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Appropriate intervention for health conditions..... but what is appropriate exercise?

Low back pain exercise instructor in York
Graham Kavanagh

We often talk about the use of appropriate exercise for the improvement of health conditions, but what exactly is appropriate exercise? There are also many "facets" of appropriate exercise.

A health condition can vary greatly from person to person and not all exercises are suitable for every person. To actually manage and start to make practical and realistic improvement each case has to be taken on its own merit.

This means gathering as much information as possible about a persons health condition, history and current level of ability. What aggravates their condition? What makes it worse? There then has to be a distinction made between what is uncomfortable or hurts..... due to fitness improvements needed or something to be avoided in relation to certain complications.

Exercise therefore has to be "appropriate" taking the health condition into account, as well as any constraints of a persons ability..... to carry out exercises. Incidentally, when the benchmark is created to work from (following assessment), progress or management is effective.

So what are the "many facets" of appropriate exercise? The improvement of a health condition is the ultimate outcome, but some health conditions may not improve due to the nature of the health conditions. Exercise then has the DEFINITIVE role in the prevention of worsening symptoms or management of..... with the desired outcome of improving daily activities. 👈

What is another angle that commonly comes into play?

Non-specific low back pain for example is a broad spectrum and can display so many complications that can be actually specific..... and provide information in exercise planning. For example, a recent low back pain case that I am currently working with comes from a slightly different angle.....

Mild symptoms of degenerative disc disease are evident due to medical report being produced. There is a leg issue which sometimes gives way (doing certain activities) though there is no confirmed issue of any neural impingement. On top of this we have the usual suspects in low back pain by way of years of exercising "wrongly" and weak core stability and general lack of "core" strength.

There are no contraindications to exercise provided by the medical sector.

Degenerative disc disease dictates some exercises that simply cannot be done, due to pain aggravation so appropriate exercise has to build strength and movement around this. There are a whole host of exercises that we can do and do use to avoid worsening DDD. This is appropriate training. 👈

We can build stability, strength and improve functional movement. There is another point to note too. Advice is often requested in relation to different training environments. Although I provide exercise sessions in homes. offices and the outdoor space in central York..... many clients do train in other places such as gyms.

Part of exercise prescription comes by way of specific advice in the use of training facilities..... or additional options and recommendations with sports. Training facilities contain an array of equipment from free weights to resistance machines, smaller exercise gear like Swiss balls and bands to varying cardio machines. What gear to use, what not to use, what resistance if any resistance at all, and ways to adapt pieces of equipment for an individuals health circumstances are vital.

Just because all this equipment is available to use, doesn't meant say it is appropriate for a person with certain health conditions or complications with the lower back. This is the importance of taking into account each case on it's merits, and applying APPROPRIATE exercise to provide the benefit to that health condition.

Exercise advice not only involves the improvement of, but the management of and ways to reach the desired outcome with adaptation, alternative and "appropriate" exercise. Many facets!

At Graham Fit Personal Training, specialist training and advice is provided for many health conditions, and of course the improvement of low back pain. Get on track in just a few sessions.

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