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CHIROPRACTIC SERVICES


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CHIROPRACTIC SERVICES


Chiropractic

What does a chiropractic adjustment consist of?

A chiropractic adjustment is the use of a specific force in a precise direction that helps normalize spinal function. When the 24 bones that protect the spinal cord lose the normal position or motion, delicate nerve tissue can become irritated. If a thorough examination reveals malfunctioning areas of the spine, chiropractic adjustments may be recommended to help this condition.

What are the sounds I am hearing (cracking or popping)?

This noise does not come from your bones; it comes from the release of gas when two joints in your body are separated. This action is very similar to the sound you hear when you crack your knuckles or scrunch up your toes when you’re stretching. Dr. Koh is also trained in other specialized techniques where no popping or cracking is heard or felt.

What is an Activator?

An Activator is a specialized chiropractic treatment device. It uses low force to treat problems in your spine and is excellent for those patients who prefer a more gentle type of treatment.

Will I need x rays?

Just as a dentist or doctor routinely uses an x-ray to show any irregularities in bone structure, Chiropractors may need to take an x-ray of your spine to fully understand your unique spinal structure.

X-rays enable Chiropractors to rule out serious pathology, and study your case in order to decide upon the most effective course of care.

X-Rays will only be performed if absolutely necessary, usually in cases involving trauma or injury.

How long does it take to heal?

Each patient’s healing process depends on the extent of their injury, past medical history and if he/she follows the instructions given by the doctor on the best route to achieving optimal Chiropractic health. If the above are followed, most patients are surprised at how much their pain or discomfort has subsided in such a short time!

Do I have to continue with chiropractic care for the rest of my life?

No. Dr. Koh will work with each individual patient to determine his or her concerns, and what an appropriate health plan will consist of.  Suggestions will be made based upon the framework of what each patient is seeking but the patient always has the right to choose. We will always respect your decision.

Must I do stretches and exercises?

Providing patients with the tools for self management is an important part of what we do at our clinic.  Rest assured that any stretches and exercises prescribed are safe for your condition.  Once we have helped you return to optimum health, exercises have an important role to play in maintaining your vitality.

Must my practitioner refer me?

No. Chiropractors are portal of entry health care providers. Anyone may come in for a consultation and initial examination.

Are there any risks of seeing a Chiropractor?

Dr. Koh will perform an initial consultation to determine if you are a good candidate for chiropractic adjustments and Activator methods in terms of patient safety and likelihood of success. He will provide personalized treatment according to your individual condition.

If you are not a good candidate for chiropractic care, Dr. Koh will be sure to refer you to the appropriate health care provider.

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ACUPUNCTURE


ACUPUNCTURE


What is acupuncture?

Acupuncture is the practice of inserting thin, solid needles into the skin at specific points in the body. It is a traditional chinese medicine technique that has been helping people for over 2000 years treating a variety of conditions.

Is it painful?

The method of acupuncture is performed with such a precise method; very little, if any, discomfort is detected. Any discomfort quickly subsides. When acupuncture is performed by a certified, licensed practitioner, most patients feel very relaxed during the procedure.  Typical sensations range from a tingling, warmth or pressure to a dull ache.

What does acupuncture treat?

Acupuncture has been proven effective on many common ailments such as headaches, migraines, back pain, anxiety,  sciatica, infertility, addictions, circulation disorders and much more. You don’t necessarily have to have a particular ailment to benefit from acupuncture; traditional Chinese medicine is based on the idea of prevention of disease by living in balance and harmony – what acupuncture helps to accomplish.

How does it work?

Numerous studies have shown acupuncture points are “hot spots” of the nervous system. By employing needle stimulation, we are able to decrease the sensitivity of the nervous system, thereby reducing your pain!  Acupuncture can also release trigger points and promote relaxation.

How long will it take me to get results?

This will obviously vary from patient to patient depending upon the condition your are being treated for.  Some patients report immediate relief while others will require repeated treatment sessions.  In general, most patients usually require anywhere from 5-10 sessions.

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ORTHOTICS


ORTHOTICS


Orthotics

Our bodies generate a tremendous amount of stress and strain on our feet with every step we take.  This can present as arch, heel, ankle, knee or even back pain.

Custom orthotics help reduce pain and discomfort by rebalancing and supporting your feet where they need it the most.

