You may be one of millions who live with some form of physical disability. If so, you know that incorporating exercise into your daily routine is a challenge. It is, however, vitally important that you do. Exercise produces the endorphins in our bodies that boost our mood, relieve stress and improve our self-esteem. Exercising helps to keep us feeling positive about life.
Your disability may be an ongoing problem, or due to an injury. It may be related to weight problems, breathing difficulties, arthritis or many other causes. No matter, every one of us will benefit from adding daily exercise to our schedules.
There are three main kinds of exercise we need to include:
Cardio-vascular which acts to raise heart rates and endurance. Your limited mobility condition will dictate what you can do, but many find that water exercises are best for them. Even people in wheelchairs can do some form of cardio exercise.
Strength exercises usually involve weight training and resistance exercises. They build muscle strength, increase bone mass, improve balance, and help prevent falls. Focus on your strengths when you plan which strength exercises to do.
Flexibility exercises improve range of motion, help prevent injury and reduce pain. They reduce stiffness in joints. Stretching exercises such as yoga are good prospects.
Before you begin any new exercise program do the following:
Get medical clearance from your doctor.
Make a plan with the help of a physical therapist or other health professional.
Begin slowly and increase your exercise bit by bit.
Stay the course—don’t give up.
There is not doubt that people with disabilities of any kind will benefit from a regular exercise routine. Get going and have fun!