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Being Active at Home – A Guide for Older Adults

Posted on 31st May 2020 by

A new booklet, co-funded and developed by Sport England and Public Health England (PHE), has just been launched! It aims to help older adults keep up their activity levels while isolating due to coronavirus (Covid-19).

This is part of the Sport England Join the Movement campaign designed to provide inspiration and trusted information to the public about how to get active in and around the home during the coronavirus pandemic.

Being active is good for our physical and mental wellbeing. This is why we should all try to move regularly, including exercises to help stay strong and steady. This particularly applies to those of us who have health conditions or are older. Due to coronavirus we are all spending more time within our home, so it is important that we find ways to build activity into our day, every day.

Over the next few weeks, you may have health and social care appointments cancelled or delayed. If you are waiting for treatment, being active is one of the best things you can do to look after your health, as part of a healthy lifestyle. Being active at a level that feels comfortable is unlikely to make your health worse; in fact it can help to manage many health conditions.

Most of us are spending much more time within our home. This can be frustrating and upsetting, and it can be harder to be active when you can’t do your normal daily activities. This guide will help you to find ways to build activity into your day. If the exercise suggested doesn’t work for you, feel free to adapt them based on what you can do.

There’s some fantastic, simple strengthening and balance exercises.

As well as lot’s of general health and wellbeing advice.

If you’re struggling with your activities, we can help with providing an online video appointment or telephone support. So, do get in touch. You can call us on 023 8025 3317.


Helping Young People during Lockdown

Posted on 11th May 2020 by

We are entering week 8 of lockdown, meaning week 8 of home schooling, kids not getting out with their friends, no formal social or sporting activities or hobbies.

How are you coping? Are the kids running you ragged? Has healthy eating and exercise gone out the window completely?

Fear not, we have a few handy ideas to kick start motivations once again!

It can be hard for our bodies and routines to adjust to such a change like the current global pandemic. It’s important, especially for younger members of the family, to introduce a new routine into daily life to keep stress levels low and energy levels high. You may be facing an increased number of stressors and tensions may be riding particularly high. In spite of this, it’s helpful for family units to come together to work through their problems. Try to be mindful of how others are feeling and to be more forgiving if they need to explode, cry or simply hide away.

When we’re feeling down, we often turn to sugary foods to help give us an energy boost. However, this can have a negative effect as the sugar rush may not last long and could potentially crash lower than we were before. Its good to look for energy in carbohydrates, especially complex carbs, such as sweet potato, wholegrain breads, lentils, parsnips or butternut squash. They have a slower release to help keep energy levels higher for longer.

One way to get younger family members eating the right foods is to include them in meal planning and preparation. They’ll have a sense of achievement and is a nice break from any home schooling also. Or, you could class it as a Food Tech class… two birds with one stone.

London Sport has an exhaustive list of ways to get kids up and active at home. Current Government advice is daily exercise to help the public get fresh air during lockdown, but we don’t always want to exercise. Their list gives you extensive areas of other ways to keep fit and healthy from the comfort of your own home; whether its alongside The Nations PE teacher, Joe Wicks, or Sport Englands campaign with Disney to create fun dance routines. 

We’re often bombarded by negative messages or thoughts from tabloids and social media, so its important to look for ways to keep spirits high from all the technology we have at our disposal. Zoom quizzes have been very popular in recent weeks, and are a great way to catch up with friends of family. You can also find a whole host of online games and entertainment which loved ones can participate in with you across the internet. They’ll introduce enjoyment and pleasure back to this ‘new normal’ and give younger people another element to a daily routine.

Here’s some great ideas:

Weird & wonderful ways to get through lockdown

Free online, boredom-busting resources!

Don’t forget yourself too!

But, lockdown isn’t always about looking after others before yourself. You still need to make time for you. Listen to a podcast, read a book, enjoy the sun; make time for yourself to relax and reflect on the current situation. Self care is so important in order to look after others. Some of the our favourite podcasts are:

Happy Place – Fearne Cotton

Food for Thought – Rhiannon Lambert

Run Pod – Jenni Falconer

That Peter Crouch Podcast – BBC Sounds

Give me Strength – Alice Living

Castaway – Laura Whitmore

When thinking about your current situation it’s helpful to:

  1. Acknowledge and accept that this is how things are at the moment (this is your new ‘normal’ and you can’t push it away or make it disappear). Think about what’s in your control and what is outside of your control.
  2. Find a way to allow yourself to feel all the things that this new normal brings up (it’s OK to feel cross, frustrated, sad, angry and any other associated emotion).
  3. Find ways to do your best within the situation (are there any positives for example, are you getting to do anything which you wouldn’t normally be able to do?).
  4. Stay in the moment rather than regretting the past or worrying about the future. We will be thinking more about this process in the next Step.