Brands Available

Specs & Spines works in conjunction with The Orthotic Group and International Orthotics Labs to ensure quality results in a timely manner. Both providers are trusted sources that provides quality footwear and orthotics for men, women and youth and we are proud to work with them to provide quality orthotic materials for our patients. Footwear for any occasion or season is available – simply inquire at reception or ask Dr. Koh when you are in for your appointment.  We have an extensive selection of footwear available.  Please contact Specs & Spines for the latest in availability, styles and pricing.

 

Orthotics FAQ

+ What is the difference between an “over the counter” orthotic and a CUSTOM made orthotic?

A custom orthotic is molded to your individual foot to align it in the most anatomical efficient position. Orthotics work on your feet in a similar manner that glasses work for your eyes. They reduce stress and strain on your body to keep your feet in proper alignment. While all insoles will help reduce pain and pressure on your feet, only a custom made orthotic is made specifically for you! They not only feel better but will last much longer, they are backed by our warranty.

+ WHAT ARE CUSTOM ORTHOTICS?

Custom orthotics may look like regular insoles, however they are biomechanical medical inserts that are tailored to your individual foot imbalance and body mechanics. They are constructed of specialized materials that will last much longer than anything that can be bought in stores. Orthotics help to reduce strain not only on your feet and back, but your whole body.

+ HOW DO CUSTOM ORTHOTICS WORK?

Custom orthotics correct the imbalances and abnormalities in your gait cycle by providing specific support right where it is needed. For example, a patient with flat feet (pes planus) would result in a condition called overpronation. A custom orthotic would correct this condition by providing proper support along the arch, reducing strain in adjacent joints. This prevents overcompensation by the surrounding structures.

+ How often do I need to wear my orthotics?

The more you wear your orthotics, the more benefit you will receive. If your lifestyle requires different types of footwear, ask us about footwear options optimized for your activities. We often fabricate different types of orthotics for more strenuous activities (running, crossfit, basketball, baseball, etc.)

+ Will my new orthotics feel uncomfortable?

As with all types of new footwear, there is an adjustment period that accompanies your orthotics. Remember, your orthotics are working hard to correct your alignment and you may feel more pressure in certain areas of your feet during this time. We always recommend wearing your orthotics in 2 hour intervals for a period of 2 weeks until you become accustomed to them.

 

What conditions do Orthotics treat?

Orthotics are helpful for treating a variety of conditions, including:

ACHILLES TENDONITIS

This is inflammation of the tendon that runs along the back part of your leg.  People who tend to run uphill are prone to this condition.  If the ankle is unable to flex properly, the tissues surrounding the tendon become inflamed and damaged.


ILLOTIBIAL BAND SYNDROME

The iliotibial band is an extension of the TFL muscle that runs down the side of your leg.  As the muscle slides over your hip during movement, it can often become tight and inflamed.  People who run downhill and on banked tracks are prone to this issue.


METATARSALGIA

This condition often presents as pain or tenderness at the ball of the foot (near your toes).  It is often most pronounced during weight bearing activity.  Sometimes people experience sharp pains when the toes are flexed.  Other times experience numbness and tingling in the toes.  Causes include being overweight, certain foot shapes (high arches) and footwear choices (high heels).

  • ARCH PAIN

  • HEEL PAIN

  • FLAT FEET (PES PLANUS)

  • BUNIONS

  • OVERPRONATION

  • SUPINATION


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LASER THERAPY


LASER THERAPY


Light phototherapy or laser therapy as it is commonly known, uses a specialized light to penetrate the skin and tissues to stimulate the body’s natural repair process.  This results in decreased pain, swelling, inflammation and remarkably reduced healing time.

It works well for athletic injuries, repetitive strain injuries, as well as both acute and chronic conditions.  It does so by stimulating the bodies natural healing process resulting in a safe, gentle effective treatment.  

How does it work?

Laser therapy stimulates the cells of the injured area with light at specialized wavelengths.  This results in photochemical reactions where the body’s cells produce energy at an increased rate.  This biochemical increase in energy optimizes cell function for recovery.  Efficiency increases and the body heals itself faster.  The benefits of laser therapy include:

·       Increased cell metabolism

·       Reduction of local inflammation

·       Relief of acute and chronic pain

·       Increased local blood circulation and lymphatic drainage

·       Collagen and muscle tissue repair

What conditions does it treat?

