Each January, we often see a spike in preventable injuries that occur during the festive season. With Christmas fast approaching, we’re sharing our top 5 tips to take care and stay healthy!
- Stay Active
It’s important to promote physical activity amongst all generations! The best way to spend time with family, friends and grandchildren is to get out and get active. In fact, you might find you have even more time during the holiday period than normal to go for a walk, bike ride or a swim down at the beach!
Children require 60 minutes of moderate physical activity per day and adults 30 minutes, so we encourage people of all ages to stay active this Christmas.
- Exercise in the morning before all the hectic festivities begin! Not only will movement and fresh air do wonders to your physical health but also help reduce those holiday stress levels!
- Give gifts that promote activity such as a frisbee, running shoes or pedometer.
- Take care with lifting and carrying shopping!
Whether you’re lugging heavy luggage or bags full of shopping gifts, remember to be mindful of your posture, particularly your spine to prevent injury.
- When carrying items, keep them close your body. This can reduce the load on your shoulders and lower back.
- Maintain the natural curve of your spine when lifting. Bend with your knees not your back! Keep your feet wide apart. Be aware of the best lifting technique for you and respect what your body is telling you.
- Avoid sitting for long periods.
Over the holiday period many people spend their time sitting on the couch recovering from their Christmas lunch or sitting for long periods, watching TV (boxing day test cricket!) or in a car or plane visiting loved ones.
Research shows that sitting for long periods can have a detrimental effect on your body and can lead to the onset of low back pain and chronic diseases (such as obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular disease and cancer).
- Avoid sitting for more than 30 minutes.
- Be mindful of your posture and the type of chair you are sitting in and ensure you have adequate back support.
- Take regular breaks when driving to get out of the car to move your legs.
- Stay well hydrated
It is often extremely hot over this period, so ensure you stay well hydrated. Water is essential for our cells, organs and tissues and when we are adequately hydrated our bodies perform at their best.
It is recommended adults drink between 2-3L of water per day.
- Try adding flavours to your water such as a squeeze of fresh lime, orange, grapefruit or mint, slices of cucumber and plenty of ice! Use soda water just to mix things up.
- Keep your water bottle close by as a constant reminder
- Don’t ignore pain or your injury management routine.
It is important not to ignore any pain or discomfort you might have over the festive season. If you experience any of these symptoms please do not hesitate to contact us on 8342 1233, we are always here to give you help and advice.
If you have a regular routine of exercises/stretches to manage a particular condition please ensure you continue with this to avoid any unwanted “flare-ups.”
Amy Zilm – Physiotherapist
- Australian Physiotherapy Association (APA) Physiotherapists warn Australians about avoiding common Christmas Injuries. View link.
- American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) Physical activity in children and adolescence. https://www.acsm.org/docs/default-source/brochures/physical-activity-in-children-and-adolescents.pdf
- American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM). New recommendations on Quantity and Quality of Exercise. View link.
- Safe Work Australia – Lifting, Pushing, Pulling https://www.safeworkaustralia.gov.au/manual-handling
- Nutrient Reference Values Australia and New Zealand. https://www.nrv.gov.au/nutrients/water