Hopefully, we’ll be able to find a sense of normality soon be connect with loved ones properly. There are of course, further online guides on how to cope during lockdown. Support wesbites such as Mind, Family Lives and Young Minds are charities that offer support, knowledge and advice so if you are struggling, please speak to someone. 



Walk This May

Posted on 1st May 2020 by

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! This year, Walk This May, may have extra importance. For some, it’s one of the only activity they may get to do that provides a break from isolation and some time out and about. For others, the physical activity of walking is crucial for physical and mental health.

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
  • stress relief

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. Although, this may not be advisable in the current climate with our 1 activity a day restriction.

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.
  • 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.
  • Walk at different times of the day. Fresh morning walks will be a very different experience to a dusk walk.
  • Put on a podcast or playlist to listen to whilst you walk.

Here’s some advice on walking within social distancing guidance.

Here’s a few ideas from Living Streets too.

And when our lockdown restrictions are lifted, here’s some more ideas…..

  • Drive to different places to walk, park the car and enjoy the views and scenery while you walk.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • 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.

#WalkThisMay #Try20


Working Out at Home, Injury Free

Posted on 29th April 2020 by

“Now more than ever, it’s important we look after ourselves.” This is the message we’re being given and great advice. Alongside following social distancing and isolation guidelines, looking after ourselves is absolutely key.

One of the main ways in which we can do this is by taking part in regular exercise and activity.

But, for many, this is such a big change in routine and habits, we may be finding ourselves doing something totally new. And this can take it’s toll on the human body.

Whether you’re doing Joe Wicks’ daily PE, running lot’s more to make the most of your ‘daily exercise’ or trying a new dance class online, you need to be just as careful!

So, what steps can you take to make sure you stay injury free?

  1. Start anything new gradually. You may be buzzing to do Joe Wicks 9am PE session every day, but if you’re not used to doing a 30 minute exercise session daily, you need to give your body some time to adapt.
  2. Pace yourself. Try and start with a spaced out schedule and build it up gradually. Your body really needs to be able to adapt gradually to the demands placed upon it
  3. Vary your activities. By all means, try a few online video home workouts, but mix it up by going for a walk or cycle (following latest social distancing rules), a bit or gardening, kick around with the kids or some spring cleaning!
  4. Listen to your body! The same principles to preventing injuries still apply! Lot’s of the exercise videos online are very heavy on the knees and hips, with lot’s of body weight exercises such as squats. lunges, high impact activities. These can really cause issues if you aren’t used to doing this type of exercise or do too many or too often.
  5. Don’t binge! Overall, as we’re not out and about so much, we are naturally moving less throughout the day. So, don’t be tempted to sit all day for hours on end and then suddenly jump up and do a 30 minute workout! It’s a good habit to move regularly throughout the day, so you’re keeping lightly active on a regular basis.

If you do find yourself with a new injury, a persistent ache or pain, then we’re still here for you. We can offer online video physio consultations – read more about these here.

If you’ve always thought about trying Pilates but never had the chance or are finding yourself with a bit more time, we also have a new Pilates Online service, with 4 new classes published every week and access to a whole library of Pilates classes. You can sign up here.

#StayHomeWorkOut


How to Foam Roll – The Art of Self-Myofascial Release

Posted on 19th April 2020 by

You may be feeling the effects of either doing too much exercise during lockdown, from tackling daily workouts at home without face to face guidance or tackling exercises your body isn’t used to. Or, it may be the opposite, and the lack of activity from not getting out and about so much is taking its toll. Maybe you’re just missing your regular massage!

The good news is, a foam roller could be your new best friend!

Here’s a quick, no nonsense guide to help ease any tight, achey areas and improve your warm-up, performance and prevent injury with some simple foam rolling! It’s all about the fascia!

What is fascia?

Firstly, fascia is a dense connective tissue that surrounds every muscle, joint and organ in the body.

There are 3 types of fascia; superficial, deep and visceral.

  • Superficial fascia lies just beneath the skin.
  • Deep fascia penetrates and surrounds muscle tissue.
  • Visceral fascia helps keep vital organs in place.

