Considering Women’s Health Week this week, 4th September – 8th September, Exercise & Sports Science Australia (ESSA) is encouraging all women to understand and recognise the significant benefits that physical activity can have on their health and well-being.
Recently the Australian and New Zealand Journal of Public Health published a new study that compared National Health Survey data from over 20 years. Results indicated that Australians have not improved their activity levels since 1989, with almost 60 per cent of adults still not doing enough physical activity.
“From this study, women are a key target group for intervention as the trend of inactivity has increased from 39.5% by 0.3% per year. We are finding that women increasingly are not meeting the guidelines of 30 minutes of moderate exercise a day, for one reason or another,” says Anita Hobson-Powell, ESSA Chief Executive Officer.
When speaking with every-day Australian women, it appears the two biggest barriers for not maintaining a healthy lifestyle are ‘lack of time’ and ‘their health not being a priority’.
“This Women’s Health Week is the time for women to put themselves first, for at least one week, and start making positive changes to their health that can last a lifetime,” notes Ms Hobson-Powell.
For women, finding time to exercise and focus on their health can seem impossible at times.
Sarah Mengel, Accredited Exercise Physiologist, reasons that, “You put money in your super to look after the future you. Exercise is much the same. It’s an investment in the health of the future you.”
Physical activity can play a vital coping role within the life of a woman. Throughout the menstrual cycle, during and after pregnancy, menopause, etc., exercise benefits both a woman’s health and physical and mental well-being, plus treats and manages chronic conditions and illnesses.
By speaking with an exercise professional, such as an Accredited Exercise Physiologist or Accredited Exercise Scientist, they can help create an individualised exercise plan that can cater to your schedule and help you achieve the minimum 30 minutes of physical activity a day.
“As a mum of toddlers I know that it’s not always possible to get out of the house with the kids to exercise. I have an aerobic step at home that I use for interval training (two minutes high intensity, two minutes low intensity). The low intensity I can use to stack the dishwasher, put on a load of washing, give cuddles etc.,” explains Accredited Exercise Physiologist, Kate Condon.
It’s important to remember to always consult an exercise professional before beginning any new exercise routine, and to find out what is going to work best for you and your uniqueness.
For more information on how to exercise right for you, visit the Exercise Right website.
To find your local accredited exercise professional, click here.
For more information on Women’s Health Week, click here.