Don’t Let Yourself Be Sidelined by Tennis InjuriesTennis is one of the most popular sports throughout the world, with approximately 75 million participants worldwide. It is a sport that you can play at every age and at every level. Children can start playing from the age of 4, using softer, slower balls and smaller rackets on modified courts to make the game easier and more fun, gradually progressing to regular rackets, balls and courts. Older players can start the sport at any age and can continue playing all their life. Whether you are looking for the competitive club league tennis or a more social game amongst friends, tennis is an excellent sport with loads of health benefits. Tennis is a fun and social (as well as competitive) way to add to your weekly activity goals.
Here are some amazing benefits of participating in regular activities like tennis:1. Increased brain power From alertness to tactical thinking, tennis enhances the neural connections in your brain. Kids who play tennis regularly get better grades at school. 2. Better hand–eye coordination Playing tennis involves regular skills that all contribute to good hand–eye coordination. You can improve your agility, balance, coordination, reaction time and more. This can benefit you in injury prevention where improved balance and agility can help protect against rolling an ankle or tripping and falling often resulting in sprains or Colles fracture of the wrist or worse a hip fracture in older age. 3. Reduced stress Tennis involves physical, mental, social and emotional challenges, which increase your capacity to deal with stress. Or simply running around smashing some balls may help you to blow off some stress too! 4. Strong heart Compared with other sports, tennis players have the lowest incidence of cardiovascular disease. Playing just 3 hours a week will reduce your risk of heart disease by 56%. 5. Higher fitness levels Playing tennis on a regular basis (2–3 times/week), either singles or doubles, meets the global exercise recommendations and leads to increased fitness levels. Tennis is an excellent interval training technique - running, stopping, burst of activity then rest between points or games (which elevates and then lowers heart rate repeatedly through a match) which is proven to be hugely beneficial in improving fitness levels and in cardiovascular conditioning too. The effect is not only seen in elite players but with recreational tennis too. 6. Leaner body Tennis is an excellent and fun way to burn calories and lose weight. An hour of singles play can burn 580–870 calories. A lower body weight has immense benefits in preventing and managing cardiovascular diseases including diabetes, and a lighter frame will reduce loading on your back and joints reducing joint pain and possible arthritis in older age. 7. Strong bones Playing tennis on a regular basis leads to stronger, healthier bones. This effect is strongest in those who play tennis from an early age, but even if you start playing tennis later in life you can benefit from the positive effect on your bones. This is applicable to both women and men combating the development of osteoporosis a.k.a. brittle bones with ageing. 8. Strong leg muscles Playing tennis strengthens your leg muscles, which helps maintain your mobility and independence in old age.
The Secret is Staying Injury FreeBut these health benefits won’t be very fruitful is you are sitting side-lined because of injuries and while some injuries are quick to repair, others can take a couple of weeks and others may be more stubborn, taking 6 weeks or more. What’s more frustrating, and unfortunately very common, is the risk of re-injury. One of the greatest risk factors for an ankle sprain or a muscle strain (tear) is having suffered from a previous sprain or strain. Nearly 2/3rds of tennis injuries are chronic overuse injuries, many of which are caused by poor technique, incorrect equipment use and lack of physical conditioning
Acute injuries, like an ankle sprain or calf strain, although sudden and unpredictable can also be prevented with adequate preparation and appropriate conditioning. Chat to one of our friendly staff for more information on how to prevent common tennis injuries and stay in the game longer!
Falls Prevention – Balance
What is a fall?
- The World Health Organisation defines a fall as "inadvertently coming to rest on the ground, floor or lower level, excluding intentional change in position to rest in furniture, wall or other objects". Falls in older people cover a wide range of events, including:
- trips on raised obstacles (eg. loose rugs, cords, mats) or uneven surfaces (eg. footpaths, roads)
- slipping on wet or highly polished surfaces
- tumbles and stumbles down steps or stairs
- falling off a ladder or stepladder
- falling over in a shopping centre or while using public transport.
What a fall is not:
- Falls in older people are not accidents. Similarly, falls are not an inevitable or unavoidable part of life. The causes of a fall can usually be identified and the sequence of events leading up to the fall can be predicted and therefore can be prevented.
- Unintentional falls continue to be the leading cause of injuries requiring hospitalisation in Australia.
Risk factors for falls
- Physical activity has been shown to be the most promising falls prevention strategy, both as a single intervention and as a part of a multi-factorial approach.
- Research shows that specific exercises such as Tai Chi, balance, gait training and strength building group classes or individualised in-home programs reduce falls risk by 12% and the number of falls by 19%.
