One excuse that people give for not working out is the weather. The old: “Oh, I would workout, but then it snowed.” But, just because the weather outside might be frightful, it doesn’t mean you can’t make your indoor exercise delightful. It’s particularly important for you to be knowledgeable on some easy indoor exercises to recommend to your therapy patients. It’s important to be active year round, not just when it’s nice outside. Keep your therapy patients, especially ones suffering from arthritis, (who should be keeping active) smart to the ways to comfortably exercise in the winter months.
Ways to “Winterize” Arthritis Workouts
Join a class. Some people don’t have the space in their apartments or homes for indoor exercise. A great way to combat a lack of roam-ability inside, is to sign up for a class. Additionally, when you’re paying for something you’ll be less likely to avoid it. Also, being around a bunch of people is a great motivational tool. There’s lots of benefits to working out in a class. If anything, it’s also a way to make friends, too. Recommend gentle classes like yoga for your patients to look into this winter.
Walk around at the mall. You can comfortably walk for miles in a shopping mall. And, it’s completely free. For people that get their exercise by walking around the neighborhood in less brisk months, recommend they start getting their walking in here instead. A lot of older people who are retired take advantage of mall walking on weekday mornings when they’re relatively empty. Also, for the holidays you can kill two birds with one stone; get some healthy walking done while getting presents for your loved ones.
Get a short term health club membership. Places like the YMCA offer short-term memberships that you can take advantage of during the winter. A lot of times when you join a health club, free classes are a perk that comes with it! Just be sure to make sure you know the terms and conditions of joining for a short time to avoid canceling fees.
Turn your living room into a makeshift gym. You don’t need bulky and expensive machines to get a good workout. You can simply move the coffee table and turn on a YouTube dance or yoga instruction video. Or, get some small weights or an exercise ball and get a good workout from the comfort of home.
But if you do want to go outside to exercise…
Adjust your outdoor routine. Exercising outdoors is still possible before spring if you just make a few tweaks to your regimen.
- Warmup longer than usual. When it’s colder out, take full advantage of your time you spend doing those warmups! Do it twice as long as you do in warmer months.
- Wear layers. Arthritis can flair up when you get cold so it’s very important to bundle up when going outdoors to workout. You can always shed layers if you get too hot! Wear a hat, tie on a scarf, etc.
- Alter your exercise schedule. You may want to try morning walks instead of after-dinner because it gets dark much earlier in the winter. To avoid dangerous night time exercise, you may have to do it at different times.
- Keep water with you. In the winter, you’re less likely to feel thirsty than in warmer months so the risk of dehydration increases.