Exercise and Movements Eases Arthritis

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First off, check first some simple tips to relieve  arthritis pain and preventing arthritis through exercise. Afterward, find out how water exercise and yoga relieve arthritis pains.

10 Easy Tips for Arthritis Pain Relief

Think you can’t stop that arthritis pain? Great news! You can act now. Get 10 super easy and effective arthritis pain relief tips from arthritis experts and make your life with arthritis a little easier now.

1. Protect your joints.

Don’t keep your joints in the same position for a prolonged period of time. Balance your rest and work throughout the day. Use the strongest joints available for the job.

2. Stretch it.

Stretching should be part of every arthritis patient’s daily routine.

A good stretch helps prevent injuries by warming up muscles and tendons which are more limber and less likely to tear.

Spend at least 10 minutes each day stretching, and work each major muscle group.

3. Cool it down.

Stop physical activity. Rest in a cool or shaded environment.

Spray with a mist of cool water or wrap an ice pack or cold compress in a towel and apply it to reduce arthritis pain and swelling.

4. Get moving.

Exercise can help reduce joint pain and stiffness and increases flexibility and muscle strength.

It can also help with weight control, stress management, and make you feel better overall. The Arthritis Foundation also offers water exercise and other classes.

5. Get a massage.

Massage therapy can relieve your pain, soothe stiff sore muscles, reduce inflammation and swelling.

Make sure you use oil or cream on your fingers to make it more gentle. Work the area for five to ten minutes a day if possible.

6. Keep your weight in balance.

Being overweight, even just moderately, impacts weight-bearing joints and can increase the pain of arthritis.

Studies have indicated that losing extra weight lowers the risk for developing osteoarthritis of the knee. Losing weight can help slow the progression of arthritis too.

7. Get a diagnosis.

If you are experiencing symptoms like pain, stiffness, swelling for more than 1 weeks, you should consider seeing your doctor and getting a diagnosis.

Remember that there are more than 100 types of arthritis. It is important to get the specific diagnosis for the type of arthritis you have.

8. Take your medication the right way.

Don’t stop taking your medication just because you feel it is not working. Check with your doctor first.

You need to understand that it may take several days to several months for a medication to become effective.

9. Look out for new options.

Recently FDA has approved some new drugs for osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis and other arthritis diseases.

If feel that the current medication doesn’t work well, check with your doctor about possible new options.

10. Keep educating yourself.

It is important to learn something new about arthritis. Find some good websites online and subscribe to their newsletter if they have it.

Join one of two active online arthritis communities like forums or bulletin board. Never hesitate to see your doctors and ask questions.

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Exercise and Arthritis

Your bones hang out in a lot of joints. Knee joints. Hip joints. The joints in your fingers and the joints in your toes.

Wherever bones meet, there is also cartilage, a rubbery, protective layer that ensures your joints bend smoothly and painlessly. But even cartilage cannot do this tremendous job alone.

A thin membrane called the “synovium” provides the fluid that lubricates the moving parts of the joint. When the cartilage wears out of the synovium becomes inflamed, the result is generally a case of “osteoarthritis” or “rheumatoid arthritis.”

In osteoarthritis, the cartilage can be eroded so much that bone does rub on bone. Thos type of arthritis develops gradually over a lifetime as a simple result of the wear and tear placed on your joints over the years. Very few people escape some degree of osteoarthritis, though the severity varies a great deal.

As a matter of fact, if you are over the age of 50, you are likely to have at least one joint affected by osteoarthritis. Osteoarthritis affects men and women equally and is by far the most common type of arthritis, with almost 16 million Americans in the list.

In rheumatoid arthritis, damage to the synovium is at the source of trouble. Doctors and researchers are not absolutely sure what causes it, but most think that rheumatoid arthritis is a disease in which the immune system actually attacks certain tissues in the body, including those that connect the joints and the synovium.

Rheumatoid arthritis begins with swollen, red, stiff, and painful joints, but it may progress until scar tissue forms in the joint or, in extreme cases, until the bones actually fuse together.

Almost 75% of the 2 million people with rheumatoid arthritis in the United States are women. The disease can hit as early as teen years.

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Exercise – Your Prevention Options

Investing a little time in developing a good weight-bearing low-impact exercise and stretching plan can add up to great results when it comes to staving off arthritis pain. Strong muscles help protect the joints from wear and tear, and the movement keeps joints flexible.

That is why the quest for fitness is at hand, even if you are 50 years and over. However, most Americans over 50 are still right where they always were sitting back and watching others jog by.

Most of them contend that that is just for people who have been athletic all their life, or some say exercise is for young people and engaging into exercise will do them more harm than good.

There are still some that insist on excusing their selves in exercise routines because they do not just have time or they have less energy than ever before. These are all lame excuses. Hence, it is time to start to get rid of those pains. Start exercising.

Consequently, preventing arthritis is not an exact science, but physicians have discovered a few ways to lower your risk. Here is how:

1. Do not weight around

The single most important measure anyone can take to prevent osteoarthritis of the knee is to lose weight if they are overweight. Extra weight puts extra stress on your knees.

If you are 10 pounds overweight, for example, you put 60 pounds per square inch of extra pressure on your knees every time you take a step. That extra pressure can slowly but surely erode the cartilage in your knees, leading to arthritis.

A study has clearly supported the theory that weight loss weighs in on the side of prevention. In the study, overweight women who lost 11 pounds or more over a 10-year period decreased their risk of developing osteoarthritis of the knee by 50%.

2.Stretch those muscles

Any kind of stretching is good as long as you do not bounce, which can lead to a muscle pull. This is according to some of the professors of clinical medicine in New York City.

Try to hold a slow, steady stretch for 15 to 20 seconds, then relax and repeat. It is best to flex up by stretching before any exercise, especially running and walking. But it is also a good idea to stretch each day.

