Everyone has heard the saying, “No pain, no gain.” The truth is, exercise shouldn’t hurt your body. Staying active is a way of life, and exercising is simply the means to an end. The ultimate goal is to maintain mobility for the duration of your life. Here are some simple exercise ideas that won’t strain your joints or overwork your muscles.
- Walk instead of run. Running puts a great deal of impact on our joints. Walking, however, is a low-impact way to get the same amount of exercise for your muscles without stressing out your joints. Step up your walking pace to give your heart a workout too. Brisk walking, or power-walking, gives your body a cardio workout without putting any stress on your joints.
- Yoga is another low-stress exercise. In fact, yoga is a great way to reduce stress and relax the body while you exercise. Stretch your muscles and improve your balance with yoga’s many poses and positions. Increase your flexibility and maintain proper tone, while protecting your joints from the pounding and crushing effects of other workouts. You can even build muscle mass and achieve strength enhancement from doing power yoga.
- Swimming is a great exercise that provides a joint-friendly workout. The buoyancy of the water holds your body in a weightless state while you exercise. Your muscle groups work together to give your body an overall workout, while your joints stay fluid and loose. Twenty or thirty minutes of swimming, three times per week is a great way to stay fit without causing any pain or discomfort.
- Would you rather compete in a low-impact sport? Try golf for a game of joint-friendly exercise. Golf involves plenty of walking, as long as you opt out of riding in a golf cart. Golfers also develop good upper-body fitness without sacrificing the health of their joints.
- Bowling is another great way to have fun while you exercise. Be sure to wear proper shoes, and choose a ball weight that is right for your stature. Hefting a 16-pound ball will cause your arm to complain later.
There are a myriad of other low-impact sports and activities to keep you active at any age. Shuffleboard and badminton are among the many games that provide plenty of gain without any pain. The main idea is to keep moving. Inactivity can be just as bad for your joints as over-activity!