Everything in the body is connected through fascia, but some areas are more connected than others, forming thickened sheaths and bands of fascia. These are bundled together, inseparable from the muscle tissue (myo) and it’s accompanying web of connective tissue (fascia), forming a 3D myo-fascial web throughout the body. Think of a 3D spider’s web in the shape of your body & you’re getting close!

When working optimally, this myo-fascial web helps provide support, stability, movement dynamics, force transmission and optimises sporting performance.

Why should I foam roll?

Trigger Point Grid Foam Roller Foam rolling
We like the Grid Rollers from Trigger Point Therapy

  • For warm-up pre running, as it’s far more effective that static stretching (5)
  • To increase nutrient-rich blood flow to muscles that need it.
  • To improve the mobility and flexibility of muscles and joints (4,6,7).
  • To increase athletic performance (8,9).
  • To recover from exercise faster (1,2,3).
  • To reduce inflammation and remove toxins/chemical waste products.
  • Longer term, to break down adhesions in muscle and connective tissue.
  • You can also successfully self-treat minor injuries such as muscle strains and trigger points.

When should I foam roll? 

  •  MB1 MB5 Trigger Point Roller Ball
    A great alternative to a foam roller is the MB1 or MB5 ball

    Before exercise: when paired with a dynamic warm up to increase blood flow to areas that may be lacking it.

  • After exercise: used within a cool-down procedure to flush out blood that has pooled in working muscles and to allow fresh nutrients and oxygen in to kick start the recovery process.

If you’re used to getting ‘hands on’ treatment but the lockdown means this is no longer possible, this can be a great alternative.

Rolling for only a few minutes can have a dramatic impact on the quality of your training session. So, if you’re stuck for time, pre-exercise rolling would provide most benefit.

How to foam roll

Remember this easy guide and apply it to each muscle group that you’re working on.

  • 4 linear rolls (to search the muscle for areas of tightness, we call these ‘hot spots’).
  • 30 second holds on each hot spot.
  • 4 joint movements (to move the muscle underneath the roller).
  1. Underside of the foot (plantar fascia)

TrP Foot roller Foam rolling

  • Place the roller under the sole of the foot.
  • Apply pressure and roll slowly towards the heel and back to the sole of the foot, 4 times.
  • Hold pressure on any hot spots you may find.
  • Once this hot spot starts to reduce, maintain pressure and add in movement of the toes by flexing and extending them all 4 times.
  • Repeat the process 3-4 times.
  1. Calves (gastrocnemius and soleus)TrP Calf Roller
  • Zone A = achilles to mid-calf.
  • Zone B = mid-calf to just below the knee.
  • Roll zone A, followed by zone B.
  • Begin by sitting on the floor with the roller on your Achilles tendon.
  • Place your hands behind you and the other leg on top to add pressure.
  • Roll up and down searching for hot spots. If any are found, hold this pressure for 30 seconds.
  • You can also ‘span’ the muscle by turning your foot inwards and outwards whilst maintaining pressure on a hot spot.
  • Repeat this process 3-4 times before moving on to zone B.
  1. Thighs (quadriceps)
  • Zone A = front of the hip to mid-thigh.
  • Zone B = mid-thigh to just above the knee. TrP Quads
  • Roll zone A, followed by zone B.
  • Begin by lying on your front with the roller at the front of your hip just below the bone.
  • Support yourself with your elbows out in front and the other leg bent up to the side.
  • Roll up and down in search of hot spots. If any are found, hold this pressure for 30 seconds.
  • You can also ‘span’ the muscle by turning your foot inwards and outwards whilst maintaining pressure on a hot spot.
  • Now, once on a hot spot, bend and straighten the knee 4 times.
  • Repeat this process 3-4 times before moving on to zone B.
  1. Buttock (gluteals and piriformis)
  • Begin by sitting on the roller with your hands behind you for support.
  • Shift your weight onto one side as you bring that leg up and cross it over the other.
  • Aim to have the roller ‘in your back pocket’.TrP Glutes Foam Rolling
  • Roll along the length of your glute in search of hot spots. If any are found, hold this pressure for 30 seconds.
  • Repeat the process 3-4 times.
  1. Upper back (paraspinals, rhomboids, trapezius)
  • Lay on your back with the roller just below the shoulder blades.
  • Place your arms behind your head or cross them in front of your chest.TrP Upper Back Foam Rolling
  • Lift your hips off the floor and use your legs to roll up and down the spine.
  • Carefully extend your back over the roller.
  • Add in side bends to target various muscle groups.
  • Again, if any hot spots are identified, hold this pressure for 30 seconds before moving on.
  1. Chest (pectoralis major/minor)
  • Lay on your front and place the roller (or trigger point ball) just inside the shoulder joint, on the pectoralis tendon. Pec TrP
  • With the arm above the head roll up and down in search of hot spots.
  • If any are found, hold this pressure for 30 seconds.
  • Add in arm movements to manipulate the soft tissue underneath the roller. 4 straight-arm scoops should do it.
  • Repeat this process 3-4 times.
  1. Latissimus Dorsi
  • Lay on your side with one arm above your head for support.
  • Place the roller at a 45° angle just underneath your armpit.Lat Dorsi TrP
  • Shift your weight to roll up and down in search of hot spots.
  • If any are found, hold this pressure for 30 seconds.
  • Add in straight arm movements to release the tissues further, 4 movements followed by 4 rolls.
  • Repeat this process 3-4 times.