Ask your doctor to teach you stretches that focus on potential arthritis trouble spots, such as the knees or the lower back.

3. Walking is always the best exercise

Take a good long walk at least three times a week or participate in a step-aerobics or low-impact exercise routine maximum results.

There is no proof that running is bad for the joints, but remember, it may aggravate an injury if you already have one. Just remember to check with your doctor before starting a new exercise program.

The bottom line is that of all the healthful habits, exercise is the most important. This is because people are designed to be active. Hence, it is really important for people to exercise in order to stay healthy and keep those joints free from wear and tear.

Just keep in mind that the unexercised body, even if free from the symptoms of illness or problems like arthritis, is not at its full potential. Hence, start exercising right now!

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Water Exercise for Arthritis Relief – Fun & Effective

Everybody knows exercise is a significant part of staying healthy. As anyone with arthritis can tell you, though, when your joints say no to play, exercise goes from pleasurable and stimulating activity into a trial of how much pain you can tolerate.

The tendency when suffering from arthritis is to keep your joints as motionless as possible.  The problem is that this leads to weakening of the muscles and tendons and a stiffening of joints, which makes the pain worse over time. It is a self-feeding cycle difficult to break out of.

One solution comes in the form of The Arthritis Foundation Aquatics Program, a warm water exercise program designed by the Arthritis Foundation.

Why warm water exercise? The warmth offered by hot water allows muscles to relax and intensifies circulation of blood to the joints. In fact, ever since the discovery of the first hot springs, humans have used the miracle of warm water baths to fight aching joints.

Besides reducing the pain in your joints, exercising in water permits body weight to be supported.  This makes exercising in water easier, safer and more relaxing.  Not only that, but the resistance that water provides as your body moves in it helps strengthen muscles

These days, what with spas, health clubs, and backyard hot tubs, just about anyone has access to a pool of hot water to relax in.

Not only does this bring some immediate relief of arthritis symptoms, but it also provides us with a great environment in which we can exercise.

You should consult your doctor before beginning water exercise.  Water exercise is completely safe for most people, with a few exceptions.  If you’ve have suffered serious joint damage or replacement surgery you may be among them.

Your doctor will know what’s right for you.  Also be aware of temperature. Water between 83 and 88 degrees Fahrenheit is ideal for exercise.  Anything over 100 degrees may be relaxing, but can lead to overheating. After you’ve gotten the doctor go ahead, it’s time to get started.

The Arthritis Foundation Aquatics Program exercises can be found in the free brochure “Water Exercise: Pools, Spas and Arthritis” from the Arthritis Foundation.

Classes are also offered at local pools nationwide—contact your local Arthritis Foundation office for information.  The classes are lead by a trained instructor, usually last between 45 minutes to an hour and are scheduled 2 to 3 times a week.

With a doctor’s guidance, whether at a local pool or at home, a water exercise program is a fun and effective way to combat arthritis and keep joints and muscles healthy.

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Yoga: The Holistic Treatment for Arthritis Pain Relief

Living with arthritis pain is not something that anyone would like to happen to them. Many people suffer the aches and pains of damaged or inflamed joints.

Some are just uncomfortable, and some become crippled as a result of a disease that has been recognized since prehistoric times but understood only in the past few decades.

Arthritis affects the joints, specifically where the areas in the body where two or more bones meet. There are several different parts of the joint that may be affected by arthritis, such as cartilage, synovium, tendons, and muscles.

The neighboring ends of bones that form the joints are covered by a soft, protective material called cartilage that cushions the bones and keeps them from rubbing together. The joint is also enclosed in a capsule and lined with a tissue called synovium.

The term arthritis covers a group of more than 100 diseases that involve inflammation of joints and discomfort in connective tissues throughout the body. In many parts of the world, the disease is called rheumatism.

Arthritis is a frequent conversational topic because it affects so many people. It is estimated that about one out of every seven people in America have arthritis in some form and the need to find arthritis pain relief is on top of most sufferers’ minds.

It could mean taking a pill, performing gentle exercises, stretching or trying some other means to obtain relief such as yoga.

Yoga is an ancient practice using a system of postures and breath controls, which aim to achieve the perfect union of body, mind, and spirit.

Yoga can be customized to help with a wide range of specific conditions including chronic pain conditions such migraines, fibromyalgia, chronic pain, and arthritis.

Yoga for arthritis pain relief does not necessarily mean bending and contorting the body into weird and impossible positions just to get comfort from the pain.

It is enough that a person suffering from arthritis may practice breathing and self-awareness, the core of yoga practices.

While stretching is certainly involved, yoga is really about creating balance in the body through developing both strength and flexibility. This is done through the performance of poses or postures, each of which has specific physical benefits.

The poses can be done quickly in succession, creating heat in the body through movement (vinyasa-style yoga) or more slowly to increase stamina and perfect the alignment of the pose.

The poses are a constant, but the approach to them varies depending on the tradition in which the teacher has trained.

Yoga poses can be tailored for different joints. A common arthritic problem is swelling of the fingers and knuckle joints.

In this case, if the condition is not too severe and the person suffers mild to moderate pain, a series of poses can be worked on that lengthen and spread the fingers. Hand stretches also create energy flow to the area that eventually moves to the fingers.

Experts say that the heat is really good for the joints.  As a therapeutic practice, yoga helps a person create heat through deliberate breathing and movement.

 

How Busy Women Should Exercise To Stay Fit?

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Are you always busy? Fret no more. It’s not an excuse. There are still ways to be fit and live a healthy lifestyle even if you have a hectic schedule.

One time saver trick is to work your fitness opportunities into the course of your day.

Rather than performing one lengthy workout each day, try to find methods of bringing a little fitness activity into the most mundane portions of your day.

