Monday, October 12, 2015

Why Walk? Pain Relief

I'm always interested in reading about ways walking can and does improve the quality of life.

Headache Relief: Six Tricks to Ease the Pain by Megan Johnson appeared  in US News & World Report, One of the six tricks they listed for headache relief was moderate exercise such as walking and biking. 

"Thirty minutes of walking, biking, or other moderate physical activity at least three times a week is good for managing headaches, says Richard Lipton, a neurologist at Montefiore Medical Center in New York. Exactly how exercise helps isn't clear, he says. It may reduce stress, a recognized cause of headaches"

An article by Patrick J. Skerrett in Harvard Health Publications had this to say about walking and arthritis pain:

"Taking a walk on most days of the week can actually ease arthritis pain and improve other symptoms. It’s also good for the heart, brain, and every other part of the body."

Finally something many of us may have experienced first hand. Walking helps to ease pain during labor. I certainly remember walking the halls with each of my children praying they'd soon make their appearance!

From the book Easing Labor Pain: The Complete Guide to a More Comfortable and Rewarding Birth, the author, Adrienne B. Lieberman, states:

"A British study comparing mothers who walked during labor to mothers who stayed in bed demonstrated that walking not only shortened labor but also reduced pain and the need for medication."

These are just a few examples about how adding moderate exercise like walking can reduce pain or at least make it more bearable. 

Next time I have a headache I'm going to  reach for my sneakers and try a 30 minute walk!

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