Did you know Public Health England have recently conducted a review of evidence and have issued new advice as a result?
Aerobic exercise, such as walking or running, is great for heart health and circulation (as well as your mental wellbeing, of course!). But it needs to be balanced with exercise that focuses on strength and balance.
As we get into our forties and beyond, our muscle strength starts to decline. We need to take active measures to maintain it. Poor muscle strength in older adults increases fall risk by 76%.
Strength and balance exercise can help prevent falls – and also improves mood, sleep and energy levels!
If you’re not sure what kind of exercise would be useful, here are a few ideas:
- Tai Chi or yoga
- Ball and racket sports
- Weight / resistance training – in the gym, or at home using bodyweight (as in press-ups, plank etc)
- Nordic walking
- Dancing of all types, from line-dancing to ballet to ballroom
There are also ways to build strength and balance into your everyday activities:
- Use the stairs rather than the lift
- Park at the far end of the supermarket car park and carry your shopping bags
- Practice standing on one leg, perhaps every time you’re waiting for the kettle to boil, or brushing your teeth? Do make sure you can grab something, though, if you start to topple!
Small things can make big changes – persistence is the key! Aim for two decent sessions of balance / strength work a week and stay sprightly for years to come!
Need some help or advice to overcome pain that’s stopping you reaching your exercise potential? Get in touch here.
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