Go stair climbing at lunch, park on the top level of the parking garage and walk down-then-up when returning the stairs, park far away from the door of the supermarket and see if your mall has a walking path that is clearly marked.

You’ll be amazed at the hidden opportunities many of us have for exercising during our busy days. The trick is often in discovering the activities rather than the time.

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4 Quick Exercises to Stay Fit

These tried-and-tested exercises can give you quick results with just 10-minute focused workouts every other day. If you’re on a serious mission and feeling really motivated, feel free to go for it every day.

And don’t forget to mix up these moves with some cardio work, even if it’s a game of soccer with the kids or a brisk walk to the park.

Dolphin Kicks

For this exercise, you want to balance your weight on your forearms with your elbows directly underneath your shoulders.

Make sure to pull your shoulder blades down towards the hips (away from your ears) – this will keep the stress off your shoulders.

Extend your hips and spine, pull in your abs (this supports your torso) and bend your right knee slightly off the floor for more support.

First Inhale, and then as you exhale extend your left leg straight out to hip height, contracting the glutes and hamstrings. Your hips should be facing forward at all times.

With a slight bend, return the left leg to meet the opposite supporting leg.

Reps:

Repeat up to 20 repetitions, keeping the torso still, then switch to the other side.

Muscle Focus:

Glutes, hamstrings, abs, and lats

 

Super Butt Kicks

Lay down on your back, placing your arms down by your side. Lift your hips off the floor in a bridge position.

Your right knee should be bent with the heel in line with your sit bone, and your left leg should be extended straight up.

As you inhale, lower your left leg to the floor. Be sure to keep your hips still and maintain the bridge position.

Exhale and bring the leg back up to the start position

Reps:

Repeat up to 20 reps, and then lower your left leg to the floor in the same bent position as the right. Lower your butt to the floor, rest, and change over to the other leg.

Muscle Focus:

Glutes, hamstrings, abs

 

Dead Bug

Lay down on your back with knees bent at a 45-degree angle. Head, neck, and shoulders should be off the floor and hands resting on your knees.

On an exhale, draw in your abs and simultaneously extend your left leg out and your right hand over your head.

Repeat this move, alternating your arms and legs.

Keep your eyes focused on your belly button at all times, and if you start to feel the tension in your neck, lower your head down to the floor. This will get easier as you build more strength in the abs.

Reps:

Build up to 20 repetitions completed twice with a 30-second to 1-minute break. Make sure not to sacrifice form.

Muscle Focus: Abs

 

Side Plank Leg Lifts

Lay down on your side, balancing on your right hip and resting on your right forearm.

Your right elbow should be directly underneath your shoulder and your knees bent and stacked on top of each other.

While exhaling, contract your abs, and lift your hips off the floor.

At the same time, extend your left arm and leg out to the side of your body, making sure to keep the knee and toe facing forward.

Reps:

Try for 10-15 reps, and then turn over onto your other side and repeat.

Muscle Focus:

Glutes, abs

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No Time for Exercise?  Try This!

While it’s generally accepted that multiple 30-60 minute sessions per week are optimal for producing results, the truth is that it’s possible to do a great amount in far less time.

EVERYONE has five minutes a day. The only question is, can anything really useful be done in just 300 seconds?

The answer is a resounding “yes”, but you need to choose your exercises carefully.

If there is such a limited amount of time, the best choice is to pick the most important muscle group. Chest? Back? Shoulders? Legs? All wrong. The abdominals are the most important muscles in the body.

In no particular order, they:

  • protect the low back
  • are vital to sports performance, transferring power from the lower to upper body
  • aid digestion, and massage the internal organs
  • are important for proper, healthy sexual function
  • are “the window to health”

We judge fitness and health more rapidly with a glimpse at the waistline than any other single indication.

  • are vital for posture, which increases physical energy and mood
  • are the cornerstone of your entire fitness program

You’ve never seen someone with toned abdominal muscles and flabby arms and legs, have you? The reverse is not true.

  • are the most important muscle group for physical attractiveness in women

No matter the wonderful definition of arms or legs, if your belly is sagging, you have a problem!

There are other reasons, but one of the best is the fact that of all body parts, the abs tends to be the least favorite body part to work.

They’re hard! That reason alone should be enough to motivate you. Anything other people don’t like working is a golden opportunity for you.

But how can you do anything useful in just five minutes? One daily approach is to perform five minutes of the toughest ab exercises you can find.

And a fantastic tool for this is a “Roller Wheel” available for five dollars at any sporting goods store. Not the fancy ones, just the simple get-on-your-knees variety.

Try this, perform one rep, and take a breath. Then do two reps, and take two breaths.

Then three, and take three breaths…and so on until you can’t go any higher.

Then, drop back to one rep, and start climbing again. When that gets easy, take one breath for every two reps.

An even better method is to break up your exercise into multiple daily sessions.

The roller wheel is useful here as well, but you might want to investigate some of the powerful “Vacuum” exercises from yoga, or the dynamic tension style “stomach flattening” exercises.

In these, you exhale all air and flex the abdominal muscles for several seconds. If you do these properly, even without aerobic exercise your waistline will decrease!

While there is no serious disagreement that longer sessions produce better, and more balanced results, the busiest woman on earth can find five minutes a day and sometimes.

That grip is what it takes to get you started on a new, healthier lifestyle.

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Diet Tips for Busy Women

Staying on your diet can be a challenge for anyone, but for a busy working mom, the challenges can be especially tough.

A busy lifestyle can make it impossible to get to the gym for a daily workout, prepare your meals ahead of time, or even to remember to pack your lunch for work each day.

Being in a rush can make it difficult to stick to your diet when it’s so easy to grab something at the drive through.

Here’s a collection of hints and tips from other busy women that will help you stay on your diet despite all the temptations.

