Tuesday, July 25th, 2017

Personal Trainer’s Perspective

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As a personal trainer, I take a blood pressure measurement as a regular part of my client’s physical assessment prior to working with them.

Most clients I see have no idea what their blood pressure is or what it should be. They come to me to get fit and they do not typically expect a health check too.

I use my first assessment to view their body as a whole. I look for “symptoms” where the client may not see or feel anything wrong.

Those tell tale signs include the client’s body mass index, flushed colour in their cheeks, a stressed nature, excessive perspiration prior to exercise; these are all symptoms to me but not necessarily picked up on by anyone else unless a visit to the doctor is needed.

Often in such a case, the high blood pressure may be detected by the physician but simply attributed to a temporary illness or “white coat syndrome” – where a patient exhibits an abnormally elevated blood pressure reading simply because of the anxiety a trip to the doctor produces – and in many cases no further action is taken. This may be the fault of the patient who gets over whatever issue was troubling them in the first place and who then doesn’t follow up with their GP about the high blood pressure reading.

If a client has a blood pressure reading that indicates hypertension might be a problem then it is recommended that they should see a doctor as soon as possible to further assess the situation. If left untreated, hypertension can be a serious life threatening condition.

Depending on the client’s average reading (first thing in the morning whilst still resting) I might recommend some lifestyle changes; healthy eating, daily exercise (so the body becomes hot and sweaty), some de-stressing time (like yoga, soothing music, and quiet time) and reduced antiperspirant usage.

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