Things We Can Learn From Digby The Dog

Every night I take my dog Digby out to the backyard to do his business.

Every night he races around the back yard like he is chasing some invisible cat- some nights just a little and other nights a lot.

The moral of the story is not that he is psychotic, but that he knows he needs to MOVE.

It is natural to him. He runs and runs and then stops when he has had enough.

We could all take a lesson from Digby…we all need MOVEMENT in our lives.

Take an extra walk, run up the stairs occasionally, walk at lunch time, do a lap of the oval when your kids are playing sport…..but MOVE, it is good for you.

Written by,

Mark Stokes (Physiotherapist & Groove Owner)

Movement is Good for our Brains

Multiple studies have shown that exercise, even walking, massively improves cognitive and creative brain function.

Harvard professor John J. Ratey, in his book Spark, tells the story of a school in Naperville, Illinois, that scored 1st in the world in the international science TIMSS test.

This is not some private boarding school. It’s an average school, except for one thing…it has a physical fitness requirement. Compared to the national average (30%) only 3% of the population at Naperville is overweight.

The fact that Naperville is the fittest school AND the smartest school supports that regular exercise is good for our brains.

Not all our kids are sporting superstars, but all of them need to move, even if it is small amounts.

How do we get our kids moving?

  • Walk the dog
  • Take them for a walking chat.
  • Encourage different study positions, postures and move regularly

Movement Helps Us Live Longer

In addition to a healthy diet and psychosocial well-being, regular exercise can improve both life expectancy and quality of life and help in the prevention and control of chronic disease.

(Gremeaux, V., et al., Exercise and longevity. Maturitas, 2012. 73 (4): p. 312-317.)

Other studies have shown that regular exercise was as effective as Zoloft for fighting depression.

Take home message= MOVE

How can you implement movement into your day?

Movement tip #1

Have a walking meeting: If you are meeting a friend for a coffee and a chat, meet at the café, go for a short walk and talk, then stop and have the coffee afterwards. Easy!



The Runner’s Groove: 18 PHYSIO TIPS

1. Start with time and not distance: When starting a program concentrate on how much time you are spending running and not how far or how fast. With the proper base of “time in your legs” distance and time will be easily worked on later.

2. Don’t crush the egg: Tension in the arms and upper body can restrict or running economy and waste a lot of energy. It will also make the breathing muscles work harder and less efficiently. An old athletics coach once told me to pretend I had eggs in my hands. It means you don’t clench, and keeps the arms less tense.

3. Learn from your mistakes: Do you have a past history of running injuries? Did you overtrain or breakdown? Think back to what worked and what didn’t and don’t make the same mistakes. Send us your questions if you are unsure.

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