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Physical Activity versus Exercise: How Much Do We Need?

We are often told that we need to exercise but are not told HOW to exercise. First off, let’s differentiate the difference between physical activity and exercise.  Physical activity is any bodily movement that occurs as a result of musculoskeletal contraction that ultimately increases energy expenditure.  This is a fancy way of saying that physical activity is an action that requires energy to perform. An exercise is a structured form of physical activity.  But let’s not get caught up in the jargon because both are one and the same and are important for our mental and physical health.  

Man in a wheelchair lifting a kettlebell weight above his headThe American Heart Association currently recommends that adults accumulate greater than or equal to 150 minutes of moderate physical activity or 75 minutes of vigorous activity per week while children should get at least 60 minutes per day of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity weekly.

So, what exactly is moderate vs. vigorous activity? While everyone has different abilities, here are some different ideas to get those recommended “moderate” minutes as classified by the American Council on Exercise that can be adapted to functionality: chores that I push off until the weekend (washing windows, washing my car, cleaning the garage, sweeping/vacuuming), general carpentry, walking 3-5 mph,  mowing the lawn, slow room ball dancing with that special someone, fishing, sailing your boat, canoeing/kayaking (3-5 mph), gardening, leisure biking/stationary bike, leisure swimming (what you consider “easy”), table tennis, shooting hoops, non-competitive volleyball, and golfing!  

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Backwards Walking May Be More Helpful Than You Think

What is the most common cause of long-term disability amongst adults? Stroke (National Hospital Care Survey Demonstration Projects: Stroke Inpatient Hospitalizations, 2019). According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 795,000 people in the United States have a stroke. 610,000 of them being their first new stroke. Subsequently, strokes can reduce mobility in more than half of stroke survivors aged 65 and older (Heart Disease and Stroke Statistics, 2022). The aftermath can affect your ability to transfer, ambulate (fancy term for walking), prevent you from doing activities of daily living, living independently, and increase your risk of falling.

Backward walking activates more muscles in comparison to forwardfeet walking  walking, targets knee flexion and helps to activate those muscles
that haven't been firing correctly because of the aftermath of the 
stroke. 



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'Tis the season to be safe!

'Tis the season to be safe! 

The holiday season has always been referred to as the best time of the year. Even if you are not travelling to visit family and friends in other areas, there are still many activities and fun things to do with your family while at home or in the local Tallahassee community!

family holiday gathering

The best gift is creating memories with family.

The holiday season is a special time of year and by doing some of these activities it can help bring families together as they celebrate! 

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