Child physiotherapy and physical exercise

Sara ortiz

January 30, 2020

The accompaniment of a specialist in child physiotherapy can help prevent and improve all types of injuries in the sports practice of children and young people, which is essential for the integral development of people.

There is a strong relationship between our level of health and physical activity and good nutrition. Even so, it is estimated that 23% of adults and 80% of adolescents are not physically active enough, and that the obesity rate in Spain is around 40% in the child population.
According to the WHO (World Health Organization), in order to establish good health guidelines, it is important to start them from early childhood (from 0 to 6 years old) and to modify and adapt them as the growing needs of the child.
It is also important to correctly perform this physical exercise to prevent injuries, which is why it is recommended that you work with a pediatric physiotherapist who can advise you on the guidelines for pre-sports training.

Benefits of physical exercise

Early childhood: 0 to 6 years

In early childhood, guidelines are mainly based on a non-sedentary lifestyle, good sleep patterns, and improved physical activity for the child. These guidelines bring benefits to physical and mental health, prevent obesity and associated illnesses, and generally improve children's well-being. In order to influence these benefits we recommend:
· Replace postural restrictions (stroller, sofa, chairs ...) with active play patterns, with different contextual interaction options given by caregivers.
· To promote good quality sleep.
· Creating an environment that promotes intellectual development from affection.

In children and young people

It is recommended to start physical activity after reaching the age of 6, they understand as such planned, repetitive and performed physical activity in order to maintain or improve their physical condition.
A recommended guideline is to perform 2 to 3 days of physical activity a week, moderate to vigorous, 75 to 150 minutes in total, combined with an active lifestyle: playing in the yard for sports activities, returning at home walking or doing sports, playing outdoors, helping with household chores and climbing stairs instead of taking the elevator. It is enough to practice them for 20 minutes a day to stay healthy and healthy.
Following these guidelines during childhood, adolescence and youth has been linked to less need for hospital care (related to cancer, heart and respiratory diseases), higher survival and lower risk of cardiovascular mortality during adulthood.

Impact on the human body

The impact of aerobic exercise on the various systems of the human body can be summarized as follows:
Respiratory system
· Increases respiratory capacity by 5-6%, with greater transport of oxygen to the lungs and quality of pulmonary ventilation.
· Produces modifications and adaptations to maximize the effectiveness of the respiratory system.
Cardiovascular system
· Normalizes blood pressure and blood volume.
· Increases vascular adaptability and resistance.
Musculoskeletal system
· Improves muscle perfusion, increases endurance and muscle recovery during and after exercise.
· It causes structural and functional adaptations in the muscle fibers in order to adapt to this change, the muscular strength.
Intense loads lead to a net growth of the involved connective tissue and maintain proper cartilage thickness.
Nervous system
· Improves intramuscular, intermuscular coordination and recruitment of nerve and muscle fibers, synchronization of motor units, correct coactivation of the muscle and reciprocal inhibition during muscle contraction.
· Improvement in the mechanisms of posture advancement and adaptation.
· Improvement of sensory stimuli and proprioception, and of the brain centers responsible for postural control and movement.
Greater resilience during psychic efforts and greater emotional well-being.
It is also recommended that regular adapted physical exercise be performed in a population with chronic illnesses such as: obesity, dyslipidemia, type II diabetes and hypertension in the child population who would benefit from the same enrichments.

Child physiotherapy in injury prevention

L 'accompanied by a specialized professional in child physiotherapy can help prevent and improve all kinds of injuries in the sport of children and young people.
Poor physical exercise can lead to a deficit of strength, a lack of neuromuscular control and coordination, low endurance, an increase in previous injuries and poor rehabilitation. Maintaining prolonged, high-intensity motor efforts in the same musculoskeletal structures may increase the risk of injury to the limbs by 61% if not taken preventive measures.
In order to prevent the aforementioned injuries it is advisable to work on resistance training programs that have been proven to work increase muscle strength, by increasing thick motor skills, coordinating the neuromuscular junction with muscle fibers, increasing the uptake of these muscle fibers. Studies of this method also show a positive relationship with results in physical exercise, bone health and self-esteem. These exercises mix motor learning in basic positions with the stretching prior to performing the physical exercise.
The flexibilization exercises they help to improve the load on the cartilages, increasing the nutrition of the articular surface, improving the quality of the tissue in the ligaments and fasciae, increasing the solicitation of different muscle units.
THE'resistance training regulates development and sports branding, and promotes effects on the various structures until adulthood. They also have a great impact, especially during the prepubertal period, due to the large neuronal proliferation of the central nervous system and its maturation.
Performing these exercises can serve to rehabilitate and prehabilitate all types of practitioners.
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Sara ortiz


Degree in Physiotherapy and specialist in Pediatric Physiotherapy UIC)

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