Exercise improves the quality of life in women. Women who perform aerobics or cardio exercises have a lower body mass index (BMI), controlled cholesterol levels and blood pressure, and are at a lower risk of chronic conditions such as diabetes are cardiovascular disease. Strength training, three days a week, can make your muscles stronger. The right exercises are those that use your whole body in a functional way. Standing, bending, lifting and lunging—all are good exercise routines.
Exercise in older women is the answer to stiff and aching joints. It benefits the joints by making you lose weight. A complete exercise routine for elderly women or post-menopausal women includes stretching, strength training and aerobic or endurance exercise. Start your exercises slowly with stretching, which allows your muscles and joints to be flexible and prevents injury. Aerobic exercises improve your cardiac health.
Exercise makes the pain sensing receptors less sensitive, hence making walking swimming, yoga, etc. almost pain free. Ailing women can also do certain exercises with the doctor’s advice because such low impact activities lessen the stress on the body. Walking is a good weight-bearing exercise, which can help keep bones strong. And such exercises would help women to recuperate well. Thirty minutes of moderate physical activity everyday is sufficient. Doing smaller bouts that add up to 30 minutes a day are enough for health benefits.
Having a Baby? Exercise!
In case you are planning a baby or you are pregnant exercise can do wonders for you. However, reports suggest that the maximum number of miscarriages take place in the first three months. It is important to be very careful during the first three months hence experts advise exercise from the first trimester onward.
Sports or activities with a high risk of falling should be avoided during early pregnancy. The fetus is normally protected from bumps and falls but accidents do happen. High impact aerobics, difficult yoga asanas, jogging, etc. can put a strain on the joints or ligaments and can also put a higher risk on pregnancy. Do not overdo stretching. Avoid exercises in which your joints get overstretched.
During pregnancy, it is important for both you and your baby to be in good shape. Safe and mild exercises are known to boost the immune system and help you provide the energy to conceive. It helps to prepare your body for labour and the tiring process of childbirth. Improved cardiovascular health, respiration and muscular strength can give you stamina at the time of labour. In addition, exercise at the time of pregnancy helps in relief from constipation, backache, fatigue and even varicose veins.
There are many sage exercises for expectant mothers. The exercises should not be vigorous. Activities such as brisk walking, swimming, stretching are ideal during pregnancy. Exercises can include flexibility, low-impact aerobics, muscle strengthening, endurance and relaxation.
Exercises that can be done during pregnancy include:
- Stretching helps improve flexibility and maintains muscle tone
- Stationary biking is good
- Moderate or low aerobic workout is safe
- Walking for 30 minutes a day can increase your fitness by raising your heart rate
- Yoga helps relieve stress
Exercising in water is sage and enjoyable during pregnancy. It is also good for women who have backache. The water supports your whole body, and you can be as energetic or relaxed as you want. There may by public and private pools that offer antenatal classes, often run by trained midwives or physiotherapists.
Most classes begin with a sequence of gentle warm-up exercises, followed by stretches and a swim. Swimming several lengths can give you a good, safe workout.