What Are The Best Adjustable Dumbbells Out There?

When I was looking to invest in some exercise equipment for home use, I was advised to go for adjustable dumbbells. These exercise devices are versatile and practical, suited to different workout requirements.

When I started my search, I was surprised at the selection available out there. It was not easy but after some research, I did find the best adjustable dumbbells to buy in Australia.

Adjustable dumbbells are the most popular choice for home gyms because they offer a wide range of weight options.

Instead of keeping a few dumbbells with different weights, the adjustable variety are quite compact. Plus, reducing or increasing the weight is incredibly easy.

They are much easier, though more expensive, than spinlock or screw collar dumbbells, where the weights are more complicated to change. On the other hand, fixed dumbbells just take too much space.

How To Find The Right Adjustable Dumbbells

When I was in the market for my first set of adjustable dumbbells, I admit I got carried away by the marketing, specifically what these products promise to provide.

At the end of the day, I had to simply consider what I actually needed and focus on that. After all, why buy a dumbbell set with 80 kilos when I just needed them for simple and light isolation exercises.

The first step I took was to identify the exercises I want to do at home and start from there.

Some of the sets are quite an investment, so I just needed to put my foot down and get something that meets my needs and suits my budget.

However, it should still be made by a reputable manufacturer known for creating high quality dumbbells.

If you are unsure about the manufacturer and the quality, try to do some research online to read first-hand reviews of the products available out there.

If you prefer, you can track them down to a store or a gym using these dumbbells and try them out.

Taking your time and following the necessary steps to find what’s best for you will ensure that you will only shell out money for the best product out there.

The Best Adjustable Dumbbells

1. Force USA’s Olympic Dumbbells

This is a high-quality product that also meets the Olympic standards. A set includes screw collars (instead of spinlock), which are connected to the bar. Lastly, another benefit is that the collars are quick and secure.

The only disadvantage of these dumbbells is that the plates are not yet included in the set.

2. EverFit Dumbbell Set

This is the set that I ended up buying because it is a great starter set that will not leave a hole in your wallet. For a little investment, you get various sets (between 15 and 35 kilos) that are good quality.

Thanks to its robust design and the durable stainless steel, it is worth every cent. However, the heaviest is restricted to 35 kilos.

3. Powertrain-Adjustable Dumbbells

If you like to add or remove weights while working out, then this is the right product for you.

Changing the weights is fast and easy. In fact, all you need to do is to move the rotating dials on both sides. It has a total of 15 weights. Unfortunately, its disadvantage is the price.

There are quite a few adjustable dumbbells out there that have a lot to offer users which can complicate their choice of a set.

With such a wide selection, it becomes difficult to pick. The best thing to do is to be as specific as possible so you can find the best set quickly.

Why You Should Book a Pregnancy Massage

pregnancyMy first pregnancy was tough on my body. I had always been more or less the same weight my adult life, and suddenly I was gaining more pounds than I was used to carrying. Moreover, it was starting to become difficult to sleep and move around with a persistent backache. I had always loved going to the spa for a massage, but after I got pregnant, I was wary just in case it is dangerous for me and the baby.

Desperate for a good and relaxing session, I searched for a pregnancy massage Eastern suburbs Melbourne. I wanted to relieve myself of backache, but I wanted to be sure that the therapy will be, at the same time, safe. I looked online and found practitioners who are qualified for this and immediately booked myself an appointment.

When I went to the center for my session, I found out how different pregnancy massage is. First of all, she had specialized equipment where I can lie without squishing my baby and allowing my therapist to still be able to massage my back and shoulders.

My therapist offered a treatment room that was so warm and relaxing, perfect for women who need to relax a bit despite the extra kilos they are carrying around all day. Stress is, of course, very bad for mothers and babies, and as the day of giving birth draws near, anxiety can really build up. A massage is, then, not just for its physiological benefits, but also for clearing the mind and feeling better psychologically.

To be more concrete, here are advantages for booking that appointment:

Skin Benefits

I have started to develop some really ugly stretch marks because of the weight that I have put on. When you get taut skin massaged, these can be reduced and the oil can even nourish your skin.

