A new report from the Chief Medical Officers in the UK has just been published, on the amount and type of physical activity people should be doing to improve their health.
Make a start TODAY. It’s never too late.
Physical activity will help you by:
Benefitting your health
Improving your sleep
Maintaining a healthy weight
Improving your quality of life
Some is good, more is better.
Physical activity can help reduce the risk of type II diabetes, cardiovascular disease, falls, depression, joint and back pain and a number of cancers, including colon and breast cancer. So, why wouldn’t you choose to be more active?!
The new guidelines have 4 very simple & easy to follow principles:
Be active; either 150 minutes of moderate intensity or 75 minutes of vigorous intensity a week
Minimise sedentary time (in other words, don’t sit around so much!)
Build strength on at least 2 days a week. This doesn’t have to be power lifting at a gym, daily activities that make demands on you like carrying heavy shopping bags counts too!
As you get older,, include activities to help improve your balance 2 days a week.
Every minute counts.
How can we help you with meeting these guidelines?
At the core of what we do, we help you recover quickly from any pain or injury that might otherwise stop you from being so active. This is so important, the impact that having an injury can have on your physical activity levels over time can be really underestimated.
We also offer a huge range of activities that help you be active!
As you get older, the risk of falling and fall-related injuries, such as fractures, increases. Falls are a common and serious health issue faced by older people in England. The impact of falling can be huge. Falls can cause distress, pain, injury, hospital stays, loss of confidence, isolation and loss of independence.
Around 24% of men and 30% of women aged 50 years old and over report having fallen in the previous 2 years, with 7% of men and 11% of women aged 50 years and over reporting having had a fall that required medical attention. In 2017/18 there were 220,160 falls-related emergency hospital admissions among patients aged 65 and older.
One of the most effects ways of preventing falls and fractures is regular strength and balance exercises.
The World Health Organisation notes that physical activity is the key element to support healthy ageing. Physical activity and exercise is an essential requirement for maintaining mobility and independent living during later life.
Muscle mass (the physical size of your muscle) reduces by 0.5% to 1% per year after 50 years of age and 2% to 4% after 75 years of age.
Loss of physical strength can be 2- to 5-times faster due to muscle quality.
Bone density (the amount of minerals in your bones which relates to their strength) decreases by around 0.5% per year from age 40.
Following menopause, women lose 2% to 3% bone density per year.
Older adults can experience problems with balance due to decline in the nervous system and changes in nerves throughout the body.
Guidelines recommend that older adults should undertake activities aimed at improving muscle strength and balance on at least 2 (preferably non-consecutive) days a week.
New guidance has just been published by Public Health England, which aims to improve the quality of strength and balance exercise programmes for people in the community.
The guidelines state that effective muscle strengthening and balance improvement programmes aimed at preventing falls should consist of a programme of one-to-one or group balance and task training exercises, plus resistance exercises delivered by an appropriately qualified instructor.
The timing of this new guidance is perfect, given that we are just expanding our exercise classes for older people, Positive Steps.
These classes in Chandlers Ford incorporate balance and strength exercises in a supportive, friendly and caring environment, with the added bonus of being social and fun! (The laughter duding the classes can often be heard through the clinic!).
Falls are not an inevitable part of ageing. Older people can take positive steps to prevent them
The 8th – 16th June 2019 sees in Bike Week, which aims to inspire more people to take to 2 wheels.
Cycling is a wonderful way to exercise, whatever your level or age. It’s great for cardiovascular fitness, muscle strength, flexibility and has a host of health benefits.
It’s a safe form of exercise and is often a great way to start fit if you need to maintain your fitness with a lower impact activity. It’s also a fab way to incorporate exercise into a mode of travel!
However, like many forms of exercise, cycling can become a source of injuries. Cycling injuries tend to fall into 2 camps, either a traumatic injury or an overuse injury.
These are caused by some sort of trauma. This is normally a fall or collision and can be very minor to severe. Traumatic injuries are often accidents that can’t be avoided, but you can take precautions. These include:
Wearing appropriate protective clothing such as a helmet
Being up to date with bike maintenance to make sure you bike is in top working order
Knowing and reading the weather conditions and environment to make sure they fit with your plans
Understanding your personal limitations and being realistic with your ability. Many accidents occur when people are pushing themselves unrealistically.