Here’s a handy videos you can watch to help demonstrate some foam rolling techniques.

Check out our YouTube Channel for more videos.

We also have a handy little download for you here: goPhysio Foam Rolling Super Six

If you haven’t got a foam roller, we recommend the TrP Rollers and balls. We can deliver same day to anywhere in the SO53 postcode during this lockdown period, so take a look here for more details.


References

  1. Pearcey GP, Bradbury-Squires DJ, Kawamoto J, Drinkwater EJ, Behm DG, Button DC. Foam rolling for delayed-onset muscle soreness and recovery of dynamic performance measures. J Athl Train. 2015;50:5–13.
  2. Macdonald et al. (2014) Macdonald GZ, Button DC, Drinkwater EJ, Behm DG. Foam rolling as a recovery tool after an intense bout of physical activity. Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise. 2014;46(1):131–142.
  3. Rey E, Padron-Cabo A, Costa PB, Barcala-Furelos R. The effects of foam rolling as a recovery tool in professional soccer players. J Strength Cond Res. 2017;
  4. Bushell JE, Dawson SM, Webster MM. Clinical relevance of foam rolling on hip extension angle in a functional lunge position. J Strength Cond Res. 2015;29:2397–403.
  5. Su H, Chang NJ, Wu WL, Guo LY, Chu IH. Acute effects of foam rolling, static stretching, and dynamic stretching during warm-ups on muscular flexibility and strength in young adults. J Sport Rehabil. 2016; 1-24.
  6. Kelly S., Beardsley C. (2016) Specific and cross-over effects of foam rolling on ankle dorsiflexion range of motion. International Journal of Sports Physical Therapy 11(4), 544-551.
  7. Macdonald GZ, Penney M, Mullaley ME, Cuconato AL, Drake CD, Behm DG, Button DC. An acute bout of self-myofascial release increases range of motion without a subsequent decrease in muscle activation or force. J Strength Cond Res. 2013;27:812–821.
  8. Peacock CA, Krein DD, Silver TA, Sanders GJ, von Carlowitz KPA. An acute bout of self-myofascial release in the form of foam rolling improves performance testing. Int J Exerc Sci. 2014;7:202-211
  9. Monteiro et al. Acute effects of different self-massage volumes on the FMS overhead deep squat performance. Int J Sports Phys Ther. 2017; 12(1): 94-104.
  10. Monteiro ER Correa Neto VG. Effect of different foam rolling volumes on knee extension fatigue. Int J Sports Phys Ther. 2016;11(7):1076‐1081.

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Staying Active During Isolation

Posted on 17th April 2020 by

As the coronavirus has spread across the World and lockdown continues, many more individuals are being asked to stay at home in order to protect themselves and others. Gyms, parks and other fitness/health facilities are closed for the time being. All of the sudden, everyone’s level of activity has been reduced, which can pose a significant challenge for our mental and physical well-being. 

According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), “physical inactivity has been identified as the fourth leading risk factor for global mortality”. 

Everyone, whether, they were active or not before the quarantine, needs to avoid this sudden sedentarism as much as possible. 

How much activity should I do? 

The recommendations are very simple: 150 minutes of moderate-intensity or 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity physical activity per week, or a combination of both (WHO). Read more here.

That means you only need to do:

  • 3 x 50 min sessions a week or;
  • 5 x 30 min sessions a week or;
  • 7 x 22 min sessions a week 

in order to stay active, healthy and reduce your risk of mortality. 

