The benefits of exercise, from stronger muscles to a healthier heart, are well known. However, many popular workout options involve high-impact exercises such as running and jumping, which aren't always a good idea for beginners. This then leads to pain, injuries which may require costly physiotherapy, and a general disinclination for exercise in general! This article sets out five fun, low-impact exercise ideas that are suitable for everyone, from those new to exercise to those recovering from injury.
- Swimming. Swimming merits a place at the top of the list because, as well as being fun and relaxing, it functions as both cardio and strength training. Fitness Magazine lays out a plethora of benefits from reduced cholesterol to lower blood pressure. Keep it interesting by learning a new stroke or trying to beat your own lap times.
- Cycling. Cycling is great because as well as strengthening your leg muscles while putting very little pressure on your joints, you get to be out in the fresh air seeing more of your local area. Livestrong suggests starting with a recumbent bike for those who need more lower back support.
- Walking. Walking is another type of exercise that will get you outdoors appreciating the beauty of the countryside, although if the weather or your local area don't offer many options, walking on a treadmill is just as good. Load up some music, take a bottle of water and see where you end up!
- Yoga. Yoga is a relaxing form of exercise that promotes strength and flexibility, as well as improving your breathing through a variety of poses. NHS Choices also explain that practising yoga can improve the mood and also improve balance, too.
- Step Aerobics. If you want a good cardio workout without the joint pain that can come with things like running, look at taking a step aerobics class. This gentle cardio exercise is easy on the joints, as well as being fun — classes often exercise together in time to music, and it's a great way to meet new people too.
With the range of exercise ideas above, you're sure to find something that suits you and that you look forward to doing. All of the above ideas will give you a great workout, at the same time as not putting too much pressure on your joints. The Department of Health recommends 150 to 300 minutes of exercise per week, so you can try different ideas on different days for more varied workouts. If you're in physiotherapy, make sure to talk with your therapist before starting any exercise routine.Share