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Arthritis Fitness Etobicoke

Strength, Endurance & Cognitive Aging

Mark Richardson - Monday, June 26, 2017

G'day everyone,

This weeks post is of dual purpose.  First up I'm sending you a resent study report from Finland, published in Medicalxpress.
 Now I do not endorse all the side adds & links. I do wish you to focus on the article, itself.
I have been somewhat of a Town Crier in regards to this article. I'm now in my 5th decade of living with JRA & RA {Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis, Rheumatoid Arthritis}. If it were not for a passion for movement, I believe I would be lost. All movement does begin in musculature. Whatever age I was, I found the courage to try everything/everyway there was to move my body. Absolutely the stronger I maintained my body the better my over all performance. It has long been proven that the hard the body is worked, the more it can do work. This for sure relates to my cognitive performance. Remember the fact that exercise does relieve stress & allows for less pain. Endorphins are our best friends I think I have held two Gym memberships through all these years. I've relied on resistance training using my own body weight. Then once adapted to the movement & reps. I would find something else to hold onto or push to increase the resistance.
Like forward to sharing again with you soon.
Cheers, be Safe, move Safely/Mindfully
mark r

Greater muscle strength – better cognitive function for older people

June 26, 2017

Greater muscle strength is associated with better cognitive function in ageing men and women, according to a new Finnish study. The association of extensively measured upper and lower body muscle strength with cognitive function was observed, but handgrip strength was not associated with cognitive function. Cognition refers to brain functions relating to receiving, storing, processing and using information. The findings were published in European Geriatric Medicine.

The study population comprised 338 men and women with an average age of 66 years. Their  was measured utilising handgrip strength, three lower body exercises such as leg extension, leg flexion and leg press and two upper body exercises such as chest press and seated row. Sum scores to depict lower body and upper body  strength were calculated separately, and cognitive function was assessed using the CERAD neuropsychological test battery with calculated total score.

Handgrip strength is relatively easy and fast to measure, and it has been widely used as a measure of muscle strength in various studies. However, this new study could not demonstrate an association between muscle strength and cognitive function when using a model based on mere handgrip strength and age. Instead, an association between muscle strength and cognitive function was observed only when sum scores depicting upper or lower body muscle strength were included in the model.

"The findings suggest that it may be justified to go beyond the handgrip and to include the upper and lower body when measuring muscle strength, as this may better reflect the association between muscle strength and cognition," says Early Stage Researcher Heikki Pentikäinen, the first author of the article, who is currently preparing a PhD thesis on the topic for the University of Eastern Finland.

Exercise is known to have various health benefits, and  is a way for practically everyone to increase  and enhance muscle strength. However, the association of muscle strength with various aspects of cognitive function is a relatively under-researched area. The study provided new insight into the methodology of measuring muscle strength and into the role of muscle  in cognitive function. The study constituted part of the extensive, population-based DR's EXTRA study, which was a four-year randomised and controlled intervention study analysing the effects of exercise and nutrition on endothelial , atherosclerosis and cognition. The study was carried out at Kuopio Research Institute of Exercise Medicine in 2005–2011 and it involved more than 1,400 men and women living in the eastern part of Finland.

 Explore further: Body builders aren't necessarily the strongest athletes

More information: H. Pentikäinen et al. Muscle strength and cognition in ageing men and women: The DR's EXTRA study, European Geriatric Medicine (2017). DOI: 10.1016/j.eurger.2017.04.004 

Read more at:

Summer Schedule-Nordic Pole Walking

Mark Richardson - Thursday, June 22, 2017

Well it has been to long time. Much to long.

G'day it's Mark here,

Well as the Grateful Dead sang in the 70's. " What a long trip it's been?"
Got to be honest as always. I've booked in a couple of heart surgeries, multiple investigation into the GI tracts. The Docs are saying now that we're not quite sure what's happening? This is after many tests, some on going, like meds changes, diagnostics, blood tests etc., etc.,. As a favourite author wrote in Slaughter House 5 " and so it goes....."

As far as my spirit & soul I'm doing good. Still a lot of miles left on this set of tires. Thanks for all the shout outs I've received.

