This is a photo of joggers on a bridge.

The Scientifically Proven Benefits of Exercise

As the signs of great weather approach, people seem more motivated to exercise.  We want to be in good shape to do some of the more physical summer activities such as gardening, outdoor walks and golfing.  Here are some scientifically proven health benefits of exercise:

  1. Longevity– People who are physically active live longer.
  2. New brain cell development/improved memory and cognition– Exercise stimulates the formation of new brain cells.  Research has shown that the areas of the brain stimulated by exercise are the same spots responsible for memory and learning.  In studies, older adults who engage in routine physical activity score better on tests that assess decision making, memory, and problem-solving.
  3. Improve your mood– Exercise releases endorphins that improve mood and reduce stress and anxiety.
  4. Cardiovascular health– Lack of physical activity is a major contributor to heart disease, diabetes, stroke, high blood pressure and elevated cholesterol levels.  Remember that your heart is a muscle, and exercising it makes it stronger and work more efficiently like the other muscles in your body.
  5. Weight control– Regular exercise helps you to reach and maintain healthy weight.  If you consume more calories than your body requires to get through the day, exercise helps to offset that.  Exercise speeds up the rate of energy use which results in increased metabolism throughout the day.
  6. Muscle strength– Studies repeatedly show that strength training increases muscle strength and mass and decreases fat tissue.
  7. Bone strength– An active lifestyle that includes weight-bearing exercise promotes bone formation, delays bone loss and may protect against osteoporosis.
  8. Sleep better– The natural drop in body temperature 5-6 hours following exercise is what researchers hypothesize to be the reason why those who engage in regular exercise tend to sleep better.

 

Having a workout buddy can help keep you accountable and motivated.  Having some good music, setting some goals, and varying your routines keep things fresh and interesting.  Don’t get in a boredom rut: now that it’s getting tolerable outside, try to do some activities in the fresh air!  And don’t forget that exercise improves circulation to sore spinal muscles!  See your doctor before starting any new moderate to heavy intensity workout.

 

Star Tribune names PDR Clinics a 2017 Top 150 Workplace

A Top 150 Workplace

Edina, MN June 25, 2017—Physicians’ Diagnostics & Rehabilitation (PDR Clinics) has been named one of the Top 150 Workplaces in Minnesota by the Star Tribune. A complete list of those selected is available at StarTribune.com/topworkplaces2017 and will also be published in the Star Tribune Top Workplaces special section on Sunday, June 25.

Produced by the same team that compiles the 26-year-old Star Tribune 100 report of the best-performing public companies in Minnesota, Top Workplaces recognizes the most progressive companies in Minnesota based on employee opinions measuring engagement, organizational health and satisfaction.  The analysis included responses from over 69,000 employees at Minnesota public, private and nonprofit organizations.

The rankings in the Star Tribune Top 150 Workplaces are based on survey information collected by WorkplaceDynamics, an independent company specializing in employee engagement and retention.

Physicians’ Diagnostics & Rehabilitation Clinics (PDR Clinics) was ranked 51st on the small company list.    

“It is an honor to be selected as one of the Top Workplaces again this year. Living out our six Core Values of excellence, innovation, optimism, modesty, seeing the potential in everyone, and leading with grace makes this a wonderful place to work! It is also incredibly rewarding to see the patients we serve thrive in our program and get the relief they deserve from chronic neck and back pain. I feel incredibly blessed to be a part of such a great organization!”, said Tracy Rheineck, Administrator of PDR Clinics.

Star Tribune Publisher Michael J. Klingensmith said, “The companies in the
Star Tribune Top 150 Workplaces deserve high praise for creating the very best work environments in the state of Minnesota. My congratulations to each of these exceptional companies.”
 

 To qualify for the Star Tribune Top Workplaces, a company must have more than 50 employees in Minnesota. Over 2,000 companies were invited to participate. Rankings were composite scores calculated purely on the basis of employee responses.

 

This is an image of an adult stretching on a boardwalk.

Maintaining Your Spinal Flexibility

Remember how limited your range of motion was prior to undergoing PDR’s MedX rehabilitation program? Those tight, injured muscles slowly regained flexibility by all of your hard work stretching daily and performing isolated exercise in the MedX machines.

Here are a few tips and reminders in maintaining your flexibility and continuing improvement:

Use good posture and ergonomics

Muscle tightness may result from prolonged and repetitive use of the body in a particular pattern or posture. Prolonged sitting at a computer, for example, tends to create short, tight suboccipital, upper trapezius, levator scapulae, and pectoral muscles from a forward, rounded head position.

Take brief stretch breaks

Typically after sitting, driving, or working in a flexed position, your body needs to extend!
Here are the best postural stretches to do every few hours:

  • Chin and head retraction
  • Supported Neck Extension (backward)
  • Lower Trapezius Mobilization stretch
  • Doorway Pectoral Stretch
  • Standing or Prone Extension stretch

Stretch at night or after aerobic activity

Stretching is most effective if done to a warmed up body, about the temperature that causes a light sweat. So, completing cardiovascular exercise or taking a hot shower before stretching tends to help. For pain reduction, it is best to stretch muscles just prior to going to bed. The body heals at night and the muscles should be allowed to heal in a lengthened state.

Stretch with intension and accuracy

30-60 second long gradual holds while deep breathing will allow a more effective stretch. Hold at the point of tension, relax, and wait until the muscle relaxes, allowing you to bring yourself into a further stretch.

Keep stretching in your weekly routine

Continue to stretch daily, until the muscle is no longer tight. When muscles are no longer tight, the body has returned to balance, and it is no longer necessary to stretch daily. To maintain flexibility by stretching once every 1-2 weeks. If tightness re-occurs, then go back to the daily stretching routine.