Here's one more reason to exercise: Physical inactivity contributes to chronic musculo-skeletal pain, which affects the muscles, ligaments, tendons and bones. People with chronic conditions such as back pain, arthritis, or neck pain suffer daily through pain, fatigue, and even depression, and more people are falling victim every day. In fact, some experts have characterized the increasing prevalence of musculoskeletal conditions as an epidemic.
According to a 2008 study published in BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders, a connection exists between physical inactivity and chronic musculoskeletal complaints (MSCs). Study participants responded to questions regarding their physical activity 11 years prior to experiencing any MSCs. The researchers concluded, "In this large-scale population-based study, physical exercise was associated with lower prevalence of chronic MSCs, in particular chronic widespread MSCs [>15 days during the last month]. Furthermore, consistent medium activity level [120-179 min./week] was associated with [a] more than 50% lower prevalence of chronic widespread MSCs." (If you'd like to review the abstract of the BMC study, visit: www.biomedcentral.com/1471-2474/9/159.)
There you go - the latest in an ever-growing list of reasons to make exercise a part of your weekly routine. And remember, a consistent, balanced fitness program of cardio, muscle strengthening and stretching will do more than help in the prevention of chronic pain; it could also help prevent other serious conditions such as heart disease and hypertension.