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PTSD & Execrise

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is a group of stress reactions that generally develop after witnessing a traumatic event, such as a death, serious injury or violence. After becoming exposed to one or more of these traumas, humans will experience different emotions associated with these experiences which effect each individual differently. This is a normal response, however in some people these emotions will eventually pass while for others they can stay having a negative impact on the individual and those around them. According to statistics PTSD affects about 12% of the Australian population, and can have a negative impact on your health.


COMMON EFFECTS OF PTSD

PTSD, although commonly known as a psychological health diagnosis can actually have a major impact on physical and social health factors as well. These psychological influences may include some symptoms including:

PHYSICALLY
·        Weight fluctuations (weight gain or loss)
·        Increased risk of heart disease
·        Increased blood pressure
·        Increased sedentary behaviours
·        Higher risk of developing diabetes

SOCIALLY
·        Increased time spent at home
·        Isolation from family and friends
·        Avoidance of busy or noise stimulating areas
·        Increased time off work

PSYCHOLOGICALLY
·        Increased anxiety
·        Depressed mood
·        Poor sleep hygiene due to night terrors etc
·        Increased fear/avoidance associated with certain triggers that might escalate the condition

How Exercise can HELP?

The best place to start is by getting in contact with an Accredited Exercise Physiologist who will assist you in setting SMART Goals and working hard to reach them within the time frame YOU  have decided on. This is especially important for those suffering from PTSD as if these goals are not achieved there is potential for this to play further on the condition.  Ensure your SMART Goals are:
Specific - Goal is direct, detailed and meaningful
Measurable - Goal is easily quantifiable to track progress
Achievable - Goal is realistic and you have the tools to attain it
Realistic - Goal is achievable
Time Based - Goal has a deadline

Research suggests that there are a wide variety of exercise types that can be beneficial for those suffering from PTSD, but the best is something that you enjoy and something that you are going to stick to for long term benefits. Strength training/aerobic exercise and slow rhythmic movements such as Pilates and yoga have also been found to be successful. Exercise guidelines follow that for healthy populations and recommend 150 mins of moderate or 75 minutes vigorous aerobic based activity while resistance training advises a minimum of 2x per week.

Whats next?

If you or someone you know suffers from this condition and would like some help setting up an exercise program contact us here at Ex Phys Australia. We can help you on the road to recovery tailored to your individual needs just call us on 1300 869 169 or email us at info@exphysaustralia.com.au.

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