It’s like a seesaw. As the mercury drops, the aches and pains rise. The coldness of winter multiplies the aches and pains we may experience. Research from Tufts University in Boston in 2007 showed that for every 10 degree drop in temperature, there was an incremental increase of the reporting of arthritic symptoms.
So how do we reduce the risk or severity of these aches and pains?
- Keep yourself moving. Don’t allow your exercise to drop off because it’s cold.
- Lengthen your warm up. In colder weather it takes longer for your muscles to warm up.
- Wear warm clothing if you are going outside, it will help you maintain you temperature better. Beanies, gloves, coats, warm socks and compression/thermal tops will help in really cold and windy environments.
- Find alternative training venues. If it is too cold to go outside, take your exercise inside.
- If you are not getting a lot of sun, make sure you increase your vitamin D intake. As research has shown many people with chronic lower back pain have low levels of vitamin D. Check first with your healthcare professional.
- If your aches and pains are in your back, keep yourself moving. Rather than resting completely, make sure you maintain some low level movement. Stretching and mobility exercises are easy to do. Use your massage ball or foam roller to help with these.
- Get an Osteopathic treatment. The combination of the massage and joint mobility techniques will help relieve those aches and pains.
- Eat and drink warm stimulating foods. Such as soups, oats and tea.
These 8 steps are simple but many of us forget to action them in winter, as we want to naturally hibernate in the cold weather. In preparation for Spring, start moving!