  • Plantar Fasciitis
  • Achilles tendonitis
  • Diabetic Foot Ulcer healing
  • Muscle Spasms or tension
  • Fibromyalgia and Neuralgia
  • Lower Back Pain
  • Herpes Simplex and Herpes Zoster (Shingles)
  • Carpel Tunnel Syndrome – Hand
  • Whiplash Neck Injuries
  • Migraine Headaches
  • TMJ of Jaw – Temporo Mandibular Joint Dysfunction
  • Rotator Cuff Syndrome
  • Post Operative Knee and Hip Rehabilitation
  • Ankle Sprains
  • Cosmetic facial Contouring, Scars and Keloid repair
  • Chronic Pain and Acute Pain reduction
  • Soft Tissue Injuries
  • Arthritis – Rheumatoid and Osteo Arthritis and Bursitis
  • Swelling
  • Inflammation conditions
  • Bruising
  • Edema
  • Post surgical healing of scars, incision site and pain, swelling, bruising
  • Strains of muscle, muscle and tendon tears, Ligaments
  • Sprains of ankle and other places
  • Sports medicine for injury of athletes
  • Sinusitis
  • Headache
  • Foot Pain

 

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LEARN ABOUT BACK HEALTH


LEARN ABOUT BACK HEALTH


CLICK ON THE TEXT BELOW TO FIND OUT MORE ABOUT IMPROVING BACK HEALTH

+ "BACK" AT WORK - AVOIDING PAIN AT THE OFFICE

As your workload at the office increases, so do repetitive actions, such as typing, using your computer mouse and talking on the phone. These routine tasks seem simple, but they can add a level of physical stress to the emotional and mental stress of getting the job done. In fact, repetitive strain injuries have skyrocketed in the last 20 years due to the increasing reliance on workplace technology.

Try these tips to reduce the strain:

Computer Monitor
Position your computer screen directly in front of you. Allow the muscles in your eyes to relax by following the 20/20/20 rule: Take a 20-second break every 20 minutes and focus on an object that is at least 20 feet away from you.

Telephone
Use your hand to support the telephone against your ear and alternate sides regularly. Do not cradle the phone between your ear and your shoulder. Consider using a headset or speaker.

Chair
Sit upright and all the way to the back. Place a support cushion or roll against the arch of your low back for lumbar spine support. Here are some tips to help you adjust your chair:

Stand in front of the chair and adjust the height so that the highest point of the seat is just below your knee.
Sit on the chair and make sure that your knees are bent at approximately a 90-degree angle when your feet are flat on the floor.
Adjust the backrest forwards and backwards as well as up and down until it fits the hollow in your lower back.

Sit upright with your arms hanging by your sides. Bend your elbows at about a right angle and adjust the armrest height until they barely touch the undersides of the elbows. Remove the armrest from the chair if the right level cannot be achieved.

Lastly, don’t forget to take a quick stretch break or change position every 30 to 45 minutes. Your back, neck and shoulders will thank you for it!

5 TIPS FOR SELECTING OFFICE CHAIRS

When shopping for the best ergonomic office chair, getting a chair that fits your unique needs should be the top priority. Not every chair labeled “ergonomic” has all the adjustment features necessary to truly be ergonomic. Here are the top 5 things you need to consider to help you make a better selection.

  1. Seat pan comfort and shape

When you sit in the chair the seat pan should be at least one inch wider than your hips and thighs on either side. The seat pan should not be too long for your legs otherwise it will either catch you behind the knees or it will prevent you from leaning fully back against the lumbar support. Most ergonomic chairs have a seat pan with a waterfall front that prevents the seat from catching you behind the knees. The seat pan should also be contoured to allow even weight distribution and it should be comfortable to sit on.

  1. Think adjustable

Always ensure that your chair is pneumatically adjustable so that you can adjust seat pan height while you are sitting on the chair.

You should be able to adjust the height of the seat pan so that the front of your knees is level or slightly below level and your feet are firmly on the ground. In most cases there should be no need for you to use a footrest. The mechanism to adjust seat height should be easy to reach and operate when you are seated.

  1. Lumbar support is key

Many chairs have cushioned lumbar supports that can be adjusted up and down and forwards and backwards to best fit your shape. If the chair will be used by multiple users then this level of adjustment may be required. However if you are the primary user of the chair then a fixed lumbar support may be acceptable, if it feels comfortable.

  1. Don't forget about the hips

A chair that doesn’t provide enough hip room can make you sit too far forwards on the seat pan, which doesn’t provide so that you will not have enough thigh support.

  1. Have a long-term strategy

Think about how the chair will feel after 60 or 120 minutes. Low-density foam seat pans can become permanently deformed after long term use which can affect cushioned support leading to discomfort, imbalance and hip and back fatigue.

And one bonus tip!