Help with Sciatic Pain

During late pregnancy, the weight of the baby and the uterus exerts a lot of pressure on your sciatic nerves and leg muscles. This is a typical complaint of women that can actually be improved after a session. 

Reduce Swelling of Joints

Reduced circulation and more pressure on major blood vessels caused by the heavy uterus can lead to swelling. Going for therapy will stimulate soft tissues and minimize fluid accumulation in these joints.

Decrease Symptoms of Stress and Depression

Studies have shown that massage helps reduce stress hormone levels. Pregnancy can really bring a lot of changes in your body and this can be hormones can really make you emotional. Depression can also occur as women start to feel big and ugly. This is why you should go to that spa. In fact, a course of therapies over 6 weeks can significantly make you feel so much better.

Fewer Chances of Complications

Stress can affect childbirth and regular massage will help the mother relax. In turn, this will reduce complications and even result in higher birth rate.

Promote Better Sleep

Because of the relief I experienced after the massage, I could sleep better without feeling the throbbing my back.

Help Induce Labor

There is also a form of therapy called Induction Massage, where practitioners use acupuncture points, as well as relaxation techniques and oils to facilitate labor, especially perfect when you are overdue.

Other Benefits

Should your baby be in a breech position, a massage can relax your pelvis and help with the rotation. At the same time, recovery can be sped up, regardless of whether you go through a normal or caesarean birth. Lastly, production of milk can be increased, which is also a great thing for your baby.

With so many benefits, it is really a great idea for pregnant women like me to book a session with a therapist. However, there are some important points that you should consider. 

First of all, make sure to clear it with your physician or gynecologist if you are thinking about going for a pregnancy massage. There are some conditions that will require an approval of the doctor before you go for a session. Some of these include pre-eclampsia, hypertension, severe headaches, high blood pressure, and severe swelling. If you are also having a high-risk pregnancy, pre-term labor or have recently given birth, inform the therapist. Should you have any of these conditions, consult with your doctor first before having a massage. 

Second, if you are especially experiencing consistent pre-term contractions, you should speak up so that pressure points that might stimulate pelvic muscles should be avoided. 

Third, it is more recommended to wait until the end of the first trimester before you book an appointment.

Make sure to include pregnancy massage in your plans during your 9 months. Not only does it bring you lots of advantages, it will really help you relax and enjoy the wait for your baby to arrive. This is a special time for you and by removing stress and pain out of the equation, you can really savor these wonderful changes happening in your life!

Physiotherapy and the Management of Sports Injuries

sports injuryNobody understands sports injuries a lot better than physical therapists or physiotherapists. Countless athletes have seen their dreams shattered because of sports-related injuries. Some have eventually lost their lives because of the complications that result from concussions as well as fat embolism that gets lodged in the brain or even in a major artery of the heart secondary to a fracture. And while orthopaedic doctors and neurologists will be typically involved in the management of sports-related injuries, its ongoing treatment and rehabilitation will require the expertise of a physical therapist to make sure that you retain optimum functionality of whatever is left after the injury. Unfortunately, I had to learn this the hard way.

I enjoy running. In fact, I have participated in several marathons including the Melbourne Marathon and the Melbourne Half. But that was about to change. I was training for the next marathon when I tripped on a large crack on the pavement, landing hard on my knee. I felt a jolt up my spine and my knee started to really throb within the next couple of days. I knew that I had to rest it, apply cold compress, and elevate the rest of my lower limb. But, foolish me, I was more focused on completing my exercise regimen just in time for the marathon. So I didn’t. Only when the pain started getting really unbearable that I decided to see an orthopaedic surgeon. X-ray examination revealed that I had a severely swollen kneecap. You can say I wasn’t surprised. What I was amazed at, however, is the fact that I was given a very unusual prescription: physical therapy. Sure, the orthopaedic surgeon gave me analgesics for the pain but there is not much he can do. According to him, the best healthcare professional to manage my problem is a physical therapist.

I was quite sceptical knowing that physiotherapists only work with world-class professional athletes and sports organizations as well as manage the rehabilitation programs of patients who have recently had a stroke or those who have undergone hip replacement surgery. I know that physical therapy is primarily rehabilitative in nature and as such I was cynical about the idea of getting a physiotherapist manage my swollen kneecap. Is this not supposed to be a domain of the orthopaedic surgeon?

