Thomas Physical Therapy May 2019

THE THOMAS TIMES

MAY 2019

Randy’s Ramblings

“THE READY POSITION”

Most of us would never want to do anything that would hurt another human being. However, we often function in ways that traumatize our bodies without realizing it. For instance, we stand with our knees locked back in hyperextended or over straightened positions. We sit in slumped postures depriving the discs in our spines of crucial blood flow. And nowwe hold our necks in compromising positions as we check our phones and devices creating a painful new diagnosis referred to as “text neck”. Joints do not like to hang out at end range positions. Staying in these extreme positions for extended periods of time often puts more stress on our bodies and increases inflammation. It alsomakes the ligaments vulnerable to being overstretched with unexpectedmovements. In contrast, the ready position protects us with normal functional activities. The ready position is defined by a wide stable base of support, knees and hips bent and the back in a neutral position or relatively straight alignment neither flexed nor backward bent. Athletes function in what is called the ready position tomaximize their efficiency and generate the most power for their sport. Notice how you use your body with daily activities. Do youmove smoothly and efficiently or are you just blundering through the day? Honor your body. Bend your knees slightly when you’re standing at the counter brushing your teeth, putting on your make up or shaving and notice how it immediately takes stress off the knees and low back. Become a student of function.

As you age, it may feel like you don’t recognize your own body anymore. You swear that manufacturers are printing product packaging with smaller fonts, you groan whenever you sit or stand, and you visit the bathroom at least once every night. Aging is an adventure, and staying physically active is a constant battle between your aching joints and the will to get moving. Starting a physical fitness routine may be one of the healthiest choices you can make. As we approach National Senior Health and Fitness Day on May 29, take some time to evaluate your fitness activity level. You can use the following tips to live a more active lifestyle — no matter how old you are! Celebrate National Senior Health and Fitness Day This May GETMOVING! Physical activity is one of the keys to a long and healthy life. For older adults, the benefits of physical activity are increased tenfold. When you participate in physical activity at least once per day, your chances of developing heart conditions, diabetes, and arthritis decrease. For patients who already have arthritis, low impact activities like water aerobics or walking can provide relief for the joints. Exercise is also essential to maintaining a healthy heart after a heart attack or stroke. Probably the most important benefit of staying physically active is helping you stay upright. According to the National Council on Aging, exercise helps prevent senior citizens from falling — one of the deadliest things that can happen to an older adult. According to the council, every year, 1 in 4 Americans aged 65 and older falls GET STRONGER!

Train yourself to be aware of your movements and take joy in how blessed you are to be able to do the things that you can do.

-Randy Thomas

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