  1. Chair covers 101

There is a whole range of upholstery materials available, each of which has benefits and concerns. Vinyl and vinyl-like coverings are easy to clean and spill resistant, but they don’t breathe and if the chair begins to heat up under the thighs uncomfortable amounts of moisture can accumulate. Cloth upholstery is the most common covering, but this is less resistant to spills and more difficult to clean. A cloth covered seat pan can also become warm and moisture laden, and cloth covered foam seat pans can be a significant source of dust mite allergen. When selecting your chair covering think about cleaning and maintenance issues and plan appropriately.


+ PREGNANCY AND BACK HEALTH

Now that your little one is born, you’re learning what putting baby first means to your body.
While that’s normal, taking care of your health is equally important.

Let’s face it – lifting an infant several times a day is hard work, and can create damage to your back if you’re not careful. With a baby in one arm and a diaper bag on the other, keeping the stress off your lower back is another balancing act to master. Luckily, a chiropractor can help you.

Did you know?
A study in the Journal of Orthopaedics reported that 50-90% of pregnant women will likely experience lower back pain. This pain may persist after giving birth if you don’t take action.

Keep your back healthy at home
Here are some ways to reduce the risk of back and neck pain:

Lighten your load
Choose a diaper bag that distributes weight evenly across your body to limit the stress of isolated muscles.

Stretch your body
While your baby is old enough for tummy time, join them on the floor and do some exercises to stretch your neck and back.

Feed comfortably
When nursing, avoid hunching and keep your baby close to you. Also choose a comfortable, upright chair with a pillow.

Keep your baby close
Don’t stretch your arms out – bring your baby close to your chest before lifting. Consider wearing your baby on your front so you can alleviate the strain on your back.

Keep tub trouble at bay
Avoid reaching or twisting when bending over a tub. When kneeling, use a non-slip mat to protect your knees.

Exercises/stretches to help alleviate your back pain at home:

  • Shoulder opener
    Breathing deeply and calmly, relax your stomach muscles
    Let your head hang loosely forward and gently roll from side to side
    Bring your hands up to your neck and gently massage the back of your head and neck
    Drop your arms to your sides, relax your shoulders & slowly roll them backward and forward for 15 seconds
  • Crossover
    Standing with feet shoulder width apart, raise your hands
    Bring your right elbow across your body while lifting your left knee
    Touch elbow to knee, remaining upright and repeat alternating sides for 15 seconds

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+ GARDENING - BACK TIPS TO KEEP YOUR GREEN THUMBS WORKING

With eighty-eight per cent of Ontario chiropractors reporting that gardening is the most common source of back and neck pain during the warm weather season, the Ontario Chiropractic Association's Plant and Rake Without the Ache public education program is aimed at helping gardeners to avoid the stiff and sore joints, muscle, neck and back pain that sometimes accompanies work in the yard.

Plant and Rake Without the Ache
Gardening is a great way to stay active and have fun in the sun. But many Canadians sustain injuries that can be easily prevented with a little know-how.

The right moves
Use the right moves to lighten the load on your back. Kneel, don’t bend, to plant. Change your body position often. Take frequent breaks. Alternate between light and heavy chores. Drink lots of water. And most importantly, loosen-up before you start out.

Warm up
Before you begin any physical activity, warming up is a key factor in preventing injury. Take a walk, even on the spot. Ten to 15 minutes should do it. Don’t forget to lift your knees and gently swing your arms.

Stretch before you start
To plant and rake without the ache, do each of these stretches five times. Don’t bounce, jerk or strain. Stretches should be gentle and should not cause pain.

YOUR SIDES
Extend your right arm over your head.
Bend to the left from the waist.
Hold for 15 seconds and repeat on the other side.

YOUR ARMS AND SHOULDERS
Hug yourself snugly.
Slowly rotate at the waist as far as is comfortable to the left, then to the right.

YOUR BACK
In a seated position, bend forward from the hips, keeping your head down.
Reach for the ground.

YOUR THIGHS
Face a wall or tree and support yourself against it with one arm.
Bend your right knee and grasp your ankle or pant leg with your left hand.
Hold for 15 seconds and repeat on the other side.

YOUR HAMSTRINGS
Stand.
Reach your hands to the sky.
Then bend at the waist and reach toward your toes.
Hold for 15 seconds.


