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Research tells us staying well in all respects requires regular exercise and Spring is the time to start but to maintain it you should find something you enjoy, establish a routine and share it!


If you are a beginner, aim for 20 minutes of cardiovascular exercise at least three times a week such as walking, swimming or cycling and work towards 40 minutes four times a week. No matter what type of exercises you do, be sure to start slowly and gradually increase your workout time and intensity. Do listen to your body but at the same time it is good to feel that you have been doing something so stiffness afterwards as the body repairs is normal and healthy.


Walking is simple, free and one of the easiest ways to get more active, 40 minutes four times a week has been shown to have health benefits for heart and bowel disease, it strengthens the muscles that support your back without putting any strain on it or subjecting it to sudden jolt.


How and when you exercise must be considered and not be too aspirational.  When is convenient? Can you use it to break up a sedentary day? and Can I cycle to work? are questions you should ask. Walking from the office at lunchtime is a very good answer to both questions. Add to that moving from your desk, even standing up regularly through the day has health benefits, try marching on the spot, squatting or shadow boxing just for a few minutes, it will boost concentration!


You could attend a class in Yoga or Pilates or join a sports centre of gym but if you want to exercise at home then get a DVD or use You Tube.  Try to balance your activities and include abdominal exercise, use small arm weights and do squats to work the legs.  If you have a back problem it is unlikely that your back is muscularly weak and more likely it is not balanced by strength form the front and the sides so don’t just train your back.


If you don’t like the idea of exercise but want to be active for example gardening or would rather do a sport like golf, tennis or bowls then you need to train the movement patterns that you will need, a simple daily routine of a few minutes will give your body the idea that the muscles of your trunk should be part of the activity, run through a few abdominal crunches and do a few squats as a warm up for golf or gardening (see our gardening news page).walk_exercising



Whatever activity you choose it is important that you do it regularly, that requires you to establish a routine and that is easier if you enjoy it and doing it in company helps you do it when you feel less inclined, your co-trainer becomes you coach and you do the same for them!


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