Common traumatic cycling injuries include:
Fractures – often the clavicle (collar bone) or scaphoid (wrist) as you put your arm out to protect you as you fall.
Bruising – to the muscle and/or bone. This is as a result of falling directly onto the area, often a prominent bony area such as the outside of the hip.
As the name implies, are caused when a part of the body is being ‘overused’ and can’t cope with the physical demands being placed upon it. Cycling is a very repetitive activity, an average cyclist might perform well over 5,000 revolutions an hour. The human body has a threshold of what it will tolerate and sometimes it just can’t cope with prolonged repetitive demands being placed on it. This is when an overuse injury rears it’s head.
The problem with overuse injuries is that they often start gradually as a tiny niggle that you ignore. Before you know it that niggle is a regular occurrence but you think it will just go away just as it appeared. Then it eventually becomes really annoying and can actually becomes so severe it stops you doing the things you love and that may have caused it in the first place, which is even more of a pain!
You can take steps to avoid or minimise the impact of cycling overuse injuries. These include:
Make sure your bike is set up correctly. This is crucial given the repetitive nature of cycling. Very small adjustments such as saddle and handlebar height can make a huge difference.
Increase your cycling gradually. Whether its speed, distance or hills – don’t do too much all at once. You need to give your body time to adapt and adjust to the demands being placed upon it.
Listen to your body. If you feel a little niggle, hold back a bit until it eases off to give your body chance to recover.
Seek advice at the right time. If a niggle is becoming more than that, it’s better to come and see us sooner rather than later. Overuse injuries that are ignored can often become long term problems and then they’re much harder to resolve and take longer to recover.
Common cycling overuse injuries include:
Back pain – which is often related to your posture on the bike and easily resolved by changing your bike set up.
Neck pain – again, this is often posture related and being more aware of your posture and position on the bike can be really helpful.
Knee pain – including tendonopathies, patellofemoral pain (front of knee) or ITB problems (side of knee).
Foot or ankle problems – such as achilles tendonopathy or forefoot pain from the pressure of peddling.
As Physio’s we’re highly skilled at identifying and resolving all the injury issues that may arise from cycling. Many of our team are keen cyclists themselves, so can truly identify with what you’re experiencing. If you are suffering with an injury as a result of cycling, give us a call to see how we can help you and get you back on your bike! #BikeWeekUK
May is National Walking Month. A month to promote and celebrate the joys, benefits and health effects of walking! Who’d have ever thought we needed to raise awareness of such a simple activity?! Yet, with our increasingly sedentary lifestyles and the impact of this on our nation’s health, the simple task of walking needs some extra support!
So, what’s the big deal with walking?
Not only is walking as a mode of transport great for our environment, walking is a great way to improve or maintain your overall health. Just 20-30 minutes walking a day can improve your cardiovascular fitness, strengthen bones, reduce excess body fat, and boost muscle power and endurance. It can also reduce your risk of developing conditions such as heart disease, type 2 diabetes, osteoporosis and some cancers. Unlike some other forms of exercise, walking is free and doesn’t require any special equipment or training.
Did you know, physical activity does not have to be vigorous or done for long periods in order to improve your health. A 2007 study of inactive women found that even a low level of exercise – around 75 minutes per week – improved fitness levels significantly, when compared to a non-exercising group.
What are the health benefits of walking?
Walking is a weight bearing exercise, as you are carrying your own body weight when you walk. There are lot’s of health benefits associated with walking more. Some of the benefits of walking include:
increased cardiovascular and pulmonary (heart and lung) fitness
reduced risk of heart disease and other cardiovascular diseases
helps manage and improve conditions such as high blood pressure, diabetes and high cholesterol
helps with joint and muscular pain or stiffness and long standing conditions such as osteoarthritis or osteoporosis
stronger bones and improved balance
increased muscle strength and endurance
reduced body fat
improved psychological and mental health
How much walking?
As a recommended guideline, to get the health benefits, you should try to walk for at least 20 – 30 minutes as briskly as you can on most days of the week. ‘Brisk’ means that you can still talk but not sing, and you may be puffing slightly.
The 30 minutes doesn’t have to be done all at one time, it can be broken up into smaller chunks, like 3 x 10 minute walks if this fits better with your lifestyle or you can’t manage 30 minutes in 1 go.
