Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Health Tips for March 4

Health Tip: Protect Your Muscles

It's important to stretch and warm up your muscles before exercise.

The American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons lists these common risk factors for muscle strains and injury:

  • Tired muscles that have been worked too hard.
  • Tight muscles that haven't been properly stretched.
  • Weak muscles that haven't been strengthened through training and exercise.
  • Muscles that haven't been warmed up before exercise, sports or other activities.
  • Muscle groups that work together that don't have properly balanced strength. For example, a stronger hamstring than quadriceps, or vice versa.

Health Tip: Sit Properly at the Computer

Stretching your neck and working your wrists at a computer for hours at a time can strain much of the body.

The American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons offers these suggestions to help reduce computer pain and discomfort:

  • Sit up straight, with your ears lined up with the top of your shoulders, and your shoulders lined up with the hips.
  • Relax your upper arms, and hold them close to your body. Keep your hands and wrists straight in front of your arms.
  • Keep your hands and fingers relaxed when typing or clicking on the mouse.
  • Take regular breaks and relax your hands and fingers.
  • Give your eyes a rest and look away from the computer every so often. Also, try to position your screen to reflect the least glare.
  • Place your computer monitor about an arm's length in front of you, and right at eye level so you don't have to look up or down to view the monitor.

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