There is a movement afoot (pun intended) to get more people exercising by involving their family doctors.
It’s that time again. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services just released a new edition of the Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans. That sound you hear is Americans collectively sighing.
Have you ever wondered why you feel healthier and happier when you stroll through the trees or frolic by the sea? Is it just that you’re spending time away from work, de-stressing and taking in the view? Or is there more to it?
We all know making physical activity a regular habit is important for health and well-being. But health promotion messages are often aimed at children and young people, with less focus on the importance of physical activity for older people. However, older age is a crucial time for being active every day.
“Exercise isn’t really important for weight loss” has become a popular sentiment in the weight loss community. “It’s all about diet,” many say. “Don’t worry about exercise so much.”
This quote from an anonymous patient sums up the experience of millions of sufferers of a health problem that’s rarely recognized or even discussed, yet has a major impact on their lives. Simply put, these people can’t catch their breath.
Physical Education (PE) is often viewed as a marginal subject within the curriculum. And many secondary schools actively reduce PE time to make way for what are deemed more “serious” or “important” subjects.
It can often be tempting to jump on a bus for a short journey through the city, especially when it’s raining or you’re running behind schedule. Where there are dedicated bus lanes in place, it can feel as though you speed past gridlocked traffic. But as city authorities begin new initiatives to get people walking or cycling, that could all change – and so could you.
If you have ever broken an arm and had to wear a cast or splint for a few weeks, you will be familiar with the alarming loss of muscle and uneasy feeling of weakness experienced after removing your cast. Most people do not do much exercise while a broken arm is healing and can struggle with this loss of muscle for many weeks after the injury.
Walking significantly lowers the risk of heart failure in older women, a new study shows. The study of more than 137,000 postmenopausal women aged 50 to 79 is the largest and most comprehensive to date that has evaluated physical activity within the context of heart failure prevention.
Increasing the amount of exercise is one way to use the energy stored in fat cells, or to ‘burn’ fat. Many of us may be considering “burning some fat” so we feel better in our bathing suits out on the beach or at the pool. What does that actually mean, though?
People with low muscle strength don’t typically live as long as their stronger peers, according to a new study. After adjusting for sociodemographic factors, chronic health conditions, and smoking history, researchers found that people with low muscle strength are 50 percent more likely to die earlier.
Many older people find they’re not able to move as freely as they did when they were younger. They describe their movements as feeling stiff or restricted. In particular, feeling stiff when getting out of bed first thing in the morning or after sitting for a long period. The feeling does eventually ease with movement as the muscles “warm up”, but it can be troublesome. There are a few reasons this happens.
There are many ways to get around a city. You can drive a car or ride a motorcycle. In many cities you have the option of public transport. And of course if you live close enough to where you are heading you can get around in a more active way by riding a bicycle or walking.
Cycling may be dangerous in some ways, but it’s healthy too. But do the health benefits outweigh the risks of potential death? And what about public transport or driving? What is the risk of having an accident, and are there any health benefits at all? There are a number of variables to consider, so the answers to these questions may not be as straightforward as you think.
There seems to be a lot of confusion regarding the value – or lack thereof – of muscle stretching to accelerate recovery after exercise. “Stretching clears out your lactic acid,” and other similar claims abound. Is any of this true?
When temperatures spike in the summer, it’s important to make sure you temper your workouts to stay safe, says Sandeep Mannava, a sports medicine specialist at University of Rochester Medicine.
Given the state our bodies are in after exercise, and what alcohol does to our system, drinking after sport is a bad idea.
We know excess weight is linked to many adverse health consequences, but there is now growing understanding that it also affects fertility.
Some of us like to stroll along and smell the roses, while others march to their destination as quickly as their feet will carry them. A new study out today has found those who report faster walking have lower risk of premature death.
Swapping your car for more physically active forms of travel may reduce your risk of heart disease, stroke and premature death, our latest research shows.
Pretty much everyone knows that taking exercise helps people stay in good health. It staves off chronic ailments like type 2 diabetes and heart disease and – maybe – helps us live longer.
