Ageism is the stereotyping of and discrimination against individuals or groups based on their age. Ageism can take many forms, including prejudicial attitudes, discriminatory practices, or institutional policies and practices that perpetuate stereotypical beliefs.

Negative ageist attitudes are widely held across societies and not confined to one social or ethnic group. Research suggests that ageism may now be even more pervasive than sexism and racism.


This has serious consequences both for older people and society at large. It can be a major barrier to developing good policies because it steers policy options in limited directions. It may also seriously impact the quality of health and social care that older people receive.

These negative stereotypes are so pervasive that even those who outwardly express the best of intentions may have difficulty avoiding engaging in negative actions and expressions. Furthermore, negative ageist attitudes are often seen as humorous and based in some degree of fact; thus, the humour is often mistakenly assumed to counteract any negative effects on the older person. Yet ageism has been shown to cause lowered levels of self-efficacy, decreased productivity, and cardiovascular stress (50). And these stereotypes can become a self-fulfilling prophecy, reinforcing the inaction and deficits that result from their internalization.

These negative attitudes are also widely present even within the health and social-care settings where older adults are at their most vulnerable. Some of this prejudice arises from observable biological declines. This so-called objective starting point for the stereotype of older age may be distorted by awareness of disorders such as dementia, which may be mistakenly thought to reflect normal ageing.

Furthermore, because ageism is assumed to be based on these presumed physiological and psychological facts, little or no account is taken of the less obvious adaptations made by older people to minimize the effects of age-related loss, nor the positive aspects of ageing, the personal growth that can occur during this period of life and the contributions made by older people.

This socially ingrained ageism can become self-fulfilling by promoting in older people stereotypes of social isolation, physical and cognitive decline, lack of physical activity and economic burden.

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Moving beyond pain medication

A prescription painkiller could make a big difference for those suffering from acute pain. But is it absolutely necessary to put these chemicals into your body? Can they cause harm? At what point do the disadvantages outweigh the benefits?

blur bokeh bright candies

Take the case of a patient with chronic arthritis, painfully trying to maneuver through her daily activities. It’s obvious that she needs pain relief. Surely she needs medication so she can get over the pain and move more freely (??).

But consider the long-term implications of that decision. The medication can’t permanently improve the joint movement or relieve pain forever. It can’t build cartilage or muscle strength. By dulling the pain from a suffering joint, it may cause overuse or strain, worsening joint damage and pain. So begins the cycle… Eventually the pain can’t be controlled any more – she’ll have to live with its crippling effects.

But let’s imagine instead, this patient chose a healthy lifestyle packed with recovery factors. She would get outside more, breathe clean unpolluted air and soak in the early morning sunlight for an hour a day. Research shows that sunlight increases vitamin D production in the skin. Vitamin D deficiency is linked with increased risk of cancers, autoimmune inflammatory diseases like rheumatoid arthritis, high blood pressure and diabetes, not to mention heart disease.

Another potent secret weapon in the battle for renewal is exercise. Yes, just simple, controlled exercising despite the pain. Exercising reduces chronic joint pain. It lowers inflammation and lubricates the joint. It improves muscle strength and flexibility. It gives better joint function. It may take a few weeks or even months, but the effect is long-term and healthy.

Physical exercise also helps boost your immunity. An active immune system is a real gift – it helps prevent diseases, including cancer and minor viral infections which can precipitate auto-immune reactions.

Getting active reduces your stress by releasing natural “happy chemicals” like endorphins in your brain. Low stress means better recovery from injury!

Furthermore, being personally involved in your own recovery (especially with helpful physiotherapists) helps with emotional wholeness. As any psychologist would testify, happy, purposeful activity brings immense benefits such as pain relief, distraction from unhappiness and increased self-esteem. An exercise group gives you those feelings of altruism and togetherness, making it even better.

In essence, recovery from injury or chronic illness need not be based on medicine. Rather, gentle graded exercise is a powerful tool to launch you on the road to real health, especially when combined with diet and lifestyle changes.

If you’re suffering in pain, call us on (480) 335 2747. We would be glad to show you specially designed exercises for painful or injured parts of your body and suggest ways of recovery with minimal or no pain medication.


To be successful, you must dedicate yourself 100% to your training, diet and mental approach.

~ Arnold Schwarzenegger

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Participating in Mental, Social, and Physical Leisure Activities and Having a Rich Social Network Reduce the Incidence of Diabetes-Related Dementia in a Cohort of Swedish Older Adults (Original Research)

Authors: Anna Marseglia, Hui-Xin Wang, Debora Rizzuto, Laura Fratiglioni, Weili Xu.

