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6 Exercises for Lower Back Pain Relief

Dealing with lower back pain can be debilitating, affecting your daily activities and overall quality of life. Fortunately, there are targeted exercises that can help alleviate discomfort and promote healing. In this blog post, we’ll guide you through a series of exercises designed to provide relief and strengthen the muscles supporting your lower back.

1. Pelvic Tilts:

Lie on your back with knees bent and feet flat on the floor. Gently tilt your pelvis upward, flattening your lower back against the floor. Hold for a few seconds, then release. Repeat for 10-15 reps.

2. Cat-Cow Stretch:

Position yourself on your hands and knees. Inhale, arch your back, and lift your head (cow pose). Exhale, round your back, and tuck your chin to your chest (cat pose). Flow between these poses for 5-10 rounds.

3. Child’s Pose:

Start on your hands and knees, then sit back on your heels with your arms extended. Hold this stretch for 20-30 seconds, feeling a gentle stretch in your lower back.

4. Bridge Pose:

Lie on your back with knees bent and feet flat. Lift your hips toward the ceiling, creating a straight line from your knees to your shoulders. Hold for a few breaths, then lower your hips. Repeat for 10 reps.

5. Knee-to-Chest Stretch:

Lie on your back and bring one knee toward your chest, holding it with both hands. Hold for 20-30 seconds, then switch legs.

6. Hamstring Stretch:

Lie on your back and raise one leg, keeping it straight. Loop a towel or band around your foot and gently pull your leg toward you. Hold for 20-30 seconds, then switch legs.

Remember, every step you take towards better mobility and reduced pain brings you closer to a more fulfilling life.

If you find yourself needing personalized guidance, expert advice, and a dedicated team to support your journey towards a pain-free life, look no further than Progressive Edge Physical Therapy. Our experienced and caring physical therapists are ready to work with you, tailoring a plan that suits your individual needs.

Take the next step towards a healthier, happier you by contacting us today. Reach out at 201-563-8418 to schedule a consultation or visit us in person at Union, NJ. You deserve a life without the constraints of lower back pain, and we’re here to help you achieve that.

Let Progressive Edge Physical Therapy be your partner in reclaiming your vitality and mobility. Don’t wait – take action now and embark on a path to a more active, pain-free lifestyle.

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What Does “Active Rest” Mean?

Do you work out? If so, how often do you exercise? Whether you’re trying to lose weight or get buff, working for your health or confidence, you may be in a rush to see results. 

You may think working out all days of the week, pushing every muscle to the absolute limit, is critical. Unfortunately, refusing active or even passive rest days is counterproductive. To ensure your workout is optimal for your well-being, we at Progressive Edge Physical Therapy in Union, NJ explain how to leverage active rest and reach out for physical therapy if things don’t go as planned. 

What Happens When You Work Out?

While working out, you’re straining your muscles, causing the tissues to rip slightly. Although satellite cells around the fibers work to patch these breaks in muscle tissues, they won’t have a chance to remedy the area if you’re constantly working out. That’s because you’re repeatedly pulling at the muscles.

Properly healing means giving your cells a chance to repair damaged tissues, making a rest day a must. While this may sound counterproductive, keeping your body from mending these rips can painfully and permanently damage your muscles, not only parting you from your fitness journey but also everyday activities. 

Why Is Active Rest Essential?

Rest days don’t have to be completely passive. Taking one to two days for a lighter fitness regimen keeps your body active and allows your muscles to heal. Any low-intensity exercises that don’t leave you winded, such as taking a stroll through the neighborhood park or doing some stretching in the living room, also maintain momentum, improving your quality of life.

What Should You Consider Doing on Your Active Rest Days?