Here are the dates upcoming for the summer season:

Tues. July 4/17 at 10am Field A                                       Thurs. July 6/17 Field A 

Tues. July 11/17 at 10am Field A                                      Thurs. July 13/17 Field A

Tues. July 18/17 at 10am  Field A                                     Thurs. July 18/17 Field A

Tues. July 20/17 at 10am  Field A                                     Thurs. July 25/17 Field B

Tues. July 27/17 at 10am  Field A                                      Thurs. Aug. 3/17  Field A

Tues. Aug. 8/17 at 10am   Field B                                      Thurs. Aug. 10/17 Field A

Tues. Aug. 15/17 at 10am Field B                                      Thurs. Aug. 17/17 Field A

Tues Aug. 22/17 at 10am  Field B                                      Thurs. Aug. 24/17 Field A

Tues. Aug 29/17 at 10am  Field B                                      Thurs. Aug. 31/17 Field A

Tues. Sept. 5/17 at 10am  Field A                                      Thurs. Sept. 7/17  Field A

Tues. Sept. 12/17 at 10am Field A                                     Thurs. Sept. 14/17 Field A

Tues. Sept. 19/17 at 10am Field A                                     Thurs. Sept. 21/17 Field A

Tues. Sept 26/17 at 10am  Field A                                     Thurs. Sept. 28/17 Field A

As always as you receive this email. Please make sure anyone that may have not gotten it gets it. Or even more simply please ask them to forward to me their email. I'll make sure to add them to out group list!!!!!

Cheers for now, be Safe, move Safely. Mindfully.

Mark Richardson

I'll be updating my website & blog shortly. Plus I'll be trying my luck at Facebook as well.
Stay tuned, I'll be sure to keep the Oakville NPW Crew updated. I sure miss Tues. & Thurs. mornings with all of you!!!!

Nordic Pole Walking Dates, Spring 2017

victor castellanos - Friday, March 31, 2017

G'day to All, :) It has been way too long since I've been with you. Thus it goes without saying, that I miss deeply the fun, the camaraderie, the skills learned each & every Tuesday and Thursday. Each day I wake, I do give a thanks. Then comes the evaluation of what I may or may not be able to do on the day.

My hope is to rejoin you again ASAP.

In the mean time here is a brief update. It looks like a 3rd Ablation procedure is coming my way. Added to this have been given the label of living with vIBS ( very Irritable Bowel Syndrome). Yikes who knew? I'm working on solutions, as we speak. But got to tell ya. LMAO

It's a pretty simple way to loose weight & inches.

So here's the dates that we all need to schedule. To have a group like ours, doing the special ways to move, the NPW gives. To have an awesome facility that is so Loyal to our needs. All of it adds up to a Home run combination for better health !!!!!


  • Tuesday April 4/17 @10am        Thursday April 6/17 @10am
  • Tuesday April 11/17 @10am      Thursday April 13/17 @10am
  • Tuesday April 18/17 @10am      Thursday April 20/17 @10am


  • Tuesday May 2/17 @10am        Thursday May 4/17 @10am
  • Thursday May 11/17 @10am   
  • Tuesday May 16/17 @10am    
  • Tuesday May 30/17 @10am      


  • Thursday June 1/17 @10am
  • Tuesday June 13/17 @10am       Thursday June 15/17 @10am
  • Tuesday June 27/17 @10am       Thursday June 29/17 @10am

In closing for now. I do deeply wish to see you all again soon. Once I find the source of this damn Kryptonite!!!!!! ....LOL....... "I'll.... be.... Back"

In the mean time please make sure David & his awesome staff. Know that we appreciate them & the world class facility!!!!!!

Please do share these dates, by passing along the an invite to do NPW. Also if some one is not on my distribution list? Get them to contact me, please. So they may be added. Cheers for now.

Be safe, Move safely

Mark Richardson, 

Nordic Pole Walking Dates, Winter 2016-2017

victor castellanos - Monday, December 12, 2016

All start with a favourite joke my Dad use to tell and this goes back to the times of propeller transport planes. " The plane has taken off. Passengers are on their 3rd or 4th free cocktail, lounging, smoking cigarettes etc. Then the pilot comes on the cabin speaker. ' Ladies & Gentleman. Welcome aboard, sit back and relax we have great weather ahead, clear skies all around. The co-pilot & myself wish to let you know. We are completely lost!!!!! Yet we are making absolutely Fabulous time!!!!!'...."

