The importance of strength and balance
in our workouts
in this weeks Pilates for busy people weekly show
As we age our bodies change and our risk of falls is greater. With falls, further complications occur, which affect our lives. In this week’s show we gain insight to what’s happening to our bodies, and what we can do about it now.
This week I talk to Georgina a GP in her late 30s who has two small children and a very busy life. About the importance of strength and balance in our workouts.
We want to know what really happens to our bodies as we get older because our risks of falls increases as we get older.
Georgina explains “we now talk a lot about this sort of health care about frailty, which is a kind of a combination, of all sorts of different things that happened as we get older but a lot of that is to do with muscle mass loss and weakness in the joints and the spine and the core and that’s frailty, is also other parts of the body as well. The brain and is tied in with medications and other sort of medical problems, but falls are a good marker for how frail somebody is”
So, frailty is sort of an overview umbrella term almost for the aging population. Some of the aged population are doing so brilliantly but some of them are really struggling with what they are now living with.
Georgina talks about how falls can reduce life expectancy so it is important to try and prevent it!
Falls in older people also lead to lack of confidence and can make rehab difficult. That’s where exercise comes in often with the confidence as well. If older people can recover and strengthen up with the physios and occupational therapists and teams getting people out of hospital to get them going again.
Georgina believes that if we can create habits earlier in life particularly strength and balance exercises but all exercise really throughout their life when something like this happens, they’re less likely to have it happen but be if it happens, they’re in good habits in terms of doing these things regularly and what they would normally do with their day to day life.
How can this help younger people?
What we do now is go to the gym, we go for runs, but we are missing out on strength and balance because we think we’re invincible. We need to educate people it’s going to happen to them too.
Georgina says “It’s very difficult to get that that message out there. But I think the key thing is if you start. I say to a lot of people in their 40s that this is the window.
Women in particular obviously is very difficult because the time of life of going through the menopause and it becomes a time when life becomes very difficult and often for people the first thing to go is our exercise and actually, it shouldn’t be that both from a physical point and for mental point of view.”
So if you are naturally in good habits where you are doing the right things.
Building up your strength when you are in your 40s and then 50s, and then 60s, your muscle strength. The muscles around the joints, keeping your joints stable, your core strength, you’re much less likely to have problems. The muscle bulk will be there but you do have to carry it on. The sooner you start the better. Anything you can do is really good.
People need to set realistic targets. You don’t need to be going to the gym or doing loads , it’s the little things you do more often. As I’ve said to you before, it doesn’t matter if you fall off the wagon, so long as you get back on, you know
You’ve got to do a little bit and keep going. Especially women and weights!
A lot of women get very, very focused on their weight and on the scales and it’s not about being skinny but about being strong.
To stop what can become a vicious ciycle when people who struggle with back pain are more likely to gain weight or more likely to have medical problems which makes them more likely to not exercise. This makes them more likely to become more unwell and frailer and fall. Making simple day to day exercise part of your life early on. It will set you up in such good stead for the future.”
If you want to start bringing movement, strength and balance into your day then why not try Pilates. Pilates focses on strength, balance and mobility. You are never too old to start and you will start to feel the benefits very quickly.
At Studio 44 Pilates we are aware that time is one of the biggest excuses we use for learning something new or doing exercise. But as this discussion with Georgina has shown just short burst starting now will make a real difference in the long run.
Find out more about our memberships HERE.
(included in the membership is a Beginners programme too)