5 Clever Exercises to Do from Your Wheelchair

Roger Sims from www.locostmedicalsupply.com shares that continuing to exercise into your senior years can be a challenge, as the aging process can naturally make you less energetic and less mobile. This is particularly true for wheelchair users, as this further limits your options for exercise and other physical activities.

However, this does not mean you must resign yourself to a sedentary lifestyle, as there are many exercises that are both beneficial for your health and suitable for those with impaired mobility.

The benefits of staying active into your senior years are enormous, helping to combat many medical conditions and diseases, such as muscle wasting, osteoporosis, heart disease, diabetes, and dementia. Staying as fit as possible is also beneficial for improving mental health and maintaining independence, as well as boosting your immune system, vitality, and energy levels.

Regular exercise can improve your quality of life in many ways, keeping you healthier, happier, and more energetic well into your later years. Although wheelchair users have fewer opportunities for participating in physical activity, there are several ways to overcome the hurdle of limited mobility and achieve a healthier lifestyle.

Mobility equipment can be of great use to wheelchair users with some leg function, as it can make walking short distances and performing exercises from a standing position possible. However, there are also many highly effective exercises that can be performed from a seated position.

Here are five clever exercises to do from your wheelchair, which can all be of great help in strengthening your body and boosting your health.

Seated Cardio Workout

Cardio is a great exercise for burning calories and getting the blood pumping, promoting a healthy cardiovascular system, and helping to prevent illnesses such as type 2 diabetes and heart disease. You may think that an effective cardio workout requires a high level of mobility, but there are plenty of ways to raise your heart rate from a seated position.

Experiment with exercises such as “picking fruit,” in which you raise alternating arms one at a time over your head, “chair marching,” where you raise one arm in time with the opposite leg before switching sides, as though you were marching in place, and rowing motions.

These are all great actions for an effective cardiovascular exercise routine and should be performed daily. Starting off small by dedicating ten minutes each day to cardio is a great way to begin, and you can increase the time you spend doing it as your fitness grows.

There are several excellent seated exercise videos available online which are easy to follow, and developed by personal trainers to deliver the best and most effective cardio workout from a seated position. Read more

4 Ways to Promote Healthy Living as You Age

Roger Sims from www.locostmedicalsupply.com shared that people are living longer, and the aging process can present some challenges to people who do not nourish and look after themselves well.

Aging has been associated with a decline in mental and physical health. This fear comes from losing independence, becoming a burden on family, and needing long-term care. However, there are many positive ways to look after yourself as you age and live a good quality of life.

Healthy Eating – The goal of eating is to nourish your body well so you can maintain your mobility and activities of daily living. Healthy eating supports a good quality of life.

Healthy eating is all about finding balance with your eating behaviors. Most people know about the dietary guidelines, yet have difficulty with eating well.

The dietary guidelines recommend people eat whole foods such as grains, fruits, vegetables, protein foods, and dairy to maintain and improve health. Eating well can also prevent certain health conditions.

Eating intuitively is an important strategy to eat the foods your body needs. Overall, intuitive eating helps you to eat when you are hungry, stop when you are mostly full, and choose foods you feel like. Therefore, intuitive eating is key to meeting your nutrition requirements.

As you age, life’s circumstances can change and may affect your ability to source a variety of food, prepare it, and eat it.

Poor or reduced appetite is a common challenge experienced, especially in people who are not well. A decrease in appetite can be a problem. Without adequate awareness of appetite, food intake tends to decrease. If left untreated, a decrease in dietary intake can lead to unintentional weight loss and subsequent loss of muscle mass. This loss of muscle mass affects mobility and, therefore, activities of daily living and quality of life.

There are key nutrients that the aging population needs to be aware of to support their health.


Energy

Energy is essential for regulating normal physiological processes maintaining life. Energy in food gives you the energy to do activities of daily living and helps you to feel less tired in the process.

  • Protein is important for maintaining muscle mass.
  • Calcium helps to maintain bone health.
  • Bone health and immune system require vitamin D.
  • Fiber helps to maintain bowel health and regularity.

Eating enough energy foods and getting enough protein are the most important activities when loss of appetite or unintentional weight loss is experienced. Energy foods and protein help you to prevent or treat malnutrition. Malnutrition is a frequent cause of death in the older population living in the community and in residential aged-care facilities.