+ FITNESS TIPS FOR YOUR SUMMER SPORTS (RUNNING, TENNIS, GOLF)

Playing sports, sitting at a desk all day, or even running outside are all simple actions performed in our day-to-day lives. But, did you know that most of these actions require repetitive movement that can often cause muscle strain. The motions of everyday activities can sometimes contribute to common injuries, such as tennis elbow, shoulder tendonitis and shin splints.

Here are three types of preventative exercises you can do at home to help alleviate and prevent those everyday injuries from slowing you down:

  1. Tennis Elbow,
    a common overuse injury that happens in the summer months due to increased sports activity with racquet sports, cycling, or golf.
    Preventative exercise: Eccentric strengthening. Use weights to strengthen the area and muscles used in your favourite activities.

  2. Shoulder Tendonitis, a common injury often due to faulty shoulder mechanics that can be a result of sitting disease.
    Preventative exercise: Chest stretches. Chest stretches helps get the shoulders back into the right position. Shoulder blade exercises are also a great way to help mobilize the muscles around your shoulder blades and strengthen the muscles of the mid-back.

  3. Shin Splints, a common injury as people increase their mileage outdoors. It is caused by running on concrete or other hard surfaces for longer periods of time.
    Preventative exercise: Leg stretches. Use a foam roller to warm up your calf muscles and lower leg muscles prior to running.
    Being mobile and staying active is a great way to keep fit and healthy. Remembering these simple preventative exercises will help you stay on an injury-free path.


+ THE CONCUSSION PLAYBOOK

Concussions are called an ‘invisible injury’ because its symptoms aren’t always easy to recognize and even MRI imaging isn’t perfect at identifying a concussion. But with this kind of brain trauma, the effects are all too real. According to Scientific American, one blow to the head may increase your risk of a mental health disorder. We’ll cover some steps you can take to reduce your chances of suffering long term effects after a hard hit.

What is a Concussion?
A concussion is traumatic brain injury caused when the brain is shaken inside the skull, which can cause damage to blood vessels in the brain or even injury to the brain tissue itself.

All it takes is a hard tumble on the basketball court or a blow to the head or the body. Yes, that’s right — you don’t necessarily have to hit your head. For example, when your body stops suddenly due to a hard tackle or a strong pick, it can cause whiplash and a concussion.

Some people think concussions only happen if you black out. But nine out of ten concussions don’t make you lose consciousness, and some only cause a brief interruption in mental alertness. Studies find that most high school and college athletes don’t report concussions while playing football. They might not realise that a concussion can happen even if you don’t black out.

In the past, athletes in many sports returned to play too soon after a concussion, sometimes even on the same day. But sports and health organizations are starting to take these injuries much more seriously. Trainers, health care professionals and athletes themselves are watching more closely for concussions and taking a more conservative approach to rehabilitation and return to play. This is an important change for the health of athletes everywhere.

Dealing with a Concussion
If you’ve had a concussion, the first 10 days are crucial. During this time you are at the greatest risk for another concussion. Not only that, your risk of getting another concussion rises every time you have one. If you can protect yourself in those first few days, you’ll have much better odds of a full recovery.

But first, you need to know that you have a concussion. Effective concussion management starts with recognizing the signs and symptoms, some of which may show up hours or days after your injury. It is important for parents, coaches, trainers and athletes to recognize these early signs. They typically include:

  • Difficulty thinking clearly, concentrating or remembering new information.
  • Headache, blurry vision, queasiness or vomiting, dizziness, balance problems or sensitivity to noise or light.
  • Irritability, moodiness, sadness or nervousness.
  • Extreme sleepiness or difficulty falling asleep or remaining asleep.

Any athlete with potential concussion warning signs should see a physician as quickly as possible for a diagnosis. Remember, there is no simple test for a concussion. Many concussions can be missed if you rely only on a simple five-minute assessment done on the sidelines.

Athletes, coaches, parents and health care providers should all be up to date on concussions. If you are not comfortable dealing with a concussion yourself, have a concussion plan in place so you know exactly who to ask for help if someone shows warning signs.

Returning to Play
Most people recover within a few days to three months. The Zurich Consensus statement on concussion recovery recommends the following five stages of rehabilitation:

  1. No activity: Focus on recovery. Rest your body and your mind.
  2. Light aerobic exercise: Get your heart rate up with light activities like walking and swimming, but don’t go past 70% of your maximum heart rate. Your goal is to increase your heart rate without risk of re-injury. Do not do any resistance training yet.
  3. Sport-specific exercise: Add movement by re-introducing sport-specific movement like skating or running drills. Do not do anything that might risk a head impact.
  4. Non-contact training drills: Add more complex forms of training to improve your exercise, coordination and cognitive load. This could include passing drills in football and hockey. You may start resistance training again.
  5. Full-contact practice: Once your doctor says it’s okay, you can participate in normal training again. This will build your confidence and skills before returning to play.

