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Physiotherapists support stroke initiative

CSP press release published on 13 May 2008

Physiotherapy has a significant role to play in health promotion around the prevention of stroke and the CSP offers advice to support the Stroke Association's Step up for Stroke initiative

Stroke is the single largest cause of disability in England, leaving some 300,000 people living with moderate to severe disability.

Physiotherapy has a significant role to play in health promotion around the prevention of stroke across all age groups, particularly in the areas of exercise prescription, activity management and smoking cessation.

There is evidence to suggest that members of certain ethnic minority groups are disproportionately susceptible to stroke (NAO 2005) and anecdotal evidence implies that accessing exercise within the leisure sector is more difficult for women from some black and ethnic minority groups. By working within and across health, social care and leisure sectors, physiotherapy can make a substantial contribution to the health and well-being of all population groups. Increasing targeted resources for minority groups may also help to address such inequalities.

The Stroke Association recommends walking 10,000 steps a day to help to reduce body fat, and to lower and prevent high blood pressure and cholesterol - major risk factors for stroke. Here are some ways to increase your daily step count:

· Go on foot for some or all of the way to work or school

· Take your, or someone else’s, dog for a walk

· Walk up and/or down the stairs, rather than taking the lift

· Enjoy a stroll with your partner, friends, or children.

Further details of the Stroke Association's Step up for Stroke initiative can be found at: http://www.stroke.org.uk/fundraising/fundraising_events/step_up_for_stroke.html

In addition to walking, you may want to try some of the activities in the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy's Lazy Exercise Guide for Busy people. It offers general advice for people who need to exercise but don’t know where to start. It could be what you need to help inspire you to take up a more physically active lifestyle

Also of interest: Top tips for a healthy hike – physiotherapists support Walk to Work Day

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