SILVER WINNER - Expat Living’s Readers’ Choice Awards 2022

Dear Patients,

We are delighted to share that we have come out on top in the Expat Living’s Readers’ Choice Awards 2022.

The public voted for who they think are the best companies in Singapore, with votes casted for favourite products and services in 118 categories, from top hairdressers to the best brunches and florists in town.

In the "Best Physiotherapy" category, we have emerged as the SILVER WINNER, a valued recognition given to only one clinic in Singapore each year.

This wouldn’t be possible without your support. Many thanks to all who have participated and casted a vote for us. Without doubt, if there was a “Best Community” award, it would have to go to the PhysioActive family!


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GOLD WINNER - Expat Living’s Readers’ Choice Awards 2021

Dear Patients,

We are delighted to share that we have come out on top in the Expat Living’s Readers’ Choice Awards 2021.

The public voted for who they think are the best companies in Singapore, with votes casted for favourite products and services in 118 categories, from top hairdressers to the best brunches and florists in town.

In the "Best Physiotherapy" category, we have emerged as the GOLD WINNER, a valued recognition given to only one clinic in Singapore each year.

This wouldn’t be possible without your support. Many thanks to all who have participated and casted a vote for us. Without doubt, if there was a “Best Community” award, it would have to go to the PhysioActive family!


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PhysioActive is available in Orchard, Raffles, East Coast, Jurong & Novena!

Global Health Asia Pacific Awards 2020

We are proud to announce that PhysioActive has been recognised as the Physiotherapy Medical Centre of the Year Asia Pacific at the Global Health Asia Pacific Awards 2020.

Such awards are a recognition of the tremendous effort the team places in delivering the best of treatments to our patients. This is also the main reason why our services are trusted by an ever-increasing number of expats and local clients.

Above all, it is still our clients like you who remind us why we do what we do. Thank you for allowing us to serve you, and thank you greatly for your continued support!

About Global Health Asia Pacific Awards 2020

The GH APAC awards aims to recognise companies in a variety of regional and global markets that have maintained consistently high standards in delivering quality care and pushed the boundaries of delighting their customers at every stage and in every interaction.

The methodology for identifying award recipient candidates draws on:

  • Consumer survey
  • Panel of industry experts
  • Judging criteria
  • Market research reports
  • GlobalHealth Asia Pacific’s healthcare knowledge

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Common Golf Injuries and Top Tips to Avoid Them

Golf is a sport played by both young and old. Some people see it as a sport that’s easy on the body and can be played into their later years. There is some truth to that train of thought but, like any other sport, injuries can occur. These injuries range from mild to more serious. Research from the British Journal of Sports Medicine shows that 15-40% of amateur golfers sustain an injury on an annual basis. The risk increases over time with 7 in 10 golfers suffering a golf-related injury in their lifetime. Along with this, it was shown that professionals have higher annual rates of injury ranging from 30-90% showing that more frequent play increases the risk of injury.

After volume of play, improper swing mechanics is another common risk factor for injury.

Injuries can occur at any stage during the golf swing, from backswing all the way through downswing, impact and follow through. Here are the most common injuries sustained during golf:

1. Back / Spine

Lower back injuries lead the way as most common, accounting for up to 34% of all golfing injuries. The rotational forces of the golf swing can place considerable pressure on both the spinal column and muscles. Combined with the fact that the movement is in a flexed position and very repetitive, it’s no wonder injuries occur. Neck and thoracic injuries are also both very common.

TIP:  Take 5-10 minutes before each round to stretch out the muscles of the back. Warm up with some shorter shots and work your way through the clubs to the big stick. Building strength in the core and lumbar muscles will not only help prevent injury but should also improve your game.

2. Elbow

Tendinopathy (degenerative changes in a tendon) of both the inner elbow (golfer’s elbow) and outer elbow (tennis elbow) are the most common golfing injuries in the elbow. Tendon injuries generally occur when they become overloaded or are under an increased/repetitive stress over a period of time e.g. like a golf swing. Risk of tendon injuries also increases with age due to natural degenerative changes that occur in the tendon.

TIP: Stretch and strengthen those forearm muscles to make the tendons more flexible and stronger, therefore, less susceptible to injury. There are some straps for tennis elbow which may help offload the tendon and reduce pain during your round.

3. Wrist/Hand

Similar to the elbow, the high speed of the swing and the forces through impact can cause strain in the tendons of the wrist and hand.

TIP: Learning proper grip can greatly reduce the impact through the hands and wrists at impact.

