Resolve to Sweat Smart this Fall with Proper Pain Prevention - and Treatment
Survey reveals Canadians are eager to jump into physical activity, which may lead to injury
Toronto, Canada The month of September marks more than just the end of summer vacation and back to school. It’s also a time for starting new routines and for many Canadians, a time to renew health and lifestyle resolutions including increased physical activity and getting back to the gym. Yet, many of the new and renewed fitness fanatics this fall may not realize that rushing into a new exercise program can result in unnecessary pains, strains and even injury.
According to the summer phase of the TYLENOL® Canadian Pain Survey1, conducted by Angus Reid Strategies (conducted in August 2009), over half of Canadians plan on starting a new or building upon a current exercise regimen at the beginning of September and most (82 per cent) plan to be active at least three days a week or more. The winter phase (conducted in December 2008) found that of those Canadians who make New Year’s resolutions in January2, two-thirds (67 per cent) plan to include an exercise program in their goals for 2009 and most (82 per cent) plan to sweat it out three days a week or more - including those who currently exercise infrequently or not at all.
“The two biggest months for new memberships and activity at gyms are January and September; these are times when better health and fitness are top of mind,” explains Tyler Quick, personal trainer and athletic therapist. “Being active is an important factor in one’s overall physical and mental health, but we need to recognize that the best approach to avoid injuries is to start off slowly and build up time and intensity gradually. Rushing into something new with an overly-exuberant fitness program may mean your new fall routine is recovery, not better health!”
Not surprisingly, the winter survey revealed that many active Canadians (72 per cent) have experienced some bodily pain or injury as a result of exercise - the most common being back pain (37 per cent), pulled muscles (34 per cent) and knee strain or injury (30 per cent).
Unfortunately, more than half (56 per cent) of Canadians who experienced pain or injury as a result of physical activity stopped their exercise program temporarily (two weeks or more), while 10 per cent abandoned it completely.
AVOID THE BIG OUCH
Preventing pains and injuries is one step toward achieving a fitness goal. “Injuries can be discouraging and make it easy to give up on an exercise program; however, proper preparation can help avoid these setbacks and ensure success,” says Quick.
Before beginning or intensifying an exercise program, Quick recommends this approach:
* Consult a physician - a doctor will help determine a patient’s best approach to fitness
* Take it easy - ease into a program with slow and gradual increases in time and intensity
* Correct technique - sports trainers can ensure proper technique and safe equipment use
* Stretch - before and after workouts
* Listen - don’t push through the pain
* Rest and Recuperate - allow the body to recover from intense workouts
MANAGE THE STRAIN
Even with planning, increased physical activity or intensity may lead to muscle aches or back pain. When this happens, several treatment options are available that may be considered based on the discomfort level:
* Visit a physician to discuss treatments such as physiotherapy and rehabilitation exercises
* Take an analgesic, like TYLENOL® pain reliever, to help alleviate pain
* Explore non-traditional treatments such as chiropractor or acupuncture
* Follow the RICE approach - Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation
For more information about managing the strain from physical activity, visit www.livingwell.ca.
ABOUT MCNEIL CONSUMER HEALTHCARE
McNeil Consumer Healthcare markets a broad range of well-known and trusted over-the-counter (OTC) products around the globe. McNeil Consumer Healthcare, Division of Johnson & Johnson, markets products in the adult and pediatric pain relief, allergy, gastro-intestinal and nicotine-replacement categories under the brand names TYLENOL®, MOTRIN®, BENYLIN®, BENADRYL®, REACTINE®, PEPCID®, IMODIUM®, ROLAIDS®, NICORETTE® and NICODERM®.
1TYLENOL® Canadian Pain Survey was conducted from August 5 to August 6, 2009 by Angus Reid Strategies through an online survey among a randomly selected, representative sample of 1,002 adult Canadians. The margin of error for the total sample is +/- 2.2 %, 19 times out of 20.
2TYLENOL® Canadian Pain Survey was conducted from December 9 to December 10, 2008 by Angus Reid Strategies through an online survey among a randomly selected, representative sample of 2,026 adult Canadians. The margin of error for the total sample is +/- 2.2 %, 19 times out of 20.
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