The string "17" can be converted to a number

Gilmour Osteopathy | News | Information | What's New
Prev   |  Next

Beware 'Springtime Activity' after a long cold winter

Winter has been long and hard this year. Over the last two months many of us have had our normal activities and sports curtailed because of the weather. Even simple activities such as walking have been reduced. Many people have suffered winter bugs and this too has reduced their activity.
All of this results in a general body and spine deconditioning. Muscles are weaker and joints stiffer. As the weather improves, the temptation is to launch headlong into more vigorous activity than we have been used to over those cold, dark, short winter days.


Winter has been long and hard this year. Over the last two months many of us have had our normal activities and sports curtailed because of the weather and even simple tasks like walking have been reduced. Many people have suffered winter bugs and this too has reduced their activity.

All of this results in a general body and spine deconditioning. Muscles are weaker and joints stiffer. As the weather improves the temptation is to launch headlong into more vigorous activity than we have been used to over those cold, dark, short winter days.

And we can't wait!! Gardening, golf, decorating, spring-cleaning and other sporting activity commonly bring patients to the consulting room. I have seen this pattern many times over my 30year career and I see it coming now. The following tips may keep you out of my hands a little longer!

  • Make the transition to a more active style of life graded. It is often sudden changes in patterns of activity that will awaken dormant joint problems or strain muscles unused to it.
  • Little and often is the message. Long periods of unaccustomed activity are sure to find you out. Try and plan the activities ahead so they are mixed and varied rather than heavy and prolonged.
  • Watch out for periods of time when the weather improves over several days at a time. Bright longer days, particularly when the clocks change, make us feel better and our enthusiasm gets us carried away. Do pace yourself
  • If you are a gardener try and break the tasks up or have 2 or 3 different tasks running at the same time so that you create a variety of different movements and positions.
  • When you have been active don't come in and slump into a soft chair. Poor sitting posture after periods of activity can lead you into trouble.
  • Try not to let your own time agenda dictate the activity. For example, if you have been in the office all week and only have 3 hours to do the garden on a Saturday, don't rush it all at once - try and vary the tasks.
  • If you suffer a sudden onset of spinal pain, ice packs can be useful to reduce inflammation. A cloth covered pack, or bag of frozen peas, over the affected area for 15 minutes once an hour can help reduce the inflammation. If you have a favourite non steroidal anti-inflammatory drug you can use, such as Ibuprofen, then this can help. If you suffer any sort of gastric irritation or respiratory problem from it then you should stop.
  • If your activity has caused you pain then it is most helpful to alternate between short periods of 'pottering about on your feet' and short periods of rest probably lying down. Periods of sitting, once you have hurt your back, can make the situation worse.

Finally, if you are unsure what to do with your problem, whether to leave it or seek help, you can always give Andrew Gilmour a ring. He is quite happy to give you advice over the telephone and, if you are in need of an urgent appointment, then please make this clear when you speak to the Reception. Let's hope the spring sun will shine and equipped with this information you will survive it well!

Andrew Gilmour DO BSc(Hons)Ost - andrew@gilmourosteopathy.co.uk


Send to friend          Ask a question 


Prev  |  Next