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Kittle: Choosing the right exercise program
"Those who think they have not time for bodily exercise will sooner or later have to find time for illness." —Edward Stanley
Choosing the right exercise is a matter of finding an activity that helps you achieve your fitness goals and is safe, sustainable, and enjoyable. Exercise should also offer some degree of challenge so that the exercise increases or sustains fitness levels.
There is no limit to available exercise options so you may want to begin with asking yourself “Why do you want to start a fitness program? Perhaps your Doctor or Physiotherapist suggested you become active? What are your goals? What are your health concerns? Limitations? What activities do you enjoy? Biking? Swimming? Walking? Skiing, Tai Chi, Water Aerobics? You are more likely to stick to an activity you enjoy. Fitness should be fun!
If you're a social person, a gym or health club membership may be the ticket. Group fitness classes also allow social butterflies to be around lots of people and enjoy camaraderie while also getting fit.
For those who enjoy exercising outdoors, there is no shortage of walking and hiking groups available. If you prefer to exercise alone or you find health clubs intimidating, exercises you can do at home may be best. If you find you need motivation to adhere to your home or gym fitness program hiring a personal trainer may be right for you?
Along with accountability and motivation a personal trainer assists in helping you to work out safely watching your form, monitoring your vitals and can provide objective feedback about your limits and strengths. Most of us tend to ignore some of the subtle signals our body provides.
We either push through pain or give up too soon. Because a personal trainer can watch what you are doing while you are doing it, they can help push you or slow you down as necessary.
If you are age 50 or older, haven't exercised for some time, or have chronic medical conditions, such as diabetes or heart disease, it's a good idea to consult your doctor before beginning an exercise program.
There are also a number of specific exercise programs available for those with other health concerns such as arthritis, fibromyalgia, osteoporosis, just to name a few.
If you struggle with the pain and stiffness of arthritis, fibromyalgia or any other inflammatory diseases you need to consider an appropriate exercise program for your condition. Low impact , low intensity exercise is recommended for those with Arthritis to help preserve muscle strength, joint mobility, improve functional capabilities, relieve pain and stiffness, improve overall physical conditioning, re-establish neuromuscular coordination, and mobilize stiff or contracted joints.
Non-weight bearing activities such as cycling, warm water exercise” and walking, are recommended along with exercises to put all joints through their range of motion to maintain mobility .Exercise should be avoided during acute arthritic flare ups.
For those with Osteoporosis (porous bones)an exercise program like Osteofit group fitness classes that include weight bearing exercise to increase bone mass and fall prevention exercises are key. Non-impact activities such as balance, functional and postural exercises may also benefit people with osteoporosis. Although these exercises don’t build or maintain bone density, they may increase muscle strength and decrease the risk of falls and fractures.
Each workout will puts you one step closer to reaching your fitness goals. If you find you are getting bored in your fitness program, Set a new Fitness goal and don't be afraid to try something new!
Pursuit Fitness offers Fibrofit warm water exercises at Hawthorn Park Retirement Community heated pool, and Osteofit fall prevention program for individuals with osteoporosis, personal training and in-home gym and office programs.
Seniors Fitness Specialist