Well that kind of summed up my last year or more. If challenges are what make us. Then I'm either going to heaven or I might win a prize for surprises or endurance or just never giving up!
What started with a simple heart surgery a year & a half ago. Has launched a domino effect on how my physical body is reacting. And thus being studied. Geeesh I cherish the medical professionals, but Holy-mack-in-Naw. When you are brave enough to ask them questions. Due to being honest how your body is responding/feeling because of symptoms. Then faith & courage must be your partner, regardless the answers that will come back to you.

All I'll say right now. Is due to the questions I've asked the 'white coats' has been truly astounding, darn near mind blowing. If I was at the race track, I would be winning all the box score bets etc. I'll not begin to touch on the emotional roller coaster. But here goes a reader's digest. Seems I'm not only unique, but there may be some medical physical evidence on why. I'm now being researched because of things they've detected in my brain. The white coats are thinking I've had one too many concussions for my young 60 years of daily gifts. Then on the up coming Valentines day I go in for gastronomic exploratory surgery. Oh my Geeeeesh who knew!!!!! There's more but I'll say this. If it wasn't for my strong belief & faith, plus a great sense of humour ( was it all the drugs I've taken LMAO over time. Gosh were the 60's, 70's 80's not great times LOL). What is a person to do? Lay down & just get dirty? Nope. I know that winning is just as simple as going for it!!!! what ever you dream or wish for can be achieved. Absolutely some days winning is just waking up seeing the morning, then saying thank you. Thank you for another shot a the title, a shot at your personal best, another shot at your gold medal day performance.

Now here's all the dates you've been waiting for:-


Thursdays December 15th, 22nd.


Thursday January 5th, 12th, 19th, 26th.

Tuesday January 10, 17, 24, 31


Tuesday February  7, 14, 21, 28,

Thursday February 9th, 16th, 23rd

Please be assured I deeply miss our NPW times. The community that we belong to & share. I surely will sing to the rafters how NPW added to my personal health profile. Motionizing/ exercising has allowed me so much in the form of physical, mental, emotional returns, based on value returned in so many parts of my being here. On being able to succeed at many shots at my personal gold medals.

On being able to share to others the benefits. For now I'm blessed at being trained in yoga for elders/arthritis, plus a love of Tai Chi. All movement is golden!!!!! adding them up often through the day. This means time elapsed, sequenced performances of moves & therefore accumulated. Simply gives each of us a shot at our own personal bests.

For proof just ask Ginger, what exercise/motion has empowered her!!!!! Wow what a mentor, partner, coach, example she showcases. I know I'm very fortunate!!!

Happy Merry Christmas, Joyous Holiday for all of you. Be safe, move safely, grow your confidence! Better is always a good option.


Mark Richardson, 

Nordic Pole Walking Dates, Fall 2016

victor castellanos - Monday, September 26, 2016

Good Morning Everyone !!!!!!,

Hey there all you wise & passionate Nordic Pole Walkers. Well the end of summer is around the corner, but another awesome season that is fall is closing in. I believe that it is fantastic, that no matter how hot it is, or how cold it may get, or how rainy it may be. We have one of Ontario's or even Canada's best indoor sports facilities at our disposal!!!!!!

Truly I'll put our groG'day All Nordic Pole Walkers, from the Oakville group & beyond!!!!

First part of news is there is a new guy in town. His name is David Zanic. I spoke at length with him regarding our up coming schedule. He seems a helpful, cool guy. So please make a point of saying hello & welcoming him to the Oakville facility team. Can stop saying how blessed we are to have access to our Amazing, to their Amazing facility. Keep spreading the word of our TuesdayThursday mornings!!!!! 

