T I want to dedicate this article to people who are physically challenged (people with limited mobility) but still want to live an active life. Exercise is important for all of us, whether we are limited in movement or not. However, for those of us who are physically challenged, keeping fit through exercise can be a challenge, given that we have mobility issues to deal with. The limited mobility can be due to overweight, illness, disability, or even injury.
A big no, I can answer. Life with limited mobility is almost sedentary, and that is something we want to do away with if we have to enjoy life in this world longer. Thus, we need to strike up a workout regime that can work for us, despite our physical challenges. Let’s dive into the tips right away.
It should not be lost on us that every type of exercise has health benefits attached to it. In fact, mobility problems make some exercises even easier. However, a typical exercise routine for the physically challenged should incorporate the following types of exercises, which are also essential for people without physical disabilities.
Flexibility training: This type of exercises help to improve our motion range, minimize stiffness, reduce pain, and reduce the chances of injury. Yoga and stretches are categorized under flexibility exercises. So, it doesn’t matter whether our legs cannot move normally, we can still benefit from this type of exercise. Exercising especially in water has proved beneficial for those of us with mobility issues, as it is gentle on joints and muscles. It is still very possible to perform cardio even if we are confined to a wheelchair.
Strength exercises: These exercises help us in building muscle resistance, preventing falls, and improving balance, among other benefits. If we are experiencing limited mobility in our lower parts (legs), for instance, our focus in strength training will be in improving the parts of the body. The opposite is true; if we are experiencing mobility problems in the upper parts (e.g. shoulder injury), then our focus should be in improving the lower parts, such as the core and legs.
Success in limited mobility exercises comes when we do certain things right. As I have said before, the limited mobility could be as a result of illness, injury, or weight issues.
Medical clearance: So, it may be a good idea to first consult with our medical doctors about the type of exercises to engage in. We must not forget that some exercises can make our physical conditions even worse, and that is why a recommendation from the doctor is necessary. Once we get an all-clear from the medic, we can proceed with our exercise regime.
Having a fitness coach: With a training coach, we don’t have to worry about what kind of exercises will fit our physically challenged bodies. And let me be a bit assertive here; a fitness coach can be of great benefit for anyone, despite their physical condition. And while exercising by ourselves is completely possible, it is still a challenge to most people and that is why results of self-training take too long to manifest. A training coach knows which types of exercise are appropriate for every individual trainee. They help device a workout regime that can work for each of us, based on our individual differences.
Starting small: We shouldn’t expect to start with 30 push-ups if we are obese, for instance. This will be injustice to our body, and we may end up injuring ourselves in the process. Fitness coaches recommend that we start with the activities we enjoy, while setting realistic short-term goals. It doesn’t matter how small or simple a fitness goal is, achieving it will motivate us to do even better and work towards achieving higher goals.
Listening to our body: We should immediately stop training when we feel pain in our body. The pain may be a sign of some injury caused by the training. Additionally, we should avoid moving the injured parts during exercise.