Other activities you should take advantage of on your much-needed active rest days, keeping you from needing physical therapy, include:

  • Speed walking just above your usual strolling pace, or hiking, as long as it doesn’t heavily affect your breathing or heart rate
  • Yoga or light stretching to promote healthy muscle healing while maintaining a hearty blood flow
  • Swimming for smooth and dynamic resistance from the pressure of the water, slowly building your strength and endurance while reducing joint impact
  • Cycling or low-intensity ellipticals, which provide a light cardio workout
  • Cardio exercises such as jump roping, trampoline jumping, or pogo stick hopping, as long as you keep it light

When Are You Most in Need of an Active Rest Day?

Taking at least one day a week for active rest is ideal, but feeling extremely sore to the point where you’re struggling with your usual workout indicates you need time off immediately. 

Switching to a low-intensity activity for the day alleviates soreness and reduces downtime since lighter exercises increase blood flow and amino acids to the affected areas. This strategy also lowers stress on your body that could otherwise land you in physical therapy.

How Is Passive Rest Different?

Passive rest means your body is submissive, sitting in front of the television or lounging around the house. Many physical therapists warn against doing so because it painfully tightens muscles the day after a rigorous workout, but it can be helpful under certain circumstances:

  • If you’ve received an injury from your workout, you’ll need a few weeks to recuperate, keeping the injury from worsening. Consider going in for physical therapy to work out any kinks, and have your medical history handy for your physical therapist, so they know how to best treat you.
  • It’s also okay to take a passive rest day from all activities if your body is feeling unusually tired. Always listen and respond to your body’s needs.

Since There’s No Guarantee, Trust Us for Physical Therapy

The last thing you need is to lose your freedom and ability to move, barring you from enjoying your favorite activities and spending time with those you love. Sadly, even with passive or active rest days, an awkward barbell lift or drastic weight increase can lead to injury. 

Don’t take more rest days than necessary because of a pull or sprain. Trust Progressive Edge Physical Therapy for physical therapy in Union, NJ and get back to your life and workout regimen as soon as possible. We’ll diagnose and treat any impairing conditions when you call 201-563-8418 today!

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Tips for Staying Active in the Heat

Summer is here, which means that it’s hot. In some parts of the U.S., midsummer of 2021 is hotter than ever before. The risk for heat-related illness spikes during the summer, so it’s important to be extra cautious when exercising on those hot days to protect your health.

Heat exhaustion and other heat-related illness during hot weather are a real possibility. Whether you are just walking the dog or engaging in strenuous exercise, there is a greater risk to your health, so be sure to take precautions.

To urge you to stay safe and preserve your health during this hot weather, we at Progressive Edge Physical Therapy Clinic put together this helpful guide on how to stay active, stay cool, and stay safe when under the sun.

General Tips for Active Exercise in the Heat

Pick the Right Time

If possible, try not to do active exercise between 1 p.m. and 5 p.m., as these are usually the hottest times of the day. Plan your exercise schedule and put your workouts either in the early morning or later in the evening to guard your health.

Drink Plenty of Fluids

Many people underestimate how much they sweat when doing exercises, so be sure to drink plenty of fluids. Drink plenty of water during and after your workouts. Afterwards, you can cool down and recharge with a sports drink. Sports drinks have electrolytes like potassium and sodium that you lose when you sweat.

Dress Smartly

You’ll need to regulate your body temperature in the heat, so wear light, comfy, non-restrictive clothing that provides airflow. Pick clothing made from soft, breathable fabrics like cotton or polyester and avoid materials like nylon or wool.

Don’t Overexert Yourself

You know your body, so watch for signs of heatstroke, especially if you are not used to exercising in hot weather. Don’t be afraid to take it easy while in the heat and limit your routine a bit.

Take Frequent Breaks

It’s a wise idea to take frequent breaks when working out under the sun, even if you feel like you may not need it. Heat exhaustion might not be immediately apparent, so rest often and check your temperature periodically.

Watch Out for the Sun

You not only have to worry about the heat but also the sun’s harmful rays. It’s advisable to wear sunscreen even if you are only outside for a short time. You should also work out indoors in the living room to avoid exercising in the sun. 

