Movement is medicine
Have you heard the saying “movement is medicine” before? We say it all the time at Rock Solid Fitness.
But what exactly does that mean?
It means movement, whether exercise or just regular activity, has a positive, healing effect on your body, just like pharmaceutical medicine. But using movement as medicine (when you can) avoids the potentially harmful side effects of many medications.
And plenty of research shows that movement (including weight training) help your body protect itself from disease processes in the future.
A recent study by a team of Australian researchers studied whether resistance training (like we do at Rock Solid Fitness) can improve memory and reasoning in people with mild cognitive impairment, which is often a precursor to dementia.
The researchers recruited 68 women and 32 men ages 55 through 86, all of whom had mild cognitive impairment, and randomly assigned them to two groups. One group did weight training twice a week for six months, lifting 80% of the maximum amount they could. The other did stretching exercises.
All participants were given cognitive tests at the beginning and end of the study and 1 year after they had finished the study. The group that did weight training scored significantly higher at the end of the study than at the beginning, and still showed those gains 12 months later. The gains in test scores were also greatest for those who had the greatest gains in strength. The scores of the group who performed stretching exercises declined somewhat.
A natural reaction for someone with aches or pains is to completely avoid using that sore area of the body. However, movement promotes healing by increasing blood flow, which gets rid of inflammation and brings in the body’s healing agents. Avoiding movement to an area of the body further causes stiffness and does not assist the healing process.
Next time you have aches or have an acute injury, think about scheduling your workout instead of skipping it. You will heal quicker and get back to business – and just might improve your memory and help your future cognitive function.
Movement is medicine! Watch our CEO, Patty explain how!
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