Building walking into your daily life is the most effective way to maintain activity levels. Take a look at the ‘Try 20’ Challenge below. There’s lot’s of ways and simple ideas for you to get 20 minutes of walking into your day.
Make walking part of your daily life
If you can build waling into your daily life, you are more likely to maintain it longer term. Some suggestions to build walking into your daily routine include:
Take the stairs instead of the lift (for at least part of the way).
Get off public transport one stop earlier and walk to work or home.
Walk (don’t drive) to the local shops.
Walk the dog (or your neighbour’s dog or look at sites like ‘Borrow My Doggy‘). Getting a dog can be a great way of encouraging you to exercise regularly if you can take on the commitment.
Meet friends for a social walk instead of going for a coffee.
Make walking part of your routine, maybe the same time every day scheduled into your diary.
Progress and challenge yourself
Over time, our bodies will tend to get used to physical activity. So if you’re starting to walk more and more, try to increase the intensity of your walking as your fitness levels improve. You can increase the intensity of your walks by:
walking up hills
walking with hand weights
increasing your walking speed gradually by including some quick walking
increasing the distance you walk quickly before returning to a moderate walking pace
walking for longer
Keep it interesting!
Like anything, if you enjoy doing it, you’ll be more likely to stick to it and make it part of your life. The same applies to walking. There are lot’s of ideas to keep your daily walk more interesting:
Pick different routes so you don’t get tired of seeing the same sights, explore places you’ve never ventured to before in your local area.
Find one or more friends or family members to walk with, walk instead of (or at least on the way to or before!) having a coffee.
Walk at different times of the day. Fresh morning walks will be a very different experience to a dusk walk.
Drive to different places to walk, park the car and enjoy the views and scenery while you walk.
Explore what’s going on around you, notice the sky, the people, the sounds. Be mindful.
Think about local walking groups that might offer additional support. Here’s some ideas.
When we created our new clinic space in 2016, we were very clear that we wanted to create a specific space for rehabilitation, supervised exercise and strength & conditioning training. All the evidence and latest research into the best outcomes with training and recovery points towards strength training being the gold standard for outcomes and long term physical durability.
So, when you visit us at goPhysio. You’ll find this dedicated space, aptly named THE STRONG ROOM!
Why The Strong Room?
As many local residents may recall, 11 Bournemouth Road, Chandlers Ford, was once a National Westminster Bank. What does every bank need? A vaulted safe room, of course, AKA a strong room. When we purchased the property, the original strong room was still in situ.
The heavily re-enforced walls and roof no longer served their purpose and to fit in with our grand plans, this area of the building was demolished. (Not an easy task I can add!). If you’re interested you can see the demolition and building works here or you may have seen our photo journal if you’ve been to the clinic!
In it’s place, a new space was created, to house our rehabilitation service. As an adage to what once stood there, we decided to name this space The Strong Room. Why? Because this space focuses on improving strength (amongst other things!).
What is rehabilitation?
Physiotherapy and sports therapy for people with aches, pains, musculoskeletal and sports injuries, unless you were a high level athlete with access to such facilities, traditionally consisted of treatment based around a treatment couch. Such treatments were often pretty passive, and accompanied by a programme of exercises for the injured person to complete in their own time at home. These exercises are generally progressed at the next physiotherapy session until the patient felt ‘better’ and able to resume normal activities.
However, the outcome and success of treatment often falls on adherence to exercise, the correct exercise technique and the type, timing and progression of the exercises linked to tissue healing and functional goals.
With instant access to both the facilities that offer a huge range of exercise programmes and onsite support of our specialist Graduate Sports & Rehabilitation Therapy team to augment our Physiotherapy team, this space is a great asset to what we can offer you at goPhysio.
The space is used for both 1-2-1 rehabilitation during physio or sports therapy sessions and also regular small group rehab and specialist young rehab for under 16’s. What’s great about it is that it isn’t an intimidating or scare environment. You receive full support, from a team of friendly, clinically trained specialists – a wonderful combination of facilities and expertise, all under one roof!
If you’re in the clinic, let us show you the great facilities we have on offer and find out more about how it could help you.
