Common questions in my office
Aug 22, 2013 / 5:00 am
Treating a wide variety of injuries, pain and general maladies in my office leads to a surprisingly common few questions which I get asked daily while treating patients. In this article, I will address three of them.
What is the best chair to sit in at work?
The one you use the least. Not an entirely helpful answer I know, but facts are facts. There is no great chair to use in an office setting and getting fitted for a chair properly would require a bit of an ergonomic know how. That being said, prolonged sitting has been found to be terrible for your health and if you can find a way to avoid sitting, do it. Several companies are now producing very nice sit-stand desks where a person can literally push a button and move their desk up and down according to their needs. By standing and working in front of a work station, a person puts less compressive forces through their spine and also decreases the forward slumping position that sitting encourages. All this risk reduction leads to a decreased likelihood of developing conditions such as Upper Cross Syndrome, which is something I have written about in a previous column. The end answer to this is sit less and you will be a healthier person.
What is a normal heart rate?
As part of a normal first visit, I always take blood pressure and heart rate. While most people are aware that a normal blood pressure is 120/80 (or even better 110/70), many people don’t know what a normal resting heart rate is. A resting heart rate will have a tendency to increase throughout the day dependent on a number of factors such as fitness levels, recent meals, consumption of caffeine, temperature and stress levels. That being said a normal resting heart rate first thing in the morning can range from 40-75 beats per minute (bpm). During a typical office visit a person can have a “resting” heart rate anywhere between 60-90 bpm. It is not a true resting heart rate because they have been moving around and also may have a bit of white coat nervousness. A heart rate of below 50 (except in very fit individuals) and above 100 bpm during rest in my office would prompt me to investigate a little further with my patient.
What’s better Yoga or Pilates?
That depends if you are talking to a yoga teacher or a Pilates teacher because they will invariably tell you that what they do is exactly what you need. While both yoga and Pilates can be very helpful in developing strength and flexibility, a patient in my office needs more specific answers and advice than simply “go do yoga, it will improve your core stability”. My patient will get exercises based on an assessment of where they are too weak or too strong (yes, that can happen) or where they are too tight or too loose (yes, that can happen as well). It is not yoga or Pilates or any other brand of exercise that is the best. It is the correct, specific exercises implemented at the right time that is best. A person who has an injury should be properly assessed by someone with the qualifications to do so and should be given graded exercises based on that assessment.
Read more Back to Basics articles
- Supplements for pain management Nov 28
- Core exercises you are better off without Nov 14
- Why your back hurts Oct 31
- Choosing a personal trainer Oct 17
- The problem with "making good time" Oct 3
- The ankle-foot complex Sep 5
- Common questions in my office Aug 22
- Are your sources reliable? May 16
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