Participating in Mental, Social, and Physical Leisure Activities and Having a Rich Social Network Reduce the Incidence of Diabetes-Related Dementia in a Cohort of Swedish Older Adults (Original Research)



The effect of a healthy lifestyle on diabetes-related dementia remains unknown. We examined whether an active lifestyle and rich social network may counteract the increased risk of dementia in people with diabetes.



Dementia-free older adults from the Swedish National Study on Aging and Care in Kungsholmen (n = 2,650) were followed up for 10 years. Diabetes was ascertained on the basis of medical history, medication use, medical records, or glycated hemoglobin (HbA1c) ≥6.5% and prediabetes as HbA1c between 5.7 and 6.5%. Dementia was diagnosed by specialists following standard criteria. An active lifestyle was defined as a moderate to high (vs. low) level of engagement in leisure activities or a rich social network (having moderate to rich [vs. poor] social connections and support). Hazard ratios (HRs) of dementia risk were derived from Cox regression models.



There were 246 incident dementia cases during follow-up. Those with diabetes (n = 243), but not those with prediabetes (n = 921), had greater risk of dementia (adjusted HR 2.0 [95% CI 1.4–2.9]) than diabetes-free participants. Participants with diabetes but low level of engagement in leisure activities (HR 4.2 [95% CI 2.2–8.2]) or a poor social network (HR 3.4 [95% CI 1.9–6.1]) had greater dementia risk than diabetes-free participants with moderate to high levels of leisure activity engagement or a moderate to rich social network. In participants with diabetes, an active lifestyle (high level of engagement in leisure activities or a rich social network) was associated with less of a raised risk (HR 1.9 [95% CI 1.1–3.4]).



An active and socially integrated lifestyle may significantly counteract the detrimental effect of diabetes on dementia risk.

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I used to play outside as a kid… What kids these days are missing out on?

Playing outside used to be the norm. Today, children spend most of their free time in front of a screen of some sort. Generally, they go outdoors only for organised sports or activities (which are often completely driven by parent involvement).

What do they miss? Not just fresh air!

sedentary children

Experience outdoors

The outdoors is where people interact with the world around. We are all part of this earth, of sunshine, wind, rain, soil, mud, water, trees, flowers, birds and beasts. Our bodies are made up of the same physical substance that has been recycling in this earth since it was all created. We need them all for a healthy life.

It’s one thing to grow a geranium in a pot, but quite another to see wildflowers in a mud patch. No virtual app can mirror the actual feel and look of pond slime, tadpoles changing into frogs, leaves into humus – a world of growth and change!


Instead of lounging in front of a screen or hunching over a game, your kids could be running, calling, hiding, seeking, climbing, cycling, skating, learning how to negotiate obstacles both physical and mental.

Children that spend time inside are not developing coordination and dexterity due to the sedentary life style. They perform awkward movements and in many cases they are clumsy.

Social skills

Having quarrels, learning when and how to react, how to deal with bullies, how to cultivate friendship and loyalty, sharing rather than a gimme mentality, keeping your cool when things don’t go the way you expected – these are part of the right kind of social interactions that come when a bunch of kids plays outside.

Caution, not fear

They learn to stand on their own feet and yet know you’re the right distance away, in case something comes along too big for them to handle. They learn to be watchful, to know if something is not right or downright dangerous, but not timid or fearful. These are big healthy lessons for real-time living that come with good old-fashioned outdoors play.

Natural living

Playing in winter, spring, summer and autumn with all the varying conditions it brings is another immense advantage of outdoors play. Kids learn how to adjust to hot or cold, wet or dry, and become immune to ordinary dirt, bacteria and pests. Children’s growing brain becomes attuned to the circadian rhythms of their bodies, helping them wake and sleep, work and eat, in seamless harmony.

Strong bones

Skin exposed to the sunlight of outdoors becomes a chemical factory, producing vitamin D which helps strengthen bones with rich calcium. Outdoor play builds protein into muscle. This will lower future risks of obesity, diabetes, heart disease, depression and osteoporosis, to name just a few.


Outdoors time also releases stress. Active outdoors play releases pent-up energy which in turn gives you a happier, more peaceful child. You may find he is more able to pay attention to his work. A happy mood and directed curiosity also results from outdoors play, which protects him from the blues as well.

So let’s make sure our children enjoy what we had. Take your kids along with the neighbourhood pack, to the park or on a hike, trail walking, a day at the lake, whatever. Your kids will grow up happier, healthier and better for it!