- These interventions can also increase the time before a person falls for the first time. A physical activity program should be specific for individuals and include exercise that challenges balance at a moderate to high extent with a attendance twice weekly.
What you can do to prevent thisPhysical activity is key to preventing falls and improving well being! A holistic program including:
- Proprioceptive retraining – challenging your body on unstable surfaces such as wobble discs and bosu balls helps to retrain your ability to recognise where your body is in space.
- Strengthening – a full body strength program including lower limb, upper limb and core strengthening will help to mitigate the loss of muscle mass common in the older population. Exercises such as squats, bridges, push ups and calf raises are useful examples of this.
Other modifiable risk factors for fallsIncontinence
- Problems with bowel and bladder control can impact on an older person's ability to stay active, healthy and independent.
- Incontinence, urinary frequency and assisted toileting have been identified as falls risk factors for residents in residential aged care facilities.
- Physiotherapy can assist with incontinence.
- Sore, aching or tired feet make it difficult for an older person to stay active and independent, and can affect the way they walk.
- Some types of footwear such as slippers, thongs or scuffs, and wearing socks without shoes can increase the risk of falls.
- Low vision, impaired vision, a change to vision or vision affected by medication can increase the risk of an older person falling. Vision impairment ranks sixth in the world's major causes of loss of wellbeing, and the prevalence of vision loss increases with age.
- There is strong evidence that falls risk is increased by medications which act on the central nervous system, such as those used to treat depression, sleep disorders and anxiety.
- For those using these medications to assist with sleep disorders and anxiety related health issues, there is a need for longer term support and use of non-pharmacological alternatives such as relaxation, reducing caffeine intake, increasing physical activity and meditation in the first instance.
- The relative risk of falls can be reduced by 20% in those with a history of falling by an occupational therapist conducting a thorough home risk assessment and arranging the recommended modifications.
- Tidying up behind you and not leaving objects on the floor can also help to prevent falls.
- Nutrition is an important factor in falls prevention, as frailty results from a loss of muscle mass and strength, neuromuscular impairment, immobilisation and malnutrition.
- Older Australians are at risk of developing nutritional health problems due to reduced energy needs and a decreased ability to absorb nutrients.
Falls can be prevented! Staying healthy and active, maintaining strength and balance, identifying falls risk factors and improving home safety will help to minimise the risk of falling.
Talk to your physiotherapist today about minimising your falls risk factors or join our fit for life program.
As Father’s day approaches we have taken time to reflect on the influences that our Father's have had on us.
Dan,Matt, Joel and Kai have been interviewed, below are their responses:
DanThe 3 things you love about being a father; 1. Being able to watch your children grow and develop into their own personalities 2. It gives you the privilege of being able to see the world again through a child's eyes. Kids teach us to see the beauty in little day to day things that often we forgot to notice in our busy lives 3. I also love being able to share things that I love with my children. I get more joy out of seeing them catch a great wave or make it to the top of a mountain hike than I would if I was doing it myself
MattThe most Important things my father taught me... How to drive, swim, tumble turn in the ocean and how to not catch any fish What it would mean to be a father.. Being a father (especially for the first born) would undoubtedly be the highlight of a man's life What is your favourite tradition with my Father? Growing up it was the New Year's Test at the Sydney Cricket Ground. Favourite activity to do with my Father Favourite activity is to be out in the ocean with Dad watching him negotiate the waves on his standup paddle board What is your Dad's favorite story about you as a Child? Favourite story would be about how I was running and jumping out of the cot by the age of about one. . Who are some other important Men in my life to recognise on Father's Day? Fred Hollows / My Granddad
JoelThe most Important things my father taught me... Patience If things don't make you happy don't do them Go with the flow What is your favourite tradition with your Father? Surfing and going to Farmers market in Bellingen Favourite activity to do with your Father ? Surfing and laughing with him as he goes over the falls How would you describe your Father in 3 words Classic Aussie Larrikin What is your Dad's favorite story about you as a Child? Hiding behind his leg because I was shy Who are some other important Men you would like to recognise on Father's Day? Huey ~ God of waves Poseidon ~ God of water
Incontinence is a widespread condition that can range in severity from a small leak to a complete loss of bladder or bowel control.
According to the Continence Foundation of Australia, more than 4.8 million Australians have bladder or bowel control problems.
It is not normal and we can help - so let's start talking about it!!
Continence and Pelvic Floor Physiotherapy is a proven way to regain control of your pelvic floor. We specialise in training the pelvic floor muscles correctly: the sooner you see us, the sooner you will be on your way to recovery!
