Some things are always a good idea! Hand washing is one of them. It is always a good idea to maintain good hand hygiene! In times of infectious spread of illness, it’s the best idea! Do you know what’s awesome about hand hygiene? It’s easy to do! The poster with this post gives a quick glimpse on hand hygiene. If you follow its recommendations, you will be off to a great start. If you want to learn even more about hand hygiene, specifically in the healthcare setting, use the link provided to see the CDC’s full recommendations and statistical information on the subject.
Let’s talk about hydration! It’s common knowledge that staying well hydrated is a good thing and dehydration is a bad thing. But, do you know enough about this topic to avoid problems? For instance, when should you start taking in more fluids? What are the signs and symptoms of dehydration? When should you seek medical assistance? Knowing the answers to these questions could help you avoid trouble in this area.
It’s that time of year again. When the temperature starts to steadily increase and summer is on its way! What better time to learn about proper hydration and prevention of dehydration?
Let’s start with daily water intake. As a general guideline, Mayo Clinic recommends approximately 15.5 cups per day for men and 11.5 cups per day for women. This is a combination of all fluid intake for a day. Fluid intake can come from multiple sources! Water is the primary source, other beverages and food also contribute to overall intake. Keep in mind that this recommendation is a general guideline! There are multiple factors that can change these numbers. Activity level, environment, and health status, are just a few of these factors. In general, your fluid intake should increase if your output increases. For example, if you are in a hot environment, your water intake should increase to match the increased temperature. This will help prevent dehydration. Which brings with it certain risks. We will get to that next!
Dehydration occurs when your fluid output is greater than your fluid input. When this happens, your body does not have enough water to perform its normal functions. As you can guess, this leads to problems! The tricky part is that your body does not tell you it is becoming dehydrated until the problem is there, which means you don’t feel thirsty until it’s too late. Once the problem is there, then your body lets you know about it, in the form of symptoms. There are multiple symptoms that can occur when you are dehydrated. Some of the symptoms of dehydration are fatigue, dizziness and confusion, less frequent urination, and extreme feeling of thirst. If these symptoms are severe, medical assistance may be needed to restore the body to normal function. Other times, dehydration can be self-treated with rest and increased fluid intake.
The best way to treat dehydration is by preventing it altogether! This can be done by maintaining proper hydration! Seems simple, right? If you rarely feel thirsty and have light colored urine, you are probably well hydrated. Here are some helpful hints to maintain your hydration. It’s always a good idea to drink water before, during, and after physical activity. Drinking water with your meals is another easy way to help stay hydrated.
But wait, there’s more…..
To read more on this topic, visit the links provided, which give more information on proper fluid intake, general guidelines for various activities, conditions, and risks/dangers of dehydration for various populations.
Where to start?
It’s the beginning of a new year! It’s time to set new goals, make a plan to meet them, and then go after them. If any of these goals involve increasing your physical activity or continuing an established physical routine, there are several things to keep in mind. The first is, are you safe to begin physical activity. If you have had a major illness or injury in the past year, you should get clearance from a medical professional before starting regular physical activity. Do you have a nagging ache or pain, that you are worried will worsen with activity? Getting an evaluation from a physical therapist to identify specific deficits and make a personalized plan for you could be the answer!
Things to consider.
Before starting physical activity, it is important to warm-up the body properly. This can be done with active stretching. By making stretches active, you begin to promote motor memory to the muscle, which in turn allows for proper functioning of the muscle during exercise. It is vital to stretch the areas that you are going to be working. So lower extremities, for leg work-outs, and upper extremities for arm work-outs. It does not hurt, however, to stretch both areas, even if you aren’t working those areas out on a particular day. Below are some pictures of basic stretches for the upper and lower body.
Another thing to keep in mind when beginning a new physical activity is moderation. For example, if you haven’t been doing a certain exercise or activity in awhile or ever, do just 10-20 minutes to start. Then, build onto your time as your body gets used to it. Don’t add a lot of new activities all at once, if something bothers you, then you won’t know which thing caused the issue. Start with one or two things and add more on each day or week. Start with low weights or repetitions and increase slowly. This way, you don’t strain or stress any tissues in excess. Lastly, don’t get worried if you are very sore after starting a new activity. It takes time for the muscles to get used to being used in a new way. Soreness is a good sign that you worked the muscles well.
Make it personal!
