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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