Don’t try to ‘save time’ by eating on the run, or snacking at your desk while you work. No matter how rushed you are, take the time to eat like a civilized human being.

Set the table, put your food on a plate and have a meal. You’ll eat less and feel fuller – and not feel the urge to snack because you ‘haven’t eaten anything all day’.

Cook just what will be eaten. Ignore all those homemaker articles that suggest that you ‘cook for tomorrow’ to save time. Cook one portion per person at each meal.

That way you’ll avoid the temptation to finish off the leftover – and teach your family healthy eating habits.

Unless, you have a systematic way of doing things that your cooked meals for the week are already segregated, packaged and labeled for every meal.

It’s great to bring it to work for lunch or snack or it can be your backup if you are really tight to prepare something fresh.

But doing this strategy takes a lot of planning and preparation beforehand along with discipline to eat only the right portion indicated for that meal.

Get up early enough to eat breakfast at home. The morning rush to get ready may make it tempting to grab something on the way to work or skip breakfast entirely. Don’t do it.

You’ll end up eating up all that saved time – and a lot more calories – with mid-morning trips to the snack machine or fight off the blahs all morning long.

Stock up on easy breakfast foods. A piece of fruit, a container of yogurt and a slice of toast are a healthy, balanced start to your day.

You should also make sure to have a nice supply and cleaned and cut fruits, vegetables, and salad ingredients in your refrigerator in order to make these dishes readily assessable for quick lunches or snacks.

Having these foods readily available will help you resist the temptation to snack on higher calorie prepackaged food while also helping to ensure that you have a ready supply of fresh fruits and vegetables to help you get your 5 servings a day.

You should also keep some conveniently packaged yogurt on hand as a good quick and easy dairy product.

Sugar-free pudding cups are another decent snack for those who need something quick and easy to have on hand.

Most diets suggest that you drink at least eight 8 ounce glasses of water a day. If the thought of drinking a half gallon of water makes you queasy, there are ways to make it more appealing.

Stock up on flavored bottled water in the fridge at work and keep one icy cold on your desk.

At home, float mint sprigs or lemon slices in a crystal pitcher. There are no added calories, but oh what a difference in presentation and flavor!

Preparation and planning are essential to successfully meeting your weight loss goals.

By preparing the right amount of nutritious food, you will never even miss the convenience of that high calorie prepackaged meals and snacks that so many of us survive on when not dieting.

 

 

Which Back Exercise Gives You Better Relief?

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What are the best exercises and stretches for back pains? Have you been asking this question for quite some time?

No matter what your job, you use your back every day when you’re sitting, standing, lifting, and even lying down.

Take note that a back injury can result in pain, disability, and even loss of income if it prevents one from doing their jobs.

Together with proper lifting techniques, back exercises are one of the most important things you can do to strengthen your back and help protect it from accidental injury and sports injuries.

The right back exercises, when done on a daily basis, can help to keep your back fit at the best possible level.

Remember though, if you are experiencing back pain of any sort, check with a healthcare professional before doing this or any exercises.

And do the exercise according to the medical advice rendered by that professional.

Be wary of some consequences of improper exercise such as sciatica. Sciatica is the disease which affects nerves of the back.

To control the back pain due to the nerve disease you must undergo strength training in physiotherapy.

If you understand the concepts of how backs get injured by bad back exercise habits you can easily tell if you are moving in healthy ways, if an exercise will help or harm, or if you’re doing a good exercise in a bad way.

You’re not helping yourself if all you do is a “list” of exercises. Worse, many people are given a list of things to never do them again.

This list is often the favorite activities that made their lives worthwhile and fun.

Most people spend their lives doing activities with poor posture that rounds their lower back.

They sit, stand, walk, and exercise round-shouldered and round-backed.

This shortens chest and shoulder muscles in front, and over stretches and weakens your back.

Like squeezing a water balloon in front, when you round forward.It squeezes the front of your discs between your back bones (vertebrae) above and below the disc.

Below are several options of back exercises that you could do or you could choose to perform to relieve any back pain.

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Back Exercise Stretches for Back Pain

Back exercise stretches the lower back muscles to help bring relief to back pain caused by over-stressed back muscles. Spine rehabilitation too is done through back exercise.

People suffering from back pain are put through an exercise regimen, as exercise stretches the back and promotes better blood circulation in the area.

You will hear many people complain of back pain occasionally. About 75% to 85% of the people experience back pain at some point in time in their life.

The most common area of back pain is the lumbar region of the spine. This is the region that bears most of the body weight. Sudden twisting and bending can cause injury to the back.

Back pain also occurs when the muscles get stiff because of poor posture. Back exercise stretches the stiff muscles to provide relief.

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Back Exercise Stretches – For Back Pain Relief

Back exercise stretches need to be performed softly. You should treat your back gently and not subject it jerky and violent movement.

The exercise routine that you follow should start gently and gradually build over a period of a few weeks.

You could cause more harm than good if you do not follow the expert’s advice in matters of back exercise.

Warm up your body before you embark on the stretching routine. Exercise stretches the muscles, ligaments, and tendons in the area surrounding the back.

The muscles and tendons associated with the spine are designed for movement. Hence, they need to be stretched daily to perform optimally.

The hamstring muscles are an important factor in back pain problems. Most people with back pain have stiff hamstring muscles.

Stand comfortably with your feet shoulder-width apart. Now slowly bend forward and try to touch your toes with your hands without bending your knees.

Your action should be smooth and not jerky. Be careful not to overdo the stretching part. Stop when you feel pain. This exercise stretches your hamstring muscles.

Your back pain will improve gradually as you continue with the exercise. The exercise can also be performed while lying down.

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Basic Guidelines for Back Strengthening Exercises

Back exercises are one of the better ways to relieve yourself from back pain and lead a healthy life.

