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Personal Trainer Osteopath
Many of us engage in sports and may also have a personal trainer to maximise our levels of fitness and get the best possible training technique.
We live in a health and fitness and leisure culture, and are constantly bombarded with images of attractive, fit, healthy, slim, happy people by media and advertising.
Yet fitness, vitality and true health comes from the inside, from healthy physiology and taking care of ourselves — rather than, or despite the pressure, superficiality, competitiveness, materialism, glamour and expectations from culture that we live in. We live in a 'dynamic' culture, where it never stops, and it's easy to take on to much — which is experienced as 'stress' by many of us.
Yet a high level of personal fitness and exercise is actually a very good strategy for stress-management, health and well-being. Assuming, of course, that we also maintain reasonable work-life balance, eat properly, and have adequate sleep and down-time.
Exercise helps with better sleep, improved blood sugar regulation (increased muscle mass stores more glucagon, the soluble form of glucose) improved mood and energy levels.
Although all exercise is good — evolutionary we are simply not designed for a completely sedentary lifestyle, to sit a computers or drive for long hours — all of which can cause back-pain, neck pain, etc — exercise is a 'science' and there is a difference between what I would term 'exercise' as a science (which includes highly refined training such as pilates, yoga, qigong, martial arts), and simply 'recreation' or sport — e.g. team games, for cardiovascular fitness, but which also build team relationships, and have social engagement.
Even if your work is active, rather than sedentary, there are differences between work (often using our bodies under duress) and doing something for fun and enjoyment, or a higher purpose.
At its highest level, exercise is a science where the focus is on internal technique, alignment, muscle balance, efficiency and performance. This can be very different from how some people use their bodies, mechanically and insensitively, in a mundane repetitive task, which they may not necessarily be enjoying!
Although my profession is an osteopath, own training background from youth was martial arts (tai chi, qigong, aikido, Japanese archery) and pilates, and as I get older, these days, my activity is mostly Iyengar yoga (and yes, I still go to the gym and do a variety of training).
Research (HealthDay, US National Center for Biotechnology Information) suggests however that it is middle age and beyond that we must strive to maintain reasonable fitness. Having once had good fitness levels when young counts for almost nothing, if as we grow older, we do not maintain these fitness (and hopefully also flexibility) levels.
Benefits of regular exercise include:
- lower levels of heart disease, cholesterol, stroke, and high blood pressure
- lower levels of low-grade inflammation (c reactive protein)
- lower levels of type 2 diabetes
- lower levels of colon, breast, lung and multiple myeloma cancers
- stronger bones and muscles
- improved mental health and mood - lower levels of depression and anxiety
- increased longevity
For more about this, please see:
For most people, regular exercise is also a social experience, as most sports involve interacting with other people. For more about this you could see:
My endeavour as an osteopath, and a 'personal trainer' osteopath is to give you, as an individual, the most appropriate exercise therapy for your own situation and body's constitution. Also, I can check on your technique, if you are already training in a particular sport — as this is just as vital as any osteopathic treatment. Even the best possible acupuncture and/or osteopathy treatment (or physiotherapy treatment for that matter) will only give limited and temporary results, if your training technique is compromised, sloppy, over-ambitious or inappropriate.
Careful attention to exercise therapy and better form and technique can hopefully not only improve your recovery time from injury, but also (hopefully) help prevent future injury — although admittedly this is highly dependent on your own training schedule, recovery time, technique and specialist training in your own sport.
You may also wish to visit the Sports Injuries page.
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