How To Create A Movement Habit And Stick To It

Ever tried to develop an exercise habit and found yourself unable to stick with it?

If so, you aren’t alone. The difficulty in maintaining an exercise habit happens for a variety of reasons. It might be that you tried too much too soon. Or more likely, you just didn’t find something you actually enjoyed enough to stick to.

One of the most common questions I hear as a physical therapist is, “What kind of exercise program is best for me?”

My answer is always, “The one that you enjoy enough to show up for every day.”

There really isn’t a right or wrong answer. And while this approach sounds simple in theory, it can take some trial and error to figure it out.

One of the most common problems I run in to is the use of the word “exercise”. For some, it carries a lot of baggage because they think they have put off developing an “exercise” habit for too long. They fall into the trap of thinking it’s too late for...

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5 Action Steps To Promote Falls Prevention

 

We don’t often think about our balance until it becomes a problem. In my work as a therapist, I’ve treated both younger and older adults with balance problems.

Balance is a complex system, involving communication between our brain, body, and sensory systems. A decline in any one of these can quickly become problematic.

We tend to associate balance problems with aging, but there isn’t a magical age you reach in which your balance starts to decline. Instead, physical decline begins the minute you stop challenging yourself.

The benefits of maintaining and improving your balance at any age are endless. You’re more likely to be capable to continue doing the activities you love as you age. You’ll worry less about falling, and have more confidence than adults who don’t have good balance. Research has even found a strong connection between balance and brain health. The better your balance, the sharper your mind as you age.

There are small ways you can...

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5 Action Steps to Take Today to Start Aging Well

Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links, meaning at no additional cost to you we will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.

Whether you're 15, 35, or 75 years old, newsflash... you are aging! 

Might as well take control and decide how you want to age. 

It's never too early to start to think about aging, and if you aren't happy with how you're aging it's never too late to start. 

At our clinic, we've had the pleasure of working with adults all the way up to 102 years old who report their quality of life as very high. And that is because their daily habits support their longevity. So... we've been keeping track of what these habits are so we can help others do the same. 

There are an infinite amount of actions you can take to age gracefully, but we listed out the action steps that will give the greatest impact for the effort put in.

Always remember, aging can be what you want it to be.

1. Think Positive

We probably sound...

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How Your Physical Health Relates to Your Mental Health

Brain health isn't a topic discussed often enough, particularly within the medical community. On the bright side, the topics of mental health and access to mental health services have come to light in the last few years. But, the aging brain is often left out of the conversation.

There are many unanswered questions about the decline in brain health with aging. The medical profession is starting to observe the differences in adults who experience brain atrophy and those who don’t. So, we're gaining some clarity. But, there's still so much we don't know.
 
The research identified some clear patterns in those who receive a diagnosis of dementia. But, keep in mind that patterns don't always give a clear cause. We know fall risk increases with increasing mental decline. We know poor mental health increases the risk of developing dementia. We know a connection exists between muscle weakness and dementia. What isn't as clear is why.
 
This is the 2nd part in a...
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For Better Health, Be Like a KidĀ Again

The other night, I was watching my one-year-old son attempt to pick up a garden hose in the backyard. Starting in a deep squat, he kept trying to stand up with an object that was heavy relative to his size. Standing unsupported is a skill he's yet to master, and here he was trying this unknown skill to him. After about 50 tries, he finally got it and I'll never forget that smile on his face.

 
Watching my children grow over the last few years, I've realized kids are invigorated by the most difficult of physical challenges. Curiosity to learn about their surroundings results in physical skills like crawling and walking. The connection between physical movement and brain development is clear in children.
 
I'm not sure where we lost this as adults, but keeping this same curiosity would solve most of our health problems. Adopting a child's approach brings mindfulness to movement, paving the way for healthier aging. Here's what you can take from this example to...
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Your Mindset About Aging is Impacting How You Age

What's the first thing that comes to mind when you think about aging?

Do you imagine a life of limiting what you enjoy because of medical conditions? A time of decline? A life full of doctor's appointments?

Or do you imagine a life full of vitality? Feeling amazing so you can continue to do all the things you love well into your golden years?

We hope imagine the latter, but unfortunately most only picture the first scenario.

How We View Aging 

It's an understatement to say that our society holds tightly to a negative view of aging. It's pervasive in the ways we talk about older adults and also very apparent in advertising. It seems we are on a never-ending quest for “anti-aging” everything.

We often make the mistake of associating aging with decline, and these views impact the way in which older adults view their health. We make assumptions we'll decline both mentally and physically as we age.

But are we really declining because of age itself or because our views...

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The One Factor That Holds the Power to Change Your Life in an Instant

"Whether you think you can or whether you think you can't, you're right." -Henry Ford

Have you ever heard of a self-fulfilling prophecy?

Ever had a feeling something would go wrong, and then it did? It probably left you wondering if it was intuition, or if your bad feelings caused you to act differently than you would have, bringing about the negative outcome. The answer is likely the latter.

You've likely experienced this at one time or another, and are likely experiencing this every day without even being aware!

So how do you know if this is you?

Are you struggling with your health? Not feeling quite as energetic and confident as you hope you will someday?

You might be setting yourself up each and every day for a self-fulling prophecy when it comes to your health just by being in the wrong mindset.

When you believe something will go wrong, you set yourself up for failure. In healthcare, we see this every day. At a client's first visit we often hear stories of desperation and how...

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Want the Secret to Living Your Best Life?

 

Want the secret to living your best life?

We have to admit, this is a bit of a trick question because there truly is no one secret to being your best self. Though the answer to this question is in reality quite simple, it might not be easy.  

A common theme we hear from our clients is that there is some key to living a healthy life that they just haven't found yet. Some deep, dark secret that holds all the answers to living a life of energy, vitality, and abundance.

Chronic disease is becoming more rampant by the day, so we must be missing something, right? Some unknown, mysterious secret that will change our health in an instant if only we could find it.

The true answer is that there is no secret. There is no "one-size-fits-all" approach. And certainly no magic bullet. Instead, the answer involves being mindful along the journey toward finding our best self. It’s not an exciting answer, but by admitting this ourselves we can find a...

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Mindful Movement for Healthy Aging 101

 

At the core of our approach in helping our clients along their journey toward better health as they age is building a mindful movement practice. 

A mindful movement practice is different from a typical exercise or fitness routine. Mindful movement is also one of the most overlooked components of health habits

So what is mindful movement? Mindful movement is for everyone, from elite athletes to couch potatoes. 

Over our years of practice in the medical field, we have noted much of the messaging thrown at us by the fitness industry can be more of a detriment to health than a help. So, we set out on a mission to change the thought patterns around movement to encourage an emphasis on the many positive health benefits of exploring your mobility.

One of our first steps with new clients is guiding them through establishing what we call a "movement practice". A movement practice is individualized based on the health goals of the person in front of us. A...

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