Fuel Up Before and After

You’ll burn more calories working out under the sun, so eat a nutritious snack about 30-40 minutes before active exercise. Foods high in protein and natural sugars such as nuts, fruits, vegetables, and legumes are great pre-workout foods. After exercise, eat something high in protein and carbohydrates to refuel.

Exercise With a Friend

A workout pal is always a good idea, and that goes double when it is hot outside. Not only is having someone to help you stay motivated beneficial, but you and your workout buddy can look out for symptoms of heat stroke and keep each other safe in case of an emergency.

What Are the Signs of Heat Exhaustion?

Common symptoms of heat exhaustion include

  • Nausea
  • Muscle cramps
  • Dizziness
  • Headaches
  • Excessive sweating
  • Racing heart
  • Weak pulse
  • Confusion or disorientation

If you experience any of these symptoms during exercise, stop working out, drink fluids, and sit in an air-conditioned room to regulate your body’s temperature.

When Do I Need to See a Doctor for Heat-Related Illness?

If you leave it untreated, heat exhaustion can progress to heat stroke. During a heat stroke, your body temperature can reach over 104 degrees F (40 C), which can cause life-threatening complications.

If you still have high body temperature or if heat exhaustion symptoms do not get better after an hour or so, call 911 and get immediate attention. You may need IV fluids if you can’t get enough fluids from drinking.

If you have had a heat stroke in the past, be sure to get clearance from your doctor before engaging in any new activity. Recovering from a heat stroke can take weeks, and it will be a while before you can return to full workout capacity. Once you get cleared, you can gradually build up your stamina and heat resistance.

Stay Smart and Beat the Heat in Hot Weather

The hot weather doesn’t mean you have to lay off exercise. It just means that you need to be more careful about your health. As long as you drink fluids, keep your body temperature cool, and take frequent breaks, you can reduce the risk for heat-related illness.

Are you being held back from exercising in the heat because of aches and pains? Here at Progressive Edge Physical Therapy Clinic, we can get you back to the activities you love. Call us today to find out more at 201-563-8418 or check out our blog for more tips on healthy living.

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Disproving the Myth of Aging and Activity Level

If healthy aging is important to you, a lifestyle that includes healthy habits should be as well. However, some older adults may limit physical activity over concerns about safety, ability, or chronic health conditions. These worries may be due to the myth of aging and activity level, which holds back some older people from starting or maintaining an exercise regimen.

While you may not have the same performance, ability, or endurance that you did when you were younger, that does not mean you cannot benefit from regular exercise. Here is what you need to know to stay active and stop believing in the myths about aging.

Why Physical Activity Is a Good Thing

If you currently exercise regularly, good for you! The best way to stay active is to be active. Any form of movement is better than nothing, and it can help your joint, muscle, and bone health. Older adults may want to check with their medical provider before starting any new exercise, especially if they have an ongoing health condition or are recovering from an injury.

A well-balanced exercise regimen should include strength training, balance, posture, and flexibility. Aerobic exercise is important for your cardiovascular health to keep your heart pumping and blood flowing. Exercise can also be fun and social, providing mental benefits as well.

Exercise Yields Big Benefits

One myth about aging is that physical fitness is not possible in older age. As people age, they may not want to participate in formal exercise or intense workouts. Public health experts recommend about 20 minutes of moderate exercise daily, which can be broken into several sessions, such as a ten-minute walk in the morning and ten minutes of stretching in the evening. You do not have to lift weights every day or run a marathon to achieve health benefits.

What can you expect to gain from exercise? Many older adults can experience these improvements from regular movement:

  • Lower blood pressure and resting heart rate
  • Increased metabolism
  • Better blood flow
  • Bone loss prevention
  • Boost in memory and concentration
  • Better balance
  • Improved sleep
  • Reduced depression and anxiety
  • Prevention of Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia

With physical and mental health benefits, exercise delivers a lot for people at any age.

You’re Never Too Old for an Exercise Program

There are many types of exercise for every age and fitness level. Just as there are seniors who run marathons, there are also older adults who are bedridden or have serious health problems yet are still able to do simple muscle-strengthening activities.

