[FoRK] Global population increase coming from an unexpected direction?

John Parsons bullwinklemouth at yahoo.ca
Sat Oct 23 16:43:29 PDT 2010

--- On Sat, 10/23/10, Stephen Williams <sdw at lig.net> wrote:

> And, as pointed out a while ago, it's been found that
> joints also benefit from consistent running: runners,
> without serious injuries, have the best joint condition and
> least pain in old age.

Still not a complete 'given' in my estimation. I'm prepared to agree the correlation is there, but the degree of chicken/egg causology is less clear. Your use of the "weasel" proviso of "without serious injuries" makes that clear.

Running may be good maintenance for body and tissue health, but other conditions (i.e. arthritis, etc.) may render the maintenance moot. Running in itself is not restorative (i.e it is not a physical therapy per se, but a desired end point of therapy). If no therapy exists to relieve the underlying condition, running is not only unattainable, it is useless in the equation.

I swim regularly, because it is the only form of aerobic exercise I can perform without pain. For me, running will never be possible again.

BTW, Your example of astronauts in micro gravity is a good one... While they train for weightlessness in a large pool, the general atrophy is only noticeable in zero G. What about reversing the paradigm? Suppose they had to navigate around and perform aboard the ISS in a medium as viscous as water (or more). You'd get no 'shock' component as you point out, but overall tone would be maintained, and presumably the bones would tend to reform into different arrangements to handle the different stress loads, while not necessarily atrophying. Would cetaceans have as hard a time with micrograv?


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