What can a Women’s Health Physiotherapist do for your menopausal symptoms?

A Women’s Health Physiotherapist can assess you individually and tailor an exercise program to address any particular issues and goals that you may have.

At Squareone, our physiotherapists have postgraduate training in managing older women and in particular exercise prescription for the different needs of the menopausal woman.

Exercise can be prescribed to manage:

  • Lowered mood and depression: These are significantly improved with exercise. Even as little as 30 minutes walking 3 times per week has been shown to decrease symptoms of depression. Exercise can also improve the quality of your sleep which helps you have more energy and feel less fatigued.
  • Muscle joint aches and pains: Specific exercise can improve muscle strength and control around joints to ease load and reduce pain. Exercise can reduce pain even when arthritis is present.
  • Pelvic floor dysfunction: After a comprehensive assessment, specific pelvic floor muscle training can be prescribed to address your symptoms. Exercises may aim to strengthen and build muscles, improve muscle relaxation and train your bladder if urgency is an issue.
  • Weight gain: A combination exercise program of high-intensity interval training and weight training has been found to best prevent weight gain and assist weight loss. Interval training is aerobic training that has fluctuations in intensity. So there can be periods of harder work followed by easier work. Your physiotherapist can prescribe a program using your preferred exercise and taking into consideration any joint or muscle issues.
  • Cardiovascular problems: Exercise not only helps maintain a healthy weight, but also assists in lowering blood pressure and normalising cholesterol and blood sugar levels. This then reduces your risk of having a heart attack.
  • Bone density: Exercise causes stresses across the bone matrix resulting in increased bone density to cope with the load. After menopause resistance training uses weights, exercise bands and body weight is the safest way to build bones whilst protecting your pelvic floor.
  • Loss of muscle bulk and strength: The same decline in muscles in muscles happens as with bones. If specific exercise is not started or continued at menopause, a significant reduction in strength and bulk can occur at this time. Muscle strengthening using resistance such as weights can improve your strength, balance and overall function.

 

How much and what exercise should I do?

 

Aerobic exercise: 

For results, you should do at least 20 minutes of this sort of exercise 3 times per week. ( Aim for 5 sessions). To be effective, you must work your heart and lungs so that you are breathing more heavily and quickly than when resting. You should be puffing, but still able to speak in sentences. Aerobic exercise should be avoided close to bed time to decrease the risk of overnight hot flushes.

Flexibility exercises:

These can be incorporated into the end of a cardio or resistance training workout or you may prefer to take part in a group class such as yoga. These exercises are a great way to wind down at the end of the day and assist with sleep.

Resistance or strength training:

Resistance training is an essential post menopause for bone health, maintaining good balance and weight management. This will need to be done 2-3 per week. To achieve the best results and to avoid injury, your program should be designed and monitored by a women’s health physiotherapist such as our experienced physiotherapists.

Functional Training (Clinical Pilates):

Enrol in a Clinical Pilates class. This is ideally done weekly and should be supervised by a Women’s Health physio such as those at SquareOne.

 

What will happen at the first physio session when I want to start exercising?

 

The Physio at SquareOne can assist you in commencing an exercise program even if you have never exercised before.

In your initial appointment, your physio will discuss your health and medical history including any injuries you may have. Together you can set individual goals to meet your needs and address any symptoms. We want to get the most out of your life.

Book an initial assessment 9968 3424 or book online through our website.