Anyway, the physiotherapy clinic my doctor recommended was nevertheless acceptable for me. I live in Werribbee, just 30-plus kilometres southwest of Melbourne, so it was comforting to know that the Wyndham Physio and Rehabilitation clinic – wyndhamrehab.com.au is also based in Werribbee. At the very least I don’t have to drive all the way to Melbourne just to get the physical rehabilitation. What amazed me, however, was the fact that the clinic’s many clientele were young women like me. Most have musculoskeletal problems or issues in mobility aggravated by pain. They were also at the clinic all raring to manage their pain and immobility issues and get on with their lives.

Physiotherapists are specialists in optimum physical mobility. Where the body needs to move in a certain manner, then they are the ones who needed to be sought. Any issue that compromises or undermines the body’s ability to move efficiently is thus, addressed so that improved functional mobility is achieved.

So what happens during a physiotherapy visit? First, your physical therapist will conduct a very thorough assessment of your health but mostly, will focus on your physical mobility. This means that your muscles, joints, and bones and their respective characteristics will be carefully assessed. Your range of motion and the strength and tonicity of your muscles will be thoroughly evaluated. The stability of your joints as well as your body’s overall flexibility will also have to be assessed in order to come up with a very accurate description of the body’s state of physical mobility. The physiotherapist will then create a comprehensive plan that is primarily composed of three goals: rehabilitate the injured body part, strengthen the surrounding structures particularly the muscles, and prevent further injuries.

Physiotherapy will not address your problems in one sitting, however. In my case, I had to visit Wyndham several times. Each time, my physiotherapist will assist me with stretching and muscle strengthening exercises. I also had to undergo transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation to help relieve the pain and discomfort, increase muscle strength and tonicity, and improve blood flow to the injured area. At home, I was also advised to apply heat and cold compresses alternately and to perform the physical exercises we do at the clinic.

In 2 months’ time, I was able to regain full functioning of my knee. This really helped me better understand what physiotherapy is all about and how it can benefit individuals suffering from a variety of musculoskeletal problems. You can click here to see my previous article about physiotherapy.

7 Simple Tips to Leading a Healthy Life

Leading a healthy life should not really be difficult. Many individuals think that it is something very ideal and as such can never really be attained. While there is some truth to this, owing to the fact that there are a lot of factors that can affect health in general, man should still strive to achieve optimum health and wellness at all cost.

While a lot of factors can affect your health and wellbeing, there are certain things that you can do to optimize your state of health. These are intended as general tips because they can be applied to anyone and under any life circumstance.

Eat Well

You should always strive to eat a more well-balanced diet that should contain the macronutrients carbohydrates, proteins, and fats. Be mindful of the kind of food that you eat. If you have access or can afford fresh, all-natural, and / or organically-grown food products, then by all means, include these in your diet. As much as possible stay away from food items that are heavily-processed especially hydrogenated products. Hydrogenated food products are essentially full of trans-fats. Eat more lean meats, fish, vegetables, and fruits.

If you already have a health condition, ask your doctor what food you can and cannot eat. Usually, you will have to manage your intake of certain food items either to decrease your risk of disease complications or to improve your body’s functioning in relation to the presence of a disease.

Sleep Well

Sleeping is a way for your body to recharge itself. Just as you notice your smartphone heating up after a few minutes of using it, your body tends to overheat as well as you go through the day. Many experts believe that you should always strive for the quality of your sleep. So, take a warm shower and drink your milk just before going to bed as these have been proven to help you relax and sleep a lot better. Turn down the lights, play soft music, and remove all possible distractions so your body can start replenishing its energy reserves.

Hydrate

Your body is essentially composed of water and other substances. Without water, your body tends to overheat leading to some serious health problems. Drinking at least 1.5 liters of water everyday should keep your cells well hydrated and functioning properly.

