Unfortunately, I have nothing new to report on the election front. Stay tuned! But I have been ruminating on a blog for quite some time. You lucky readers, you.
I was reminded of the idea tonight when suggesting a continuing education course about the impact an overweight population has on the practice of physical therapy. By this, I do not mean "bariatric physical therapy". Bariatric PT is a great specialty, or would be, if the APTA made it one. I could easily digress into why it should be a specialty alongside Prevention, Metabolic Regulation, and Community Centered PT, but that is not what's calling me tonight.
Tonight I just wanted to point out the fountain of youth. We've all seen it. It's the short one, the one next to the taller one that we all tend to drink from. So yes, I'm talking about water fountains. Stay with me here and feel free to point out wheelchair accessibility, biomechanical issues, and the vertically challenged, if you absolutely must. But the point I'm trying to make is that, when given a choice between an easy option and a minutely more difficult one, we tend to take the easier of the two.
I won't argue that you burn more calories by stooping for the lower water fountain. But I will say that a conscious, symbolic dedication to a more effortful why of doing things would help lessen our societal waistband. Am I wrong? It's not that people are lazy necessarily. I think it's the same poetic sensibility inherent to our brain's motor planning ability. We don't think about it. We just see, and take, the path of least resistance. A brilliant strategy for the serengeti, less so for a perpetual office safari. Perhaps there is a time to tell our clients, "Work harder not smarter!"
But exerting more effort will only get our society so far. Many people have dealt with weight related musculoskeletal issues so long, their anatomy no longer responds typically to stressors. And then they have their stroke, COPD diagnosed, diabetic event, heart attack, fall, car crash, or come to Jesus moment. That's where we come in. Except, wouldn't it be great to have prevented it all in the first place? To slap the proverbial Big Gulp out of their hand ages ago? To push for the short fountain while the short fountain was still an option? I think so. Where do you stand and where does your state measure up?