What activities should I do?

There is plenty of activities you can do at home to keep yourself active:

  • Gardening: The Spring is coming; it is time to show off your gardening skills! Read more about gardening injury free here.
  • Walking: get up every 30 minutes, walk around the house, around the garden or up and down the stairs. Give your sofa a rest! Take inspiration from the legend Captain Tom!
  • Dancing: why not? The clubs are closed but that doesn’t mean you can’t have fun at home. Get the whole family moving in a dance off competition!
  • Cleaning: now it’s your opportunity to finally get your garage or loft cleaned and organised. You’d be amazed at how much exercise a bit of cleaning actually involves.
  • Try an online exercise class or challenge: there is plenty of information online. You can look for videos on YouTube or sign up for online classes. You can also follow us on our Pilates Facebook Group or goPhysio Facebook Community Group, where we have been uploading exercises you can do at home, challenges and tips on how to manage your health during this quarantine. We’ve also just launched an online Pilates video platform, where you can have access to 16 new Pilates classes a month for just £29 with a FREE 7 day trial. Subscribe now here.

Being healthy is not only about physical activity. Mental health is very important and there’s plenty of ways you can exercise your mind:

  • Establish a routine: whether you’re still working from home or not, keep a routine. The disruption of your normal routine can leave you feeling lost, trying to figure out how to fill all the hours in the day. If you’re at home with the kids, try to plan out activities that will keep everyone busy so you can get some work done. Plan your day, make up your own routine to save you from the monotony. 
  • Be physically active: healthy body, healthy mind.
  • Communicate: time to catch up with old friends and family. Reach out to others. We are all going through the same, we all appreciate some talking. If you’re at home with the family, try to have your meals together and talk. No TV or phones allowed.
  • Relax: time to catch up with all the reading you wanted to do on holiday. Give meditation a try. Have you ever tried Yoga or Tai Chi? Now you’ve got the time, use it!
  • Practice mindfulness: use this time of enforced isolation to slow down and be mindful. We normally live such a fast paced life, we don’t have that luxury, so now’s a great time to give it a try! Read more here.
  • Laugh: time to watch you favourite comedy shows or movies, get the whole family together and play some board games, watch some funny videos and “memes” online. As Eric Idle once sang “Always look on the bright side of life”.

We are all in this together and soon we’ll be back to normality. 

Until then enjoy the gift of time. Use it wisely and stay active. 


Staying active whilst in isolation

Avoid Gardening Pains

Posted on 2nd April 2020 by

Spring is upon us and it’s that time of year to get out in that garden, tackle those weeds and start to prepare for the nicer weather – whether it’s out of choice or because someone has nagged you to do it!

Here are our top tips to avoid injury, whether you’re gardening, painting the shed or washing the patio!

Warm up before starting

You wouldn’t go for a run or start a gym workout without warming up your body – so make sure you do the same before you start work. Go for a brisk walk around the garden, get the blood circulating round your body & do a few gentle stretches to loosen your muscles before you start that weeding!

Cool down when you finish

Same as tip number one – make sure you wind down to a stop and do some more gentle stretches when you finish to stop your muscles stiffening up after your activity. Don’t just sit down and admire your hard work (as tempting as it might be!).

Pace yourself!

With the longer days, bank holiday weekends and nicer weather, it’s tempting to do all the work in one day to keep the rest of your time free or keep going for long periods – but this could lead to overworked and over strained muscles and joints. Spread your jobs out evenly over the days, evenings and weekend and build up to the harder jobs.

Variety is key

Try to avoid spending time in prolonged positions – by varying your tasks, you will limit the strain you put on each body part. For example, do 30 minutes of weeding, 30 minutes of digging and then 30 minutes of mowing the lawn. Put some mini breaks in between each job to have a rest, stretch and drink.

Avoid twisting

Keep your feet facing the same way as your hips and shoulders – this stops any rotational strain through your body. Stand straight as you mow the lawn or push a wheelbarrow and keep everything you need close by to avoid twisting to reach it.

Keep everything at the correct height

If you are working at a bench, make sure you don’t have to crouch or stretch to reach it – this could put extra strain on your back. If you’re working at a height, use a ladder or step to stop straining your neck by looking up for long periods.