Be Active

It is not necessary that you go to the gym every single day. Even ordinary household chores can be sufficient to keep you physically fit. Cleaning the house, hand-washing your clothes, doing some small woodwork or even gardening, and doing some maintenance can be great ways to keep you fit. Or, you can enjoy an early morning jog at the park or by the riverside. The important thing to remember is that your lifestyle should not only be confined to your chair in the office or your couch in your living room.

Socialize

Laughter is best shared when with friends. Go out with them and have some good fun. Volunteer for some charity work. There are plenty of individuals in this world who are less fortunate than you. They also require assistance from others, not necessarily in terms of money, but maybe just someone to talk to. You feel much better if you are also able to connect to other individuals.

Explore the World around You

Why not try doing something different. Get your family and go for a weekend vacation. There are a lot of beautiful things in this world just waiting to be discovered. You do not have to be a full-time explorer to discover and enjoy these things because they can exist right in your own backyard or community. You just have to be sensitive enough of the things around you.

When was the last time you stopped and really appreciate the green grass that grows on your lawn? How about the bees and butterflies that fly from one flower to the next? Have you tried differentiating the chirps of birds and the sounds of crickets? You may take these for granted but they are also part of your life, your existence.

Lighten Up

Stress is a part of daily life. Whether you care to admit it or not, it is what brought you here and now. So, lighten up. Play with your family or your friends. Take a stroll down the park. Enjoy the sunset. Do whatever it is that makes you feel more relaxed and calm.

While these abovementioned tips are very helpful, there are also other things you can do to lead healthier lives. The thing to understand is to have a positive outlook in life. That is the key. When you start with optimism, every single thing follows. From a healthy mindset to a healthy behavior, it is no doubt that getting sick is far from happening.

What Is Healthy Is Not Always Healthy

Close-up of human hands with forks tasting salad; Shutterstock ID 82023532; PO: aol; Job: production; Client: drone

What you thought is healthy is no more so. Every year the most common New Year resolution remains to stay fit. However, how many are able to fulfill this promise? The irony is that people taking these pledges are unaware that the diet has no impact on their health. Sometimes it could turn out to be harmful as well.

Many celebrities endorse juice cleansers. It is touted as a way to cleanse the body of toxins, make you feel energized, cleanse your skin and leave a shine on your hair. But do these cleansers do this in real? Well, people have to understand that liver and kidney conducts the role of removing toxins. There is no need for a special diet to cleanse your system. The trick here is that juices are not as effective as eating the whole fruit or vegetables. For instance, carrot juice is devoid of fiber that is rich in the vegetable. Juice cleanse definitely helps reduce weight due to its low calorie count, but too much of calorie reduction is not good for health.

Always HealthyVitamin tablets are not going to help you in any way, and it is just an investment done in the wrong place. Taking vitamin pills and not eating vegetables and leafy greens is not going to help. Studies reveal that there are no health benefits in vitamin pills. Over dosage of multivitamin supplements can lead to neurological problems. Sometimes it can lead to liver damage, nausea, and other illness.

Antibacterial soap does not leave you healthy says Food and Drug Administration. Using antibacterial soap has no better effects than regular soap. If you think antibacterial soap can prevent the spread of germs, then you need to reconsider as they may contain chemicals causing health risks over long term exposure.

The primary dieting trend is using low fat and high protein diet. Most of these are aimed at weight loss. However, remember that reduce a particular food can cause more damage than good. Always remember that too much or too little of anything could damage your health. Similarly, overloading with protein and cutting on fat is not going to help in any way. In turn, too much of protein can damage your kidneys. Intake of fruits and vegetables is good when cooked as it unlocks the nutrients than when taken in raw form.

Healthy Is Not Always HealthyHealthy labels are not meant to be healthy. Many shoppers prefer whole wheat or whole grain bread than white bread. Even whole wheat bread is baked with sugar and other ingredients that can be unhealthy. Natural does not always mean to be good. Natural chicken or other products that are termed naturals are not necessarily better.

Athletes often use energy bars, and every department store or supermarket is loaded with energy bars and people are crazy substituting it for lunch or dinner. Dieticians warn that it is sugar packed and is a cause of concern. Instead, add fruits and veggies are a lot healthier. Though it is a convenient meal, it is not the healthiest.