 4. Shoulder

Injuries to the rotator cuff in the shoulder are a common source of pain for golfers. The typical golf swing puts a lot of stress on shoulders by going through wide ranges of motion with speed and power. Injuries to the cuff can occur through overuse, hitting too much ground or trying to rely on the upper limbs to generate power instead of the hips and core. 

TIP:  Don’t wait for pain. Strengthen those shoulders to prevent injury. Rotator cuff injuries are extremely common and can be managed very well through strength and conditioning.

5. Knee

Knee injuries generally arise from trying to stabilise the knee, while the hips and trunk rotate rapidly. Over time, this can put stress on cartilage and meniscal structures in the knee. If a golfer already has arthritic changes it can pose more problems and they may need to manage their volume of play more diligently.

TIP: Working on single leg stability and control can help you avoid putting excessive stress though the knee joint. Ensure you have proper footwear that gives appropriate grip.

If you are experiencing any of the above because of golfing, don’t be afraid to book an appointment. We can assess your injury, get to the root of the problem and get you back swinging pain free in the future.

This post has been written by Physiotherapist Padraig Corbett B.Sc

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Osgood Schlatter Disease

Has your child been diagnosed with Osgood Schlatter Disease? Well, fear not - it’s not as scary as it sounds!

What You Need to Know

Osgood Schlatter Disease (OSD) is not a true disease, but an overuse injury of the knee. It is a common, temporary musculoskeletal condition that causes knee pain in older children and teenagers. It most often occurs during times when the bone is growing quickly, for example during the teenage growth spurt. OSD is more common in boys. In boys, it is usually reported between 12-16 years. In girls, this growth spurt occurs a little earlier between 11-15 years. Children who participate in running and jumping sports are at an increased risk of OSD (effecting 21%). Less active children are at a lower risk (effecting 4%) but can also experience this problem. Pain is located very precisely so diagnosis is rarely a problem. Patients can point exactly to it - a tender bony bump at the top of their shinbone, below their knee. An x-ray is usually unnecessary.

Anatomy Explained

OSD is caused by irritation of the bone growth plate. While a child is still growing, these growth plates are in the form of cartilage rather than bone. The tendon from the kneecap (patella) attaches down to the growth plate in the front of the shin bone (tibia). The thigh muscles (quadriceps) attach to the kneecap, and when they pull on the kneecap, this puts tension on the patellar tendon. The patellar tendon then pulls on the shin bone, at the area of the growth plate. Cartilage is not as strong as bone, so high levels of stress can cause the growth plate to begin to hurt and swell.

While most children will develop OSD in one knee only, some can develop it in both knees. In almost every case, surgery is not needed. This is because the cartilage growth plate eventually stops its growth and fills in with bone when the child stops growing. The knee pain almost always stops once the child is finished growing, but symptoms may come and go during this period for 1-2 years after.

Sports and Movements

Any movements that involve bending and straightening of the knee can lead to tenderness at the point where the patellar tendon attaches to the top of the tibia. Activities that repeatedly place this stress on the knee, especially squatting, kicking, jumping or running, can cause the tissue around the growth plate to hurt and swell.

In some cases, your child may need to stop sporting activities for a short period, to allow pain levels and inflammation to settle down. Patients who do require a rest period usually do not need to avoid sports for a long time, and often relative rest is adequate. Relative rest means decreasing the intensity or frequency of your sporting activities but not stopping them completely. A physiotherapist can advise you regarding which of these would be most appropriate.

Physiotherapy Intervention

If your child is diagnosed with the condition, the first step would be to schedule in a physiotherapy appointment. A physiotherapist would typically begin with a baseline assessment of your child's:

Based on the assessment, the physiotherapist can design a targeted exercise program to effectively manage OSD. This may involve:

Passive treatments like heat, ice, or taping may feel good and help a little, but they do little to improve the underlying condition. Ultimately, the best treatment for OSD is an active physiotherapy rehab program. To speed up recovery, it always helps to have an informed exercise plan designed to improve mobility and to strengthen and stabilise the knee. By working with a physiotherapist, your child is highly likely to recover quicker than sitting at home or on the sidelines.

This post has been written by Physiotherapist Liam Mc Ginley MSc, MCSP

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Why Do My Knees Hurt When I Run?

Sound familiar? As a physiotherapist it’s a question I hear almost every day. In fact, it’s a question I asked myself several years ago. Walking out of the house at 7:30 in the evening when three young children needed baths, stories and bed did not fit well with my regular football matches, so I made the decision to change my training regime and started running.