Lift with your knees, not your back

When lifting heavy objects, make sure to bend your hips and knees to help support your back. Holding the object closer to your body will also help reduce any extra strain – so make sure to wear clothes you don’t mind getting dirty!

If you do injure yourself – don’t panic! Have a look back at our previous blogs on using heat vs ice and the ‘POLICE’ method of self treatment. If in doubt, give our friendly Patient Care Team a call and book an appointment with one of Physiotherapists at goPhysio. We’ll be able to assess, diagnose and treat any injury and give you the best advice on how to treat and prevent another episode!

You can also book an appointment online 24/7 here


Health matters: physical activity – prevention and management of long-term conditions, new guidance published

Posted on 29th January 2020 by

Public Health England has just launched a new publication Health matters: physical activity – prevention and management of long-term conditions

There are undeniably SO many benefits of being more active. These include:

  1. Reducing the risk of many long-term conditions
  2. Helping manage existing conditions
  3. Ensuring good musculoskeletal health
  4. Developing and maintaining physical and mental function and independence
  5. Supporting social inclusion
  6. Helping maintain a healthy weight

One in 3 adults in England live with a long-term health condition, such as diabetes, arthritis, cancer or a neurological disorder. These people are twice as likely to be amongst the least physically active. However, evidence shows that regular physical activity can help prevent or manage many common conditions such as type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease and some cancers. It can also help with many of the symptoms of these long-term conditions and prevent further complications or problems developing.

What we love about the new publications, is the focus is becoming more about PHYSICAL ACTIVITY and not just exercise. Exercise is only one way of being physically active, so it’s great to see more attention being paid to this.

So, what constitutes PHYSICAL ACTIVITY?

  • Active living – so going about your daily life more actively! Getting out for a walk, sitting less, gardening or household chores, even going shopping can be fairly active (particularly when you compare it to internet shopping!!).
  • Active travelling – getting on your bike, walking, getting off the bus a stop earlier and thinking twice before hopping in the car – great for the planet too!
  • Active recreation – getting out to walk the dog, a social walk or cycle with friends, trying a new activity like climbing, bouldering or dry slop skiing!
  • Active Sport – Either informal, a game of rounders at the park, a kick around in the garden or a go on your kid’s trampoline. Or organised sport such as playing as part of a team, going to an exercise class or taking part in an event.

So, what should we be doing?

The guidelines state that for good physical and mental health, adults should aim to be physically active every day. Any activity is better than none, and more is better still.

There are 3 elements of the physical activity guidelines:

  1. Strengthening activity – Muscle strength, bone health and the ability to balance are crucial to physical function. It is important that strengthening activities are important throughout your life for different reasons.
  2. Cardiovascular activity – A combination of moderate, vigorous and very vigorous intensity activity is recommended.
  3. Sedentary time – Adults should aim to minimise the amount of time spent being sedentary, and should break up long periods of inactivity with at least light physical activity.

With a bit of creativity, lateral thinking, small changes to your daily routines and habits, it is easy to increase the levels of physical activity in your life.

You simply can not argue with the potential benefits to your health and wellness. If activity were a ‘medicine’ it would be a miracle! So, how can you not find the time or a way?!

How can we help?

Increasing physical activity is woven into everything we do at goPhysio.

  1. If you’re in pain or injured, one of the consequences is that you are unable to be as physically active as you’d like to be or should be. By helping reduce your pain and helping you recover from your injury fast, we’ll get you back to being active again! Our Physio or Sports Therapy team are on hand to quickly and accurately assess and diagnose your injury. We’ll put in place a realistic recovery plan. No GP referral is needed and we aim to offer appointments within 24 hours, so you don’t need to face any delays. Book your appointment online here.
  2. If you’re approaching your latter years, we offer a specialised exercise class for those 60+, designed exactly to target the recommended guidelines above. Positive Steps runs on a Tuesday, Wednesday & Thursday from 11am – 12pm. Your first class is free, so just give us a call to book in a taster class.
  3. We run a comprehensive exercise based rehab service. This is a great way to build and develop strength, recover from a new or recurrent injury and help prevent injuries by getting your body stronger. Read more about rehab here.
  4. Pilates is a wonderful gentle way to exercise, that can be adapted for all ages and abilities. It works on strength, flexibility and balance and also gives some mental space and focus, with time to invest and focus on yourself. We run 20 classes a week in Chandlers Ford and offer flexible options for bookings. You can read all about our Pilates classes here.

Whatever you love to do, we’re here to help and support you in staying active and getting more active, so you can live an active, healthy, positive life, pain & injury free.

