Daily exercising is essential to a healthy lifestyle. You might hear the term “low impact” exercise and assume that it’s a slow, not effective workout. However, low impact exercises are perfect for those who have stiff or sore joints, are recovering from an injury, or those who just want to switch up their current routine! Here are some of the best low impact, but still effective, exercises you can try today.
Swimming is fun, relaxing, and good for your body! Because our bodies are buoyant, water in the pool puts virtually zero pressure on our joints. Speaking of joints, swimming in a heated pool can actually offer pain relief for those of use experiencing stiffness or joint pain. The resistance in the water targets your muscles and holding your breath is a great lung workout.
The elliptical versus the treadmill is often debated. Most runners wouldn’t consider substituting a run on the treadmill for a 20 minute elliptical workout. But, if you’re looking for a low impact way to keep your whole body moving, the elliptical might be for you! The motion of the elliptical mimics the natural foot path of how you run, walk, or jog. This motion helps prevent strain on your joints, but still allows you to get a great cardio workout.
Walking is an extra convenient low impact workout because, it can be done literally anywhere! If you are able to get up and walk 10 minutes in either direction, you are able to have a quick and beneficial workout. Walking is very low impact so adding some hand (or ankle) weights and seeking out some hills is a great way to pump up your workout. If you find that your joints are still hurting after a walk, try avoiding concrete or asphalt and opt for a wooded or grassy trail.
Former dancers will rejoice! Barre classes are centered around ballet positions and is targeted to increase muscle stamina and core strength. But don’t worry, you don’t need and prior dance experience to attend a class. Barre is named after, surprise, the wooden are that is anchors a wall found in ballet studios. Classes are done barefoot and usually do not involve any weights. Instead of large and intense movements (think squats) found in other strength classes, barre uses very small increments called isometric movements. These movements are often gentle on joints and don’t require a ton of equipment, making barre a pretty intense low impact workout.
Now that you’ve gotten the run down on low impact workouts, it’s time to give it a try! You can start with whatever is most convenient for you, then slowly start integrating these joint friendly workouts into your weekly workout schedule.
It’s always a smart idea to check in with your chiropractor before making any extreme changes in your workout plan. Consult with one of our doctors today!
The writing team at Tuck Chiropractic.
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