Call us for an appointment if your child has any issues around movement, fitness, or other physical ability – or even ideas around how to get them more active.


Quick tip

Stand up and walk around every time you make a phone call. Break up your extended sitting periods.


Lack of activity destroys the good condition of every human being, while movement and methodical physical exercise save it and preserve it.

~ Plato

Funny thought of the day

Your alarm clock sound is pretty much a personal TV show intro music to your daily life.


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Isometric, Concentric and Eccentric muscle contractions: What’s the difference?

Muscle contraction is simply muscles doing work. So what’s with all these complicated terms?

Isometric contraction is what happens when you lift and hold a heavy weight steady. Your muscles bulge, but nothing’s moving.

Concentric contractions are movements where you exert muscle force, such as pushing a weight away from you.

Eccentric contractions are the opposite; it is when you lower / return a weight to neutral position, such as letting a weight come back down.

Think of the bench-press exercise, lying on your back: You start at the top and lower the bar; this is an eccentric contraction. Simply holding the bar steady without movement half-way down is an isometric contraction. Lifting the bar back to the top is a concentric contraction.

Now try to recognize these in your very next workout.

muscle contraction

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Just how bad is your posture?

Are you slouching your way to an early death?

Your posture says a lot about your health. Your neck pain, headaches, back twinges and persistent tiredness could all be pointing to one thing: Poor posture.

What is good posture? Basically, it is just keeping your spine happy, keeping it in balance no matter what you are doing and putting as little stress on it as possible to during your daily activities.

Just how bad is your posture?

We have a number of curves built into our spines (it looks like an S-shape when viewed from the side). This helps us stand upright with our weight balanced over our feet. But a look around you shows how little we think of our backs. Heads drooped forward, rounded shoulders, bent knee walk – signs of the strain caused by long hours of sitting. The heavy handbags and the high heels are just spine abuse!

Yet many of us keep making the same postural mistakes over and over. We let our backs go out of alignment by sitting in one position too long. We don’t notice how our heads are sagging forward as we stare at computer screens for hours on end. We lean onto one leg if we need to stand for long. We walk as little as we can and generally put continuous stress on our spines, hips and knees. We slouch, pressing together the small bones in our backs. We get potbellied when our spines finally give in to the stress and sway forward. We let our shoulders get rounded, limiting our chest expansion and so breathing in less oxygen.

The hunched spines also mean all kinds of muscles have to be pressed into action to keep us balanced. Needless to say, we get tired and achy by the time we get home. We flop into a big squashy chair, exposing our tailbones to even greater pressure. In bed, we pile up the pillows, kinking our neck muscles. Naturally, we wake up with stiff necks and shoulders; not to mention the twisted backs from sleeping on soft mattresses on our sides or stomachs. Little wonder we are such an unenergetic lot!

Do you relate to any of this? Then you need to start being kind to yourself. Call us, your local physiotherapists. We are committed to helping you. We’ll show you how to achieve a strain-free posture at home and at work, as well as in your car! We can tell you if and how you are stressing your body by poor alignment. We can help you to get back into efficiency mode. We can even soothe away cramps and knots.

And the best part is, your body will thank you by working far more easily. You’ll start looking great, what with your confident stance and your aura of vigor and strength. Your aches and pains will fade away as the basic bone and muscle abnormalities are corrected. You will start enjoying life again without nagging pains and persistent tiredness.

So go ahead. Call us today on (480) 335 2747 for an appointment and give yourself a break!

Funny thought of the day

We go to other people’s jobs on our days off.

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Do kids get bad backs?

Child with Bad posture

In general, we think that children are impervious to serious injuries, given their boundless energy and great flexibility. However, we cannot take their health for granted.

Such is the case with back health, allegedly an adults-only issue but in reality something that demands vigilance and intervention at all ages.

Sure kids bounce up quickly when they fall, but as their bodies mature they will be motivated to test their physical and athletic limits. Thus, they will become more susceptible to back injuries and putting their quality of life at risk. Therefore, parents and others (teachers, coaches, community leaders, etc.) all share an interest in promoting superior back health.

Here are some steps that you can take to help your children (ages 4-12 in particular) to prevent back injuries:

Provide children with correct footwear

Children’s back health literally starts at the bottom. Most recognized pediatric associations acknowledge that proper footwear encourages full movement and reduces the risk of back injury. This is especially true for kids involved in sports like gymnastics, basketball, and football.

Here are some easy tips to follow:

  • Make sure the shoes fit!
  • Shop in-person with your kids – don’t go online to make purchases.
  • Avoid novelty footwear like flip-flops and high heeled shoes.
  • If mass-marketed footwear does not work for your kids, consider special orthotics.