It is important to ensure that exercises are worked within a range of motion, so as not to further strain the painful back.

In case you experience pain while doing some stretching steps, stop exercising immediately. Avoid sudden movements and jerks when performing back exercises.

Even though it may be hard to perform the steps in a slow and controlled motion.

People suffering from lower back problems face various problems while working out. It is important to get into an exercise routine gradually and build muscle power.

Always perform back exercises after consulting your trainer. It is also important to understand that back pain doesn’t develop overnight and hence restoration of the back will also take time.

Check this back exercise that gently stretches your back muscles:

1. Lie on your back with knees bent.

2. Slowly raise your left knee to your chest, while pressing your lower back firmly against the floor.

3. Remain in position for 5 seconds.

4. Relax. Repeat the exercise with your right knee.

5. Repeat this exercise 10 times for each leg.

back exercise

Best Exercises For A Healthy Back

Back pain plagues millions of people over the course of their lifetime.

Back pain can be due to repetitive strain on the back, an acute injury to the back, bone wear, and tear on the back or even from simple fatigue.

Some experience back pain because they work in a sitting job and the back is weakened due to lack of exercise.

Many cases of back pain can be avoided by exercising your back in a healthy way that strengthens the muscles and ligaments so that back pain will not be a problem again.

Strengthen The Core

The back is not the only thing that keeps your body upright. Your abdomen, together with your back, represents the “core” of your body.

Both parts need to be functioning in order for you to have the ability to stand, stretch, and bend appropriately.

Perhaps one of the best exercises for a healthy back includes abdominal exercises. A weak abdomen puts too much pressure on the back to take on functions the abdomen needs to participate in.

Abdominal exercises strengthen the overall core and will help you have a strong and healthy back.

What abdominal exercises work best?

Something as simple as sit ups can help strengthen the abdominal muscles so that the core is strengthened.

The exercises can be done in several ways to strengthen the upper, middle and body muscles.

For example:

  • Sit ups with your legs straight—this strengthens the upper abdominal muscles
  • Sit ups with your legs bent—this strengthens the middle abdominal muscles
  • Lying down and lifting your feet off the floor—this strengthens the lower abdominal muscles

Try to do these three kinds of sit-ups in different sets of ten at a time and you will have a strong core that will help your back keep your body strong.

As mentioned, you should do sets of ten of each of the three types of exercises and do about ten sets a day.

This involves about three hundred different exercises that may make your abdomen sore for a day or so.

Simple Back Exercises

You can strengthen the back alone although most exercises that strengthen the back also strengthen the abdominal muscles as well.

Either way, you have a healthier back as a result.

Leg Lifts

One simple back strengthening exercise involves lying prone (on your stomach) and lifting your leg straight up a few inches off the ground. Do one leg at a time.

Ideally, you should do sets of ten backward leg lifts at a time before switching legs. Do several sets each day to strengthen the back.

Back Exercise Machines

There are machines you can use at the health club that isolates the back muscles.

They involve sitting in a chair of sorts that bends backward when you straighten out your back so you are in a lying position.

Different weights can be added to the machine so that you can gradually increase your muscle strength with heavier and heavier weights.

Do ten repetitions at a time and several sets of repetitions as part of an overall muscle strengthening routine.

pilates for back pain

Upper Back Exercises for a Strong Back

The back supports the weight of the upper body and has to be strong to carry out its work unhindered.

People focus on strengthening their lower back, but upper back muscles too need toning up.

A well-toned back looks good and helps in maintaining correct posture. Upper back exercises are a good way of strengthening the upper back.

Some effective upper back exercises are mentioned below.

Women would rather have a well-toned upper body, whereas men prefer a muscular back. Dumbbell pullovers and dumbbell rows are effective upper back exercises.

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Dumbbell Pullover

You will need a narrow workout bench.

Lie with the workbench supporting the upper back and neck, and your head leaning over one end.

Place one leg each on either side of the bench with feet firmly placed on the ground.

Lift the dumbbell over your face with arms stretched out. Slowly lower the dumbbell over your head in an arc.

Hold, and bring it back to original position. Initially, do five repetitions and gradually raise the count to fifteen.

Another variation of this upper back exercise is to hold the dumbbell with bent arms. With elbows bent, slowly lower the dumbbell over your head in an arc.

And then gently pull back the dumbbell to the original position.Primarily, do five repetitions and gradually raise the count to fifteen.

Dumbbell Row

Place the dumbbell on the right side of the bench, and your left leg on the bench with the right foot firmly placed on the floor.

While leaning forward, place the left hand on the bench in front of the body. Your back should be in horizontal position.

Pick up the dumbbell and raise your arm slowly upwards until your upper arm is in level with your upper body.

Hold, and take back your arm to the original position.

Initially, do five repetitions and gradually raise the count to fifteen.

Now, repeat the exercise with the left arm.

These upper back exercises are great ways to build a strong upper back that add to the ‘V’ shape of the body.

pilates for weight loss

Pilates for Back Pain

The essential thing that those who suffer from back pain can learn is awareness of the neutral alignment of the spine and the strengthening of the postural muscles to support the alignment.

For those people with back pain caused by the degeneration of discs and joints, or poor posture, a Pilate’s exercise program can be beneficial to easing the problem.

Most back problems are caused by bad posture; this can be sitting, walking or standing.

This causes us to lose strength in our postural muscles over time and gets worse until eventually, you cannot even correct your posture if you want to.

Pilates is an excellent form of exercise to remedy this problem too.

What is Pilates?

The Pilates method is a form of exercise that focuses on using the core postural muscles to help keep the body balanced and support the spine.

It is a method that teaches awareness of breathing and alignment of the spine. In helping to prevent and alleviate back pain the system also strengthens the deep torso muscles.

