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4 Low Impact Exercises

Dec 6, 2010

Low impact exercises are a great way to get some physical activity for your body and your overall health. They are beneficial for all athletes and people of a variety of fitness and health levels, but are most useful for people with outstanding health concerns. Low impact exercises are those that avoid putting unnecessary pressure or stress on any part of your body.

By reducing the impact that you experience as you exercise, you'll help to preserve the strength and integrity of your various muscular systems and bones. Whether you have a preexisting injury or condition or if you're simply looking to avoid injury as best you can, low impact exercise is a great option. Here are four low impact exercises:

1. Swimming

Perhaps the single best low impact exercise is swimming. Swimming is a great cardiovascular and aerobic exercise. It burns off substantial amounts of calories and, when done properly, works out every major muscle group in your body. Because of the consistency of the water in which you'll swim, and particularly because you make no impact with the ground as you swim (unlike when running, walking or completing many other forms of exercise), you'll have a much lower rate of injury and muscle strain.

2. Rock Climbing

For those people who are physically fit and looking for low impact exercises, rock climbing is a fantastic choice. Because your weight is supported from above by the rope system that you're attached to, most rock climbing experiences are quite low impact.

3. Walking

Although it's not completely free of potential stress due to impact, walking is a much safer bet than a variety of other exercises in this respect. Because your body is accustomed to walking throughout the majority of life anyway, walking is a good way to incorporate some activity into your schedule without putting your legs or other parts of your body through a good deal of stress. To enhance your walking experience and build up your fitness, try holding weights as you walk or increasing the speed and distance that you walk.

4. Hiking

For a change of pace from standard walking, hiking can be a great low impact activity. Because most hikes take place on unpaved areas, you have the benefit of a softer surface on which to move around. This can be very helpful in reducing the impact that you experience. If you're concerned about impact injuries or other conditions, be sure to take your hike slowly and don't overexert yourself.

These and many other exercises can all provide you with a solid aerobic activity option, and many of them will help to exercise various muscle groups as well. For additional recommendations, speak with a personal trainer or a doctor.

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