Exercise on Prescription
Everyone knows the importance of regular exercise when it comes to maintaining a healthy lifestyle and organs. And a number of illnesses can be helped by attending regular classes at your local gym or signing up to a fitness program catered for your needs. This is where doctors can intervene and suggest that you need to get a regular fitness regime to improve your health and prescribe you a specific form of exercise. So within this article we will take a look into the various ways you can be eligible for an exercise prescription and which countries are paving a way to a healthier community.
How Beneficial Could Fitness Be?
DepressionWhen you are suffering from an intensive illness, the last thing you think about is the gym, as your main focus is on getting better. However, there are a number of conditions which can benefit greatly from regular exercise, maybe even better than that of prescribed medication. Below are just a few of these which can be greatly improved through incorporating a fitness regime into your daily routine:
- High blood pressure
- Back pain
- Heart disease
Depression is a very common mental illness and affects a lot of people who regularly take anti-depressants to combat the symptoms. However, it is believed that walking or jogging at least three times a week could be as effective as the pills prescribed by your GP.
Your blood pressure is always something to consider before scheduling a workout off your own bat, and it is always recommended that you seek a professional’s opinion before doing so. However, in most cases for high blood pressure in particular, your doctor may be able to prescribe an exercise activity which can help you to bring the levels down. Research suggests that systolic blood pressure can be lowered by at least 4 to 9 mm Hg through regular exercise.
Working out regularly and targeting your core muscles can be very beneficial to those who are suffering from back pain. This means that you are able to strengthen your back muscles over time and can in turn reduce the pain felt. Some studies even state that regular training prescribed by a qualified professional could be as effective as pain killers or surgery and has a much lower risk also.
Whether you suffer from type 1 or type 2 diabetes, ensuring that your insulin levels are consistent is key to a healthier lifestyle and ultimately being able to combat the illness. Therefore it is perceived that exercise can actually improve your body’s insulin control almost instantaneously!
Exercise can also be prescribed to those with trouble controlling their cholesterol. This is because keeping on top of your fitness can increase the levels of HDL (high density lipoproteins) in your body. And this type of cholesterol is known to be ‘good’ and can therefore help you maintain a suitable and sustainable level.
For those who have previously had heart attacks or have a history of heart disease, physical activity is ideal for keeping your heart healthy. Studies have shown that by regularly being active can prevent strokes and reoccurring heart attacks more than some medications patients take.
Countries Paving the Way for Improved Fitness
In recent years the knowledge of how a regular active lifestyle can positively affect your health has been taken on by many countries who have strived to better their community through introducing prescribed athletics for their patients. Here are just a few of the countries where this has been implemented:
- United Kingdom
The United Kingdom is one of the main places where exercise prescriptions are carried out. As well as this the government has introduced a number of free sports classes for younger children at their schools and in the leisure centres. There are also schemes such as cycle to work which encourages regular commuters to find an alternative way of transportation through the use of a bicycle. This initiative not only gets workers fit but it can also effect the environment positively by reducing their carbon emissions from the use of vehicles. To get involved with this scheme you would need to speak to your workplace and they will be able to assist you further with what costs will be involved. Some bigger work places may even offer employees complementary gym passes or discounts on exercise classes. There may even be an in-house training facility accessible for employees who can use it during their breaks or around their shift patterns.
In the Netherlands the locals are very hot on their fitness which is why you will find popular tourist destinations and villages swarmed with bicycles. So much so there are more bikes than cars in most areas as it is a more direct way to travel as well as increasing your health. And to accommodate for the rise in cyclists there are a large number of dedicated cycle routes all over the country which run alongside roads and footpaths to give cyclis
Previously Finland was known for being one of the unhealthiest countries in the world and held the highest records of heart disease. However, this had sparked the government into implementing schemes in order to improve the fitness of its inhabitants. For example campaigns promoting regular exercise and a balanced diet were shown across the country and it worked, as they are now one of the healthiest. And because of this, their rate of cardiovascular diseases has dropped by over 65%.ts the most direct and safest tracks to travel on.
Sweden incorporates the two main focuses of the UK government and the Dutch into one cohesive scheme. Within the country you can be prescribed exercise to help with a range of medical illnesses. Plus the government has made a conscious effort to fund building specialised cycling paths and routes to encourage their community to ditch their vehicles and buckle up their helmet.
Are you involved in any Fitness Schemes?
Above we have explored the numerous ways in which governments have introduced various programs and initiatives in order to promote a healthier lifestyle. And the most significant one of these is exercise on prescription which is seen in the UK and in Sweden too as well as across the globe. Therefore if you have had any experience with being on a specialised training course for your health by your GP, we would love to know your thoughts and feelings on it. Do you think it is a good idea as alternative ways to reduce side effects of injuries and illnesses? Get in touch over on our social media pages now and let us know!
And if you are soon to be starting a new regime set in place by your doctor, be sure to stock up on all of your exercise clothing and accessories here at Sports Fitness.
This article was written exclusively for Sports Fitness by Loren Astbury