You don’t need expensive equipment to get better

Looking round the Gym of a the very VIP hospital where i wa being treated – I did wonder at the lack of expensive equipment. I had been sent there by my specialist to get help with joint pain, pain in spine, etc. after cancer. The Gym was light, cheerful, and clean – but not many gizmos, except for a treadmill. So I wondered at the lack of ‘toys for the boys’. Until I was invited to a talk given by Mentholatum, the firm that manufactures Deep Freeze and Deep Heat. And then the words of a speaker started to make sense. Toby Garbett modestly introducing himself as “I’m a Personal Trainer”, then we found out he’d won World Championship medals for rowing with Steve Redgrave, had just got back from taking part in an Iron Man, and played every sport you can think of at a high level. He didn’t think a ym-full of high-tech equipment was really necessary – therabands and simple exercise were more Toby Garbett’s thing, and he reckons these are the best. As was exercising little and often – which started from a minute’s worth at a time – then increasing. As was the no-nonsense approach of fellow speaker, Sammy Margo; known for being the first female football chartered pshysiotherapist; she must have caused a stir when she first ran onto a football pitch to tend injured players. Perhaps that’s why they all act like prima donnas when they fall over – they are looking for sympathy from Sammy. She had useful words to say about Deep Freeze and Deep Heat Use Deep Freeze to cool down and sooth injuries in the first 48 hours. After that use Deep Heat’s gentle heat on inflamed parts. Obviously you will have seen a doctor first, so can ask their advice – then get out the spray cans and pump away.


It was reassuring that neither thought expensive gym memberships were totally necessary. Both afreed on sensible, manageable “rules”
  • Use it or lose it – exercise little and often
  • Exercise outside in fresh air when possible
  • Stand up – on telephone, etc
  • Walk aroiund without shoes – when you are indoors if floor is suitable
  • Whatever you eat – maintain healthy protein
And especially for over 60s : Exercise = independence

University of Stirling

Mentholatum always have interesting speakers, and the last one – Angus Hunter – from University of Stirling, had some interesting research into how we must ‘Use it or lose it’. A bit like preaching to the converted, as anyone who takes an interest in cancer survivorship knows we are always being told to exercise. Problem is, where can we do it ? Ever since my local Foundation Hospital turned down simple exercise classes to help those of us with Osteoporosis: because WHEN we got a fracture the hospital would operate, I despair. The word ‘prevention’ doesn’t figure in the NHS dictionary, if fact it seems as if they don’t understand what it means. But it was reassuing to listen to the experts – more used to looking after the needs of Olympians and other top athletes – giving sensible to ‘use it or lose it; even if using it meant just a minute a day, but building up when we get stronger.