At any stage, if you experience any recurring symptoms, restart the process and remain inactive until the symptoms stop.

Returning to play after concussion should occur only with medical clearance from a licenced health care provider trained in the evaluation and management of concussions.

The importance of a team
In all cases it is important to have a healthcare team working together to get you back on the field safely with an eye on your long-term health.

A physician can provide a concussion diagnosis and manage and evaluate your condition in order to provide medical clearance.

Health care practitioners such as chiropractors can help you manage headaches or back and muscle pain you may have as a result of your concussion. It’s important to remember that your injury may have also injured your neck, shoulder or back. While you’re resting and recovering, these injuries might resolve on their own. If not, a chiropractor or a physiotherapist can help you recover and return to play. A full evaluation of your strength and physical function will help you know when your body is ready to get back into sports.

Concussion symptoms can vary widely from person to person: while one person might suffer from pain, another may have depression and trouble sleeping. Education, encouragement, and a commitment to getting you back to your daily activities as soon as it is safe and appropriate are some of the best known strategies to help overcome many of the negative outcomes of concussion. That takes a committed approach from the right health care team alongside family and friends.


+ BACK TO SCHOOL - BACKPACK 101

Kids think it’s “cool” to strap on their backpacks and head out to school. But if they don’t know how to choose, load, lift and wear a pack properly – these all-important accessories can be a pain in the back.

Teaching children the importance of properly using their backpacks is key to helping them avoid injury.

Backpacks can affect your children's health
Carrying a heavy load that is unevenly or improperly distributed can result in poor posture; and even distort the spinal column, throwing it out of alignment. This can cause muscle strain, headaches, back, neck and arm pain, and even nerve damage.

Prevention is key
Choosing the right backpack: Go for lightweight vinyl or canvas. Pick a pack that has two wide, adjustable, padded shoulder straps, along with a hip or waist strap, padded back and plenty of pockets.

Packing it properly
Make sure your child’s pack contains only what is needed for that day, and that the weight is distributed evenly. The total weight of the filled pack should be no more than 10 to 15 percent of the wearer’s body weight.

Putting it on
Put the pack on a flat surface, at waist height. Slip on the pack, one shoulder at a time, and then adjust the straps to fit comfortably.

Wearing it right:
Both shoulder straps should be used, and adjusted so that the pack fits snugly to the body, without dangling to the side. You should be able to slide your hand between the backpack and your child’s back.

Your child’s backpack shouldn’t be a drag. Maintaining good back health in youth may help prevent back problems in later life. So, pack it light and wear it right!


+ HEALTHY AGING AND BACK MOBILITY

Active living is important for your health and wellbeing, no matter what your age is, but it can be vital for older adults.

Being active and mobile can help prevent many chronic conditions that can impact you as you age. Even moderate exercise can contribute to your body’s balance and bone strength, which is why it’s never too late to start exercising.

By incorporating exercise into your daily routine, you can help prevent loss of bone mass, restore and build endurance, strength, balance, and flexibility.

Being active doesn’t mean you have to be a gym addict. It can be as simple as the following:

Brisk Walking
Walking doesn’t require any extra equipment apart from supportive shoes. Taking a walk every day is a simple and effective way to help maintain balance and strength.

Strength Training
Strength training can be adapted for your needs through simple exercises such as leg extensions. In a seated position, straighten out one leg, lift to comfortable height, hold for 10 seconds and put down.

Stretching
Stretching helps you move more freely and can improve your flexibility. Having flexibility helps with tasks such as bending to tie your shoe laces. An easy stretch is the soleus stretch, which helps stretch out your calf muscle. To complete this stretch you, stand in front of a wall with one leg ahead of the other, make sure both feet are pointed towards the wall. Place your palms on the wall at shoulder height for support, bend the knee of your back leg and press the heel into the floor. Lean your hips forward, pushing into the wall and feel the stretch in your back leg. Hold this for 30 seconds and repeat with the other leg. Remember to not stretch so far that it hurts.

If exercise in a gym setting isn’t for you, there are alternatives that can help keep you in shape. Activities such as swimming, cycling, yoga and golf can help build strength and improve balance. There are many low cost or even free activities tailored to older adults at local recreational centres, community health centres and other organizations.