Exercise plays an important role in the PREVENTION and TREATMENT of illness.
Exercise is Medicine and should be prescribed as such.
|Exercise Physiology Services at Inspire Fitness for Wellbeing|
As an Exercise Physiology team passionate about the role of exercise in the treatment of many chronic health conditions, cancer and in the rehabilitation of injury; we celebrate this image below of a script given by a Doctor for exercise.
Exercise plays an important role in the PREVENTION and TREATMENT of illness.
Exercise is Medicine and should be prescribed as such.
Written by; Rory Scott (Accredited Exercise Physiologist)
Cancer is a diverse group of several hundred diseases in which some of the body’s cells become abnormal and begin to multiply out of control causing damage to the tissue around them.
It is estimated there will be 138, 321 new cancer cases diagnosed in Australia this year, with the number of deaths estimated to top 48, 586.
Exercise is now being recognized as a treatment for cancer and research suggests that for breast cancer the risk of death can be decreased by 20- 50% if physically active.
Exercise can also have a positive impact on the adverse effects of cancer treatment such as:
Before commencing an exercise program it is important to have a thorough assessment from an Accredited Exercise Physiologist.
An observational study in 2005 by Holmes et al sought to determine whether physical activity among women with breast cancer decreases their risk of death compared to sedentary women. They concluded that physical activity after a breast cancer diagnosis may reduce the risk of death by up to 50%. They found that the greatest benefit occurred in women who performed the equivalent walking of 3- 5 hours per week at an average pace.
Another finding of this study showed being physically active could reduce risk of breast cancer recurrence by 17- 43%. The potential mechanisms by which physical activity works to increase breast cancer survival include:
Recently the Clinical Oncology Society of Australia prepared the Exercise in Cancer Care paper whereby they called for:
If you know anyone who is commencing their cancer journey or is recovering from their treatment please encourage them to stay physically active- the evidence to do so is overwhelming!
For more information on the important benefits of exercise for cancer - please visit the following link;
Visit - Cancer and Exercise Statistics
Strength training increases muscular strength and function by working your muscles against a weight or force. Many people undertake strength training exercise for the physical benefits it provides, such as building bone strength, weight loss, increasing lean muscle; as well as reducing your risk of many chronic health conditions such as type 2 diabetes.
However, it is the significant mental health benefits that many people aren’t aware which may boost your incentive to commence resistance training. As it turns out, strength training can be extremely beneficial to both body and mind. A recent meta-analysis conducted by Gordon and colleagues involving 1877 participants, determined that resistance exercise training (RET) significantly reduced depressive symptoms in adults. Interestingly, these improvements occurred regardless of the participant’s health status, volume of training, or improvements in strength. Furthermore, benefits of RET in reducing symptoms of depression were greater and particularly effective in individuals with more serious cases of depression.
Traditionally, studies indicated that aerobic exercise predominantly, was beneficial in reducing depression, while a grey area existed in the research surrounding whether strength training had similar benefits, or whether it in fact increased tension and negative mood. However, this new study lends weight to the view that resistance training does in fact benefit mood and reduce depression. The research comes at an important time, with depression being the 3rd highest burden of disease in Australia, with 1 in 7 Australians experiencing depression in their lifetime.
The study indicated improvements in depressive symptoms regardless of volume of training. Gordon and colleagues could not specify an optimal exercise regime, despite some evidence supporting supervised sessions shorter than 45 minutes. Instead, he recommends following ACSM guidelines, which prescribe the completion of strength training on at least 2 days per week, with repetition ranges between 8 and 12. Alternatively, research from other studies has emphasised that self-selection is key, in that the influence of choice on volume and intensity of training is the greatest determinant in enjoyment and the reduction of depressive symptoms.
The exact reasons why such reductions in depression occurred in this study were also unclear. Gordon stated that “there are potential social, cognitive and neurobiological factors that could help explain how and why resistance training may reduce depressive symptoms,” examples of which include the social interactions that occur through training, while a placebo effect was also proposed. Previous research has highlighted some potential explanations that may help bridge this gap; here are 3 possible reasons as to why RET may lessen depressive symptoms:
Evidently, there are an array of mental health benefits that correlate with a reduction in depression and enhanced mood. As highlighted by this new research, these benefits can in fact arise from regular resistance training. Hopefully this exercise physiology blog article has increased your awareness of some of these benefits and has motivated you to begin or continue with strength training exercise.
At Inspire Fitness we pride ourselves on helping clients achieve their goals and reach their optimal physical and mental health. If you believe you want to incorporate some resistance training into your routine, please contact us on 9857 3007.
We can begin designing you your own individualised training program. It really is ‘about feeling good’.
Written by Nick Agius (Exercise Science Student, Deakin University)
Statistics show less than half of Australian adults aged 65 and over undertake the recommended amount of physical activity required to gain a health benefit. This is an alarming statistic, especially considering that exercise participation becomes more vital as you get older.
As you age (and live a more sedentary lifestyle) you begin to lose muscle mass. This phenomenon is defined by the term ‘sarcopenia’. On average you will experience a 1-2% loss of muscle mass per year after the age of 50; and you will lose approximately 50% of muscle mass lost by 80 years of age.
However, sarcopenia IS NOT inevitable. Your lifestyle choices have a major influence over your loss of muscle tissue.
Physical activity participation can prevent the reduction in muscle mass that is commonly seen among older adults; as well as increase your ability to function with activities of daily living.
