Exercise is a key component in living and aging healthily. As home and health experts, Redfern understands the positive impact being active can have, especially in preventing injuries and maintaining mobility and strength.
A mixture of high and low impact activities is needed for best results. High impact activities include running, skipping, plyometrics, etc. Unfortunately, as we age, these high impact exercises become more difficult, putting us at greater risk for injury. That’s why we wanted to focus on low impact activities; allowing you to build strength and improve your endurance. This article explores the top low impact activities to stay fit.
WHAT DOES LOW IMPACT MEAN?
Think of low impact activities as “joint-friendly” activities. Your heart rate will still increase, you’ll burn fat, and buildmuscle, but are minimizing the amount of stress (or impact) on your joints. A great analogy is to think of low impact as exercises in which you will always have one foot on the ground. Compare walking to running, for example. When walking there will always be one foot touching. Running, however, has you pushing off the ground, temporarily with both feet in the air, even if it’s just for a split-second.
Without a doubt walking is the best activity you can do for yourself. It’s so versatile, allowing you to progress at your own pace, go for as long as you like. It can be made social by walking with a friend or can be done at home on a treadmill.
Increasing your heart rate and building strength, while putting very little strain on your joints is the goal with low impactexercises. That’s exactly what yoga offers. Additionally, there are several styles of yoga to choose from, which means you’ll have no problem finding a practice that suits you.
A stationary machine that allows you the benefits of running, without impacting your joints. Many find it a bonus that you’re able to use your arms, creating a full body workout.
A cardio workout that targets your core, arms, and legs. Rowing (whether in a boat or on a rowing machine) will get you huffing and puffing. If bending your knees is uncomfortable, ease into using a rowing machine, you’ll bend and extend the lower body frequently. Don’t be ashamed if you don’t last more than a few minutes. While rowing is a low impactexercise, it is one that will get you huffing and puffing. Time is needed to build up your endurance.
Most people find swimming fun, and a mood booster as well. Swimming has the potential to tone your entire body, while taking it easy on the joints.
POST WORKOUT CARE
After you’ve worked your muscles, spoil them. Massage has been proven to increase blood flow and reduce soreness in muscles, especially after a workout. The Squirrel Massage System is used by physiotherapists and athletes to work out knots and provide deep tissue relief. You’ll also appreciate the BACKPlus PRO 3 in 1 Massager. It offers heat and deep tissue kneading.
These exercises are a great place to start your low impact routine. As you progress, keep in mind that low impact doesn’t mean low intensity, you’re still building muscle and working up a sweat. Low impact is simply a safer way for many people to remain active.