I know I keep promising to rejoin you all. I also need to reach out to say hello individually. The upside is that the 2nd heart Ablation surgery is behind me. It went a lot smoother, because I did not need to be awake for the procedure. What a relief that was!!!! Now I am just dealing with some mild complications from post op. What is really neat, what is really cool from my side of the fence. Is that my year of surgeries & health challenges has increased my empathy quotient. What I mean is this. With running my Motionize Fitness & Nordic Pole Walking business. My most powerful differentiation is the fact that I have been challenged by disease & injury all my life. Yet I can, & have always pursued a high standard of physical fitness/health. Considering the last year. I am even more confident in being able to share more deeply the power of fitness, mental plus physical!!!! Both in recovering from body issues/challenges, as well as balancing fitness/health while managing a disease. Geesh, yikes..... I never thought I'd be a role model or a mentor for others, considering a life time of Rheumatoid Arthritis. I just have always been empowered by being the healthiest, strongest I could be. So that I could/can live a full, exciting, dynamic Life. If you've got dreams/goals go for it!!!!! Age, weight or health challenges etc., can be obstacles, yes. However they are not stop signs. Just never let them blow the wind out of your sails. To me life is just way too cool of journey to hold yourself back. Make changes, wish for changes, embrace changes so you can have the best body possible. Just like NPW, it is just way to much fun. Not to participate!!!!!

Here's the dates for the 2016 Fall

First the dates not open for NPW;- Sept.7th, Oct.4thOct 6thOct.20thNov.17Nov.24th

  • Thursday September 29/16 10am-11am     
  • Thursday October 6/16 10am-11am
  • Tuesday October 11/16 10am-11am - Thursday October 13/16 10am-11am
  • Tuesday October 18/16 10am-11am
  • Tuesday October 25/16 10am-11am - Thursday October 27/16 10am-11am


  • Tuesday November 1/16 10am-11am
  • Tuesday November 8/16 10am-11am - Thursday November 10/16 10am-11am
  • Tuesday November 15/16 10am-11am
  • Tuesday November 22/16 10am-11am
  • Tuesday November 29/16 10am-11am

As always fellow NPW'ers. Please keep spreading the news about the benefits of the fabulous activity we enjoy. Spread the news about our fabulous facility. Plus if anyone you know that is not on my mailing list, get them to contact me!!!! Please

Cheers for now. Be safe, move safely. " Motion is Lotion"

Mark Richardson, 

Nordic Pole Walking Dates, September 2016

Mark Richardson - Thursday, September 01, 2016

Good Morning Everyone !!!!!!,

Hey there all you wise & passionate Nordic Pole Walkers. Well the end of summer is around the corner, but another awesome season that is fall is closing in. I believe that it is fantastic, that no matter how hot it is, or how cold it may get, or how rainy it may be. We have one of Ontario's or even Canada's best indoor sports facilities at our disposal!!!!!!

Truly I'll put our group's access to the Oakville Soccer facility up against any other facility, other NPW groups may have. There has always been such an open spirit within our group. The welcoming of newcomers. The collective energy/synergy the Oakville NPW group generates is so awesome. And when you combine that with the access we all share with a pioneer of Nordic Pole Walking in Canada. A true disciple of the Nordic Pole Walking creator & thus technique. How more special can you get!!!! Though I still can not be there to share. Please keep passing the gift of what NPW does,as well as the special location we have onto others. Since Ginger is one of the top NPW coaches in all of Canada, just follow her lead. The only result will be a healthier body & the best technique to achieve that goal.

While I'm at it I ask each of you to show appreciation to George, Lynn & all the crew that makes their huge facility a most special place.

Here's the dates for the Month of Sept. 2016

  • Thursday September 1/16 10am-11am        
  • Tuesday September 6/16 10am-11am - Thursday September 8/16 10am-11am
  • Tuesday September 13/16 10am-11am - Thursday September 15/16 10am-11am
  • Tuesday September 20/16 10am-11am - Thursday September 22/16 10am-11am
  • Tuesday September 27/16 10am-11am - Thursday September 29/16 10am-11am

I do apologize for not being there with you all. As well as leaving all the coaching fun of our growing group, up to Ginger. Gosh how I miss the fun, laughter & purpose of the cool down too!!!! On Sept. 6th I'll being having my 2nd Heart surgery for this year. If you can send a positive thought or two, my way :) on that day. It be appreciated & felt.

Cheers!!!! be safe, move safely. Motion is the best lotion.

