I used to beat the hell out of my body when I was in high school. I played soccer, basketball, rugby and a variety of other sports on almost a daily basis. I would bang and crash and hurt myself, but it never really slowed me down because I just took it for granted that within a few days or a few weeks my body would heal up and be ready for more. In University I tested my body with little sleep, more sports and a lot more alcohol, but I still always bounced back and kept going. Around my mid-twenties to early thirties a few things happened that started changing my perspective on life.
By the age of twenty four, I had completed two university degrees and was officially a registered physiotherapist. I’d like to think I was a lot smarter after six years of university, but I learned much more in the following six to ten years than I ever did in school. It was a time when my body seemed to start getting less and less invincible and I started gaining more and more perspective on the importance of physical health. I still played soccer, hockey and squash, but my body started taking longer and longer to recover; things that used to take days to feel better, starting taking weeks and I was forced to consider the physical consequences of my activity choices more than ever.
As a physiotherapist, working with clients from nine to ninety years old, I started recognizing that I was not alone in the weakening of my invincibility around age thirty. I would hear an average of ten ‘getting old sucks’ complaints a week, equally spread amongst the thirty, forty and fifty year-olds. The sixty and seventy year-olds tended to phrase it more around ‘this old body is falling apart,’ and the eighty to ninety year-olds just seemed to be happy if something actually didn’t hurt. Read More
Posted in Blog
Tagged with: aging
, allied healthcare
, chronic pain
, health records
, healthcare reform
, preventative health
Imagine handing the keys of a finely tuned, bright red Porsche 911 to a 16 year old boy, first time driver and saying have fun! Now imagine telling him 15 years later, after he has been in a few accidents, scratched the paint and destroyed the clutch that he should have driven more carefully because this is the only car he will ever own for the rest of his life, that he will now have to go for regular tune ups and will probably have to get an artificial clutch and a titanium tire sometime in the next 30 years. Oh yeah and your shocks will get worse and worse every year. I hope you had enough fun driving in the first 15 years to make the next 40 years worthwhile! Sorry I didn’t teach you to drive better!
We watch our kids struggle to reach the gas pedal for years then blindly let them grind the gears of their own bodies through their adolescence. We put them into sports in key developmental years that unknowingly teach them how to move a particular way and may mold their posture for the rest of their lives. We tell them to stand up straight with little context of what that means and we start binding their feet with stiff little shoes before they can even walk.
Children are resilient, moldable little sponges that should be given some direction and opportunity to become good drivers in their own bodies. The trouble is that most parents aren’t particularly good drivers and their kids think that they are invincible until they reach their mid twenties.
Babies can move, but very little of it is intentional. Most of their movement is created by a series of reflexes that move an entire limb as one unit. The back extensor muscles develop before the abdominals as the baby figures out how to lift its head up and arch its back. Read More
Posted in Blog
, New Moms
Tagged with: aging
, motor learning