For example, yoga and tai chi incorporate gentle movement with balance and strength to help older people maintain a healthy bone density. Water fitness classes are another way to move that can reduce pressure on joints and arthritis pain. The key is to incorporate regular stretching and listen to your body if you have an increase in pain.

How Exercise Strengthens Your Body and Mind

Wellness is a combination of physical, mental, and emotional health, and physical activity is the key to achieving it. Younger adults may exercise to look a certain way or maintain a healthy weight. By middle age, however, your focus may shift to preventing a significant health problem, such as diabetes, high blood pressure, or kidney disease.

Among older people, fitness can also keep brains active. Adults in their golden years may find friends through exercise classes at a local gym or senior center. Isolation is a serious concern for older adults, and group exercise fights that loneliness.

Issues with anxiety and depression can also improve with exercise. People of all age groups may report fewer symptoms of these conditions after working out, in part thanks to the release of endorphins that provide a natural mood boost.

An Exercise Routine without Pain or Fear

One of the most common myths regarding exercise and aging is concern about injury. Older adults may have more risk factors than young adults do, but that does not mean physical activity is off-limits.

Consider the last time you or someone you know saw a physical therapist. Did you sit still and wish the pain away or did you have specific exercises to improve range of motion and function as well as pain management? Exercise can help you feel better and reduce pain as long as what you do is appropriate for your ability level.

Push Aside Myths About Healthy Aging

If you are not sure how to stay active or have concerns about pain with activity, talk to a physical therapist at Progressive Edge Physical Therapy. Call us at 201-563-8418 to chat with us about how we can help and get on the path to better movement.

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Arthritis: Tips for Facing Colder Weather this Winter

If you suffer from arthritis, winter is less a call for celebration, snowball fights, and snuggly evenings on the sofa, and more a cause of worry, anxiety and – sadly – pain. Colder weather seems to usher in a worsening of arthritic symptoms, and the winter months can often leave those suffering from its effects with low moods, bed bound, and even worse off than they were a year ago. So in this post, we’re looking at exactly why colder weather affects arthritic joints, how you can avoid the pain associated with this, and ultimately, how you can move forward knowing that the colder months will no longer be a cause of anxiety in your life. Let’s get started.

Because arthritis affects the joints of the body, it’s clear that the colder weather plays a role in these areas. When it gets colder, joints tend to expand due to the synovial fluid in between the joints increasing in thickness. Essentially, synovial fluid aids in the fluid movement of joints, that is, movement without pain. When this fluid increases in thickness and viscosity, ease of movement decreases, thereby causing a ‘rubbing’ effect and, in essence, a lot of discomfort and pain. Hence, arthritis symptoms are greatly exacerbated.

Now, the thing is that, if you’re like so many other people suffering from weather-related joint pain, specifically in terms of arthritis, it might just seem easier to ‘wait it out’. And I understand that. Sitting still, not really addressing the issue, and waiting for the pain to pass seems like a logical thing to do. Unfortunately, this response only serves to make things worse in the long term. As the discomfort lies in the joints, not moving them or allowing the synovial fluid to heat and become fluid once more, means that the problem actually gets worse and the pain will exponentially increase. So, staying still and hoping the pain will disappear actually does you no favors – it’s far better to take decisive action against the pain, and I’m here to help you do it. Let’s take a look at a few tips for you:

  1. Exercise

If you think this is a little self-explanatory, do not give up reading just yet. There are specific exercises that you can do to improve your arthritic pain, thereby increasing mobility and quality of life. To name but a few, you could try the following:

  • Arms over head raises: slowly raise your arms above your head, hold for 5 – 10 seconds, and gently drop them down again. Repeat this consecutively for 3 – 5 minutes at a time.
  • Roll your shoulders: keep your shoulders mobile by rolling them forwards and backwards in a controlled manner. Make sure your neck doesn’t slump forward, and be careful of overstretching the muscles. Listen to your body and keep moving your shoulder for 3 – 5 minutes at a time.
  • Finger curls: if you suffer from arthritis in your hands, this one is a must-do! Curl your fingers in and out, increasing their mobility. Make sure you stretch your fingers out when you curl them back out, and curl them in in a controlled motion. This will increase the heat in your joints, thereby increasing mobility and ultimately decreasing pain.