Once you outfit your children with the right footwear, don’t forget to teach them how to put them on. In particular, have them lace up while sitting on a chair with knees raised at a ninety degree angle. This will prevent overarching of the back, discourage stiffness and encourage proper posture. Strapless and Velcro-fastened footwear are less complicated but demand care.

At the same time, many experts encourage young children to walk in bare feet whenever possible. By having direct contact with smooth and uneven surfaces, young feet will develop strong muscles and ligaments, so critical for overall balance.

Speak with your physiotherapist if you have any concerns. We can help.

Be wary of heavy back packs

Increasingly, a “silent” and seemingly innocent childhood activity is drawing more attention as a cause of major back problems: carrying heavy school backpacks. Paediatricians cite backpacks that exceed 15% of body weight as a reason for increased back strain and other overuse injuries (neck, shoulders). The average 10 year-old weighs 31kg, so her/his total backpack should weigh no more than 4.5kg.

At the same time, improper use of backpacks (e.g. slinging it over the same shoulder all the time) can cause injury even when the weight is reasonable. Therefore, parents should encourage good carrying habits and other common sense tips:

  • Choose a quality canvas backpack with wide padded straps, back support, individual compartments, and weight redistribution features like wheels, hip straps and waist belts.
  • Show your kids the best way to distribute books and supplies in the backpack.
  • Consider using a separate bag for the child’s laptop or other heavier electronic items.
  • Teach them to be prudent with what to bring home from school, and what to take back.
  • Develop good lifting (e.g. use leg muscles) and walking habits with weight.
  • Child should not lean forward when walking; if this is necessary, the backpack is too heavy.
  • Proactively ask your child about back pain.

child carrying heavy backpack

Thankfully, with the advent of laptops, digital tablets and other consumer electronics, the need for carrying heavy hardcover books between home and school is decreasing. But these themselves can add considerable weight.

Encourage back-friendly posture

It’s important for kids to develop good posture habits while walking, sitting, running and taking part in any physical activity. Simply “standing up straight” is a good start, but consider offering your children an array of balance and flexibility exercises that are fun and easy to perform. We can design a program of body weight activities, as well as ideas that require small, inexpensive equipment. This can be vital for young athletes who put above average pressure on back muscles and their spines on a regular basis.

To avoid unnecessary surprises, consider a thorough spinal check for your child on an annual or biennial basis. A qualified physiotherapist can assess posture and general joint movement from head to toe. This is a safe way to identify any back problems and a first step to avoiding headaches, weak abdominal muscles and spinal curvature (rounded back).

Parent involvement with children’s lives is the best way to prevent serious back injuries. The world can be a rough place, so providing them with the best equipment and knowledge is their best defence. Use all the tools at your disposal, and be aware of any changes in your kid’s walk (i.e. gait) and overall physical performance. Speak with us, your local physiotherapist if you have any questions.



Health inspiration

“Living a healthy lifestyle will only deprive you of poor health, lethargy, and fat.”

~ Jill Johnson

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Facts about Holistic Personal Training

A holistic healing method incorporates treating the entire person rather than just focusing on one ailment.

Nowadays, it is more and more common that a Personal Training embraces the entire well-being of the individual, instead of addressing issues only to the physical body and dietary.

In 1h of session is possible to work on different areas of the body such as the respiratory system through breathing exercises, balance and coordination through Hydrotherapy and Ballet techniques, and strength through isometric exercises. As a result, the combination of all those techniques will increase body awareness and improve focus.

A Holistic healing method also takes place in the cultural and intellectual aspects of the individual, usually by recommendations of specific literature and documentaries about natural healing and the mystic law of cause and effect that permeates our reality.

pilates in the morning

Holistic Personal Training is present 24/7 in our lives, because once we start to look at the big picture, healthy habits will slowly take place and change our behavior and old tendencies.

Alternative therapies such as magic candles, incenses, chromotherapy, mantra recitation  and sound healing to name a few, are part of a holistic approach, creating a relaxing and tranquil atmosphere in some time of our day or week. Besides, those possibilites can turn into habits, changing our routines for the better.

Meeting your Personal Trainer to do outdoor activities is a great strategy to connect with nature and expand the surroundings. Some clients are so committed with a new and conscious lifestyle, that the Personal Trainer also plays the role of a personal assistant, organizing calendars and even grocery shopping with the client for a better and complete experience.

