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Let's Get Physical!

Let's Get Physical! Brought to you by Integritas Allied Health

Whatever your age, you can enjoy the benefits of physical activity. There’s a host of health reasons to stay active and it doesn’t have to be ‘serious business’ — being active can be fun, especially if you can socialise at the same time. Exercise also helps keep your mind active and improves your quality of life.

Even a small increase in daily physical activity can reduce your risk of health conditions such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, heart disease, type 2 diabetes, bone problems, and obesity.

Physical activity can also improve your sleep, improve your mood, give you more energy, reduce stress levels and anxiety, and reduce pain from conditions including arthritis.

Four main types of physical activity are important for people of all ages: cardio, strength, flexibility, and balancing. Cardiovascular (‘cardio’) fitness activities help keep your heart and lungs healthy. This includes:
• brisk walking
• cycling
• swimming
• golf
• tennis
• aerobics classes
• dancing

quoteHousehold chores such as gardening and cleaning can also be a great cardio workout. Low-impact activities such as swimming can be beneficial for people who find movement painful because of health conditions such as osteoarthritis. Strength activities help your muscles and
bones stay strong. Strength training and weight-bearing exercise are especially helpful in increasing your bone density and reducing the risk of falls among people with osteoporosis.

Strength exercises include:
• weight training
• resistance training
• lifting and carrying (for example, groceries
or small children)
• gardening (involving digging and lifting)
• climbing stairs

Flexibility activities incorporate gentle stretching and bending exercises that help you move more easily. This might include:
• Tai Chi
• yoga
• dancing
• gardening
• lawn bowls
• mopping or vacuuming

Try to do some stretching exercises every day. You can even stretch while watching TV or waiting for the kettle to boil.
Balancing activities helps improve your balance, which can help prevent falls. They include:
• side leg raises
• half squats
• heel raises

Remember, physical activity can be varied, and you can exercise outside of a gym or classes. There are also online fitness tools and programs you can use at home.
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