I was reasonably fit, did a lot of running when I was young, and had fortunately suffered no significant injuries to that point. Yet after two months of regular runs I developed pain in both knees that took a day to settle. Why was this happening? It may surprise you that, for the vast majority of us, our knees are not the problem, rather they are a symptom of other issues that cause our knees to complain.

In my case, I asked myself the question “Have I earned the right to do the volume and variety of running I’m doing?” I was doing 3-4 runs per week, rapidly increasing my long run up to 10km and including hill climbs and one faster session. I realized I was a victim of the terrible toos, I was running too often, too fast and too long, with too little rest – I hadn’t earned the right to do so and my body was letting me know that it hadn’t had time to adapt to the loads I was putting it through.

Volume and type of training are key considerations for runners, but in the absence of pre-existing injuries or trauma another major factor is our biomechanics, or HOW we run. I’ve listed below a few of the most common culprits that, if left unaddressed, can have a significant impact on or running pleasure and efficiency:

They’re all correctable, but running is a sport that requires muscle groups to repeat the same action thousands of times - a small anomaly gradually becomes magnified and over time leads to problems. Very commonly we feel pain in our knees but the origin of the problem is elsewhere, normally a joint above (the hip and pelvis) or a joint below (our feet).

Whether we’re competitive or recreational athletes, most of us will experience a running injury at some point. Every one of us has our own style of running and in order to settle the injury and return us to optimal running, there is no ‘one size fits all’ recipe.

It is important to assess posture, flexibility and strength statically, but most of us don’t get pain standing still! So, it’s vital to see what happens dynamically, and that means looking at our running. In the clinic we use software to capture video clips that allow us to analyse a runner in slow motion or even freeze frames, looking at them from their feet to their shoulders. This allows us to highlight any biomechanical issues they might have, and from there we will create a programme tailored to the individual needs of that runner.

If your knees complain during or after running, give us a call, we may be able to help!

This post has been written by Physiotherapist Aaron Smith BSc PgD.

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Can Physiotherapy Help with Dizziness?

While vertigo and dizziness may not seem like issues that could be helped by physiotherapy, evidence has shown that a specialised exercise programme can help people suffering from frequent spells. This is known as Vestibular Rehabilitation.

What is Vestibular Rehabilitation?

Vestibular rehabilitation therapy is an exercise based program used to treat the symptoms of dizziness, vertigo and unsteadiness resulting from inner ear conditions such as:

If your symptoms are provoked or aggravated by movement or positional changes, or you have problems with balance or unsteadiness while walking, your physiotherapist can perform an assessment and come up with a treatment plan specific to your needs.

Balance and the Vestibular System explained

Good balance is essential for daily life, from getting out of bed to crossing the road. A healthy balance system uses information from the brain, inner ears, eyes, and joints, and enables people to see clearly when moving their head.

The brain controls balance using feedback received from the inner ear, eyes and sensors in the joints, muscles and tendons that sense position or movement. Conditions affecting one or more parts of this balance control system can cause a balance disorder which then can lead to dizziness.

Dizziness can cause symptoms such as vertigo (spinning sensation), nausea, vision problems, fatigue, tinnitus (ringing or other noise in the ears), falls and hearing loss.

The vestibular system is a sensory system that is responsible for providing our brain with information about motion, head position, and spatial orientation. It is also involved with motor functions that allow us to keep our balance, stabilize our head and body during movement, and maintain posture. If our vestibular system is not working properly it can affect our balance and cause dizziness.

Patients should check with your doctor before coming to physiotherapy for the treatment of dizziness. The doctor can help to rule out other potential causes of dizziness such as high blood pressure amongst other things.

How can vestibular rehabilitation help?

Vestibular rehabilitation can:

How can I exercise if I am dizzy all the time?

The exercises prescribed by the physiotherapist will be specific to your needs. Sometimes the exercises will be performed in different positions such as lying, sitting or standing; depending on what is best for you. The most common types of exercises that are included in a vestibular rehabilitation programme are:

Don't let frequent spells affect your quality of life. Physiotherapy can help in returning to everyday activities like maintaining balance in the shower, walking, sport, or housework. It can also help to reduce fatigue and increase independence.

This post has been written by Physiotherapist Breifne McKeever B.Sc (Hons)

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Is Running Bad for Your Knees?

Have you heard the myth that running is bad for your knees or damages the knee joints? Well this debate has been raging on for years. However long-distance running has continue to rise in popularity with more than 30 million individuals running marathons each year. Is that going to mean that more and more people are going to require knee surgeries and replacements?

