time To Stretch?
The best time to stretch is when the muscles and body is warm, such as after exercise or following a general warm-up prior to exercise so there is adequate blood blow around the body.
Does Stretching Reduce My Strength?
Stretching has been shown to decrease strength acutely for up to an hour following stretching. However this is more the case when a stretch is held for longer than 60 seconds. Therefore it is recommended that if stretching is required prior to exercise it should be held for 15 – 30 seconds as this is beneficial at increasing flexibility and won’t compromise performance through loss of strength.
Will Stretching Prevent Muscle Soreness?
Stretching after a workout will not prevent muscle soreness the next day as some people believe. Soreness following intense exercise is actually the result of micro tears in the muscle fibres which are then repaired during recovery, which is how muscle mass and strength is increased.
For more on the benefits of stretching and flexibility please refer to our previous blog post on this topic:
You must ensure that you have done the adequate training to get yourself to an appropriate level of health and fitness to participate in any sport. Appropriate warm up prior to competition is also highly recommended for adequate blood flow to working muscles and to prepare the body for the sports specific movements it is about to perform.
In sports such as Australian Rules football or basketball, which may involve contact, protective equipment such as mouth guards are highly recommended to reduce the risk of broken or missing teeth. Correct use of equipment such as helmets and other types of padding should always be used in sports which require it such as cricket and hockey.
Look After Yourself
It’s easy to try and be a hero and continue playing sport when you are injured. However making the difficult decision to put your hand up and tell your coach you are injured will not only reduce your risk of further injury but it may improve your team’s chances of winning as a fit player can replace you.
Making sure your sporting club or team has someone qualified in first aid, CPR and a qualified sports trainer, this is vital to ensure the health and safety of participants when things do go wrong. Also having financial cover such as insurance and ambulance cover will not only reduce hefty medical bills but make sure you have excellent first point of care when injured.
Written by Jack Hickey Exercise Physiologist at MD Health
High blood pressure is a condition suffered by many people and often treated with medication and dietary interventions. Exercise is also highly beneficial in not only the treatment but prevention of high blood pressure.
How Does Exercise Help My Blood Pressure?
While exercising, our blood pressure increases from resting levels to meet the body’s demands for supplying oxygen rich blood around the body. However, once exercise is ceased our blood pressure actually reduces to below resting levels, an effect which can last up to 24 hours. Therefore, by exercising everyday, this acute effect exercise has on reducing blood pressure post exercise can become a chronic long term effect.
What Type Of Exercise Is Best To Reduce Blood Pressure?
Moderate intensity aerobic exercise such as walking, jogging, cycling or swimming for 30 minutes five times per week, has been shown to have a positive effect on reducing blood pressure. Additional health benefits can be gained by performing this type of exercise at more vigorous intensities for 20 minutes two to three days per week. Resistance training two to three times per week on non-consecutive days has also been shown to have some impact on reducing blood pressure when performed in conjunction with regular aerobic exercise.
What Precautions Should I Take When Exercising If I Have High Blood Pressure?
When performing more vigorous forms of exercise, individuals with high blood pressure should consult an Exercise Physiologist to monitor their blood pressure response prior to, during and after exercise to ensure the safety of their exercise program. If you have high blood pressure you should not exercise if your resting blood pressure is above 180/110 mmHg and if you are medicated for your blood pressure you should consult your doctor before commencing an exercise program as this may effect the type or dosage of medication you are on.
Finally, when performing resistance training it is important that individuals with high blood pressure place a focus on slow and controlled movements, maintaining normal breathing and avoid breath holding when performing lifting exercises as this can significantly increase blood pressure.
Written by Jack Hickey Exercise Physiologist at MD Health