Vitamin C

Vitamin C is showing promising signs in delaying premature aging with its antioxidant properties. Supplementing the diet with vitamin C appears to extend life and prevent Alzheimer’s disease. Read more

Does your teen want a tattoo?

Lisa Black wrote for the American Academy of Pediatrics that like them or not, tattoos and piercings have entered the mainstream as a fashion phenomenon.

Children can spot them on celebrities, sports heroes, their baby sitters and baristas, so it is no surprise that teenagers might start thinking about making their own personal statement through ink or piercing.

Before they make that decision, young people are encouraged to talk with their doctor to review the possible consequences and potential risks associated with permanent tattoos, piercings and other body modifications.

That recommendation comes from the American Academy of Pediatrics, which published its first clinical report on tattoos in September.

Pediatricians recognized the popularity of body art and the need for doctors — and their patients — to understand the health and social ramifications.

“Tattooing is much more accepted than it was 15 to 20 years ago,” said Dr. Cora C. Breuner, an adolescent medicine specialist and chair of the AAP Committee on Adolescence, and the lead author of the AAP report. “These services have come a long way, safety-wise, but it’s best to proceed with caution.”

When counseling teens, Dr. Breuner urges her patients to do some research, to think hard about why they want a tattoo, and where on their body they want it.

While societal acceptance of tattoos and piercings has increased, there may still be repercussions. In a 2014 survey, 76 percent of 2,700 people interviewed said they believed that a tattoo or piercing had hurt their chances of getting a job.

Each state’s tattooing laws vary, but at least 45 states have laws prohibiting minors from getting tattoos, including Illinois. Thirty-eight states have laws that prohibit both body piercing and tattooing on minors without parental permission. In Illinois, minors can get a piercing with written permission from a parent or legal guardian.

The AAP recommends:

• If you are considering a tattoo, make sure all of your immunizations are up-to-date, and that you are not taking any medication that compromises your immunity.

• Before getting a tattoo or piercing, make sure the salon is sterile, clean and reputable. The facility should be regulated by the state and provide clients with information on how to care for the area that has been tattooed or pierced afterward. The facility should practice infection control just like at the doctor’s office.

The AAP also recommends teens talk with their parents before getting a tattoo or piercing.

“In most cases, teens just enjoy the look of the tattoo or piercing, but we do advise them to talk any decision over with their parents or another adult first,” said Dr. David Levine, a co-author of the AAP report. “They may not realize how expensive it is to remove a tattoo, or how a piercing on your tongue might result in a chipped tooth.”

Laser removal of tattoos can range from $49 to $300 per square inch of treatment area.

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Do this, not that when exercising

Joshua Steckler, owner of Push Fitness, a personal training studio located in Schaumburg specializing in weight loss, muscle toning, and nutrition shared in the Daily Herlad Newspaper that any exercise is better than no exercise, but if you’re taking the time to work out, make sure you’re choosing exercises that will truly improve your health and fitness.

Below are some exercises that are too commonly performed in hopes of measurable results, but often lead to injuries or disappointment. A better alternative is given for each exercise.

Plank vs. crunch

The crunch with hands behind the head is a staple exercise in many people’s abdominal routine, but there are just so many better options out there.

Lying on the floor and pulling the head forward while rounding the torso a few degrees may create quite a muscle burn if done long enough, but it does not strengthen the core as many may think.

Crunches performed incorrectly can actually strain the neck and accentuate poor posture.

Instead of the crunch, try any version of the plank. Read more

Working out at home

Jennifer Dawson, the Content Manager for a small health and wellness site, shared with Healthy Lombard that when you come home after a long day at work, it can be difficult to motivate yourself to exercise when the couch looks so comfy. But there are so many health issues stemming from a sedentary lifestyle, such as increasing the risk for certain cancers and contributing to anxiety and depression. This is why it is all the more important to develop a home fitness routine that will motivate you to be aware of your health in a fun way.

In order to inspire yourself to work out at home, the key is to make it an enjoyable activity rather than something that you dread. The truth is, you are the only one who has power over how you look and feel. Instead of spending money on an expensive gym membership, become your own personal trainer by adopting these at-home fitness techniques.

Add Fitness to Your Everyday Chores

Besides doing an at-home workout routine like P90X, you can easily add simple workouts to common activities that you already do around the house each and every day. No matter what you’re doing, you can turn any household chore into an opportunity to exercise. Washing the dishes? Do some calf raises while scrubbing in the sink. Loading the laundry? Do standing pushups against the machine in between armfuls.