As we find ourselves in Phase 2 of Singapore's reopening, many of us are working from home so now more than ever we need to be exercising for both our physical and mental wellbeing. So, is long distance running a suitable option?

Now new evidence from two studies can help shed light on the effects of long distance running. The first study is by Ponzio et al, titled, “Low Prevalence of Hip and Knee Arthritis in Active Marathon Runners.” This study compared Arthritis prevalence in 675 United States marathoners with the National Centre for Health Statistics prevalence estimates for a matched group of the U.S population. Arthritis prevalence was 8.8% for the marathoners, significantly lower than the prevalence in the matched population, 17.9%. These results indicate that there is a link between marathon running and arthritis prevalence, but it does not look into the reasons why.

The second study digs a little deeper into the reasons why the arthritis rates may be lower. A prospective cohort study by Horan et al was titled, "Can Marathon running improve knee damage of middle-aged adults?"

The study had 82 first time marathon runners have MRI scans on their knees 6 months before the marathon and half a month after. The subjects had to complete a 4 month standardised training program before completing the marathon. Pre-marathon and pre-training MRI showed signs of damage, without symptoms, to several knee structures in the majority of the 82 middle-aged volunteers. However, after the marathon, MRI showed a reduction in the radiological score of articular cartilage damage and bone marrow lesions.

To date, this is the most robust evidence to link marathon running with knee joint health and provides important information for those seeking to understand the link between long distance running and osteoarthritis of the main weight-bearing areas of the knee.

Now these studies are not high level evidence to tell us that we all should be going out running marathons but it certainly forms the base of a good argument to say that running does not necessarily damage our knees. In fact, it can ‘heal’ our knees. Coupled with the fact that physical activity reduces our risk of conditions such as cardiovascular disease and diabetes mellitus, it’s safe to say running is good for us.

We must still consider safely beginning or increasing our running. If you’re new to running then you should gradually introduce it to your exercise routine. For example, running 2-3 times a week for 3-5km. If you are a regular runner then follow the 10% rule, only increase your running distance by 10% per week.

Unfortunately, some people will still have discomfort in their lower extremities when they try to run due to other conditions such as; patellofemoral pain syndrome, tendinitis, shin splints or plantar fasciitis. If you’re having symptoms when you try to run then it isn’t recommended to ‘run through the pain.’ Give us a call and get booked in for an online assessment with one of our expert physiotherapists so they can identify the problem and get you running pain free as soon as possible.

This post has been written by Physiotherapist Louis Platt B.Sc. (Hons).

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Massage VS Physiotherapy: Which Is "Better"?

It has been over two months since Phase 2 of Singapore's reopening commenced. During this time of increased spare time and being cooped up at home, it is no surprise that more than a few of us have taken the old running shoes out or greased up the bike chain in a bid to get some much needed exercise.

On the flipside, many of you now find yourselves doing work at an inappropriate makeshift work station in your kitchen or dining room table as a result of the ”work from home” measures that many have to adhere to at this time. Perhaps, then, it is also no surprise that many of us have had a few old, and some new, injuries cropping up this period too. This can happen for a variety of reasons, chief among which are improper loading, over-zealousness with our exercise volumes and capacity as well as underlying lack of conditioning, and performing certain exercises without the proper form.

Over circuit breaker, when we were hampered by the closure of clinics islandwide, you may not have been able to get the required help at short notice and may have resorted to stretching, foam rolling or even complete rest in order to manage your issues. Now that clinics are fully operational, we are seeing a lot of cases of this type present to us with increasing requests for massage and sports massage to relieve pain or simply just to alleviate soreness and tightness. Essentially, while both massage and physiotherapy can help manage pain, there are still key differences that you should note!

Why Massage?

Massage is one of the most ancient forms of musculoskeletal treatments. It is natural for us to veer towards it, either through a massage therapist or through the use of a foam roller, given its perceived effectiveness at reducing muscle soreness and improving our general wellbeing.

But just how effective is massage at improving our athletic performance and recovery? Well, in a recent systematic review (the highest level of evidence available to researchers), massage was found not to have any benefit on jumping, sprinting, strength, endurance, and fatigue. On the other hand, the same review showed some improvement to flexibility and muscle soreness. The studies analysed for these were however, of poor quality, which makes it is difficult to measure the true effects of massage and to quantify exactly the benefits it provides.

