National Physical Education and Sports Week: 5 Ways to Stay Active
Physical activity can be difficult to achieve right now if you're sheltering in place, but even your house or apartment can provide a space to get up and get moving. During this year's National Physical Education and Sports Week, we're all getting a reminder of the importance of exercise in our lives. The unique circumstances we're living in right now have also shown us that physical education doesn't end when you graduate, but it's a lifelong experience that allows you to adapt to changing circumstances.
Below are some ideas on how you and your family can stay active while staying home!
1. Low-Impact Aerobic Exercise
Regular exercise increases blood flow, which delivers oxygen and nutrients to the synovial membrane that surrounds the joints and produces the synovial fluid that lubricates them. Aerobic exercise can also reduce joint inflammation. Be sure to avoid high-impact exercises that involve running and jumping, especially if you suffer from arthritis or joint pain. Options like walking, cycling, and swimming can provide you with an aerobic workout without putting undue stress on your joints.
2. Strength Training
Building up the muscles around your joints can help absorb the shock of regular movement. This doesn't have to mean lifting weights! Physical therapists and personal trainers can introduce you to many different strength training exercises just using resistance. Not to mention that forms of exercise like yoga and even swimming can make use of natural resistances to help build strength. And increased core strength can help reduce the strain on your knees and hips.
Getting those joints moving fights stiffness and helps lubricate them with synovial fluid. Exercises like yoga or Pilates can help you reach your full range of motion.
4. Family Activities
Getting your child up and active is difficult when you're homebound, as space may be limited. It helps to have a yard, but even within a house or apartment you can open up a space for your kids to stay active. Here are some tips:
- Active screen time: Whether it's finding age-appropriate exercises online that kids can do while watching a video, or posting your own videos online of fun physical activity, you can make the screen work for your family.
- Limited space exercises: There are plenty of exercises you can do in a space no larger than an exercise mat. Look online for ideas!
- Have recess!: You might be homeschooling your children right now in the absence of classes, so don't forget about one of the best parts of childhood. Studies and academic programs have long confirmed that recess improves focus in students, so make sure to give your children a break in the home school day for some physical activity.
- Use your yard: If you have access to a yard or driveway, you're in luck! Basketball, soccer, badminton, jump ropes, Frisbee, and classic childhood games are all viable options with even a modest yard.
- Music: Music is a great motivator, and many kids love to dance or just get active when their favorite song is on. Activity doesn't have to be controlled, and some kids prefer spontaneity. Music is a great way to get there.
5. Mountain Ice
During periods of inactivity, it's easy for joints to become stiff. Mountain Ice is here to help! This revolutionary pain gel can help relieve your aches and pain quickly by penetrating deep into your joints and reducing swelling, giving you valuable temporary relief while working through your stiffness. Ingredients like menthol, ilex paraguariensis and camphor increase blood flow and improve circulation, so that oxygen speeds through your body, helping you get energized and reducing stiffness in your joints. Meanwhile, glucosamine and chondroitin sulfate help promote cartilage rebuilding and water retention, so your joints are up to the challenge of staying fit in isolation.