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For the second year running Waikato DHB physiotherapists are marking World Physiotherapy Day today (8 September) by encouraging people to incorporate greater activity into their daily lives.

In 2016 The Lancet published a series of papers highlighting the issues associated with inactivity. They calculated that inactivity is attributed to global healthcare costs of around $53 billion, and is linked to an increased risk of heart disease, diabetes, stroke, dementia, obesity, certain cancers, osteoporosis and depression.

Through encouragement and guidance on how to increase incidental activity, the physiotherapists are hoping to play their part in delivering Waikato DHB’s mission to enable us all to manage our health and wellbeing.

DHB physiotherapists will be actively modelling healthy behaviours by taking up the Steptember challenge in aid of Cerebral Palsy.  Staff will be aiming to complete 10,000 steps daily over the 4 weeks of the campaign.

On World Physiotherapy Day physiotherapists will be inviting staff and visitors on Waikato DHB sites to take up the challenge of ‘Stepping Up’ in the form of stair climbing, step-ups and other physical activities. The aim will be to encourage individuals to seek opportunities to increase their levels of ‘incidental exercise’ e.g. standing up while on the phone, parking the car further away, going for a walk at lunchtime, taking the stairs.

Why climb stairs?

  • Scientific evidence shows everyday activities like walking and stair climbing are more closely associated with improved health than sport based exercise
  • Climbing just eight flights of stairs a day lowers average early mortality risk by 33%
  • Seven minutes stair climbing a day can halve the risk of heart attack over 10 years
  • Just two minutes extra stair climbing a day is enough to stop an average middle age person from gaining weight
  • Stair climbing burns more calories per minute than jogging
  • Easy to build into your life and there’s no need for expensive gym membership
  • Time efficient way to exercise – saves time both in not waiting for the lift and not needing to set aside additional time to ‘exercise’
  • Energy efficient – burn calories, not electricity, save money!

References

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