As summer ramps up so are the ATP Adventure Trips! These trips are designed for you to be able to challenge yourself in a safe and supported way. Our trips range from outdoor rock climbing to white water rafting to skeet shooting! Our most recent trips include Trekking Trips. These consist of hikes led by trained ATP staff in which we encourage the use of outdoor trekking poles. These poles are largely used by hikers to reduce exercise induced muscle injury during the trip. Trekking poles incorporate your arms and shoulders into the hiking motion, allowing you to use more muscle to propel yourself uphill and to control your descent. The net result is an increase in speed, without an increase in leg soreness. Poles reduce the impact on your legs, knees, ankles, and feet, especially when going downhill. The research that supports the use of Trekking poles states that there is a lower perceived rate of exertion by individuals who use trekking poles-- this means that your brain is perceiving the workload as an easier activity when compared to walking without the poles. The poles also reduce the prominence of injury because using the trekking poles decreases the force placed upon your hips, knees and ankles, while increasing balance, and evolving upper body muscles in a predominantly lower body activity. The use of trekking poles also improves a hikers posture, minimizing muscle soreness at 24 and 48 hours after a hike! The correct use of trekking poles reduces muscle damage, assists in maintaining muscle function in the days after a mountain trek, and reduces the potential for subsequent injury. The use of trekking poles is important, but using them with proper technique is also extremely vital to reap the maximum benefits. To start, make sure the poles are the correct height. Have your upper arm tight to the side of your rib cage, then you bend your elbow 90 degrees. The pole should be set at this height and remain here for the duration of the hike. It is also important to make sure you use the poles in a reciprocal fashion, this means you place the left pole forward as you take a step with your right foot and vice versa. By setting up your poles and body this way you are utilizing proper walking posture and decreasing the likelihood of overuse injuries that could occur on a hike!
Posture: elbows bent at 90 degrees
If muscle soreness begins to occur in the upper body, take one of the trekking poles and grab it with both hands shoulder width apart. Raise the pole as high as you can above your head and stretch the low back and shoulders.
If muscle soreness begins to occur in the lower body, take a pole and stretch it across your back and shoulders. Keep your legs straight, bending at the hips, moving your chest towards the ground. As you move lower, you will feel a stretch in the back of your legs and through your low back!
Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a chronic disease of the brain and spinal cord, which is also known as the central nervous system. In MS, the immune system attacks the protective sheath that covers your nerve fibers and results in problems with communication between your brain and the rest of your body. This disease can cause permanent damage to your nerves. For individuals with MS, staying active is one of the most important things you can do. Exercise can help to improve symptoms, as well as improve fitness, endurance, and strength in your arms and legs. Studies have also shown that exercising can improve:
Bladder and bowel function
Decreasing overall fatigue
The best exercises for individuals with MS
The best MS exercises to stay active are aerobic exercises, stretching, and progressive strength training. It is also important to warm up before beginning exercise--- this can include something as simple as walking or even cycling on a stationary bike!
This entails any exercise that raises your heart rate. This could include things such as walking, jogging, or swimming. Aerobic exercise should be completed at a moderate level; just be cautious not to over-work yourself! It is recommended that you get at least 150 minutes of moderate intensity aerobic exercise each week.
It is recommended that you should stretch for at least 10 minutes each day! Doing this will help you to maintain your range of motion and can work to alleviate symptoms like muscle stiffness or a lack of muscle control. Yoga is also a great way to stretch if you are into that! The following link is a website that gives you a few yoga poses that you can practice yourself at home to improve your balance, walking, and your coordination!
Strength training is not only important to improve your muscular strength, but also to maintain that strength! You can use whatever equipment you are most comfortable with, whether that be weight machines, free weights, or resistance bands. It is recommended to strength train at least twice each week, and to train each muscle group.
Tips for a great workout!
Make sure to stay hydrated- this will help to keep your body temperature low!
Exercise in a space that is cooler and won’t cause you to overheat!
Stretch after your workout too!
Start at low intensity/weight, and go slow!
Talk with your doctor before you start a new exercise program!!
Multiple Sclerosis and Exercise: Why MS Patients Should Stay Active. Penn Medicine. https://www.pennmedicine.org/updates/blogs/neuroscience-blog/2017/may/multiple-sclerosis-and-exercise#:~:text=When%20you%20have%20MS%20and,give%20your%20mood%20a%20boost. Published May 1, 2017. Accessed February 15, 2021.
Multiple sclerosis. Mayo Clinic. https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/multiple-sclerosis/symptoms-causes/syc-20350269. Published June 12, 2020. Accessed February 15, 2021.
Exercise. National Multiple Sclerosis Society. https://www.nationalmssociety.org/Living-Well-With-MS/Diet-Exercise-Healthy-Behaviors/Exercise. Accessed February 15, 2021.