Another easy way to add exercising to your routine is to remember to mix relaxation with fitness. If you plan on watching television for a half an hour, make sure you get up after the show has ended and do some lunges or jumping jacks. Treat it like a rewards system for yourself. Before long, these tiny exercises will add up to make you more physically fit without disrupting the at-home routine that you’re already used to.

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A Workout that you will enjoy doing!

Health concept

Imagine a world in which you learn something is good for you and immediately find the motivation to follow through with it. Say, exercise. What a dream, right? No one’s disputing the fact that regular exercise leads to healthier bodies and happier minds. However, so many of us still find ourselves in and out of workout routines, skipping our morning run for a few extra minutes of shut-eye, and feeling frustrated when we realize we’re back where we started, huffing and puffing after a few weeks away from the gym.

 

So, how do we get out of this start-and-stop rut? A recent study at Iowa State University shows that people are more likely to continue exercising if there is something intrinsically rewarding about the process. This could be something physiological, like the endorphin rush, or it could be the quality time you spend with a friend in the same workout class as you. It takes time for your mind to recognize this reward, but once you’ve created a habit of working out, you won’t have to think about whether or not to work out—you’ll simply prefer to do so.

 

In starting a workout routine, it’s important to find something you’ll enjoy that is also beneficial to your body and mind. A good place to start is cycling. (Full disclosure: cycling has always been one of my favorite workouts because you can sit, instead of standing like you do when running. Whatever gets you out the door, right?) Cycling has a number of benefits, including:

 

  • It’s low impact. You’re not pounding the pavement, and thus, are not stressing out your bones.
  • It’s fun. Remember when you first learned to ride a bike? After you crashed into the bushes a couple of times and finally went soaring? The feeling of cycling, whether indoors or outdoors, resurrects that elation you felt the first time your dad let go of the handlebars.
  • You’ll have increased cardiovascular fitness and muscle flexibility with regular cycling. Sign me up.
  • Cycling regularly will improve your posture. When you cycle, you’re working out all the major muscles in your body, including those core muscles that hold up your spine. You probably won’t even notice you’re doing it.
  • Your bones will grow stronger. The prevalence of osteoporosis is on the rise, as people are continuing to live longer. Consider how grateful you’ll be when you know you’ve done what you can do prevent this.
  • People who cycle regularly have lower levels of fat. Need I say more?
  • Regular cycling can lead to decreased levels of anxiety and depression. Over and over studies have proved that people feel better when they’re exercising. It’s the least you can do to improve your mental health.

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Today is National Family Health & Fitness Day

The 21 st. annual Family Health & Fitness Day USA is a national health and fitness event for families, set for Saturday, September 30, 2017. (always on the last Saturday in September.)

The event’s purpose is to promote family involvement in physical activity, one of the goals of the U.S. Surgeon General’s Report on Physical Activity and Health.

Yorktown Mall has planned some special events in honor of National Family Health & Fitness Day so grab the kids, a mat and your water bottle for a day full of free fitness classes in Center Court!

9:00 AM | Fit4Mom | This sweat session is perfect for the whole family — don’t forget the strollers!

10:00 AM | 2XL Strength & Fitness | Learn about proper technique in strength training! These tips and tricks are perfect for everyone — from teens and elderly, to athletes and families!

11:00 AM | Orangetheory Fitness | Join in on this functional full-body workout while learning about correct muscle movement!

12:00 PM | The Barre Code | Target all of your muscles and break a sweat to some of your favorite music tracks!

1:00 PM | Orangetheory Fitness | Join in on this functional full-body workout while learning about correct muscle movement!

Click here to RSVP and tag your friends on Facebook!

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Junk food: Eating for two while Lactating leads to Obesity

College of DuPage Nursing Student Syeda Tariq researched that according to the CDC (Centers for Disease Control), at least one in five children in the US between the ages of 6 to 19 years is currently obese. The rate of childhood obesity since the 1970s has at least tripled, 1 and recent research suggests the time for prevention begins during pregnancy. Dr Stéphanie Bayol from Science Daily, found that consuming large quantities of junk food during pregnancy and/or while breastfeeding may impair normal appetite regulation and encourage the desire for junk food in the offspring. According to the CDC, an extra 300 kcal/day are recommended during pregnancy, and 500 kcal/day while breastfeeding, however, this is not the time for binge eating or consuming junk food. These temptations are relatively normal due to hormonal changes or a lack of knowledge regarding healthy food choices, but unhealthy eating at these crucial times in the child’s life may contribute to childhood obesity. Research also indicates that obesity during childhood may lead to obesity as an adult and increase the likelihood of high blood pressure, diabetes, asthma, sleep apnea, bone and joint complications, or even cancer. Obese children may also suffer from self-esteem issues resulting in social isolation, depression, or bullying.