While Pilates is a simple form of exercise you shouldn’t underestimate the impact that it can have, Pilates can help to develop support for the deep postural muscles of the trunk.

It brings an awareness of the importance of neutral alignment and leads to the shoulders and hips being suppler.

Pilates has roots in ballet and dance and as such, some of the movements used in the system can be particularly challenging and difficult.

However, there are some exercises that can be learned and practiced at home between guided sessions.

As when beginning any new form of exercise it is important that you seek the advice of your doctor before commencing, the instructor guiding the Pilates session should also be qualified.

One-on-one sessions may be the answer

For those who have significant back problems, it may be advisable to have a few one-on-one sessions with an instructor qualified in Pilates and especially in treating those with back pain.

While this is more expensive than attending a class it can be worth the extra expense to learn the exercise correctly by having one-on-one guidance.

While the exercises in the Pilates system should challenge you mentally and physically, they shouldn’t cause you to struggle with them.

If an exercise is causing you pain then it could be that you are not performing it correctly or it could be too difficult a position for you.

You should make sure that you never put too much excessive stress on the intervertebral discs and avoid mental or physical fatigue.

As a general rule, those suffering from back pain and attending Pilates should never perform any exercise that pushes the spine into extremes of extension or flexion.

Side bending movements and twisting of the spine should also be avoided. As with most forms of exercise, it will take perseverance and some time spent attending classes before you will see any major improvements.

Wrapping Up

A healthy back is all about core strength training. It includes not only exercises of the back but exercises of the stomach as well.

Flexibility exercises help your back as well and include things like bending from side to side to loosen the back stiffness and bending forward to touch your toes, which keeps your back from getting too tight.

Try some of the exercises mentioned above or share them with your acquaintance you know that might need it or you think would be helpful to them.

Be mindful of your posture as well and how you execute your day to day activities to avoid any back injuries in the future.

As you can see, back exercises are needed to maintain a healthy back or to recuperate an injured back.

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Additional Reference:

10 Best Muscle Building Back Exercise!

http://www.bodybuilding.com/content/10-best-muscle-building-back-exercises.html

Best Back Exercises for a Complete Back Workout

http://www.muscleandfitness.com/workouts/back-exercises/back-exercises-complete-back-workout

The 30 Best Back Exercises of All Time

http://www.mensfitness.com/training/workout-routines/30-best-back-exercises-all-time

How to Do the Top 8 Back Exercises

https://www.t-nation.com/training/how-to-do-the-top-8-back-exercises

Back Exercises in 15 Minutes

http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/adult-health/multimedia/back-pain/sls-20076265

Exercise and Back Pain

http://www.spine-health.com/wellness/exercise/exercise-and-back-pain

15 Simple but Powerful Back Exercises that Eases Stiffness and Lower Back Pain

http://www.lifehack.org/articles/lifestyle/15-simple-but-powerful-back-exercises-ease-stiffness-and-lower-back-pain.html

Top 5 Exercises to Strengthen your Core to Prevent Low Back Pain

https://draxe.com/the-top-5-exercises-to-strengthen-your-core-to-prevent-low-back-pain/

No Equipment Back Exercises

http://dailyburn.com/life/fitness/no-equipment-back-exercises/

No-Equipment Back Exercises

http://www.fitnessmagazine.com/workout/back/no-equipment-back-exercises/

Heal you Lower Back Pain with these 5 Yoga Poses

http://breakingmuscle.com/yoga/heal-your-lower-back-pain-with-these-5-yoga-poses

How to Get a Strong Back

http://www.health.com/health/gallery/0,,20709957,00.html

Exercises for a Healthy Back

https://www.ccohs.ca/oshanswers/psychosocial/backexercises.html

HERE ARE THE DOWNLOAD LINKS:

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What Are The Brain Function And Brain Activity During Exercise?

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There seems to be no end to the benefits of exercise. Research says it will improve brain function. But before that, let’s find out first some brain activities going on while you are doing your exercise routine.

Humans need to move or else fall victim to what is often referred to as the sitting disease.

If the majority of your day is spent sitting, your overall health will suffer, it can lead to weight gain, heart disease, and other serious chronic illness as you get older.

Lack of movement can lead to heart attack, stroke, and a general loss in quality of life in our senior years.

Everyone agrees that exercise is physically great for the body. However, did you know that exercise also has a wide variety of benefits for the human brain?

What exactly happens in our brains when we exercise to have such an impressive effect on our mental health?

 

What Actually Happens In The Brain During Exercise

Exercise causes our heart pressure to rise, which sends a signal to the brain that the body is under stress. In response, a protein is released into our body called “brain-derived neurotrophic factor” (BDNF).

This protein is thought of as a “reset switch” – it repairs memory neurons, making thoughts seem crystal clear after exercising and putting the body at ease.

Simultaneously, endorphins are released into the brain, which is meant to limit the degree of pain and discomfort associated with exercise, even creating a sense of euphoria.

Like BDNF, endorphins are released in response to the feeling of “stress” brought on by exercise. The term, “runner’s high” is the coined phrase used to describe the surge of endorphins during exercise that acts as a natural anti-depressant.

The same antidepressant-like effect from a “runner’s high” results in a reduction of stress level hormones.

Additionally, a study conducted in Stockholm showed that running stimulates cell growth in the hippocampus, which is the portion of the brain responsible for memory and learning.

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How Our Mind and Body Are Affected

Together, BDNF and endorphins give us a “happy” feeling after exercise. These are somewhat addictive in nature, which is one reason why some people seem obsessed with exercising, although this “addiction” can be a healthy one.

Besides the short-term high from endorphins and BDNF, exercise also has long-term benefits. Studies show that people are happier and more productive throughout the day when they exercise.

