This month the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy (CSP) launches its new campaign #LoveActivityHateExercise?; designed to promote all forms of physical activity and to show how even small every-day tasks can help count towards improving your health. A big issue for many people is that, despite knowing that exercise is beneficial, they have either never enjoyed or had access to traditional means of exercise such as sport or using a gym.
The point of the #LoveActivity campaign is to highlight that, even if you don’t enjoy ‘exercise’, you can still improve your health by increasing the amount of physical activity you complete every day, through normal activities such as walking, gardening, cleaning or just taking the stairs instead of the escalator!
Although many of us understand that exercising regularly is healthy, sometimes we don’t fully appreciate just how important it is to our long-term wellbeing. It has been said that if exercise were a pill, it would be the most cost-effective drug ever created. Here are some of the health benefits already shown to be associated with regular exercise or physical activity:
• Up to A 35% Lower Risk of Coronary Heart Disease and Stroke
• Up to a 50% Lower Risk of Type 2 Diabetes
• Up to a 50% Lower Risk of Colon Cancer and 20% Lower Risk of Breast Cancer
• A 30% Lower Risk of Early Death
• Up to an 83% Lower Risk of Osteoarthritis
• Up to a 68% Lower Risk of Hip Fracture
• Up to a 30% Lower Risk of Depression
• Up to a 30% Lower Risk of Dementia
These are just a modest sample of some of the research findings on exercise and, as we can see, it influences everything from achy knees and hip replacements to mental health and cancer! The NHS recommends for everyone to try to be active every day, and to aim to achieve at least 150 minutes of moderate physical activity every week. Realistically, we also know that, for many people, this can seem a difficult target to achieve - whether that’s due to money, time, low self-confidence or lack of motivation; but by making small changes to your daily routine, these can all add up to make a big difference.
With this in mind and in support of the CSP’s #LoveActivity campaign, IPRS Health staff are going to try to “travel” the distance to Russia in time for the FIFA World Cup Final on 15th July 2018 (hopefully the England team will be there too!); but we need YOUR help to achieve this huge “goal” (get it?).
IPRS Health staff will be recording their minutes of physical activity each day, where one minute will count as one mile of our “journey”, and we want as many other people to join in too! We aim to cover the theoretical 2000 miles to Moscow by the day of the Final, and hopefully will even have enough mileage to make it “back home” again.
Along the way, we want to see if we can get 100 people to try 100 new forms of physical activity. We would love it if you could be one of those people! We hope that, by the end of the “journey” we will have helped lots of people realise that exercising regularly might not be as big a stretch as you had first imagined. Let’s work together and use this fun activity as a door opening to bigger and better things!
If you would like to be part of this epic journey, just send us an email firstname.lastname@example.org at the end of each week, telling us about your new activity, why you chose it and how many minutes of the activity you completed. Alternatively, you can tell us on facebook or send us a tweet (@IPRSHealth), and tell us about your activity or show us with a video.
Everyone who contributes will also be entered into a prize-draw to win a FitBit watch! And remember, you don’t need to run like Ronaldo, just adding more elements of physical activity to your day counts. Park the car further from the office, choose the stairs, trim the hedge or engage in a stealthy speed-walking race with an unsuspecting pedestrian to the next lamp-post. The minutes and the miles will soon add up!