When it comes to pain or stiffness resulting from prolonged sedentary behaviour, there are other factors at play which may include desk ergonomics and a baseline lack of conditioning which predisposes you to pain. What we can likely deduce from these findings is that while there may be some benefits to massage therapy, the perceived benefits may mask a key underlying issue that is hampering your recovery.

What Can Physiotherapy Offer?

This brings me neatly onto why physiotherapy would be the right choice for you. For one, a physiotherapy session is always preceded with a comprehensive functional assessment of range of movement, muscle strength and biomechanics with further assessments of functional activities like running gait, hops, jumps, throwing etc. where applicable. Our treatments include, but are not limited to, exercise therapy, manual therapy, ultrasound, shockwave therapy, dry needling, as well as massage therapy, all with the intention of reducing pain, improving function and achieving the goals set out with your therapist. By getting a full assessment from your physiotherapist, you will have a much clearer and better idea of exactly how to manage your condition. With all these tools at our disposal, physiotherapists are in a brilliant position to decide the best course and direction of treatment for you. In certain cases, a condition may need further assessment, in which case we can also refer you to a trusted specialist so that you can get the best care possible. So, the next time that niggling injury crops up again which doesn’t seem to be abating, consider the option of an assessment from a physiotherapist at one of our five clinics.

This post has been written by Physiotherapist Conor Walsh B.Sc (Hons).

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Ref: Davis HL, Alabed S, Chico TJA. Effect of sports massage on performance and recovery: a systematic review and meta-analysis. BMJ Open Sport & Exercise Medicine (2020); 6:e000614. doi:10.1136/ bmjsem-2019-000614

Improving Your Vertical Jump

To all the vertically less endowed individuals: are we doomed to never touch the skies? Does the air up there belong only to our tall counterparts, or is there a way to somehow train up our jumps? This question is relevant not only to our pint-sized friends, but also to athletes of sports involving jumps.

A good vertical jump allows you to shoot baskets above defenders or block an opponent’s volleyballs better, and on a jump ball, that few centimeters can make all the difference. Today, we will discuss the science behind a good vertical jump and suggest ways you can train to improve it.

The Science Behind a Good Vertical Jump

Firstly, let us identify the muscle groups involved in making a vertical jump.The primary muscles need to jump are your quadriceps, glutes, hamstrings and calf muscles. The quadriceps extend the knees to set the jump in motion, the gluteus maximus works together with the hamstrings to extend the hips during take off, while the calf muscles contract to push your feet off the floor.

Although these muscles are the primary force generator for a powerful vertical jump, we cannot neglect the supporting muscles that aid the movement. In such a movement as a jump, energy is being stored, like a spring, at the lower half of the body but as it extends into the jump, that energy is transferred to your upper body that swings itself upward for further thrust. This transference of energy is mediated by your core muscles. A strong core holds the body together and allows for greater energy transference, therefore core training should not be disregarded when working to improve a vertical jump.

There are also 2 different types of muscles: fast and slow twitch. In this scenario, a powerful burst of motion such as the vertical jump utilises more of the fast twitch muscles. These explosive movements are trained by short but high intensity workouts as opposed to when training for muscular endurance where the key is to lower the intensity for a longer workout.

Now having known what muscles we need to work on and with what intensity we ought to be training them, what are some of the exercises we can do to improve our vertical jumps?


There are several exercises that work on the aforementioned muscles above. The most similar training to vertical jumping would be plyometric exercises.

As plyometric exercises work on explosive movements generated from the lower body, they involve all the muscles needed for a good vertical jump. Any power-training exercises working on the lower body, such as the deadlift or trap bar deadlift, would also be beneficial because it helps to generate more explosive force for the jump.

Of course, not to neglect our core muscles, a nice medicine ball throw works your core, simulates the movement of a jump, and can also help omits the landing impact on your knees.


Do remember that while vertical jumps are highly explosive, it also means that the landing is more stressful for your knees. Remember to prepare yourself by wearing proper shoes for shock-absorbance, and do not work with a pre-existing injury as the condition might worsen. As always, when you are in doubt or unsure, seek professional advice before trying out new workouts!

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How Does Ultrasound Therapy Work?

The first thought that comes to mind regarding ultrasound is usually that of a scan for internal imagery used to monitor different stages in pregnancies or those used for organs imagery prior to and after surgery. Those images or rather sonograms are results of ultrasound being beamed into the body which subsequently bounces off tissues or organs allowing computers to convert the wave patterns into imageries.