Please remember that any exercises you do need to be low-impact. Any impact you inflict on your joints could exacerbate the arthritis and therefore the pain. Always be sure to listen to your body, and if you have any doubts or questions, speak to a qualified, hands-on physical therapist for help.

  • Keep your Weight in Check

As arthritis is related to the joints, extra weight translates into extra pressure placed on them. By eating healthy and maintaining a good BMI, you will decrease the pressure on your joints and thereby decrease the pain. Try to eat more vegetables, less processed food, and avoid sugar.

  • Keep Hydrated

I think you’ll know why this is included… synovial fluid is made up of a large percentage of water. If you do not have enough water in your body, the synovial fluid thickens. This, combined with colder weather, is a recipe for disaster. Be sure to drink enough water – if you are a woman, aim for 1.5l – 2l per day, and if you’re a man, aim for 2l – 2.5l a day.

These tips aside, what happens when you do experience a flair up? How can you reduce the pain in that moment? Once thing to try is applying some heat at 10 minute intervals: this heats the synovial fluid, thereby allowing for ease of movement and a decrease in pain. You could also stretch, as stretching allows the fluid to move. It will also ease pressure in the joints, thereby lessening discomfort and pain.

That having been said, arthritis – especially during the winter – can be very difficult to face. It isn’t easy, and the daily pain can be debilitating. That’s why contacting and speaking to a hands-on qualified physical therapist is the best thing you can do. Not only will a physical therapist be able to treat the root cause of the problem, thereby ensuring lasting pain eradication, but he/she will also equip you with all the tools, exercises, stretches, and knowledge you need to face flair ups and winters on your own, at home. Physical therapy will enable you to understand how arthritis works, what you personally can do to avoid the pain, and it will give you the confidence to tackle the potential of future flair ups with tailor-made programs and exercises.

This winter, make sure that arthritis doesn’t get you down. Don’t let the pain keep you from spending time with your family or making the most of the beautiful winter months. The tips above aim to give you a glimpse into the benefits of proactive action, and we truly hope that they help. For more information, advice, treatment, or simply a shoulder to lean on, why not contact one of our professional, friendly physical therapists, today? We look forward to getting you back to the life you deserve: one that is pain free and full of joy.

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Your Guide to Stress Management

Stress can be a killer: from making you lose sleep, to raising your blood pressure and alienating loved ones, it can have a massive impact on not only your mental wellbeing, but your physical health, too. Stress places pressure on your heart, tightens your muscles and causes you to lose flexibility and mobility over time, too; stress can literally rob you of your independence in many ways. This post comes at a time where each and every one of us – globally – has had to deal with more stress overall, and juggling the COVID-19 pandemic, financial pressure, and trying to maintain our physical health, has been taking a serious toll. In this post, then, we offer you some guidelines for dealing with stress – we hope these tips will promote a better, relaxed lifestyle, a healthier body, and a happier you. Follow along and try your best to implement them throughout your day. Here we go!

Exercise Matters!

I think you knew this might be the first tip, right? Stress and exercise are just not compatible – they are a bit like water and oil. As we get stressed, our bodies don’t produce as much endorphins or serotonin as they normally would. Hormone production is relegated to other parts of the body in order to deal with the stress in a bid to deploy crises management strategies. When we exercise, though, we facilitate the production of endorphins and serotonin, thereby lifting our moods and allowing us to tackle stress in a renewed and healthful way. Going for a nice walk, jog, or gym work-out can do wonders in terms of flipping the script on stress – give it a go… after reading the rest of this post, of course!

