Among the most important factors considered in determining health outcomes in physical activity. These activities are known to help with a lot of musculoskeletal problems. Physical activities offer you both physical and psychological benefits. You get to strengthen your bones and muscles and, at the same time, reduce anxiety, among other benefits. According to international guidelines, an adult should take part in 150 min per week exercising.
Occupational physical activity (OPA) is linked to jobs and has much to do with the time limit within which an individual works. It may seem like if someone works for 7 hours in a job that probably involves farming or elderly care, they have good health. Still, research has a different opinion—Contact Movement 101 Chatswood for reliable physiotherapy services.
Why Recreational Activity Is Better Than Occupational Physical Activity
Many patients don’t understand why they have to exercise, especially those who do physical work like cleaners. They assume that that is enough exercise. On the contrary, recreational activities have benefits that far outweigh the activities performed at work. Here is why;
Usually, people carry out occupational physical activity throughout the day. Those activities may not have the required intensity; they may also be done over a very long time such that they reduce the cardiovascular benefits. To improve cardiovascular fitness, you need to do high-intensity activities within a short period.
In occupational physical activity, the worker does not have control over how to do the task. The job demands dictate the activities; for instance, the worker cannot decide whether to work from outside or stay indoors, the intensity at which they do their tasks, and when to hydrate. Occupational physical activities, in most cases, leave the workers feeling overworked instead of physically fit.
Heavy lifting related to work or static postures, for instance, assembly line work, can increase the blood pressure of the person involved if they are done for a long time. The blood pressure can remain high for longer, harming your health. With recreational activity, heavy lifting is done over a short period. The participant usually controls how intense the lifting is and how long it will happen.
What can you Do if You Have a Physically Demanding Job?
If you work in places like a construction site that demand occupational physical activities, you can do the following;
- Engage in interval training to gain strength and cardiovascular fitness by picking three exercises that don’t require weights, such as calf raises, squats, or overhead shoulder presses. You can do 20 calf raises, 10 squats, and 15 overhead shoulder presses.
- Purpose going for walks every day. Walking is easy, and inexpensive, and you can do it anywhere. Try walking at a different pace after every three to five minutes; for instance, walking faster for three minutes and then slowly for the next five minutes.
Occupational Physical Activity and Health Risks
According to some randomized controlled trials and systematic reviews, occupational physical activity raises the risk for all-cause mortality, overuse injuries, cardiovascular diseases, and some carcinomas. Research has shown that male workers are more affected by all-cause mortality because of Occupational physical activity. The male laborers with the highest occupational physical activity have been known to have a doubled risk, pointing out that Occupational physical activity significantly impacts the lifespan of male workers.
Also, occupational physical activity involves overuse of the joints, implying that it can be a risk factor for workers developing knee osteoarthritis. Reports have shown that workers have also complained of fatigue and musculoskeletal symptoms after being involved in OPA. Many have reported hip pain, knee pain, and stiffness, which explains why occupational physical activity has many health risks.
Potential Risk Factors Influencing the Risks of OPA
Occupational activities involve strenuous duties like lifting heavy objects and construction work. It is important to note that while you are engaging in these activities, there are serious contractions in your skeletal muscles. The contractions usually increase blood pressure which increases the risk of cardiovascular diseases.
- Injuries – Occupational physical activities are high-intensity activities that could expose you to overuse injuries, for instance, mechanical loads. They are considered a critical component that causes overuse of occupational injuries. Tendons are susceptible to heavy loads, repetitive movements, and handling tools. They expose the body to tendinopathiesYou need to take breaks between tasks to reduce the injuries caused by overuse.
Occupational physical activity is different from leisure-time physical activity because the demands at work require laborers to have a certain level of pace and productivity to meet the company’s goals. There are instances where OPA requires lower intensity work and lifting that is less heavy, for example, in jobs like child care and housekeeping.
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