Liz is a typical 50-something woman, fit, 70 kg, 30% body fat. She goes to the gym every day, and runs for 35 minutes on the treadmill at 10km/h. But, as she tells me rather often, she can’t lose weight. So what’s going on here: is it Liz, or is it the universe conspiring against her?
Research shows that regular exercise can dramatically reduce the risks of depression as well as boost cognition and memory.
The wisdom and knowledge that the martial arts offer is something that should be preserved in modern society. The practitioner who views his training as merely a means of self-defense will eventually realize that his efforts are unrewarding. The martial Way is nothing less than self-cultivation and the promotion of virtuous conduct.
We are all aware that exercise generally has many benefits, such as improving physical fitness and strength. But what do we know about the effects of specific types of exercise?
If you want to get stronger and feel better after exercising – which is important because it encourages you to keep exercising – you don’t need a fancy gym.
You meet with a friend and tell her about a great book you’re reading. “It’s by a really famous author. Her name is, um … ”
Most of us know children who can run and play for hours and hours, taking only short rests.
The natural world is our natural home. This may sound obvious, but to many it’s a forgotten truth. There is so much drawing us away from the grounding and nourishing world around us. But no matter how cut off we may feel, or how far into our own darkness we fall, the sun always rises with the possibilities of the day ahead.
Menstruation is often called the “last great taboo” in women’s sport. But periods are the media’s taboo, not sportswomen’s. Our new research showed that elite athletes are not afraid to talk about their menstrual cycle and how it affects them.
Hundreds of thousands of people fall short of their dieting and weight loss goals every year, and the incidence of obesity continues to rise. The fitness industry’s answer to this has been to continue on as planned and blame the soaring failure rates on the people themselves, creating a culture of overt and subtle fat-shaming.
Participating in yoga and mindfulness activities at school may help anxious third-graders improve their well-being and emotional health, according to a small study.
An ageing population is leading to a growing number of people living with dementia. Dementia is an umbrella term for a group of symptoms including memory impairment, confusion, and loss of ability to carry out everyday activities.
A review of studies on exercise and happiness addresses some lingering questions about the effects of physical
activity on positive health conditions.
Most people think that the human spine is one of evolution’s great flaws. After all, around 80% of adults suffer from lower-back pain. What more evidence do you need? The truth is...
Day after day, we’re bombarded with so many media messages that rarely do we stop to think about what they’re telling us to think, do or feel.
If you take up exercise later in life, as a treatment for joint or hip pain, you should expect a small, temporary increase in pain.
The misuse of opioids has reached crisis levels across North America. Every day in 2016, 116 Americans died from opioid-related drug overdoses. And almost 1,500 Canadians died from such overdoses during the first half of 2017. Meanwhile, health-care providers continue to prescribe opioids — to try to help people suffering from chronic pain.
The tradition of sending a telegram to every British citizen on their 100th birthday was started just over 100 years ago by George V, who sent out just nine letters. Last year, the Queen had to sign over 16,000 birthday letters.
Do vegan bodybuilders have the edge? A recent study was reported as showing plant-based protein was more effective for building muscle than that from animals.
Mental strength is so important to martial arts that researchers have found karate experts’ stronger punching force may be down to a better control of muscle movement in the brain, rather than increased muscular strength. Other studies have also found that children who practice Taekwondo improved in maths test scores, and behaviour.
A 30-minute daily or alternate-day facial exercise program sustained over 20 weeks improved the facial appearance of middle-aged women, resulting in a younger appearance with fuller upper and lower cheeks, report researchers.
Gyms across the country will be packed in the new year with people sticking, however briefly, to their New Year’s resolution to lose weight. Most of them do not know that the cards are stacked against them and that weight loss is much more complicated than working out and not eating dessert.
Our latest study shows that if you’re obese but metabolically healthy (so-called “fat but fit”), you are still at a greater risk of cardiovascular disease compared with metabolically healthy people who are a normal weight.
