Everyday healthy movements
Along with regular exercise, taking good care of your body helps it function at its best to reduce the risk of injury and pain.
Maintain a healthy weight: Carrying extra weight puts additional strain on joints and muscles, leading to discomfort and poor posture and may increase the risk of osteoarthritis.
Pay attention to your posture: Good posture helps you move with more energy and less fatigue. Poor posture can overwork joints and muscles and make them prone to injury and pain. When seated, place your feet flat on the floor. Keep your back and neck upright and your shoulders back. A lumbar support or a foot rest may help you maintain a good sitting posture. If using a keyboard, make sure your elbows are at the same height as your wrists.
Eat a nutritious diet: A balanced diet of healthy foods will provide all the requirements your body needs to perform at its best.
Take regular movement breaks: Sitting for long periods is a common cause of muscle tension. Get up and take a short walk to the photocopier or to get a glass of water every so often.
Stretch your muscles: Taking a moment every half an hour to stretch tight muscles can leave you feeling fresher at the end of the day.
Warm up and cool down: Before exercise, warm up to loosen your muscles and increase blood flow to reduce the risk of injuries. After exercise, a cool down routine allows your heart rate and blood flow to gradually return to resting levels.
Move more: Incorporate movement into your day-to-day activities. Walk or cycle rather than drive or park a distance away and walk the rest of the way to your destination. Take the stairs rather than the lift or escalator. Where possible, carry a hand basket rather than push a trolley at the supermarket.
Avoid repetitive motion sequences: Prolonged, repetitive movements, or holding a fixed position for a long period of time can overuse and strain muscles and joints. Taking breaks, improving your posture and keeping fit can all help avoid fatigue and injury.
Lift safely: Adopt a stable position with your feet slightly apart. Bend your knees and let your legs to do the work as you lift. Avoid bending, flexing or twisting your back and keep the load close to your torso. Get help with heavy loads.