A Penn State research study showed that people who had worked out within the previous month were happier and more productive at work compared to those who had not exercised but not quite to the same degree as those who had worked out earlier that day.

People who exercise regularly have much better moods than those who don’t and retain a stronger sense of calmness throughout the day.

Exercise affects the brain on various fronts. Not only does it increase heart rate that pumps more oxygen to the brain, it also facilitates the release of various hormones that provides a nourishing environment for the growth of brain cells.

Research conducted at UCLA showed that working out stimulates the growth of new neuronal connections in a variety of important cortical areas of the brain.

Brain Function and Exercise

Better brain function with exercise? The evidence is clear. Not only can you get long-term benefits for your brain from exercise, but you can boost you brain power in the next ten minutes. Exercise can help your brain work more efficiently and actually make you smarter.

The thinking ability of subjects was tested in one study. After these tests, the subjects ran on a treadmill for thirty minutes. When their hearts returned to normal resting levels they took the follow-up tests.

During all tests, the subjects were connected to an EEG (electroencephalogram), in order to track their brainwaves.

Researchers found that exercising had increased the speed their decision-making. It was considered a significant difference beyond normal statistical variation.

They also found that the subjects answered more accurately after the exercise than before.

Participants were between 18 and 24 years old, but researchers think the findings will hold true for other age groups as well.

One study showed that just ten minutes of moderate exercise each day can improve mood and reduce fatigue. Brain function specifically wasn’t tested, but it seems likely that less fatigue means better brain power.

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Best Exercise For Brain Function

The research has focused more on the duration of exercise more than on the specific type. Aerobic exercise seems to be the common element in the studies that have shown improvements in brain function.

It’s likely that running, bicycling, swimming, dancing, and any other aerobic exercise will have the same effect.

Notice that ten minutes of exercise is apparently enough to have effects on the brain.

Also, while most scientists probably expected to find better brain function from long-term exercise programs, the study using treadmills showed an immediate effect.

In other words, get up and run around, and you can be smarter ten minutes from now.

Some people find that walking is a great way to boost brain power. There are the aerobic benefits now being proven by recent studies, but there seems to be something more.

It may be due to its rhythmic and relaxing nature that many people report their clearest and most creative thinking when walking.

We already knew that exercise was good for sleeping better, a healthier immune system, weight control, and a lower risk of heart disease, cancer, and diabetes.

Now you can add brain power to that list. Why not take a walk today for better brain function?

How To Maximize Exercise Benefits
20 Minutes

Based on this information, you might think that professional athletes are the happiest people on the planet.

According to research conducted by the Department of Exercise Science at the University of Georgia showed that only 20 minutes of exercise is needed to reach that peak level of productivity, positive mood, and facilitates information processing and memory functions. The key is to turn it into a habit.

Mental And Physical Connection

There is an important mental and physical connection that can increase the benefits of exercise.

For example, an exercise that integrates different parts of brain activity, such as ballroom dancing that requires rhythm, strategy, coordination and thoughtfulness in movements stimulates cognitive health more than less complex workouts like running or cycling that do not necessarily engage diverse mental abilities.

Adding Exercise To Your Life

Working out in the morning before work or school helps to spike brain activity, prepares you for stresses you may incur during your day, allows for increased retention of new information and learning, and equips you to cope with complex situations that may arise.

Start off easy – even just 5-10 minutes a day – and gradually increase the length and intensity of your workout. Going to a group or class at the gym makes exercising more fun, and it’s a great way to learn new techniques and to meet new fitness-minded people.

However, getting motivated to go to the gym regularly can be a challenge, so try different exercises at home and outdoors in your neighborhood, such as jogging, biking, strength training, etc. Variety is the spice of life, and the more you vary your routine the better for your motivation and your body.

There are many apps on your smartphone that can provide you with workout sets for all experience levels and even guide you through the exercises. Furthermore, apps like Map My Fitness and Nike enable you to track your progress, which is a great way to stay motivated as you watch yourself improve.

Final Thoughts

Remember, the health of your mind and body are closely connected, and exercise is one of the best – if not the very best – ways to improve mental and physical health in both the long-term and short-term.

The long-term benefits of exercising regularly are immense – reduced risk of disease, improved mental health, stronger body or muscles, reduced stress, improved digestion, improved blood circulation, and much more.

Even just going on a 20-minute daily walk is immensely better for you than staying sedentary. Find a training partner, set a schedule, do whatever you have to do to get those endorphins and BDNF proteins pumping as often as you can!

 

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15 Benefits of Exercise – Beyond Losing Weight

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There is a continuous argument, whether food or exercise is the essential component for effective weight loss. Most say both of them are but let me add that the order of doing so matters.

Although burning a lot of calories than your body needs can a way to weight loss, start first with having a healthy eating diet. If your eating pattern is already fixed, attack the fats with workouts.

Have you ever known someone who can eat precisely what you eat, or more, and appear to never work out, yet they appear to have some secret to be in shape? Perhaps they do.

Whatever the odds, their bodies are essentially more effective at burning off calories. It is commonly known as ‘high metabolism’.

For those who don’t have this, there is still another way around to lose weight and one of this is through exercise.

Check out below the benefits you can get from exercise to give you more reason for it to be part of your weight loss regimen.

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1. Burns Calories

Exercise pushes extra weight and maintains weight loss. When you take part in physical activity, you burn calories.

Get more active throughout the day if you don’t have time to set aside for an exercise routine like climbing stairs, running bicycling or brisk walking.

The more vigorous the exercise, the more calories you drop off.

 

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2. Build Muscle

There are some exercises that are tailored at building muscles. Any type of resistance will expand your muscles. This makes a difference because muscles consume more calories than fat.

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3. Improves Health

Getting started to exercise might not that easy for some. But as you start to get your feet wet and exercise more, you will begin to feel better and comfortable with it.

