Ergonomic Health Tips
- Running shoes need to be replaced even before they show signs of wearing out. They lose most of their shock absorption in the first six months. Youíll help protect your back, knees and feet by replacing them regularly.
- Talking on the phone can be hard on your neck or back. Use a headset, shoulder cradle or hold the phone in your hand. Donít cradle it under your chin.
- Give your eyes a break by looking up and focusing on something far away, such as the license plates of cars in the parking lot. Then focus on something near by, such as a book. Repeat this several times every hour to avoid eye strain.
- To rest your eyes, sit at your desk, place your elbows on the desk and cup your hands over your eyes, making a seal around the eye socket. Keep your eyes open and enjoy the darkness. Rest for a minute or two every few hours.
- When working at the computer, think about your posture and hand position. Sit up straight, directly in front of the keyboard. Make sure your wrists are pronated (fingers lower than the backs of your hands), not cocked upwards. This will help to reduce repetitive strain injuries (RSI).
- Stretch at least once every hour. Lean forward, cross your arms in front of you, grab your knees and push your knees apart, keeping your hands on them. Youíll feel this stretch across your shoulder blades.
- Exercising can be done in three 10-minute intervals throughout the day. Try 10 minutes of brisk walking before work, 10 minutes of stair climbing at lunch and 10 minutes of jumping rope or bicycling in the evening.
- Try this simple abdominal muscles workout: Press your lower back into your chair while tightening your abdominal muscles to strengthen them.
- Relieve neck tension by stretching in all directions. Alternatively, bend your head to each shoulder, put your chin to your chest and stretch your head back. Donít rotate your head as it puts stress on your neck..
- Stretch your shoulders by reaching one hand over your shoulder and placing the back of your other hand on your lower back. Slide your hands towards each other, trying to touch your fingertips. Alternate arms.
- Strengthen and stretch your legs by standing in front of your chair, slowing bending at the hips and knees as if to sit down, but donít go all the way, then straighten up. Keep your body upright. Wear flat shoes or do this in your stocking feet.
- Warm up before doing heavy work, including yard work and housework. Stretch your muscles and warm them up with brisk walking or mild aerobics before attempting anything strenuous.
- Always test how heavy a box is before committing to picking it up by moving one corner. When lifting, bend your knees not your back. Only lift when wearing flat shoes.
- Budget time at lunch to go for a walk. Pick a walking buddy and go regularly. Remember to wear socks and comfortable shoes.
- Reduce neck and back sprain by positioning your computer screen on a 15-degree downward angle. The top of your screen should be about level with your eyes.
- Strengthen your forearm muscles, wrist and grip. It will improve your sports games and reduce the chance of repetitive strain injury. Hold a page of newspaper by a corner and crumble it up into a small ball as fast as you can only using one hand. Alternate hands, and repeat several times a week.
- Arthritis sufferers who take glucosamine can try glucosamine and chondroitin. Together they relieve symptoms in almost half of sufferers who take them for at least one month. Recommended dosages are 1,500 milligrams a day of glucosamine and 1,200 milligrams a day of chondroitin. Take a quality supplement as many donít deliver the amount listed on the label. And check with your healthcare practitioner.
- If youíre going to indulge in a high-fat meal, try exercising before you eat. Exercising stimulates your bodyís metabolism and helps to get fats out of your blood stream faster. The closer to eating that you exercised, the bigger the benefit. As most of us eat high fat meals at some point during each day, regular exercise is important.
- The next time you plan a picnic, add a sports component. Try badminton, Frisbee or croquet. Not only will you have fun, but youíll spend less time sitting around the picnic basket nibbling.
- Check with your doctor to make sure youíre not anemic or have lower than normal levels of iron. Muscles require iron to function properly and you may not be getting optimal benefits from your exercise routine.
- Feet need exercise too. Youíll keep your feet in good shape longer if you try this exercise regularly. Put a towel on the floor, stand on it and scrunch it up with your toes as you ďwalkĒ your feet along it.
- In spite of your best efforts, you have a blister. Donít break it and try to keep it from tearing. Let the fluid reabsorb. Protect it if possible by making a little donut bandage from gauze and taping it over the blister. If it does break, keep it covered.