What is the Pelvic Floor?
The pelvic floor is a set of muscles that spread across the bottom of the pelvic cavity like a hammock. The pelvic floor has three openings that run through it, the urethra, the vagina, and the rectum. The functions of the pelvic floor include: • To support the pelvic organs, specifically the uterus, the bladder, and the rectum • To help provide sphincter control for the bladder and bowel • To withstand increases in pressure that occur in the abdomen such as coughing, sneezing, laughing, straining, and lifting • To enhance the sexual response
What is Stress Urinary Incontinence?
Stress urinary incontinence is the involuntary release of urine during laughter, coughing, lifting of objects or any movement that increases pressure on your bladder.
Urine is composed of water, electrolytes, and other waste material that has been filtered out of the blood in your kidneys. Urine is then transported via the ureters to your bladder, where it is stored. Once full, the muscles in the wall of your bladder contract forcing urine through the urethra and out of your body. Sphincter muscles and pelvic floor muscles keep the urethra closed to avoid leakage of urine. These muscles relax at the same time the bladder contracts in order to allow urine to exit your body.
What Causes Stress Urinary Incontinence?
It is caused by a lack of support to the bladder outlet, this is due to both pelvic floor and connective tissue weakness. These tissues act like a hammock to resist the downward pressure on the bladder during increased abdominal pressure e.g.- when coughing
There are several causes for stress urinary incontinence, these include:
-Hormonal changes During the week before your menstrual cycle, estrogen levels fall, causing symptoms of stress urinary incontinence to worsen. Additionally, as a woman goes through menopause, estrogen levels also fall causing the pelvic floor muscles to weaken. This results in less muscular pressure around the urethra, making stress urinary incontinence more likely.-Pregnancy If you are pregnant, you may experience stress urinary incontinence due to hormonal changes and the enlarging size of the uterus. During pregnancy, estrogen levels are lower, leading to less muscular strength in the sphincter and pelvic floor muscles. Additionally, as the fetus grows extra weight is placed on your bladder. Childbirth Vaginal delivery can damage your pelvic floor muscles making urine leakage more likely. The supporting tissues of your bladder can also be damaged during vaginal delivery causing a cystocele, or prolapse of your bladder, symptoms of which include urinary incontinence. You may not know you have suffered damage to your pelvic floor until after you have gone through menopause, when the pelvic floor muscles are further weakened due to a fall in estrogen levels.
-Poor exercise choices: Some exercises will exacerbate a week pelvic floor, these include running, jumping or any high impact exercise. Other exercises which stress the pelvic floor include sit-ups and deep lunges.
-Hysterectomy and other surgery The bladder and uterus are very close together and have common supporting ligaments and muscles. Surgery to, or removal of your uterus as in a hysterectomy, risks damage to the supporting structures of your bladder. If these supporting structures are damaged, a cystocele is likely to occur. Symptoms of a cystocele include urinary incontinence.
-Illnesses When you are ill and suffering from severe coughing, the pelvic floor muscles may fatigue and allow temporary stress incontinence due to an increase in abdominal pressure experienced while coughing.
-Obesity Obesity can increase the abdominal pressure on the bladder leading to urinary incontinence.
How is Stress Urinary Incontinence treated?
Treatments of stress urinary incontinence are tailored to suit your individual problem. The following should be considered:
Pelvic floor muscle strengthening Strengthening the supporting muscles of your bladder is very effective in helping stress urinary incontinence. Biofeedback, or the use of special computer equipment to measure muscle activity, can help improve muscle control. Electrical stimulation can also assist in strengthening the pelvic floor muscles.
• Deep abdominal or core strengthening • Learning the knack – this is when you contract your pelvic floor and deep abdominal muscles prior to coughing (or whatever triggers your incontinence) • Lifestyle changes • posture • adjusting activities e.g.- avoid jumping until your symptoms improve • Weight loss if necessary • Vaginal splinting if necessary
Studies show 85% of women with Stress Incontinence are cured with Physiotherapy treatment
To prevent urinary incontinence, you should consider the following:
• Routine performance of pelvic floor muscle strengthening exercises • Cessation of smoking • Avoidance or correction of obesity, or chronic cough • Increased daily intake of fiber and fluid to prevent constipation, a risk factor for urinary incontinence • Avoidance of bladder irritants such as alcohol and caffeine • Staying physically active. Individuals who are physically active are less likely to develop urinary incontinence • Discussing the possibilities and risks of estrogen replacement therapy with your physician