Ultrasound is a high frequency sound wave that the human ears are unable to pick up. However, the very same ultrasound used for internal imagery has also been found capable of heating up targeted body parts, breaking down, or even destroying abnormal tissues found within the body without having to go through evasive surgery of sorts, all depending on the focus and intensity of the ultrasound beam used. With technological advancements, the ability to create and manipulate ultrasound has opened a whole different world of treatments and therapies alike.

Who Would Benefit from Ultrasound Therapy?

Physiotherapists are trained to perform ultrasound therapy and can assess individuals who are suitable for ultrasound therapy. Just to name a few, individuals suffering from strains and sprains, osteoarthritis, carpal tunnel syndrome, and pain caused by scar tissues, are found to have greatly benefitted from ultrasound therapy. Many patients who went through ultrasound therapy would find that it helps greatly with pain management in a few sessions, and some even on the very first session. However, in the long run, one would benefit from healing properties brought about by ultrasound therapy citing the ability to promote regeneration of injured tissues and muscles.

Ultrasound as a Form of Therapy

For close to eight decades, ultrasound has been widely studied owing to its versatility allowing for a myriad of uses especially for its therapeutic benefits. Most studies revolve around low intensity therapeutic ultrasound on soft tissue recovery in animal and human soft tissue recovery. The two main types of ultrasound therapy however consist of thermal ultrasound therapy and mechanical ultrasound therapy.

Thermal ultrasound therapy as the name itself suggests, makes use of heat as its main element within the therapy. The continuous transmission of sound waves would cause microscopic vibrations deep within tissue molecules, creating an increase in friction and heat. Metabolism of the soft tissues are increased at a cellular level as a result of the warming effect and in turn encourage healing.

Mechanical ultrasound therapy on the other hand uses pulses of sound wave to penetrate tissues. The warming effect is minimal however, the pulsating waves cause the contraction and expansion of the tiny gas bubbles situated within the tissue. As a result, inflammatory response, tissue swelling, and pain are all decreased.

Consult your physio today to find out more about ultrasound therapy and how you can benefit from this therapy.

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Hot or Cold: What's the Best Way to Shower After a Workout?

After a hot day of workout, sometimes what feels good is a nice soak in cold water. We then hear that hot water helps the muscles relax better, promoting recovery from fatigue. On the other hand, it is common knowledge that cold water is used to cool down high temperatures to prevent the body from over heating. Which method of showering reaps the most benefits after a workout or is there a way to maximise the benefits from both temperatures? Let’s take a closer look.

Hot Shower

The same way heat expands matter, a hot shower dilates your blood vessels, increases blood flow and relaxes your muscles. When there is an increase in blood flow, muscle soreness and tightness is reduced. After a vigorous routine, the warm water and steam can bring soothing relieve to the tensed muscles.

Heat is also known to open up pores, thus a warm shower helps get all the dirt trapped in the pores out. Hair experts have said that warm water helps the hair cuticles to open up and strip the hair strands off dirt or oils!

In addition, be it your blood vessels, your skin or your hair cuticles, application of heat helps open them up to improve the blood flow. Is improved blood flow always a good thing though? Well, in cases of injuries, prolonged inflammation or swelling, vasodilation from heat would serve only to aggravate it. Therefore, a cold shower would be a better option.

Cold Shower

Instead of increasing blood flow towards your skin, a cold shower causes vasoconstriction. This means that the blood vessels contract, creating a flush for lactic acid built up in tired muscle tissues. Constricted blood vessels also reduce inflammation that comes with heat, bringing about some inflammatory-related pain relief and decrease in swelling. A study from Petrovsky (2015) has shown that muscular micro-tears from exercise is better medicated by a cold shower than a hot one, reducing DOMs more effectively. During a workout, your body produces heat and the internal temperature of your body rises. To stop the body from overheating, the body perspires to remove excess heat. Just as cold drinks contribute to lowering the body’s temperature, so does a cold shower! The cold water reduces body temperature and aids in maintaining homeostasis by getting the body back to its normal temperature.

Maximising the Benefits

From the benefits analyzed above, both showers do play a part post-exercise. Is it then possible to reap the benefits from both showering methods by simply applying both and alternating the water temperature? YES! In fact, studies have shown increased effectiveness when both hot and cold showers are combined. By implementing the cold shower first, the vasoconstriction creates a pumping motion for blood to be better circulated. By alternating between cold and hot, the body is better able to flush out waste and circulate blood. The contrast from cold to hot is also said to help with stiffness prevention!

Having said all that, it is important to note again that heat should be avoided during the acute stages of injuries. If you are unsure which methods to implement for your personal recovery, do consult your physio for a professional advice.

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