The Best Medicine

Whether you’re jumping into an impromptu soccer match with your kids, a leisurely hike, a quick nine holes, or just visiting some shops downtown, joint pain due to wear and tear or previous injury can put a real damper on your favourite pastimes.

Although pain may cause you to think twice about incorporating exercise into your daily routine for fear of aggravating a condition, most frequently, strength training can help eliminate the need for medication or even surgery.

Here are a few points to ponder if strength training is in your future:

  1. Quality over quantity – Exercise form needs to be a primary focus of a strength training regimen. Getting help from an experienced trainer can mean the difference between increasing strength and movement proficiency or increasing pain and possibly making bad movement habits worse. Often, a well-intentioned strength-training enthusiast will feel frustrated when their efforts fall short due to either inappropriate exercise selection, improper exercise form or a combination of both.
  1. The program – When preparing to add exercise to your daily routine, an extremely important consideration is the type of exercise. Obviously, a trick knee would not fare well after an intense boot camp session, and arthritic shoulders don’t appreciate machine-based chest and shoulder workouts. A well-rounded exercise program absolutely needs to incorporate natural human movement patterns which include twisting, bending, lunging, squatting, pulling and pushing. Whether you’re training for an up-coming Olympic event or just for living life to its fullest, the choice of exercises ought to improve functional fitness. Simple is often best. Exercises which use one’s own bodyweight provide plenty of challenge and they are safe as well as self-limiting. The goal of any strength-training program should be to incorporate effective ways to increase strength while minimizing risk of injury.
  1. Time is on your side – Beginning a strength training program is the best decision one can make for improving their quality of life. It is imperative to stay focused and don’t rush. Stay the course and log results to make certain the plan is staying in line with your goals. There may be hurdles to overcome along the way, but gains will be noticeable even early on in the process. At times, it may seem that pain is getting worse as a result of the new physical demands being placed on the body, but that pain should decrease as time goes by and as strength and exercise tolerance improve. It’s important to take note of exercises that cause pain either during the movements or in days following the movements. If necessary, adjustments to how the exercise is being performed or making substitutions to exercises may be appropriate.

The positive effects of a proper exercise regime can not be underestimated. Strength training will restore vigour and vitality, as well as reduce pain, but the benefits do not end there. Heart health, improved brain function, increased bone density, weight management, improved sleep and disease prevention make exercise a no-brainer at any age.

The earlier in life one begins strength training the better, however, it is never too late to reap the bounty of this pro-active and healthy hobby.

Contact me here to book your assessment.

Registered Holistic Nutritionist (R.H.N) – Canadian School of Natural Nutrition

Certified Personal Training Specialist – CanFitPro

Functional Movement Screen Certified

Biomechanics Specialist

Steve Maxwell Level 1 Kettlebell Instructor