Have you noticed that your health has started to decline during the COVID-19 lockdown? If you answered yes, you aren’t alone.
The reason for the sudden decline in health of many UK citizens may be explained by recent research launched by the British Chiropractic Association (BCA). The research investigated the impact of long-term lockdown restrictions on the physical wellbeing and routines of people living in the UK.
In this post, our Ealing chiropractor shares these research findings and offers some tips for staying healthy during lockdown.
New Research Finds UK Residents Struggling In Lockdown
The results of the BCA research paper uses data from a survey conducted by OnePoll. The survey looked into the lifestyle habits and routines of 10,000 people from across the country.
The survey based study discovered that lockdown has led to some significant changes in the lifestyles and daily routines of survey respondents. In many cases, these changes had negatively impacted the health of the respondents.
It seems that UK residents have found it much harder to exercise while in lockdown and are spending more time sitting down. This has affected the sleep patterns of some respondents and led to an increase in incidences of back pain.
Interestingly, the survey found that young people were seeing the most significant impact from being in lockdown. Almost 75% of 18-24-year olds found that they were sitting down more since lockdown began. 40% of this group report poor sleep quality and about 30% have experienced new symptoms of back, neck or shoulder pain.
Other key findings include:
- 57% find that they are spending more time sitting down than usual
- Only a third of people have managed to maintain their wellbeing routines
- 42% of Brits no longer find the time to exercise and getting outside each day
- Men are more likely to stick to new routines than women (41% compared to 23%)
- 37% of Brits are struggling with personal motivation when it comes to creating routines
- 56% of people say the winter weather has a bigger impact on routines than lockdown
- Almost a third of people have had worse sleep quality during lockdown
- One in four Brits have experienced new back, shoulder and neck pain during lockdown
- 25% of people have purchased self-support tools, but only 15% have consulted their GP or a chiropractor (10%). Most people haven’t sought any help (46%)
You can read the rest of the findings on the BCA website.
Tips For Staying Active During Lockdown From Our Ealing Chiropractor
Fortunately, there are several strategies you can take to avoid health problems associated with lockdown. They include:
If you aren’t much of a homebody, you might be unsure about what to do with yourself while stuck at home for days on end. As a result, you might end up sitting down a lot or sleeping in, which can impact your health.
Avoid this trap by looking for activities to keep yourself busy. This might include tidying your wardrobe, rearranging your furniture, reorganising your books, playing with your dog or cooking a delicious homemade meal. Virtually any activity is better than spending time sitting around or laying in bed for hours.
Lockdown isn’t an excuse for avoiding exercise. In fact, it’s the perfect time to increase your exercise levels. Look for new ways to workout around the home, like yoga, pilates, body weight exercises, aerobics, and free weights. There are plenty of videos online which share workouts that are perfect for lockdown. A rowing machine or stationary bike is also a useful tool when you are in lockdown.
Take Regular Screen Breaks
Many people have spent a lot of time watching television or using their mobile device while in lockdown, simply because they had nothing better to do. Unfortunately, these activities involve a lot of sitting, which can compress the spine and increase the risk of back pain.
Reduce the impact of these sedentary activities by scheduling in regular breaks. Use a smart phone or alarm clock to remind yourself that it is time to move around. You can also stay active while watching a screen by hopping on a stationary bike, lifting weights, doing some housework, or simply walking around the room.
Deal with lockdown boredom by treating yourself to a mini party. Bake a cake, setup some decorations, make a couple of cocktails, eat some snacks, and dance. Not only will this treat help you stay active and on your feet, it will deliver a boost to your mental health.
As you can see, there are many options for keeping busy while in lockdown. The key is to keep moving as much as possible so you avoid becoming a couch potato.
If you are currently dealing with back pain or other issues and would like to visit a chiropractor in Ealing for chiropractic treatments our clinic, The Spine & Joint Centre, is open with safety protocols in place. Give us a call on 020 8900 9004 to book an appointment.