If you think about starting a Holistic Personal Training to improve your quality of life and increase discipline, please give us a call. Our services are private and offered by appointment.


Just one healthier choice a day!

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5 reasons to STOP pain medication and START Physical Therapy

As we age, our bodies develop pain that can be from several different causes. Taking pain medication daily can be harsh on our organs and eventually build up a tolerance making the medications less effective and possibly addictive. Physical therapy can be a wonderful way for seniors to keep their bodies moving and healthy, while working to keep the pain at bay.

For seniors recovering from an illness or chronic pain, physical therapy can help work to relieve pain and improve a variety of health-related aspects.

1. Decrease Pain

Chronic pain affects each person differently. Daily pain can increase chances of depression and anxiety, challenging the daily life of the elderly in a tiring way. One of the major contributing pain factors for seniors is arthritisimages

Physical therapy has been proven to play a vital role in helping manage the pain associated with the different types of arthritis that seniors endure. For seniors, physical therapists may recommend different treatment options, such as braces and splints to support joints, shoe inserts to relieve stress on the lower extremities, hydrotherapy, and hot and cold therapy to ease joint pain and stiffness.

2. Improve Cognitive Function

Becoming more physically active after midlife was shown to lower dementia risk. Physical therapy can allow seniors to work areas of their bodies that may not be particularly active and act as an effective preventative measure in decreasing one’s chance of developing Alzheimer’s or dementia, or making sure it doesn’t worsen with age over time. occupational_therapy

Reading, doing manual tasks, dual tasks, IQ tests, playing musical instruments, learning a new language, cooking, and writing are few examples of activities that an elderly can perform without supervision, and are certain to improve cognitive function.

3. Infection Prevention

Lack of movement can increase one’s chance to develop pneumonia and decrease the immune system.

Physical activity will accelerate the metabolism by creating new muscle fibers and regenerating tissues in the body.

Decreasing pain medication will diminish the liver’s workload, demanding less of this structure.


4. Help with Incontinence

Senior women in specific are more prone to urinary troubles, which can be helped with the use of physical therapy.

Physical therapy can target most areas of the body, and with urinary incontinence, there are a number of pelvic floor exercises that can be shown to patients in order to improve urinary functions. PELVCL.1

Most women who suffer from urinary incontinence aren’t aware of why it’s happening. Working with physical therapists can assist women in gaining the awareness they need of their bladder-supporting muscles (pubococcygeus and sphincter) and then learn how to strengthen them in order to control their bladder better.

5. Fall Prevention

Falling can be one of the most deadly challenges that seniors may face. Even healthy seniors can take an accidental tumble and have to deal with the repercussions that an aging body may not be up for. Slips and Falls 1

According to the National Council on Aging, one in three seniors fall each year. That statistic would be dramatically decreased if more seniors sought out physical therapy for overall strengthening of the body. Physical therapy can improve functionality and flexibility of aging joints and muscles. Especially after a hospital stay, which often leads to decreased strength and balance, seniors need physical therapy to protect against falls.

To start Physical Therapy ASAP, give us a call to schedule an assessment session.

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Study carried out on ninety-year-olds reveals the benefits of strength training as physical exercise

After doing specific training for 12 weeks, people over the age of 90 improved their strength, power and muscle mass

Results were reflected in the increase of walking speed, a greater capacity to get out of  chairs, improvement on balance, significant reduction of falls and significant improvement in muscle power and mass in the lower limbs.

These are some of the outcomes of the study recently published in the journal Age of the American Aging Association and which was led by Mikel Izquierdo-Redín, Professor of Physiotherapy at the NUP/UPNA-Public University of Navarre.

Twenty-four people between 91 and 96 years old participated in the research, 11 of them in the experimental group and 13 in the control group.

Twice a week over a 12-week period they did multicomponent training: a programme of various exercises designed specifically for them and which combined strength training and balance improving exercises. As Mikel Izquierdo explained, “the training raised their functional capacity, lowered the risk of falls, and improved muscle power. In addition to the significant increase in the physical capacity of frail elderly people, the study has shown that power training can be perfectly applied to the elderly with frailty.”

With aging, the functional capacity of the neuromuscular, cardiovascular and respiratory system progressively diminish, and it increases the risk of frailty. Physical inactivity is one of the fundamental factors that contributes to the loss of muscular mass and functional capacity.

The conclusions of the study are: b9f1839a5ac36dd485d1c9ab24f31e90

Implementing exercises for muscle power, balance and walking in the elderly routine can prevent the impact of aging and improve quality of life. 

To start a strengthen program of personalized physical training, contact us to schedule an assessment session.


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