Monday, November 10, 2008

Physical Activity, Mobility And Health Across Lifespan Supported By CIHR Institute

“We all know physical activity is good for you. But why exactly is it good for you? What effect does exercise have on the cells and tissues of the body? What do we need to know so that we can use physical activity more effectively to combat chronic diseases such as arthritis, diabetes and heart disease? And what social and psychological factors prevent people from exercising or playing sports? These are just some of the questions that the Canadian Institutes of Health Research's Institute of Musculoskeletal and Arthritis (IMHA) will tackle over the next five years through its strategic plan unveiled at the University of Saskatchewan (U of S). ‘As Canada's population ages and grows, the burden of arthritis, osteoporosis, and other musculoskeletal, oral and skin conditions on our health care system will increase,’ said Dr. Jane E. Aubin, IMHA's Scientific Director. ‘We want to reduce this burden and improve the health and quality of life of Canadians of all ages by supporting research that increases our understanding of the relationship between physical activity, mobility and health.’ Over the next five years, the Institute will work with its partners to fund peer-reviewed research and training projects in the area of physical activity and health. This research may range from the cellular behavior of joint tissues to the psychosocial aspects of exercise, activity and sports on populations. The Institute will also promote the application of the research results into new physical activity policies and programs in collaboration with partners and communities. ‘I commend IMHA for choosing physical activity as a strategic research priority,’ said Dr. Karen Chad, Acting Vice-President Research at the U of S. ‘As a physical activity researcher, I know first hand the positive effect of regular exercise on health and quality of life. We have had tremendous success in getting people in Saskatchewan moving through our award-winning Saskatoon in motion project.’”

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