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The Difference Between Low & High Impact Exercises

Exercise is important, but finding the right exercise for your current abilities and lifestyle is even more important. Some exercises are termed high-impact, while some are low-impact. Today, Las Vegas Home Care Assistance is going to go over the key differences between these high and low-impact exercises, and which type is right for you as you enter your golden years.

High vs. Low Impact Exercises for Seniors

High-impact exercise is an intensive workout, creating force to be absorbed by your joints. Exercises involving running, jogging, and jumping are high impact. This type of activity is designed to help strengthen bones, increase heart rate, and burn more calories. Keep in mind that when running or jumping rope, twice one’s body weight of pressure will be applied to ankles, knees, and hips.

Low-impact exercise is much easier on the joints. For those with health issues, such as arthritis, osteoporosis, extra weight, or chronic health issues, low-impact exercise is preferable. If you swim, walk, use an elliptical machine, or a stationary bicycle, you are participating in a low-impact exercise. Notice that your feet never leave the ground when doing these exercises.

High-impact exercise aims at increasing heart rate, which causes you to burn more calories. Running for an hour can burn between 550 and 750 calories, depending on your speed. This is clearly a type of exercise for those who are looking to push their physical fitness level. Low-impact exercise, while not pushing the heart rate to high levels, or putting a great deal of stress on joints, can burn calories and promote overall fitness. One hour of swimming, which is a low-impact workout, can burn 600 calories, and increase muscle tone.

Finding What’s Best for You

What is the best exercise regime for you? For seniors and older adults, the low-impact approach is recommended because it eliminates pressure from the joints, which can help to minimize the risks of pain, fractures and other injuries. Most importantly, seniors should focus on moving, even if it’s only walking for 15-30 minutes on a daily basis. This can help your overall physical conditioning and as you increase your endurance and strength, you can add another level activity, such as swimming, bicycling or using the stair-stepping machine.

Also keep in mind that it’s important to speak with your doctor before beginning any new exercise regimen. A doctor will be able to assess your physical health and offer suggestions for safe and beneficial exercises. Depending on your current abilities, they may also suggest that you perform exercises with the assistance or under the supervision of a family member or professional Las Vegas caregiver, especially in the early stage of exercise when you are still adjusting to the new activity.

Carrying Out an Exercise Regimen

If you need assistance carrying out an exercise regimen, consider help from the professional, experienced and compassionate caregivers at Home Care Assistance of Las Vegas. In addition to assisting with recommended exercises and providing emotional encouragement, caregivers can help with a variety of household tasks ranging from light housekeeping and medication reminders to personal care and transportation. Learn more about hourly and live-in home care in Las Vegas by contacting a friendly Care Manager today at 702-550-3185 and schedule a complimentary in-home consultation to learn more about our care services.