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Top 5 Exercises to Increase Height For Kids

Gregory Brown, a chief editor at ConstructMuscles.com, shared that if you have a child, you need to prioritize for him to grow healthy and strong. What we want for the child is to start making fitness a habit. We need to teach them that sleep is important, eating is the way to go and grow, and exercising is just as fun as playing with your friends. We can always teach kids how to live in the fitness world by having fun and breaking a sweat.

It is a saying that when you put yourself in physical stress all the time while you are young, your growth spurt will lessen. It is time to put that nonsense to rest. We are going to show you Exercises that will allow your kids to get taller, and make them grow up healthier each day. We are going to take it easy, and see how the children will have fun while getting their fitness fix.

Exercises For Kids

What we are going to see on this article are exercises that you can do anywhere and anytime. They are functional movements that can be done under time-controlled pace. Think about as a High Intensity Interval Training without the “High Intensity.” What we will focus on is for the children to have fun, and not make them feel groggy or tired. The youth are always full of energy, and they can do this every single day before or after they go to school.

  1. Jumping Jacks

In any fitness center you go to, you barely see people do the Jumping Jacks. It is one great warm-up movement to get your blood running about. For Kids, it is all about stretching their arms, legs, and spine.

  • To perform this, jump and spread your limbs wide open, but not sudden to avoid any injuries.
  • You can clap at the top of your head, or just fully stretch out your arms above your head.
  • While the limbs are spread out, the legs should be beyond hip-width apart.
  • Then, back to standing tall.

It is such an easy warm-up, yet it is fun to do for kids. You don’t need any equipment, but a decent amount of space for you and your kid to move around.

 

  1. Hanging on The Playground Bars

It is also a great chance for you and your young one to have a bonding session. Just guide your child through the Jungle Gym bars. The reason for them to do it, is to have the same purpose of stretching their limbs and spine. You don’t need to do it on a daily basis. Just be cautious of your child’s surroundings to avoid hurting the others. It is one of those exercises that you can do on a DIY Pull-Up Bar if you have one at home.

 

  1. Squat Jumps

Another functional movement that is applicable to any demographic available. Tell your child or your younger sibling that even strong athletes do it to motivate them to exercise with you. Studies show that, jumping can boost your child’s growth and bones. It is the reason that some kids want to play basketball, so that they can grow as tall as the professionals that we see on TV.

  • Just tell them squat down, like how they would sit on a chair,
  • Then, jump as high as you can and repeat the process.

Tip: add a game to it such as, “

 

4. Stretching Movements

When you get to wake your kid up in the morning, try to ask them nicely to try and reach their toes. It will lengthen their hamstring muscles, and get a good stretch to their healthy spine. It is a good practice to get their mobility done. Then, after they try to reach for their toes, make them reach for the ceiling and tell them to reach for the sky.

Since there isn’t much movements involved besides stretching, accompany them while you are at it. On the first days, they might not be ecstatic to do it, until they get curious and do it with you.

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How to Prevent Strength Training Injuries

Lou Schuler wrote for Tivity Health’s Silver Sneakers  shares the following insightful story:

The kid flying around the gym was in fantastic shape, no doubt about it. After lifting, jumping onto a stack of boxes, and running sprints while pushing a weighted sled, he barely looked like he was breathing hard. I’d guess he was 20, one-third my age, and as I watched him, all I could think of was how many parts of my body would explode if I attempted his workout.

It’s a lesson I learned the hard way—several times. All it took was a knee injury from jumping, pulled muscles from sprints, an injured elbow from lifting fast, and worst of all, a back injury from the time I continued lifting heavy weights even though I knew something was off that day.

You can learn from my mistakes, and from the advice of my friend Chad Waterbury, D.P.T., a physical therapist and veteran personal trainer based in Santa Monica, California.

“Any injury is avoidable,” Waterbury says. The trick, as I know all too well, is to understand what not to do before you do it.

Start by checking with your doctor before beginning a new fitness program. Then, follow these tips to ensure that avoidable injuries are actually avoided. Read more