Cutting down on Caffeine

You might not have wanted to see this one, here… but, it’s true. Caffeine can cause our stress levels to sore, as sadly, it increases anxiety and tension. In fact, your morning Java may be doing you more harm than good because, in addition to increasing anxiety, caffeine disrupts sleep patterns, thereby increasing stress further. Cutting down on caffeine intake by drinking more herbal teas is a good place to start. 

Water for the Win

On that note, stress thrives on dehydration. Drinking enough water throughout your day is vital in maintaining both a healthy mind and body. Water lubricates your muscles, feeds the brain, and gives you a feeling of health and wellbeing that other drinks simply can’t give. Yes, there is water in your coffee, tea, and orange juice, but there is also unwanted sugar, caffeine, and preservatives. Keep it clean and fuel your body with wholesome fluids.

Looking After your Mind and Body: Self-Care

We live in a world that seems to have been spun off of its center: from pandemics, to protests, to technology, to wars, things can seem all but too much. So, self-care is incredibly important. We need to take time to assess our lifestyle choices and our situations – doing so will not only introduce a sense of control, but will also give us serenity in stressful situations. Why not try meditating or doing some Yoga, for example? Step away from the screens, make a nice cup of tea, and take to a mat. While you may not be a Tibetan yogi, taking some time to put a little incense on, listen to some calming music, and concentrate on nothing but your body, is a powerful way of centering yourself and reigning in those stressful thoughts. You can meditate while walking or running, too. If that’s not for you, though, try doing something you love a few times a week; maybe you like to read, go to spas, take long baths, or bake – just make sure you prioritize that time for yourself, as doing so will give you the resilience to tackle the outside stresses.

Breathe Correctly

Isn’t it odd how such an instinctual mechanism can actually contribute greatly to the level of stress you experience? Breathing is essential in maintaining a healthy, happy, stress-free you. Most of us breathe from our chests, thereby resulting in flat breathing… which doesn’t necessarily circulate oxygen as successfully as it ought to. If we focus on breathing from our diagrams, however, oxygen is more readily available and our blood oxygen levels increase significantly. The result? You feel healthier, more energetic, and you certainly feel more capable of dealing with external pressures that cause stress. Breathing techniques can be learned – all that you need is an open mind and willingness to learn! Start taking some deeper breaths, right now!

So, there you have it: some powerful tips for overcoming the stress in your life. It’s not easy, though, and we understand that. But, we also know that keeping on top of stress is a necessary step in maintaining health and wellbeing, both mentally and physically.

If you are unsure of where to start, you feel overwhelmed, or feel the negative physical/mental effects of chronic stress in your life, please contact us. Though you may not have known this, qualified, professional physical therapists can help you relieve your stress. In addition, if an existing injury is in and of itself causing you stress, please reach out. Our physical therapists can help relieve your pain, ease muscle tension teach and guide you through invaluable, tailor-made techniques for avoiding the stresses you encounter on a daily basis, can offer you the tools to help you stave off stress in the future, and can even help you with your breathing! So, please, contact as today – you are not alone and we are here to help.

We really want you to be healthy, happy, and stress free. The tips we went over in this post should act as guidelines for your life – get out there and do some exercise, drink enough water, moderate technology use, and make sure you give yourself time to unwind. Stay healthy and happy!

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The Benefits of Outdoor Exercise

As the summer fades and the cooler weather sweeps in, the trees begin to change and so do our mind-sets. Whilst we may indulge in a few more takeout nights, or drink one or two more hot chocolates, many people also venture outside to do more outdoors activities. Hiking, walking, and a general movement away from the cities into nature seems to be a common theme for the fall months. With this general influx of interest in movement and fitness, we thought it would be a good time to give you some information on why being outdoors is healthy. We want you to know how it actually boosts not only our physical bodies, but our minds and mental wellbeing, too. So, let’s jump straight in!

