Ninety percent of people report some pain relief after taking placebos (“real”-looking pills that contain no active medicinal ingredients).

Keeping Fit

Exercising Despite Allergies & Asthma

Exercise is arguably the most important part of a healthy lifestyle, but it's often difficult for people who suffer from asthma or severe allergies. It's important for people with these conditions to work closely with their doctor to determine what works best for them. In the meantime, though, here are some general guidelines.

Keeping Control

People with asthma and allergies generally do best with activities that require only short, intermittent periods of exertion. The steps below can help minimize asthma- and allergy-related exercise complications.
Always use pre-exercise inhaled medications before any major exertion, and carry your inhaler with you at all times in case of emergency.
Exercise at a level that's appropriate for your physical condition.
Warm up properly to help reduce the incidence of breathing problems. Start gradually, increasing the intensity to what it will be in the sport you are playing. For example, for soccer do some light jogging or drills, increasing the intensity to a few sprints at the end of the warm-up at the same intensity used during the game. If you warm up properly and it still triggers an asthma attack, it allows you time to manage it with an inhaler before the game starts.
Don't exercise outdoors when it's very cold or windy, if pollen counts are high or when there is a high rate of air pollution.
Limit exercise when you have a viral infection, such as a cold, or when your allergies or asthma are severely bothering you.
If it's cold and you want to exercise outdoors, cover your nose and mouth with a scarf or mask.
Asthmatics often do well with swimming, as it creates a humid environment that is less irritating to the airways.

How Much Exercise Is Enough?

As with all adults, people with asthma and allergies ideally should exercise four to five times a week for at least 30 minutes. Again, seek your doctor's advice before beginning.

If You Have an Attack

People who begin having asthma symptoms while exercising should stop and dose themselves with a pre-exercise inhaled medication (such as albuterol), per their doctor's instructions. If the symptoms subside, it's safe to continue exercising. If they don't, stop your activity, repeat the medication and call your doctor.

How to Prevent Golf Injuries

Prevention is a must if you want to avoid joining the almost one-third of U.S. golfers who sustain major injuries each year. Working with a pro can help ensure that you use proper form. Also be sure to:

  • Warm up properly. You need at least 2 to 5 minutes of aerobic warm-up activity, such as fast walking or jogging in place. This should be followed by 5 to 10 minutes of gentle stretching, including neck turns, torso twists and stretches that loosen your hamstrings and back muscles. It's also a good idea to stretch one or two muscle groups while waiting at each hole.

  • Maintain good balance and posture. You need a neutral spine position that doesn't bend or extend your body too far.

  • Shorten your swing. Amateur golfers tend to overswing and use too much force. End your backswing at the 1 o' clock position, instead of 3 o' clock.

  • Lift carefully. Use your legs as well as your back when lifting your golf bag. Pick up golf balls by kneeling rather than bending.

  • Strength train. Lifting weights increases your strength and endurance and greatly reduces your risk of injury. Focus on strengthening the muscles in your abdomen, hips, shoulders, upper back and lower back.

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