#LoveActivity



Self Care Week – Invest In Yourself

Posted on 20th November 2019 by

Invest in your future self this Self Care Week (18 – 24 November) by making small changes that can make a big difference. 

Self Care Week 2019

Think Self Care for Life is about making improvements in your life to protect your physical health and mental wellbeing.   

Follow these small steps to a healthier you: 

  • Get active; advice is to exercise for at least twenty minutes a day, it’s ideal if you can incorporate this into your day by ditching the car and walking to work, or walking the dog, taking the stairs or even dancing around the kitchen table to your favourite songs! It doesn’t have to be going to a gym or exercise class!
  • Eat well. We all know that healthy eating is crucial to our health so we can start by swapping unhealthy snacks for healthy options such as nuts, seeds and fruit. Ask your pharmacist for advice on managing your weight. 
  • Make positive changes! Take steps to stop those bad habits that don’t serve you well.  This Self Care Week make a plan to stop smoking, reduce your alcohol intake and get active! Your pharmacist can help with lifestyle changes such as weight management and stop smoking services. 
  • Rest.  A good’s night’s sleep is as essential to our health and wellbeing as eating healthily and exercising so, make sure you get the recommended 7-8 hours a night!
  • Stop!  These days we lead such busy lives that we sometimes forget to slow down and stop.  Find time in your day to just quieten your mind. Mindfulness or yoga might be helpful.

‘’It’s never too early or too late to begin to make small, simple changes that will enhance and protect your health now and, in the future, and often, one small change will make a big difference to your wellbeing.  

“For instance, choosing to become more active will not only improve your physical health, it will also boost your mood, particularly if you choose to exercise outdoors in the fresh air.” 

Self Care Week is also about safely managing long term conditions and, understanding how to self-treat those common disturbances to normal good health, such as coughs, colds, sore throats, back pain etc.

When we see people at goPhysio, a huge part of our input is educating people about their injury and steps and changes they can make so that they are empowered to invest in themselves and have an active part to play in their recovery and future preventing of injury.

Read a recent blog we wrote on the principles of being well.

goPhysio Be Well



Love Your Bones – World Osteoporosis Day

Posted on 20th October 2019 by

Today is World Osteoporosis Day.World Osteoporosis day

Osteoporosis is a condition that weakens the bones, causing them to become less dense and therefore more fragile and easily broken.

We will naturally lose some bone density as we age but in some people this occurs more rapidly and is then known as osteoporosis or osteopenia (a milder form). This affects more than 3 million people in the UK and its thought 1 in 2 women and 1 in 5 men over the age of 50 will break a bone due to osteoporosis.

COULD YOU BE AT RISK OF OSTEOPOROSIS & FRACTURES?

Find out whether any of these common risk factors apply to you here.

You may be at higher risk of osteoporosis if:

  • You have low body weight or history of anorexia
  • You had an early menopause or hysterectomy
  • You don’t get enough vitamin D and calcium in your diet
  • You smoke or drink over the recommended limit of alcohol a week
  • You’ve had long course of steroid based medication or cancer treatment

Most people don’t know they have osteoporosis until they break a bone but it can be diagnosed by a DEXA scan which looks at your bone density.

If you have osteoporosis your GP may prescribe medications such as alendronic acid which helps slow the breakdown of bone, or calcium and vitamin D supplements which help build new bone. Eating a healthy well-balanced diet and avoid smoking and alcohol are also likely to be beneficial.

Regular weight-bearing and resistance exercises have been shown to help stimulate our bones to grow stronger. The most suitable type of exercise will depend on how much bone density you have already lost, for example younger people with reasonable bone density but several risk factors would benefit from higher impact training such as running, circuit training, tennis and football.

However, if you already have been diagnosed with osteoporosis start with lower impact exercises such as walking, Pilates, tai chi, gentle dance classes and lifting light weights to build your bones up more gradually.

Our Positive Steps classes are a perfect place to start, aimed at the over 60’s we combine seated and standing resistance exercises with balance and flexibility work. We run 2 classes a week, and each class is small and friendly where in a fun and relaxed atmosphere you’ll be feeling the benefits straight away. Try a class for free, just call us on 023 8025 3317 to book a free place!

If you are unsure what’s the best type of exercise for you consult your GP or come along and see one of our Physiotherapists.

World Osteoporosis Day

Osteoporosis Fracture Risk

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