January 24, 2021

The more you move, the more you live

Keeping basic functional movements is key to having a healthy lifespan (how long you live a healthy life, not just how long you live).

Older people in the poorest health generally have the least mobility. Incorporate these five mobility exercises into your routine to prevent future problems. 

1. Get on the ground and back up again without someone helping you or having to hold on to something. When someone who can't do this falls it's extremely dangerous. Especially if they fall outside during the winter they end up having to crawl until they can find someone to hold on to or having to call for help. 

2. Squat down deep to end range of hip and knee motion, just with body weight. The majority of the population sits all day long and never uses most of their hip or knee range of motion. They bend with their back or they kneel down when trying to get something off the ground. In my chiropractic office, we see injuries every day caused by people bending down with their backs to lift something off the ground instead of using their legs and squatting down. 

3. Reach your arms overhead. Many people don't reach above their head on a regular basis. We see many people who have severe loss of shoulder mobility when they get into their 70's and older. Some even have a hard time doing their hair. Usually it is not from an injury, it's just from lack of use. 

4. Low impact interval/sprints. As people age, they lose their ability to move quickly without getting hurt. Having the ability to sprint or quickly get out of the way can prevent injuries. If you are around kids, I'm sure you have witnessed many times that moving quick can save them from getting hurt. Most people lose the ability to sprint properly in their 30's. 

5. Turn your head from side to side as far as it goes. 90% of people work from a computer and never do anything besides stare straight forward. I'm surprised people don't get in more car accidents because many people lose 50% of more of their neck range of motion as they age and checking their blind spot while driving is nearly impossible. If you lose neck mobility, it can lead to other back issues as people are twisting their back to see rather than turning their neck.

You've heard "if you don't use it, you lose it." That saying for mobility should go "if you move it, you won't lose it."

It only takes a few minutes a day to do these motion exercises and it will make a massive difference for your health down the road. 

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