This Sunday is the Romsey 5 Mile Run of 2019. The Romsey 5 Mile Run is set within the grounds of The Broadlands Estate, Romsey, Hampshire, once the home of The Earl Mountbatten of Burma. The surface is mainly tarmac with a short distance of smooth hardcore. The course is 2.5 laps of the estate making it one of the flattest 5 mile races in the county and as such attracts athletes from further a field looking for a PB time.
5 miles is a tough distance. It’s uncommon and hides nicely between those big 10km races and your weekly 5km parkrun. It’s an underrated distance and hence often underestimated. It’s a brilliant training run and a very credible distance to take the opportunity to clock some good times. It’s not a plod but it’s far from sprinting – it’s the sweet spot of speed and endurance. So just because it’s shorter doesn’t mean you can get away with no training! So we have put together 5 tips in time for the Romsey 5 miles!
The best way to tackle such a peculiar distance is to mix up your training. Try a variety of different sessions which help to train different aspects of your fitness. Interval training will help with speed, long runs will ensure you have the stamina, whilst gym/resistive training to get the power your legs need to drive through those last kilometres. Fartlek training is also great to get a better understanding of your pace – timing that sprint finish and camera composure is invaluable!
The shorter the distance you are competing, the more important it is that you warm up thoroughly. For 5 miles, it’s an essential. A good warm up should be about half an hour in total. You should consider starting to warm up about an hour before the race begins. This may seem a bit keen, but trust me – when you take into account the time taken striping down to shorts/vest, getting that last toilet break in and then the minutes taken just standing around at the start line, that hour will fly by. Get running for at least 10 minutes. During the warm up incorporate dynamic stretches– high knees, heel flicks, side strides, ring the bell, straight legged march – remember those from secondary school P.E? – well turns out they are useful after all! They get the muscles working more effectively and ready to go – reducing your risk of injury considerably. Read more about warming up for running here.
But the preparation doesn’t just start at the warm up! If you have event looming and you’re already starting to get some aches and niggles, invest in a course of Sports Massage. Sports Massage will keep those niggles from developing into full blown injuries, supporting you through your training, getting you to race day in one piece!
Lungs collapsing, knees about to give way and the body demands food, baths or just bed! But you’ll save yourself a lot of trouble with a good cool down – you’ll thank yourself if you can motivate yourself for a 10 minute plod! This will flush the lactic and waste products from the muscles by introducing fresh oxygenated blood. If there is a masseur on hand, make the most of them – they’ll do most of that more you! Also do a mix of dynamic and static stretches to relax the muscles.
Just because the event has come and gone, doesn’t mean you switch off. That warm down will have helped avoid those stiff and achy legs, but by having a follow up recovery Sports Massage, you’ll cleanse your body from that event, and focus on the next one! You can book your massage online here 24/7. Good Luck to all doing the Romsey 5 Miles, especially those doubling up and doing the Hendy Eastleigh 10K too! Look forward to seeing familiar faces!
We appreciate you guys don’t want to get bogged down with the science, research or evidence behind the ways we help you – you just want us to help you recover from your injury, quickly!
But to us, the science and latest evidence is important, it helps us get the best results for you in the best way. So we always get a little bit excited when we see or read what the latest evidence is saying (especially when it’s presented in a fab infographic!).
LOADING is currently a bit of a ‘buzz’ word in the physio & rehab circles. And with good reason. In recovery terms, rest isn’t often the best way forwards but progressive loading is! As the infographic above summarises, many of the body’s tissues will get stronger if they are subject to loading.
So, what exactly is loading?
The definition of load is………..
A weight or source of pressure borne by someone or something.
In exercise or rehab terms, loading means working with some weight or resistance to place greater demands on your body. So, that can be using just your body weight, some light resistance, like bands or machines, or using weights. So, running is loading – you’re loading all the structures in your legs (bones, muscles, joints, tendons & ligaments) through the repeated pressure between your foot striking the surface with every step. A press up loads the structures around your shoulder and arms, just as a squat loads your hips and knees. Now, if you add holding a weight whilst you squat, you are increasing the load.
What is important is that loading is gradually progressed. You don’t want to demand too much of your body too quickly (or too often), especially if you’re recovering from an injury, as this will be counterproductive. It’s a careful balance.
The ultimate result of all this loading is that you will have a stronger and more resilient body. It will cope better with the demands placed upon it, making you less prone to picking up injuries, helping you enjoy an active lifestyle and potentially preventing longterm conditions such as osteoporosis.
