With warmer temperatures, there is more opportunity to get some quality exercise. The benefits of regular exercise include reduced stress, preventing disease, gaining strength, better balance, and mental clarity.
It’s best to start with light exercise and try to make it a part of your daily routine. Make sure to practice proper form and exercise in safe environments. Exercising in public areas and discussing these exercises with your medical provider are safe precautions.
Chair Exercise. You can build strength by doing some light exercises in your chair.
Chair Leg Lifts
- Sit up in your chair with your feet shoulder length apart on the floor, holding the handles if you need to. Lift one leg up (laterally) for a few seconds, and try touching your toe with your hands. Put that leg down, and switch to the other leg. Repeat this several times.
Chair Yoga. This type of Yoga doesn’t require you to leave your chair! It will be great for building strength, endurance, and flexibility.
Chair Cat/Cow Pose
- Sit up straight with your feet firmly on the ground and put your hands on your thigh.
- Push your stomach forward while pushing your chest up, and roll your shoulders back and stretch in that pose. Look towards the ceiling if it’s safe for your neck.
- Now start looking down, roll your shoulders forward, push your chest down and bring your stomach in, then hold that pose for a few seconds.
- Alternate between those two poses 3-5 times.
Reverse Arm Hold
- Start in a seated position, with your back straight but not touching the chair.
- Bring both arms out to your side at a low angle, then put your hands behind your lower back and hold then together.
- Exhale slowly and slightly arch your back to feel the stretch.
Low Weight Training. With two light dumbbells, you can build strength in your arms, chest, back, and shoulders. Look for weights or even filled water bottles (around 1-5 pounds). Consult with your nurse or doctor before engaging in these exercises.
- Sit up straight in a chair or bench. Hold two weights firmly in your hands. Start with your hands and weight perpendicular to your chest. Hold the weight with an upwards palm, and lift both weights up to your shoulders.
- Slowly lift the weights up higher, until your biceps are near your ears. Repeat this around 10 times. If the weights are too heavy, you can use two water bottles instead.
- Stand or sit with your feet shoulder-width apart. With palms forward and upwards, hold a dumbbell in each hand.
- Keeping your back straight and elbows close to your side, slowly bend at the elbow and lift one dumbbell at a time up towards your shoulder.
- At the top, pause for a moment, then slowly lower the dumbbell back to your starting position, making sure to maintain the original form.
- Repeat the same process with your other arm. Do this around 10 times once a day.
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