- Nosebleeds are rarely a sign of a major problem, but they are always a major nuisance. Pinch your nose together firmly just below the hard part (cartilage) for 10 minutes and use a cold compress. Bend your head forward slightly to keep blood from running down the back of your throat.
- Getting splinters out is easier with more hands. Have one person push down on either side of the splinter to make it stand up, and another pull it out with tweezers. Wash with soap and water. If the wound becomes red and swollen, itís infected and needs medical attention.
- When doing aerobic exercise (cardiovascular exercise), know your guidelines for exercise intensity. Make sure youíre exercising in the right limits for your age group and fitness level. Ask at your gym for a copy of the guidelines.
- Water aerobics are a great way to exercise. Benefits include it being easy on joints, allows you to control the level of difficulty, tones every part of your body, and itís fun.
- If you canít run for exercise (a good weight bearing exercise to help keep your bones strong), try strength training or tai chi. Strong muscles and good balance will help prevent falls and reduce the risk of fractures.
- If you experience heal pain when exercising, try the following. Replace your running shoes before they wear out, stretch your calf muscles well, slow down if it helps the pain go away and rest if it doesnít. see a podiatrist or orthopedic specialist if the pain persists.
- Donít have time to exercise? Walk up the stairs in your office building. Walk up Ė not down Ė for the most benefit. More people fall when walking down staircases than when walking up them. And wear sensible shoes.
- Rebounding is a great exercise. It requires limited space, improves your balance and coordination, is easy on your joints, increases circulation and burns about 300 calories an hour.
- Get an exercise buddy to help you keep to your exercise routine. You can encourage each other and the companionship makes it more fun.
- Cross-country skiing is great exercise. You can go at your own pace, itís good for your heart, you get outside in the wintertime when you need sunlight, it strengthens all your major muscle groups and itís a great stress reliever. The average person will burn about 600 calories an hour.
- Starting a stretching program? Hold each position for 15 seconds to begin with. Add a few seconds each day. Repeat each position four times, allowing 30 to 60 seconds of rest between each position.
- Soft bicycle seats can be as much of a problem as too hard bicycle seats, as a cushy seat may allow you to sink into the hard frame. And seats that are too big or wide may cause chafing. Try the new gels seats. Talk to a bike expert to get the right seat for you to enjoy your bicycle ride.
- Stretching can also help you build muscle when combined with weight training. Stretch after each set of repetitions and hold the stretch for 20 seconds.
- Be physically active on a regular basis. Exercise not only helps you maintain a healthy body weight, but it can also help you remain healthy in general. Studies strongly suggest that exercise reduces your risk of colon cancer and possibly breast and lung cancers too. There's even some evidence that regular physical activity provides some protection against cancer in general.
- When you begin an exercise program it is best to exercise on alternate days to allow adequate time for recovery. As you progress, and your level of aerobic fitness increases, you can exercise daily since your risk of injury is lower after a long period of training.
- Late afternoon, when metabolic rates begin to slow in most people, may be one of the best times to exercise. You then burn calories while exercising and activate a faster metabolic rate for 2-4 hours at a time in the day when metabolic rate normally slows down.
- Habitual physical activity keeps your metabolism working even when you're not. The percentage of body fat decreased and metabolic rate increased in women who exercised at least nine hours a week for 10 years.
- It's important to increase activity slowly. Aim for 30 minutes of physical activity over the course of the day. Walk the dog, climb stairs or park a little further away. A little bit at a time adds up quickly. Next, increase aerobic activities to 3-5 times a week--swim, bike, play golf or tennis Ė whatever interests you. And finally, include weight training and stretching 2-3 times a week. Please note: before starting or changing your physical activity routine, it's a good idea to consult with your physician.
- To replace fluids that will be lost with exercise, be sure to drink before, during and after a workout.
- Regular physical activity can help reduce your risk of heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure and colon cancer. It can also help to control weight, maintain healthy bones, muscles and joints, and just make you feel better all over. Therefore, make it a regular thing, walk the dog or take a stroll at lunch and instead of parking close to work or the store, park further away and get activity painlessly.
Tips provided by www.2asics.com
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