Getting Fit When You Have Limited Mobility
Everyone knows the importance of regular exercise and how it can help your body, as well as being good for your mental health. The problem is, not everyone has full mobility and is able to do full-on exercises such as running or cycling. If you have limited mobility, you have to find creative ways to exercise that work with the motions you can do, so here are some ideas to help you get in your weekly workouts.
Not all types of aerobics involve leaping around or doing jumping jacks. One type of aerobics that is becoming increasingly popular is chair aerobics, where you get a workout while sitting down. You work your upper body, as well as your legs if you can, and instructors are understanding if you can’t quite do all the motions.
Many towns now have these classes, especially during the day when retirees can attend, or you can search YouTube to find videos to follow.
While cycling might be out for you, a stationary bike can give you a good low impact workout at home. Often recommended by physios for those who have limited movement, mini exercise bikes are also great for people with limited space for equipment and can be used for both lower and upper body workouts.
Yoga or Pilates
Yoga is low impact and requires minimal space to practice. It’s best to go to a class to learn the basics, so the instructor can teach you how to do the moves properly.
Some of the benefits of yoga include:
- Improving muscle strength
- Toning your body
- Improving flexibility
- Better circulation
- Helping to prevent injuries
Yoga can be good for both your mental and physical health, and it’s very adaptable, so even if you are injured and have limited mobility, you can join in and do what you can.
Pilates is a little tougher than yoga, but again, complete beginners can do it if they listen to their body and go slow at first. You may need to take non-slip physio ball to classes, and it’s useful to have your own, as it means you can practice at home. If you regularly practice Pilates poses, you’ll soon notice it gets easier over time and that you start to feel fitter and more flexible.
Once you are in the water, you feel weightless, so swimming is great for people who have an injury or limited mobility due to a medical condition. Swimming is low impact and is excellent cardiac exercise. If you have trouble getting in or out of the pool, contact your local swimming centre and see what equipment they have for people with disabilities. Many pools have hoists or lifts, so you don’t have to miss out.
It’s not always easy to get enough exercise when your mobility is limited, but luckily, there are options for those who can’t do high impact exercise and need something that’s gentler and relaxing, whether you want to get fit or lose weight.