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Thinking of hibernating for winter? 

Let’s keep your moving this Autumn!

As the colder months approach, it can be tempting to abandon our regular exercise routines in favour of warm, cozy blankets and indoor activities. However, staying physically active is just as important in the winter as it is in the warmer months. 

 Let’s walk you through reasons why we should stay active and how to do so safely and effectively!

 What Research Says About Exercise Benefits in the Cooler Months

 The science is clear, exercise in the cold does have a number of benefits, here are our favourite!

  • Improved cardiovascular health: Cold temperatures can cause blood vessels to constrict, which can increase blood pressure and put extra strain on the heart. However, regular exercise in the winter can help improve cardiovascular health by strengthening the heart and improving blood flow.
  • Increased calorie burn: Your body may burn more calories in the winter as it works to maintain its core temperature. 
  • Reduced inflammation: Cold temperatures can cause inflammation in the body, which can increase the risk of chronic diseases such as heart disease, diabetes, and arthritis. However, regular exercise has been shown to reduce inflammation and improve overall health.
  • Improved mood: Exercising in the winter can release endorphins, which are natural mood-boosting chemicals in the brain. This can help combat the symptoms of seasonal affective disorder (SAD) and improve overall mood and well-being.
  • Enhanced immune function: Regular exercise has been shown to boost immune function, which can help prevent illness and keep you healthy during the winter months.
Let’s talk about Exercise and SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder)

Seasonal affective disorder (SAD) is a type of depression that is related to changes in seasons, with symptoms typically starting in the fall and continuing through the winter months. 

 Exercise can help prevent seasonal affective disorder (SAD) for several reasons. First, exercise has been shown to boost mood by releasing endorphins, which are natural mood-boosting chemicals in the brain. This can help alleviate the symptoms of depression and anxiety that are associated with SAD.

Second, exercising outdoors during daylight hours can increase exposure to natural light, which can help regulate circadian rhythms and improve sleep quality. SAD is thought to be caused, in part, by a disruption in circadian rhythms due to reduced exposure to sunlight during the winter months. By exercising outdoors, we can increase our exposure to natural light and help regulate our body’s internal clock.

Third, exercise has been shown to reduce stress levels, which can help prevent or alleviate symptoms of depression. Stress can exacerbate the symptoms of SAD, so finding ways to reduce stress is an important part of managing this condition.

Our Five Top Tips to Exercising Safely in the Cooler Months

Are you ready to keep moving in the winter, well here are our top tips to keep safe while exercising in the cold!

  • Dress in layers: Layering clothing is key to regulating body temperature during outdoor workouts. Start with a moisture-wicking base layer, add a insulating layer, and finish with a wind and water-resistant layer on top.
  • Stay hydrated: It can be easy to forget to drink water when it’s cold outside, but it’s just as important to stay hydrated in cooler temperatures as it is in the heat.
  • Warm up properly: A thorough warm-up is essential in colder temperatures to prevent injury. Spend 5-10 minutes doing dynamic stretches and light cardio to get the blood flowing.
  • Protect your extremities: Hands, feet, and ears are the most vulnerable to cold temperatures, so be sure to wear gloves, warm socks, and a hat or headband to keep these areas covered.
  • Stay visible: With fewer daylight hours in the winter, it’s important to make sure you’re visible to others when exercising outdoors. Wear reflective gear or carry a flashlight to increase visibility.  
 Our Final Word

Now that we have convinced you of the need to keep active, we are here to remind you that our team can help you manage your health if you are unsure of where to start or are being held back by an injury or condition.

Forget the hassle of navigating traffic, sitting in waiting rooms and organising your life to fit in with appointments, at On The Go Rehabilitation Services we schedule appointments to suit your lifestyle and utilise equipment within your home to improve compliance with exercises, so you get better quicker.

At On The Go Rehabilitation Services we cater for all needs and conditions and are pleased to serve the communities of Perth and its surrounding areas. Appointments are available throughout the week, with after hours and weekend appointments available on request!

Get in touch with our friendly team here – and let’s get your health ready for the cold!

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