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About the Author


Deena Russo

Deena Russo is a certified personal trainer and body-sculpting specialist in Los Angeles. Her clientele are men and women of all ages from high school students to senior citizens.  She has experience with prenatal and postnatal exercise techniques and encourages women to stay fit during and after pregnancy. She has been involved in the fitness industry in New York and Los Angeles for the past 14 years.

Her New York experience as an aerobics instructor and private trainer includes training groups at Nassau College on Long Island as well as many fitness establishments in the tri-state area.  Deena has trained with fitness experts in many fields of fitness including core training, flexibility and balance, bodybuilding, and yoga.

She currently resides in West Los Angeles, CA   and is training at a variety of locations including private homes and gyms. She enjoys occasionally taking clients on an outdoor excursion where aerobic activity is mixed with resistance training for body sculpting.

Deena works together with chiropractors and holistic doctors for clients that have special rehabilitation needs and limitations. She has recently trained clients for the Avon Breast Cancer Walk in San Diego.

Her career in fitness began as a talk show host for a New York based television health show entitled “Creative Wellness. The show covered such topics as exercise, nutrition, self-empowerment and holistic healing. She has worked as a self-esteem coach and has led guided meditation and goal setting groups.

If it’s a trainer who genuinely cares about people and motivates her clients to push past their comfort zones and become leaner, stronger, healthier and more self confident, it’s Deena you want. or 310-948-2364 Santa Monica

The Author's web site

Best Boomer Towns Columns

Baby Boomers Improve Arthritis Symptoms With Exercise

Osteoarthritis begins with the breakdown of joint cartilage resulting in pain and stiffness. The joints of the hips, knees, spine and fingers are most commonly affected. Other joints that are less frequently affected are the ankles, wrists, elbows and shoulders. Osteoarthritis can be caused by work-related repetitive injury and physical trauma.

Rheumatoid Arthritis is more serious because it causes inflammation of the joint lining called the synovium. This can cause pain, stiffness, swelling, warmth and redness. The joint affected may lose its shape resulting in loss of movement. This type of arthritis can also affect the blood, the lungs and the heart. Usually women are more likely to be affected with RA and it is most common in the age range of 25 to 55. Children can experience this as well in a form called juvenile RA..

Studies have shown that exercise helps people affected by arthritis in many ways. It will reduce joint pain and stiffness and increase flexibility. Other benefits include muscle strength, endurance and cardiac fitness. Weight reduction from an exercise program combining strength training, flexibility training and cardiovascular activity can improve one's sense of vitality and well-being..

Before starting any exercise program, it is imperative to discuss your exercise plans with your physician. The amount and form of exercise recommended for each individual will vary depending on which joints are involved, how stable the joints are, the amount of inflammation, and if a joint replacement procedure has been done.

It is recommended to have a skilled physical therapist that is trained in medical and rehabilitation needs of people with arthritis to design a personalized exercise plan.

A skilled personal trainer must communicate with the physical therapist or physician to follow the format that has been prescribed and to understand the limitations and needs of the individual.

There are 3 types of exercises that are best for people with arthritis.

1,Range of motion exercise helps to maintain normal joint movement and relieve stiffness of the joints. An example would be gentle stretching and slow circular motions with the joints. An option can be slow, easy yoga where breathing is combined with relaxing, gentle moves.

2.Strengthening exercises help to increase muscle strength, which helps to support and protect joints affected. Properly lifting light weights is a good way to start to increase muscle strength. As you get stronger, you can gradually increase the amount of weight.

3. Aerobic endurance exercise improves cardiovascular fitness and improves overall function.

Some examples of aerobic exercise are riding a bicycle, brisk walking or swimming. Weight control is important because extra weight can put more pressure on joints. Some studies have shown that aerobic activity can reduce inflammation in some joints.

It is important to avoid strenuous exercises during acute periods of inflammation. However it is still important to gently move joints through their full range of motion during these periods. Exercise during times in the day when pain is typically less severe.

An adequate warm-up and cool down periods of 5 to 10 minutes is important and can help to avoid exacerbating the joints. Wear shoes that are shock absorbent and create the most stability. Heat applied to affected areas before exercise and ice afterwards can be helpful.

Heat can be applied before exercise to the surrounding muscles to help us warm up the troubled area by increasing circulation. This helps muscles and tendons become more pliable while it aids joint movement. Ice can be applied after exercise to reduce the inflammatory process that brings swelling.

Once again, I suggest that you get a doctor's approval and a plan designed for you specific needs. Once you begin, you will start to feel more energy and vitality. Exercise will give you a better quality of life.


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