Put simply, your tissues will adapt to the demands you place upon them.
If you think you would benefit from some guidance on realising the benefits of loading, then do get in touch. Our fully equipped Strong Room and experienced team offer that unique combination of being able to guide you on progressive loading within your own limits. We consider your ‘whole picture’ – where you are now, any injuries or conditions that affect you, what you love (or would love) to do and most importantly where you want to be. We then use our knowledge, experience and skills to tailor a programme just for you and support you as much or as little as you need.
Today, local runner, Personal Trainer & Running Coach, Mike, shares with us his story of recovery from Plantar Fasciitis.
As a bit of a brief background, Mike developed plantar fasciitis in both of his feet, after a period of increasing his running mileage 14 months ago. The painful condition affected him so much that he had to stop doing what he loved – run. When he finally came to see us, he hadn’t run for over a year. Having tried many other treatments and ways to tackle his plantar fasciitis, Mike wanted to give Shockwave Therapy a go. Both he and we are delighted with the progress that he made and within 6 weeks or so, he was back competing in his first 10k in over a year, pain free!
We asked Mike to share more about his experience and how Shockwave Therapy helped him finally recover from his plantar fasciitis.
Tell us more about your injury Mike?
In October 2017 I started to increase my weekly running miles as part of my winter training. I was focused on attending the World Masters Athletics championships in 2018. My weekly volume was 45 miles per week and I was running both cross-country and half marathon events. Since the summer of 2017 I had been experiencing post training calf tightness and this increasingly manifested in painful heels in the morning when getting up or after period of rest.
For some time I didn’t really address this as was still managing to train but by December 2017 the pain in the morning and calf tightness when running was so much that I had to stop running completely.
From seeing a physio I was told I was experiencing bilateral (both feet) plantar fasciitis.
How was it affecting your life?
Unable to train to my previous volume and intensity for months, it became clear I would not be able to compete at the World Master Championships in the Summer of 2018. In fact, the pain was so much that I didn’t compete in any races throughout 2018. This was very difficult to accept and greatly affected my mental wellbeing. Running is important to me for fitness but always plays a huge part of in my wellbeing. I am also a running coach and personal trainer and was increasingly unable to run with clients and the athletes I train. The injury was also therefore affecting my professional career.
What treatment had you tried before Shockwave?
During the first months of the symptoms I had regular sports massage and also used a foam roller at home. I had sessions of acupuncture and dry needling. Whilst all these treatments relieved symptoms in the immediate term, none seemed to ultimately reduce the discomfort once I increased my training volume.
What did the Shockwave treatment feel like?
Shockwave treatment was certainly not as uncomfortable as I had feared! I guess it is like deep tissue massage. There were times when this can be uncomfortable, but only for short periods, and has a similar ‘good pain’ feel to it.
There were post treatment symptoms where my heels would feel sore for a number of days after but this soon reduced. Gradually through the course of treatment it was clear the symptoms of plantar fasciitis were reducing the consequently the discomfort of the actual treatment also reduced.
Where are you now with your injury?
I have finished the treatment and I am now starting to increase my running volume again. Last week I competed in the Stubbington 10k. The first time I have been able to compete in a race since October 2017! Whilst no where near my previous form I was delighted to run the 10k in 40:51 which is very encouraging for 2019.
I now need to be sensible with small weekly increases of mileage and continue with strengthening exercises to my feet and calves and regular stretching and sports massage. But overall I am so pleased with the treatment and the effect it is had on my symptoms.
Do you have any advice for anyone considering Shockwave?
Do your own background reading to make sure you understand what the treatment does. Try to address your symptoms through other options first. But if you have a chronic and stubborn injury, Shockwave treatment should certainly be a serious option to explore. The goPhysio team will explain the whole process, and potential outcomes.
The entire team at goPhysio is highly professional and genuinely cares and is committed to getting you pain free and getting you back to doing what you love. I would encourage anyone to get in touch for a consultation and know you will be in first class hands.shockwave
Hampshire Shockwave Therapy is brought to you by goPhysio. It is a highly effective treatment for helping long standing, stubborn conditions that have failed respond to other treatments. These include plantar fasciitis, achilles tendinopathy, tennis and golfers elbow and patella tendinopathy, amongst others. It is a genuine and successful alternative to steroid injections and even surgery for many conditions.