Whether you are beginning a new physical routine or continuing a previous one, injuries can occur. The best way to treat an injury, is prevent it from happening in the first place. Having a professional, such as a physical therapist, evaluate your movement could do just that! Here at Functional Performance Center, we can analyze your movement, to determine areas that may need more mobility or strength. Then, we can create a plan to address any findings, that is personalized to you! We look forward to helping you in 2020. Happy new year to all!
Let’s get active!
Why you should care!
We spend the majority of our day wearing shoes! Some of us wear only one pair of shoes throughout the day, others wear several different pairs. Some of us wear tennis shoes, some work boots, some dress shoes, or even high heels. No matter how many shoes, or what type of shoe we wear, there is one thing they should all have in common – they should all have a good fit!
Purpose of the shoe
The shoe has several purposes. First, they transfer body weight to the floor when walking/standing. Second, they protect the feet. Third, they minimize stress on the feet. Lastly, they should provide appropriate support and shock absorption for the feet. Most shoes meet at least one, maybe two, some even three of these purposes. But, how many of us wear shoes that do all four on a regular basis? And, with all of the choices out there for shoes, how are we suppose to determine what shoe we should buy? Let’s get some help on that topic!
Things to consider when buying shoes
There are several factors to consider when buying a shoe. One of the most important is whether you want a shoe that promotes stability or mobility? How do you know which you need? Hint: Look at the wear pattern on your current shoes! If your shoes are worn mostly on the medial part (inside of foot), then you may be an over-pronator. Meaning your foot flattens to the ground more than it should. If this is the case, a shoe with a firm arch support and a straight last, would be best. What’s a straight last? Don’t worry we will get there. If your shoes are worn more on the lateral part (outside of foot), then you may be an over-supinator. Meaning you foot does not flatten enough to the ground, putting more pressure the outside of your foot. If this is the case, a cushioned shoe would be best for shock absorption. What if your shoe has even wear across the bottom? Then you have a neutral foot type, and would benefit from a stability shoe that maintains your current mechanics. Meaning your feet are doing just fine on their own!
Other things to consider when buying new shoes are what type of terrain you will be navigating? Having a shoe with the proper grip or tread can help prevent pain or injury. Have you had a previous injury? If so, then a shoe that supports the area of previous injury, or more cushion to allow for greater shock absorption might be best. Also, individual foot anatomy should be considered. Do you have bunions, hammer toes, or neuromas? Then, a shoe with a wide toe box could help prevent excessive rubbing and pain. What’s a toe box? Promise, we are almost there.
Let’s talk about the anatomy of a shoe.
Sole – surface of contact for your foot
Last – the foot shape of the shoe
Tread – bottom of the shoe, surface that contacts the ground
Outsole – area between sole and tread, ensures a secure fit
Lace – tightens around the mid part of foot, allows for more secure fit and stability
Tongue – allows for cinching, promoting more secure fit
Heel – variable in size, allow more or less movement based on size
Toe box – front of shoe, where toes rest, size determines movement allowed by toes
In general, any shoe you wear, should be a good fit! If your feet ache or are painful after only short periods of time, look into a different shoe. Always wear shoes that are appropriate for the terrain and activity you are going to be doing.
If you are unsure of what type of shoe you would benefit from, or have significant pain in your feet or legs, a physical therapy examination might be your answer. We are trained to evaluate biomechanics of the body and determine if deficits exist. In turn, allowing us to recommend the best options to prevent further issues. The physical therapists at Functional Performance Center are happy to assist you in this area! Give us a call at (480)968-2020, to set up an appointment!
Why you should care!
Have you ever finished a workout and felt great! Then, hours later or the next day you are so sore it’s hard to move? Did you know there is a term for this feeling? It’s called delayed onset muscle soreness. Although it isn’t fun to have, it is a good indicator that you worked your muscles really hard, which is good for your strength. If there were a way to reduce this problem before it started, wouldn’t you want to know about it? Well, there is something that can help!
What can foam rolling do?
Foam rolling has been shown to effectively reduce delayed onset muscle soreness. In multiple studies foam rolling after bouts of physical activity, reduced muscle soreness and improved passive and dynamic range of motion. Meaning muscles didn’t get as tight! This happened because foam rolling affected the neural responses in connective tissues. Want to learn how to foam roll yet?
What to do next?
Below are some basic foam rolling techniques to use after a workout or physically demanding activity, such as house or yard work. If you find that these are helpful, let us know! If you feel you may benefit from a full evaluation to determine a more personalized routine, contact us to set up an appointment today!