With the cost of healthcare in the US and the fact it will not get any cheaper no matter what our politicians tell us, most of us as we age, are looking or soon will be, for ways to decrease our out-of-pocket expenses when it comes to healthcare.
After all, one of the biggest healthcare expenses in this country is care needed for chronic diseases that could have been easily prevented in the first place through a sound physical Exercise program for starters. That is however just one of several areas that could have been utilized to avoid being stricken with chronic medical problems that eat a financial hole in our pockets in time.
This is why from my years of experience and knowledge applied that strength training is the first major step to begin reducing Medical Costs.
One of the best exercises if you had to choose one that works your entire Body from head to toe, that will stimulate and strengthen our entire body, increase our bodies metabolism and, increase hormone production is the deadlift.
Not only will the deadlift help increase your overall muscle strength and stamina but it will also help in the prevention of sarcopenia or also known as muscle wasting as we age. It is one of the biggest problems we face as we age and it is such a prevalent problem that Medicare has its own ICD-9 billing code for it.
The deadlift will also help tremendously in increasing bone density for you ladies due to the weight-bearing forces it creates and muscle and tendon stimulation. It also is a fantastic exercise for your cardiovascular system as it takes a tremendous amount of work to lift the weight up from a dead stop position on the floor for multiple repetitions.
It is also is a major player in developing core strength in seniors which is vital in your everyday activities such as getting out of chairs, in and out of the automobile, carrying groceries into the house as well, you get the idea.
It helps tremendously in strengthening your posterior chain or in other words, your hamstrings, gluteus maximus and your low back. All this strengthening and conditioning of your body due to this exercise builds a stronger body, increases muscle stamina and plays a major role in preventing falls.
This does not become important until you find one day you cannot do these simple everyday tasks like you once could and believe me, I see plenty of people who fit that description every week.
There are a multitude of excellent functional exercises that you can do to increase your overall strength and stamina out there, however, if I can get my patients and clients to choose one that will help in achieving exercise compliance for the long-term, I ask them to deadlift, keep it simple.
Of course, if you have not done this exercise in the past you will want to be sure you get the proper instruction from a competent instructor on how to use proper body mechanics and help with choosing the proper weight that will stimulate not annihilate your body.
Anyone can do it, you do not need to start with a barbell, if that is too much start with something much lighter like a five or 10 pound dumbbell or kettlebell, a broomstick if that is where you are at, again it’s not the weight that is important to start with but, the technique is vital for injury prevention.
The last thing you need to help keep your medical costs down is an injury right? Who wants to spend their time sitting for hours in an emergency room that has exaggerated costs tied to it as well?
You can complete three or four sets of this exercise for 12-15 repetitions with a weight you can complete with proper technique, rest between sets for 45 to 60 seconds and start again, you will see what I mean about total body stimulation from head to toe.
Again, it’s a great overall body strengthening exercise, a cardiovascular conditioning exercise and, it will burn a ton of calories as its affects last hours after the exercise is completed once you are using the proper resistance.
Talk about an exercise that will get your bodies metabolism racing as mentioned earlier.
A regular disciplined exercise program of just deadlifting will get you in tip-top shape in time and, increase your overall health benefits ten fold.
If you have any questions about the exercise or other benefits in how this exercise can help you in decreasing your medical costs leave me a comment below.
Richard Haynes PTA, CPT
Total Joint Fitness LLC