If your life is being affected by a long term injury and you’d like to find out whether Shockwave Therapy could help you like it did Mike, complete this brief questionnaire and we’ll be in touch. You can also give us a call on 023 8025 3317 to find out more.
Dry January is a public health campaign promoting abstinence from alcohol for the month of January, promoting a future where alcohol is a conscious choice, not a default.
After the excesses of the festive season, January brings a chance to turn over a new leaf and detox the body. Dry January is the perfect way to reset your relationship with alcohol. It only takes three weeks to break a habit, so this could be your route to happier, healthier drinking long-term.
Take a look at our top 5 benefits of giving up the booze to help keep you on track.
Last year 79% of people that completed Dry January reported that they had saved money. How much you save obviously depends on how much you drink now, but also factor in saved taxi fares and no more late night stops at the kebab shop and its surprising how quickly things add up. Instead of empty wallets and a fuzzy head try putting the money you would have spent on a night out towards something special; that new pair of shoes, trying a new activity or even putting it towards a holiday suddenly now seems much more valuable than a hangover.
Improve your energy levels
Whilst alcohol is a sedative this doesn’t necessarily mean it will help you sleep. In fact many people find the quality of their sleep is much poorer after drinking. This is because alcohol increases the levels of the stress hormone adrenaline in our body which quickens our heart rate and stimulates our body into alertness. If you add fizzy drinks as your mixers these often contain high levels of sugar and caffeine, making the problem worse. Last year 62% of people reported that their sleep and energy levels had both improved by quitting alcohol. Try swapping the alcohol for water, soda or orange juice and wake up fresh for some morning exercise to boost those energy levels further.
Alcoholic drinks tend to be made from sugars and starches making them high in calories without any nutritious benefit. A pint of beer or small glass of wine is equivalent to consuming a large slice of pizza (150-200 calories). Meanwhile our craving for greasy, fatty foods are likely to increase after alcohol due to the release of a protein in our body called Galanin. To make matters worse alcohol also slows our metabolism making it harder to burn fat. So it’s no surprise that 49% of people reported they lost weight during dry January last year.
Improve your mood
Regular drinking lowers the levels of Serotonin (the happy hormone!) in our brain, making us more susceptible to emotional ups and downs. Alcohol has been strongly linked to anxiety, depression and aggressive behaviour; it’s thought that 50% of violent crime can be attributed to alcohol. Giving up alcohol helps restore the delicate balance of chemicals in our brain, keeping us on an even keel so that we can make clear-headed decisions.
Alcohol is linked to more than 60 medical conditions including liver disease, heart disease, some cancers and depression. Not only this but it strongly contributes to obesity (see above), and can weaken our immune system. This means that we are more susceptible to winter colds and our capacity to heal is reduced. From a fitness point of view it alcohol consumption causes dehydration which will affect our muscle’s ability to be able to perform an activity and will also slow our reaction times, having a negative effect on nearly every sport. If we are injured alcohol will slow our recovery time as our body is using more energy to get rid of alcoholic toxins from the body and has less reserves to absorb important nutrients from our food nor to create the hormones and proteins necessary to build new muscle or repaired damaged tissue.
Feeling tempted? Why not give it a go this January!
We often get asked what’s the best way to ‘warm up’ before exercising or playing sports. Holding stretches is certainly a thing of the past, and hopefully this is no longer part of people’s warm up routines! But what should you be doing to warm up?
A warm up is basically exactly what it says on the tin – warming up your body! It can be an integral part of your exercise or sport, it certainly doesn’t have to be a totally separate thing.
We’ve found a great way to remember what you should be including in your warm up and it’s called the RAMP principle.
You can follow the RAMP principle for the most effective warm up for your sport or exercise. Here’s Sports Therapist Tom giving a bit of a demo.
R – raise your body temperature and heart rate. Spend 5-10 minutes doing light activity.
A – activate the key muscles involved in the activity. Especially lower back and pelvic area and core stabilisers.
M – mobilise all the joints involved in the sport or activity.
P – potentiate (perform sport specific movements to prepare the body for activity).These would be sub-maximal lifts (weight lifting) or plyometrics (jumping) for example