Mark Richardson, 

August dates for Oakville NPW group

Mark Richardson - Sunday, July 31, 2016

Good Morning Everyone !!!!!!,

Well all kinds of great news, on the horizon. The best news is get ready for the return of the best Nordic Pole Walking Pioneer / Instructor in the business. Ginger has nearly completed her very special grant program. The things she has seen and contributed towards have enriched not only herself. But absolutely those she has had opportunity to touch and therefore positively change. We all have missed her expertise, her addictive personality, plus the grace and momentum as she walks with Nordic Poles. If anyone wishes to improve the benefits from Nordic Pole Walking, make sure to saddle up close to Ginger.  I am most assured that her time away as given her added knowledge to the benefits of NPW. She'll help you move in great form, thus getting the maximum power and results from the Tuesday & Thursday mornings that are listed below. All times have stayed the same 10:00 am start times.

  • Tuesday August 2/16 @10am        Thursday August 4/16 @10am
  • Tuesday August 9/16 @10am        Thursday August 11/16 @10am
  • Tuesday August 16/16 @10am      Thursday August 18/16 @10am
  • Tuesday August 23/16 @10am      Thursday August 25/16 @10am
  • Tuesday August 30/16 @10am

I really believe that the Oakville Soccer Facility is a huge blessing for our group. The fact is Gordon and all his helpful/friendly staff are to be complemented. And complemented often. The consistency of dates which he provides for us is exceptional. In turn it gives all of us the ability to build consistent participation in healthy improved living through NPW. Plus the collective energy of the Oakville group is second to none. Miss you guys tons!!!!. But as Arnold said so many times in movies, " I'll Be Back".  

As always. I know new people have wished to join or have joined our special Tuesday & Thursday Nordic Pole Walking time. Pass this email on to them so I may add them to the broadcast email of times, dates, events etc.

Cheers!!!! be safe, move safely!


Mark Richardson, 

July dates, plus a personal check up, gosh I miss Tuesdays & Thursdays

Mark Richardson - Thursday, June 30, 2016

G'day to all of you Nordic Pole Walking Champions!!!!!!! (NPWC for short) :) { please pass along any dates to newbies & friends}

Holy-mack-in-naw!!!!!! for all you hockey fans out there. So much to catch on regarding my strange journey back to to total complete fitness. It truly is 10 steps forward, then 6 steps back. But in my world for what it is. It is completely, absolutely progress. The best news is Yes, I actually walked a full mile yesterday!!!!! it was a better feeling, than having sex. Ooops well maybe not. HEhehe maybe to much FYI. Haven't done that much movement, since the first heart operation. But what it did do was show me once again. That yes I can! Though it did take the wind out of sails for a day. That is okay. Because I remember being a 9 year old & not being able to turn off a light, or walk to school, or even do one push up. All those things kept me at that time from riding my pony, named Rocky. But I made it, one small achievement at a time. Because Rocky lead me to Charlie, Charlie the horse lead me to Friday. Friday lead me to Olympic trials etc. Regarding my upcoming second heart surgery ( this one is going to be a roller-coaster ride). Half of my pre-op test are booked. The local betting pool has great odds on my actual surgery date being before my birthday in October. Personally I doubled down on the month of September. :) LoL

The very essence of saying to one's self is. If I can do one, then maybe I will do two & so on. Always growing, always developing not such the brain, but really learning how to keep the body/muscles useful & working, toned & building. Fitness is a two way street!!!! As the body grows in tone, so does the confidence. As confidence grows so does the mind & vice sersa. Motion is for sure the Best Lotion!!!!!!!!!! It also happens to be the very best Prescription.

With that in mind is the upcoming dates for the July 2016. I do know summer is here & the hottest days are coming. Plus there is all kinds of trips, family, leisure etc planned. I pass on the hope that you all are making NPW part of you lifestyle. Doing the right thing by networking the benefits, showcasing the benefits by NPW'g daily, by being a full walker by being part of the cool down sessions. And of course buying Dr. Klaus Schwanbeck's book. " The Ultimate Nordic Pole Walking Book". ISBN # 978-1-78255-043-3. It really is gifted educational read.