Back pain is the single leading cause of disability in the world. In the US, four out of every five people experience back pain at some point in their life.
Exposure to air pollution on city streets is enough to counter the health benefits of exercise in adults over 60, according to a new study.
Low back pain is a common problem affecting more than 80% of us at some point in our lives. Recommended treatments include staying active and, if possible, avoiding strong pain medicines such as opioids.
Most of us probably know exercising is associated with a smaller risk of premature death, but a new study has found that doesn’t have to happen in a CrossFit box, a ninja warrior studio, or even a gym.
You’ve heard this before, right? Physical activity is good for your heart, your overall health – and, believe it or not, even your bank account. In the United States today, most adults (50-95 percent) do not meet national physical activity recommendations.
Repeated studies have shown that physical inactivity, and the occurrence of obesity to which it is linked, increases the risk for many chronic diseases, including breast and other cancers.
Veganism is a life choice that more people seem to be making. Still, despite its increase in popularity, when most think of a vegan, they tend to think of an animal rights activist, or someone who is a bit of a hippie at heart. And most likely, that a vegan is slightly underfed owing to a strict diet of tofu, lentils and salad.
Physical exercise may help people exert more control over impulsivity, a new, small study suggests. “There’s a lot of neuroscientific evidence that suggests mood-altering effects of physical activity could change how you make decisions...”
There’s been a lot of interest in the harmful effects of prolonged sitting at work, from academics and the public alike.
Many of us know that our children’s posture is a problem. We struggle to know what to do about it, having already learned the futility of simply telling a child to “sit up straight.” Truth be told, we often are at a loss to know how to inhabit our own bodies in ways that are comfortable and relaxed, yet strong and energetic.
Walking leads to a remarkable reduction in the risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes, some cancers, arthritis, depression, anxiety and insomnia, and premature death from all causes.
There is copious research into the manifold ways that high heels affect their wearers’ well-being
If you have been struggling with self-confidence or simply want to increase you sense of inner power, there is a simple, yet extremely effective martial arts technique that can help you reconnect with your inner brilliance.
Yoga carries with it a higher than expected risk of a painful wrist, elbow and shoulder, possibly due to poses like downward dog, new research suggests.
Your body has a maximum operating temperature, according to a physician who knows an overheated person when she sees one.
The link between exercise and the brain may be a product of our evolutionary history and past as hunter-gatherers, researchers say.
Can we really unlock our personal power by adopting “powerful” body postures? Unfortunately, the findings that link these so-called “power poses” beloved of certain politicians with a real sense of power and control are difficult to replicate.
Social situations can have a positive influence on your personal health choices. Studies show that the more socially active a person is, the better their memory.
Celebrity trainers and buff social media stars use terms such as “shred”, “burn” and “melt” to describe bodies responding to resistance training and cardiovascular exercise with rapid physical transformation.
Research has consistently shown that people who are less physically active are both more likely to develop health problems like heart disease and type 2 diabetes, and to die younger.
Getting children off the sofa, away from the TV and outside can be a challenging task for any parent, particularly in the age of increasingly sedentary and screen-focused lives.
Vibration machines have popped up in gyms alongside traditional equipment, and manufacturers claim ten minutes of vibration a day can be equivalent to an hour spent working out.
Some neighborhood designs more conducive to exercise and general well-being than others, new research shows.
Exercise is good for you, this we know. It helps build muscle, burn fat and make us all into happier, healthier people.
If you started 2017 with a resolution to lose weight or get fit then you may have found that you need some extra help and motivation by now.
Fluid is a previously unacknowledged source of the tension we feel when we stretch our muscles, research suggests.
In my practice as a GP, I have been impressed by a few energetic and active 80 year olds who remain in good health while many their age have succumbed to various chronic diseases.
Sitting has been branded the “new smoking” for its supposed public health risks, especially for people with sit-down office jobs.
When we feel criticized (by others or by ourselves), it is often the psoas that reacts by contracting or hardening and becoming rigid. Taoists refer to the psoas as the muscle of the soul because of its connection to our deepest essence and core identity.
