Patients sometimes remark that being a Physiotherapist doing assessments and manual therapy 'must keep you fit'.

I agree with them up to a point, it does indeed require a fair amount of physical work to do physiotherapy treatment, but a lot of the movements are quite repetitive. If I miss a lunch break then I might be a bit tired and achy by the end of the day. If I work over a certain number of hours then I'm achy by the end of the week. If I don't do extra fitness such as running or swimming then my upper back gets stiff from leaning over the treatment couch. On balance I would actually say that I need to keep myself fit for my work rather than relying on my job to keep me fit.

I am one of the lucky ones though. I am not sitting at a desk all day and my job does not require long hours of driving, talking on the phone or sitting in meetings. Many people's long tiring days are then finished off with a few precious minutes sitting on the sofa before bed and then the whole cycle starts again without the body having done many movements apart from sitting. So many jobs nowadays can be very sedentary with long hours driven by stressful deadlines and heavy work loads. I see many patients who's musculoskeletal problems seem to be prolonged by their static work postures.

This is why the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy is once again promoting WorkOut@Work (W@W!) for 2016.

http://www.csp.org.uk/news-events/events/workoutwork-2016

This is an established campaign which aims to:

'Inspire employees to address poor work habits e.g. not taking breaks or over-working, and increase levels of physical activity during the working day, so that health is improved and sickness absence reduced.'

In previous years employees have enjoyed a brisk lunch time walk, raised awareness of taking proper breaks away from their desks, completed cycle challenges, work based exercise classes or participated in desk based stretching sessions. These are all ways of creating a bit of variety from static postures, raising the heart rate and enjoying some post work-out endorphins during the working day.

Does this sound like something that your work place could benefit from?

Here at Sussex Physio Pilates we are proactive in promoting exercise as a method for preventing injury and pain.

If you would like more information about 'WorkOut@Work' or maybe some help putting on an event at your work place to promote physical activity among your colleagues, then we would love to hear from you, as we can help get your work force moving and 'Fit for Work'.

 

 

Heather Lowman-Riggs

Chartered Physiotherapist

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