Many of us know staying active is vital to living a healthy lifestyle. Regular exercise is proven to reduce stress levels, improve sleep quality, boost your immune system, and prevent weight gain.
As we continue to cope with the coronavirus pandemic, you may be finding it difficult to exercise or maintain your exercise routine. However, exercise is more important than ever during these stressful times. We’ve provided some high and low impact activities as well as a few tips to help you get your body moving while following the CDC guidelines.
High Impact Activities
High impact activities are exercises that often require both feet to come off the ground while working out. These activities are called high impact because once your body leaves the ground, gravity forces you back down. This causes your feet to hit the ground with pressure often similar to carrying twice your bodyweight.
Some of the benefits of high impact exercises include an increased heart rate, improved bone density and cardiovascular strength, better balance and stability, and increased stamina.
High impact activities may not be ideal for those who have pre-existing injuries, have joint conditions, or have excess weight. This doesn’t mean that people with these conditions should not do high impact activities, but that they should be added into exercise routines in moderation. Incorporating a few high impact activities into a low impact routine is a great starting point that will help strengthen your body and burn calories. Some high impact workouts include:
- Jumping Jacks
- Jumping Lunges
- Jumping Rope
- Squat Jumps
Low Impact Activities
Low impact activities are exercises that often keep at least one foot on the ground while you are working out. Your joints absorb far less of an impact during these workouts making them ideal for those with pre-existing injuries, chronic inflammatory conditions, or beginners.
Don’t be fooled by the term “low-impact.” You can still achieve an excellent workout with low impact activities, but you may have to work a little harder. Some low impact exercises include:
- Exercises on Elliptical Machines
- Strength Training
By adding a mixture of low and high impact activities to your workout routine, you will be able to strengthen various muscle groups and provide your joints with rest when needed. There is no one-size-fits-all approach when it comes to exercising, so it may take time to find the right combination of activities that work for you. Remember, the key is to sit less and move more so that you can live a healthy life.
Tips for Exercising During The Pandemic
Right now, it can be tempting to skip your workouts or feel unmotivated due to closures of gyms and fitness centers. However, there are a lot of great resources and activities for you to utilize during these times.
Get outside if you can while practicing social distancing. Go for a walk, run, bike ride, or hike on a nearby trail and get some much-need fresh air and sunshine. It will not only get your blood pumping but also benefit your mental health.
For those who are missing the atmosphere of the gym, consider taking advantage of virtual classes or looking up some online exercise routines to regain the community feel and keep you motivated.
Though it is recommended that adults get at least 35-60 minutes of exercise a day, that doesn’t mean it has to be all at once. Consider breaking up your workouts so that you can fit them into your schedule better. Remember to follow a routine to maintain a sense of normalcy and listen to your body.
For more information on how to stay active and the benefits of regular exercise, contact The Center for Spine, Sport & Physical Medicine today.