Self-proclaimed “weight loss hypnosis master” Steve Miller has announced a campaign to see all overweight NHS staff wearing badges that read “I’m fat, but I’m losing it”.
It’s normal to feel hot, sweaty and uncomfortable in warm weather, but what’s the best way to cool down?
When it comes to exercise, if there was a way to get more health benefits by doing less, then it’s likely a lot of people would be interested. This is probably the reason that high-intensity interval training (HIIT) gets a lot of attention.
Everybody knows that to lose weight you need to eat less or exercise more – or ideally do both. But it remains unclear whether there are extra benefits to be gained from increasing the intensity of workouts.
When Friedrich Ludwig Jahn, arguably the “father of gymnastics” and the inventor of the horizontal and parallel bars, opened his first gym (or Turnplatz) in 1811, he decided to locate it outdoors in Berlin.
There is no doubt that physical activity is good for you, but the optimal amount remains a topic of debate. The universally accepted recommendation is that we do at least...
One of my students became very disciplined in journaling with her Divine, and one day she said to me, “I’m so surprised. Continually the guidance I am getting is to drink water, take a nap, go for a walk, eat my vegetables, and give myself a big hug! I feel like my Divine is my grandmother!”
If the statistics are correct, many millions of new runners have laced up for the first time in the last few days.
Over the festive season, many of us will eat and drink much more than we usually would – it has been estimated that the average person in the UK consumes around 6,000 calories on Christmas day alone.
Three things happen to the brain when we exercise, says Wendy Suzuki, professor of neural science and psychology at New York University. She offers a quick explanation in just 90 seconds.
How is it that we are able to remember some events in great detail whereas other memories seem to fade away over time?
Most modern fitness trackers are electronic devices you wear on your wrist to track steps, overall physical activity, sedentary behaviour and sleep.
Yes, of course we all know we should exercise every day during the holiday season to help counter the onslaught of excess calories that started on Thanksgiving and will mercifully end with a New Year’s toast. But an equally important reason to exercise every day is...
Even though most Australians know we need to exercise more, many of us don’t. Our recent study suggests this is often due to diminishing availability of time.
Regular physical activity is an essential part of a healthy lifestyle, protecting us from a host of modern ills such as heart disease, obesity, type 2 diabetes, depression and some cancers.
For most of us, heading into a gym can lead to confusion about what exercises to do. If you want to change the shape of your body, can selecting certain exercises really work?
You’ve probably heard people say they enjoy running because it lets them switch off. Perhaps you feel that way yourself. Brain activity really does decrease when you’re performing a simple, repetitive action...
Here we review the best science about how to start an exercise habit, and how to keep it going by addressing basic questions and issues.
In a remote area of Tanzania, Hadza men leave their huts on foot, armed with bows and poison-tipped arrows, to hunt for their next meal. Meanwhile, Hadza women gather tubers, berries, and other fruits.
When people suffer musculoskeletal pain – that is, pain arising from muscles, ligaments, bones or joints – they change the way they move. Sometimes these changes include completely avoiding certain movements, and sometimes they are more subtle.
Everyone knows that exercise helps keep weight off and is good for your heart. Now, scientists say it also appears to prevent age-related hearing loss in mice.
Minimal exercise may be all it takes for postmenopausal women to better regulate insulin, maintain metabolic function, and help prevent significant weight gain, a new study suggests.
Exercise releases irisin, a hormone that helps the body shed fat and keeps it from forming, new research shows.
Most of us have a relationship to the outside world based on conflict, the power struggle. It is quite tiring. One must always be on the alert. Could there be another way of doing things?
Thanks to social media, it’s hard to escape from hearing about people’s fitness levels. Sites like Facebook and Instagram provide a constant stream of information about user’s gym visits, nutrition plans and race results.
The key to sticking with an exercise program is actually enjoying it, new research shows.
British breasts are getting bigger, with an annual survey indicating the average woman’s bra size has increased from a 36C to a 36DD