One of the biggest benefits of being out in the open air is the exposure we get to sunlight. All too often we spend our days sitting in front of a computer or slaving away in a building of some sort – getting out for a stroll, a run, a hike, or even a cycle means we give our bodies a much needed boost of vitamin D. How? Well, the sunshine vitamin is one of the few that we can’t actually derive naturally from food – we get it predominantly from the sun or from fortified foods such a milk. It’s quite apt that we get it from the sun, really, as vitamin D is the ‘happy vitamin’; it helps the body produce serotonin, alleviates stress, and elevates moods. And remember… a happy body is, of course, a healthy one. So, get out for some sun!

In addition to catching a few rays, outdoor activities promote much better oxygenation in the body. You’re probably wondering why this is important, right? Well, good oxygen levels lead to greater cardiovascular health, a better aerobic capacity (fitness level), and greater muscular strength. Got your attention? Good, now get yourself outside!

As mentioned, outdoor activities and exercise isn’t just about the positive changes to your body – though these are inevitably part-and-parcel of doing them. In fact, a large proportion of the positive attributes associated with outdoor activity comes in the form of mental health. For one thing, exercising outdoors promotes a sense of adventure and excitement. Think about it for a moment – which would you rather do? Would you rather sit on your stationary bike for an hour every day or be out in the woods amongst the trees seeing new places as you cycle along? And whilst there’s nothing wrong with stationary bikes, being in new situations and places gives one a sense of accomplishment and growth, not to mention that it ultimately challenges one’s adaptation skills and expands them exponentially – this in and of itself is something worth putting on your sneakers for!

There is so much to be said for being outside. You may not know it, but being indoors for hours on end actually means that you’re depriving your mind of valuable time to connect with nature. In effect, it means you are constantly looking for ways to distract yourself from ‘being in the moment’.

Let’s take a second to unpack that. What does ‘being in the moment’ mean? Well, initially it means being conscious of those activities you’re doing while you’re doing them. In other words, it means being entirely connected to the task at hand. When we’re indoors it may mean that we have a television blaring in the background, the stove is turned on and the spaghetti is boiling over, the kids are wrecking their rooms upstairs, or your partner just fell asleep with the heating turned on high. There are always distractions inside your home or office, thus, getting outdoors is a welcome reprieve from the constant hive of activity you’re normally faced with. Being in the moment is, then, a way to connect to the world around you rather that interfering with it. You simply give yourself the opportunity to observe the world around you. Can you imagine what doing this on a daily basis would mean for you? Less stress, deeper breathing, more time to think, and so much more quality time with the ones you love. That sounds like a pretty good deal to me.

And there’s more! One of the biggest benefits of outdoor exercise is that your immune system will get stronger. It’s strange to think about, but it’s true. As you’re exposed to new environments, new smells, and different air, your immune system will develop better coping mechanisms when it comes to disease… and you’ll definitely be able to stave off germs in more efficient ways. This is precisely why so many experts recommend outdoor play for children – the world outside is invaluable when it comes to developing a strong immune system.

Let me tell you one last secret… outdoor exercise will help keep you young! Yes, that’s right! I’m not talking about the type of ‘young’ you get from Botox injections. Nope, what I’m talking about is the real, healthful, youthful energy you can achieve by being outdoors and doing different activities. Your joints and muscles will grow strong, you’ll become more flexible and resilient, and you’ll feel so much better about yourself. The type of strength you’ll build during outdoor activities will not only make you feel younger in and of itself, but will also mitigate the risk of injury as you get older. Doesn’t that sound amazing?

At the end of the day, it’s easy to feel tired or irritable after work, but the benefits of getting those running shoes on and heading off down the road cannot be understated. So, if you’re unsure about where to start, what to do, or even if you’re well enough to attempt outdoor activities, why not consult a professional hands-on physical therapist for advice? In the same vein, a physical therapist can also treat and secure a pain free future if you’re currently suffering from pain – he/she will help you get outdoors and into the life you’ve dreamt of living. With professional advice, stretches, and treatments, a physical therapist will get you out there in no time! So, what are you waiting for? The great outdoors awaits!

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