As hard at may believe but trust me on this, you will begin to look forward to your workout schedule.

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4. Lessen Stress

Need an enthusiastic lift? Need to vent out frustration and distress?

A brisk 30-minute walk or a workout routine can be your reliever. Brain chemicals that make you happy and relax are stimulated in your brain while exercising.

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5. Boosts Energy

Continuous physical activity can enhance your muscle strength and help your stamina.

Exercise carries oxygen and supplements to your tissues and offers your cardiovascular framework some help to function more proficiently.

 

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6. Better Sleep

Having a hard time going to bed or getting sleep? Exercise can help you sleep faster and aids you to deepen your sleep. Just don’t do it before bedtime so that you will not be excessively stimulated.

 

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7. Sparkles Intimacy

You feel empowered and look better through consistent exercise. However, there’s a whole other world to it than that. For women, it can enhance arousal and for men, lessen problem with erectile dysfunction.

 

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8. Gives Happiness

Exercise can be an enjoyable approach to spending your time and energy. It allows you to loosen up, appreciate the outdoors or just participate in activities that make you glad.

Connect with your family and friends through exercising, joining some dance class, hiking, running, swimming or playing sports.

Look for fun physical activities that you enjoy doing and try something new if you get bored.

 

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9. Benefits the Brain

Exercise is healthy for your brain because it increases the blood pumped. Studies show that it lessens cognitive impairment.

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10. Prevents Osteoporosis

Different kinds of exercise can avert osteoporosis and fracture risk. Including thinning of bones and falls that are connected with breaks of the hip, spine, and wrist.

 

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11. Healthier Digestion

The absence of exercise can be a contributing factor for constipation. It improves numerous variables that are indirectly advantageous like hydration and better dietary intake.

 

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12. Decreased Stroke Risk

Hypertension and coronary illness are the two most serious risks for strokes. The advantages of strong heart and better circulation from exercise are vital.

 

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13. Better Skin

Exercise increases blood flow through the oxygen and nutrients carried by the cells through the body while waste items are moved out. It is a cleansing process that leads to better skin.

 

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14. Cut Cancer Risk

Through exercise, it can enhance profiles of hormones, the status of cardio-respiratory, maintenance of weight and metabolic impacts. It has also some beneficial effects on the immune system that spot and destroy cancer cells.

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15. Controls Addiction

Exercise can help in recuperating from addiction. It can likewise distract drug or alcohol addicts to de-prioritize their longings. It can also help reboot the body clock disrupted by alcohol abuse.

 

Bonus Tip: Tap into creativity

Most people end a tough workout with a hot shower, but maybe you should be breaking out the colored pencils instead.

A heart-pumping gym session can boost creativity for up to two hours afterward. Supercharge post-workout inspiration by exercising outdoors and interacting with nature

Many things happen to the body when it doesn’t get enough exercise. Unfortunately, it goes way beyond gaining weight.

It’s important to remember that even a little bit of exercise is better than no exercise at all. Continue reading to learn more about the dangers of inactivity. No one is immune!

 

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What Happens To The Body When It Doesn’t Get Enough Exercise

Energy Levels

Mitochondria are energy-producing structures, which live in the cells of body tissues, organs, and muscles.

These amazing little structures need carbohydrates and oxygen to work properly. Since mitochondria are required for all bodily functions and movement, you definitely can’t live without them.

Mitochondria levels drop when your heart isn’t working at its full potential and your oxygen levels are diminished, due to lack of exercise.

Fatigue occurs when energy production is slowed down and the body requires the same amount of energy to get work done.

Bone Issues

Bones love a workout, almost as much as they love calcium. The lack of weight-bearing exercise causes bones to lose density and the ability to properly store calcium.

Less calcium in your bones means more of a mineral build up in organs such as your kidneys, the cause of kidney stones.

If the period of inactivity is long enough bones eventually began to weaken. This oftentimes results in osteoporosis, which leads to a much higher risk of painful bone fractures.

 

Muscle Problems

Just like bones, muscles benefit from a good workout. One of the first signs of being out of shape, due to inactivity, is the loss of strength and muscle tone.

When muscles are idle, blood flow slows down and the exchange of waste products and nutrients decreases. Less mitochondria result in the lack of muscle coordination.

Without exercise, the “electrical” connection between your nerves and muscles is sporadic at best. How does this affect you?

You’ll typically find it more difficult to move around with the agility that you once could. It can also mean decreased strength and an increased risk of muscle injury, because of shrinking muscle mass.

 

Heart-Related Difficulties

Whatever your age, it’s important to keep your heart as healthy as possible. Even though your heart muscle is different from your skeletal muscles, the same health-related principles apply.

Without proper exercise, the heart muscle shrinks.

This makes it difficult to adequately distribute blood throughout the body and causes the heart to work much harder to get the blood to where it actually needs to go, especially in your hands and feet.

Sluggish blood flow can lead to plaque formation in the blood vessels. This, in turn, sometimes causes high blood pressure, dizziness and circulation problems.

All of these conditions are potentially dangerous if left untreated.

As you can see, inactivity causes havoc in and damage to your body. This is especially true for individuals who already deal with chronic conditions because it typically only makes things worse.

In many cases, periods of inactivity are inevitable. But, the sooner you can participate in even a light exercise regimen, the better off your mind and your body will be.

The advantages of exercise are evident. Yet as previously specified, keep on controlling what you eat. Eat the right portion.

Eat slowly for your brain gets the signal that you are full. These helps in your weight loss and fuels your workout activities.

Losing weight doesn’t have to be intricate. Keep it fun and simple by combining exercise and eating healthy food.

The list of benefits of exercise for your health and losing weight gives you more push to move right now!

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Images: pixabay.com