Here's your Dates:

  • Tuesday July 5 /16 @ 10am Thursday July 7/16 @ 10am
  • Tuesday July 12/16 @ 10am Thursday July 14/16 @ 10am
  • Tuesday July 19/16 @ 10am Thursday July 21/16 @10am
  • Tuesday July 26/16 @ 10am Thursday July 238/16 @10am

There it is everyone, another full complete month. Four full weeks of access, from Gordon & Lynne and there awesome staff. Please give them your thanks, plus support. While doing what's great for yourself's. Thanks Alice, Big time for stepping up & filling the shoes of Ginger & me. Missing you guys, just aren't the right words.


Mark Richardson, 

Nordic Pole Walking Dates, June 2016

Mark Richardson - Monday, May 30, 2016

Hey everyone her is the dates for June NPW'g at the Oakville Soccer Facility.

The news I have heard is that there is lots of new faces. New Nordic Pole Walking participants finding out the bounty of reasons, why NPW is the best total body/mind experience out there. If any one questions the fun & social aspects regarding NPW? Just refer back to the Sheridan College study. For some of us it seems not that long ago when we were a small group, introducing ourselves as we volunteered for the College paper. Yet now the Oakville group has grown & uses one the county's top facilities for staying toned & active. I can't wait to rejoin you guys on our Tuesday & Thursday mornings.

Alas that may be sometime from now. I'll be needing another heart surgery, plus the "white coats" feel I am certainly a candidate for having Addison's Disease. Geeeesh go figure!!!!! That treatments I was given as a child, teenager & young adult would show up now as a problem. Not to worry!!!! Just added a new treadmill to the home gym. So I can train better in home for the operation, & give more cross training once I start taking clients again. Then training even more consistently after surgery. I do have or have set some lofty personal health goals for myself. Maybe I'll share my action plan more fully later on. This has been some crazy journey the last year. I am looking forward to seeing the view from the other side of this little detour. Plus rejoining all of you. There will be lots to catch up on & laugh about. :)

Here's your Dates:

  • Tuesday May 31/16 @ 10am Thursday June 2/16 @ 10am
  • Tuesday June 7/16 @ 10am Thursday June 9/16 @ 10am
  • Tuesday June 14/16 @ 10am Thursday June 16/16 @10am
  • Tuesday June 21/16 @ 10am Thursday June 23/16 @10am
  • Tuesday June 28/16 @ 10am Thursday June 30/16 @10am

Can everyone make sure to say thanks to Gordon, Lynn & Trudy, for giving us a complete month or access. Thanks

Cheers, be safe to all.

Mark Richardson,

Nordic Pole Walking Dates, May 2016

Mark Richardson - Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Oh My Gosh, it has been way to long to see all of you!!!!

Yup if you guessed it. I am still on injury reserve. I'm now back on my full heart medications. Due to not the best results from my Ablation surgery. My next move is to actualize a second opinion, based on current results. The biggest take away is just how fast, lingering and counter productive atrophy is. You see without being able to maintain my level of cardio and muscular fitness. Other physical ailments went from manageable to horrific. The good news is after restarting my Meds. I am now being able to slowly begin rebuilding my cardio performance, as well as my over all muscle tone/development. Patience, consistent execution is the call for each day.

A perfect example was that for the longest time, since I last saw you. I could not even walk about the tiny village in Etobicoke that I live. It is  sad moment when a guy can not walk the 110 yards to his corner pub. Well yesterday I made it there and back. LoL :) yeah !!!! The listen for me as always. When Mind and body working together in focus. They may take you to any increased level of fitness you wish to achieve. 

I've been asked to document/journal my latest comeback on the website & social media. Still thinking of that one? 

In the mean time, here is the dates for May. There is two dates unavailable May 5th & May 19th.

NPW Calendar for May:

  • Tuesday May 3, 10am-11am                     
  • Thursday May 5, No NPW
  • Tuesday May 10,  Thursday May 12,  10am-11am
  • Tuesday May 17,  10am-11am
  • Thursday May 19, No NPW
  • Tuesday May 24, Thursday May 26,  10am-11am
  • Tuesday May 31,  10am-11am 


​Mark Richardson 416-786-6401