We often hear the common misconception that people are “too old” to complete a certain task or activity. Activities like playing golf, skiing, or going for a bush walk. However, the research shows that when it comes to decline - age really is just a number. This is highlighted in the graph below which demonstrates that an 80-year-old strength-trained man can be stronger than a 20-year-old untrained man.
Therefore, it is our goal with this exercise physiology blog article to demonstrates that anyone at any age CAN participate in exercise. We also want to encourage you to begin exercising now, because your body will adapt and it’s better late than never!
Why should I begin exercising?
The reasons that many older adults have for considering getting back into exercise vary. This may involve wanting to be able to keep up with your kids or grandkids, simply improving overall health and lifestyle, or looking to make a change after receiving a scare from your local GP. However, no matter what the reason is for your exercise participation, you will certainly benefit from this lifestyle intervention.
These benefits include a decreased risk of:
How do I begin exercising?
Joining your local gym may seem daunting, especially when you consider yourself in a setting of heavy weights and big bodybuilders. However, searching for an Exercise Physiologist or a gym like Inspire Fitness for Wellbeing where you are welcomed and encouraged in a friendly atmosphere is a great start. An Exercise Physiologist can assist you with designing an appropriate exercise program for your individual needs; taking into account your background of injuries and / or medical conditions if required.
Here is a guide from our team of Exercise Physiologists of 5 types of exercises that you should incorporate into your exercise routine:
Improving your level of aerobic fitness will increase your capacity to exercise. This will have significant benefits in delaying fatigue, improving heart and lung health, as well as improving your mental health.
It is recommended that you complete weight training of all the major muscle groups at least twice a week. This is important in building bone, muscle, joint and surrounding muscle tissue strength. Other benefits of weight/resistance training include improved metabolic functioning, and a decreased risk of injury, falls and fatigue.
The core muscles are important in supporting your spine. Learning correct technique when training core strength will benefit your posture and core stability. This can improve balance and decrease the risk of falls and the resulting injury.
Stretching is important to counteract the loss of muscle elasticity that occurs from ageing. This will help develop muscular strength, improve posture, increase blood flow and reduce the risk of falls.
Training balance is important for proprioception and motor control. Tasks and activities that were once easier to complete can become more complex with age. Therefore, being able to control your limbs in space and having a greater control over your body will increase your confidence in the ageing process.
For more information about specific exercises and demonstrations on how to complete them, visit Inspire Fitness for Wellbeing today and speak to one of our Clinical Exercise Physiologists. You can call us on 9857 3007.
1. Metter EJ, Conwit R, Tobin J, Fozard JL. Age-associated loss of power and strength in the upper extremities in women and men. J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci. 1997;52:B267–B276. [PubMed]
2. Hughes VA, Frontera WR, Roubenoff R, Evans WJ, Fiatarone-Singh MA. Longitudinal changes in body composition in older men and women: role of body weight change and physical activity.
Am J Clin Nutr. .2002;76:473-481.
Written by Eleni Frossynos AEP (Accredited Exercise Physiologist)
True or False: The intensity of pain matches the severity of an injury?
False! If we picked two people with the exact same injury, their pain would not be the same. So what other factors contribute to the amount of low back pain someone experiences?
There are two types of pain- acute pain and chronic pain.
Acute pain is a sudden onset of tissue damage due to a definable injury. Bodily tissue can take anywhere from up to 3-6months to heal and any pain experienced after this point is known as ‘chronic pain’, whereby the tissue has healed but the pain persists. New methods of management show that the psychosocial component of pain is just as important as the physical. Pain is an output from the brain. When the tissue is exposed to a potentially threatening stimulus, the brain evaluates information coming in to decide if the tissue is in danger. It then subconsciously, through the central nervous system, act as a protective mechanism producing a pain output to refrain the body from doing anything which it falsely believes could further harm the tissue. Threatening stimulus can include anything from emotional stressors, physical stressors, sensation stressors, temperature stressors etc.
For example, if we got a group of people and placed a temperature probe on their forearm which was set at one cool temperature and then showed them two lights, a blue light and a red light. Without telling them what temperature the probe is, it is highly likely that they will experience pain on the point of contact when the red light turns on compared to the blue light. The human body naturally sees the colour red as a danger signal due to past experiences, such as red at the traffic light meaning “STOP” and red on a tap meaning hot water. Relating this back to lower back pain. If someone has experienced an acute back injury in the past when doing a certain movement, the brain will store that movement in its memory bank as a potentially threatening movement. This will result in a change of behaviour, increase in tissue hyperirritability and increase of pain sensitisation. As time goes on the central nervous system sees movement as potentially harmful and subconsciously brings about pain to guard the human body.
“Know Pain or No Gain”
The first step of managing your low back pain is to educate yourself on back pain. Understanding why you are experiencing what you are experiencing and knowing how the body works. The second step is to keep moving. In moderation gradually introduce movements which you have previously avoided and then over time the body will desensitize and find the movements easier. Finally, if you found that you’ve been inactive over time introduce some mobility, stability and strength exercises into your weekly routine to improve general whole-body function. Pain management is no cure, but a way to increase function and quality of life. With some guidance from an Accredited Exercise Physiologist you can better understand your pain and have some guidance in being physically active.
exercise physiologist Categories
Exercise Physiologist Blog Archives