DHA participates in Dubai Fitness Challenge
Doctors highlight physical and mental health benefits of exercise
United Arab Emirates, Dubai, 1 November 2020: Dubai has transformed itself again into a fitness hub with the fourth edition of the 30*30 Dubai Fitness Challenge.
Dubai Fitness Challenge brings with it a sense of positivity, enthusiasm and manages to transform the whole city into a fitness hub. The support and encouragement to make all community members from children to the elderly take on 30 minutes of activity per day for 30 days is such a unique initiative and one that is growing in its popularity and engagement year-on-year.
His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of the Dubai Executive Council, launched the initiative in 2017, encouraging participants to do at least half-an-hour of exercise every day for 30 consecutive days.
This year, the challenge also provides participants with virtual at-home sessions with the Find Your 30 virtual content hub.
The DFC website includes workout videos, 30-day exercise programmes, discipline challenges, podcasts, healthy recipes, health and wellness articles and vlogs, workout graphics and educational videos for children.
The challenge also offers free, weekly guided Dubai Running Tours, providing a unique, on-foot perspective of iconic sights across the city. Organized in partnership with Arabian Adventures and sports brand ASICS, the tours will be available throughout the 30 days of the Challenge.
With so much support and encouragement, it’s time to tie-up your shoelace and get your steps in.
DHA has launched several sports initiatives such as football, basketball and volleyball to encourage employees to get active. Additionally, DHA is disseminating important health tips through all its communication platforms to support community members with health and nutrition information.
Dr Suhail Al Rukn, Neurologist and Head of Stroke Unit at Rashid Hospital says, “This initiative is like no-other! Seeing community members build a simple but highly effective routine of getting 30 minutes of exercise per day is something I feel grateful towards as a doctor. There is absolutely no doubt that we can prevent a host of non-communicable chronic diseases if we adopt a healthy lifestyle and exercise is a key pillar to achieve good health. Inactivity is a real global problem when it comes to lifestyle modification and this challenge offers people so much support and it is simple. I strongly urge community members to take up this challenge but most importantly to continue it after 30 days and to make it a part of their daily routine. The health benefits of exercise are simply multifold. From improvement in mood and mental wellbeing to the physical benefits of exercise such as its ability to lower blood pressure, prevent an onset of several chronic diseases such as diabetes and even help reverse certain health conditions such as prediabetes, the benefits are plenty.”
Mayo Clinic says that 30 minutes of regular exercise can help lower blood pressure. A reduction of five to 10 millimetres of mercury (mmHg) is possible. In some cases, that is enough to prevent or reduce the need for blood pressure medications.
AlRukn says regular exercise helps improve cholesterol, prevents or helps manage type 2 diabetes, prevents obesity and the underlying health problems that accompany it. Weight-bearing exercises can help prevent osteoporosis. Additionally it does wonders for mental health.
He says, “Exercise is a stress-busting tool, it helps provide mental clarity and also improves mood as we release endorphins (a feel-good hormone) when we exercise. It helps improve mild-to-moderate depression and anxiety as well as improves sleep. It is important to note that fitness enthusiasts and amateurs alike should not overdo exercising and should focus on the correct form or posture to ensure they prevent sports injuries. It is also important to focus on progressive overload, which means you increase your weights or intensify your exercise routine after consistently working out and not suddenly as this can lead to injuries. The idea is to work out regularly and that is the beauty of this challenge, you simply have to do 30 minutes per day.”
AlRukn says, “It normally takes 21 days to form a habit, after the 30-day challenge, you have high chances of continuing your fitness regime. Keep going with the challenge even after it is over. There are four other important steps to good health: look at your diet and ensure you eat a healthy diet at least 80 per cent of the time, get enough sleep- at least 7 hours a day; try to slot in mindfulness activities like yoga, journaling and meditation, and finally limit the use of screen-time.
“Technology is great but we should control it rather than technology controlling us.
“Simple steps go a long way. Begin today. Start the challenge, if you haven’t already,” says AlRukn.
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