Taking therapy – and precautions – outdoors
Susie Almon | posted April 27, 2012 |
With spring in bloom, many physical and occupational therapists are taking therapy into the great outdoors. From walking and biking to doing stretches in the sunshine, outdoor exercise and fresh air are good antidotes to the winter blahs. A recent study shows that just five minutes of exercise in a "green space" can create a mental health boost; if there’s a body of water in sight, the effect is even greater.
If your health professional suggests venturing outside, follow these simple precautions to make your adventure safe and fun.
Insects and snakes: Sometimes Mother Nature stings and bites, so take care not to brush up against bushes or walk into overgrowth where insects and snakes can nest. You might consider a few sprays of insect repellant on your arms and legs to keep mosquitoes away.
Variations in terrain: Wear good-fitting athletic shoes and be observant of the topography—divots, bumps, lumps and uneven texture are par for the course on unpaved or older paved areas. Be cautions when walking in low light, as well. Carry a flashlight during these times.
Cars: Never assume that a driver sees you or will stop for you—distracted driving accidents with pedestrians are all too common. Be especially cautious if you’re riding a bicycle or are walking in the street. Whenever possible, get out of the street and walk or ride on a sidewalk.
Sunburn: After a long winter indoors, skin can have less pigment and be more prone to sunburn. Even if you only plan to spend a few minutes outside, wear a broad-spectrum SPF spray of at least 15 on all exposed body parts, as well as a ball cap or wide-brimmed hat and sunglasses with SPF protection.
Dehydration: Know where there are water refill stops along the way, perhaps a water fountain at a public park or a convenience store (this can also help if you need to use the restroom during your exercise). If these refill stops are not available along your route, you may consider bringing a small bottle of water with you.
Carry a few extras: Make sure your pockets are big enough for your ID, insurance card, a small amount of cash and a cell phone. If there’s an accident, you’ll be glad you have a way to get in touch or be identified. And if an ice cream truck rolls by, that $2 might end your time outdoors on a sweet note.
Occupational Therapy Month | posted March 27, 2013
National Occupational Therapy month is a time to bring awareness to the benefits and importance of occupational therapy. We want to take this opportunity to thank our occupational therapists for their commitment to improving the lives of thousands of individuals every day of the year.
Fourth Annual WALK! with Aegis Event | posted September 24, 2012
The fourth annual WALK! with Aegis Therapies 2012 is this week, and we’re thrilled to see this year’s participants take charge and promote active aging! We’re expecting one of the largest nationwide turnouts with over 670 registered locations and thousands of participants joining the WALK! with Aegis Therapies.
Occupational therapy helps those with Alzheimer’s | posted August 16, 2012
Alzheimer’s disease is a devastating illness that affects at least 5.4 million Americans. Occupational therapists offer treatments that can promote safety and enhance a patient’s quality of life, in addition to providing comfort and care for people with the disease and their families.