Howard: The Importance Of Staying Active During The Winter



Just because it is winter, it doesn’t mean you have to stay indoors! It is easy to want to stay in, nestled up in blankets, while it’s snowy and cold. However, remaining active in the winter months is just as important as remaining

hovering around 50 degrees Fahrenheit are optimal for high ormoderate intensityworkouts. Conversely, low intensity workouts are better performed indoors during colder months, as sufficient metabolic heat may not be generated well enough to offset the cooler environment. Exercise also helps loosens muscles that may become stiff in the winter months, making it easier to maneuver around in your orthotic or prosthetic device. Additional benefits towinter exercising include: • Sunlight intake. Vitamin D is important! Many people lack Vitamin D in the winter, due to a scarcity of desire to venture out in the cold. However, simply stepping outside can have positive effects. Sunlight can act as a natural mood booster, which may even increase motivation to exercise. • Absence of heat/humidity. Too much heat or humidity can sometimes feel suffocating. During colder months, this isn’t an issue. In fact, exercising in the cold can feel invigorating, as the crisp air can increase your energy. You run out of breath easier when it is hot and humid, so when that is taken away, you may be able to work out for longer periods of time. • Immune system boost. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, even just a fewminutes of outdoor exposure during the winter can help prevent against both bacterial and viral infections.

Roger Howard, CPO, Director

active during any other season! The winter presents several fun activities that can double asworkouts. Even something as small as taking a walk around the neighborhood to look at holiday lights or building a snowman with your kids can give you the amount of daily exercise you need. At Howard Orthotics and Prosthetics, we can design specialized treatment plans for anyone who may need a little extra push in staying active during the winter. Contact us today to learn more! What are the benefits of exercising during the winter? It is an undeniable fact that daily exercise is an important part of staying healthy and promoting wellness. It seems easier to get up and exercise when it is warm out, but there is actually evidence to support the benefits of working out in the cold. Depending on the type of workout, exercising in colder weather can actually have amore positive effect on the body than exercising in the heat. According to a study titled “Exercise in the cold,” found in the Journal of Sports Sciences, temperatures


While exercise in the winter is important, icy walkways unfortunately pose a higher risk of falling. This can lead to a higher risk of injury, such as strains, sprains, and tears. At Howard Orthotics and Prosthetics, we want to make sure you stay as balanced this winter, so you can enjoy doing activities the activities of the season without fearing a harsh fall! There are some steps you can take on your own to decrease your risk of sustaining a fall-related injury while participating in winter activities. These include: • Choose shoes with winter soles for traction. You can also get a pair of ski or walking poles to help keep your balance. As an added bonus, these poles will also help you burn extra calories since your upper body is getting a workout too. • Add slip-on spikes to your boots on the extra icy days, to reduce your risk of slips and falls. • Allow at least 10 minutes to warm up when exercising in the winter. When it’s cold, your heart and muscles need more time to get ready and prepare for exercise – this can help you avoid unwanted injuries. • No matter what winter activity or exercise you’re partaking in, warm-ups should always include a combination of low-intensity movements that will make the physical activity easier to perform. For example, if you decide to go on a walk or run through the winter wonderland that your street has become, you could warm up with lunges, squats, arm swings, or jumping jacks, making sure to also get a good stretch in your calves and thighs. This will keep your body warm while you exercise and will be a good way for you to feel out the terrain beforehand to see if it’s too icy. • Add in any additional assists, as needed. Snow and ice are the main culprits for many injuries during the wintertime, which is why it is important to add to your stability. Ice cleats or rubber-soled boots can provide you with grip and support. Using a cane or crutch can also help in remaining steady on frozen terrain. Our trained CPOs can help you figure out if an additional assist would benefit you. Contact us today! Whether you’re looking for ways to get moving in the winter or figuring out how to maneuver icy terrain in your orthosis or prosthesis, Howard Orthotics and Prosthetics can help. Contact us today to find out how we can help make your winter season as enjoyable as possible!

Try this simple exercise to help you feel better... Always consult your physical therapist or physician before starting exercises you are unsure of doing. EXERCISE ESSENTIALS PIRIFORMIS STRETCH While lying on your back, hold your knee with your opposite hand and draw your knee up and over towards your opposite shoulder.

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Save these in a place where you can easily use them as needed. Watch for more exercises in our next issue. SAVE Please share these exercises with friends and family members to help them stay healthy and free from pain.


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INGREDIENTS • 1 (9 in) frozen whole-wheat piecrust shell • 1 (8 oz) package broccoli florets • 1 ½ tsp olive oil • 1 cup chopped sweet onion • 4 large eggs • ½ cup evaporated milk • 3 oz sharp Cheddar cheese, shredded • ¾ tsp kosher salt

• ¼ tsp black pepper

INSTRUCTIONS Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Let piecrust thaw at room temperature 10 minutes. Place in preheated oven, and bake until lightly browned, 10 to 15 minutes. Let cool slightly, about 10 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 375 degrees F. Cook broccoli according to package directions, until tender-crisp, about 3 minutes. Coarsely chop larger pieces. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high; add onion and cook until light golden, 8 to 10 minutes. Whisk together eggs and evaporated milk in a medium bowl. Stir in broccoli, onion, cheese, salt and black pepper. Pour mixture into prepared pie crust. Bake at 375 degrees F until just set and edges are golden brown, 30 to 35 minutes. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.





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