Stay spine fit with low-impact summer activities
posted: Jun. 19, 2023.
Summer’s warm weather gives us more opportunities for outdoor activities. You may engage in exercise or chores like gardening that work your body differently. Keeping fit is integral to your overall health, but back pain can take the fun out of summer.
Low-impact exercise is gentle on the joints, minimizes stress on the back, and builds core muscles to help you avoid future injuries. Here are some low-impact summer activities to help you stay active and maintain spinal health.
Walking: Walking is a simple and effective low-impact exercise that promotes overall fitness and helps strengthen the muscles that support your back. Start with shorter walks and gradually increase the duration and intensity. A morning or evening walk will help you avoid mid-day heat and start or finish your day with a great mindset.
Swimming: Swimming is a low-impact exercise that is gentle on the spine while providing a full-body workout. It helps improve flexibility, strengthens muscles, and relieves pressure on the spine. With warm weather, and more opportunities to use a pool, swimming is the perfect summer activity.
Cycling: Cycling is an excellent cardiovascular exercise that puts minimal stress on the spine. It helps improve endurance, strengthens the lower body, and can be a fun way to explore the outdoors during the summer.
Hiking: Hiking is an excellent way to enjoy nature while improving spine health. Choose trails with varying terrains to challenge different muscle groups and promote spinal stability. Ensure you have proper footwear and use hiking poles for added support.
Yoga or Tai Chi: Both yoga and Tai Chi focus on core strength, flexibility, and posture, which can help alleviate back pain and improve spinal health. Tai Chi is a Chinese martial art involving slow movements and deep breathing. It can help improve balance, flexibility, and posture while minimizing strain on your back. Look for outdoor classes or practice in your backyard or a local park.
Stand-up paddle boarding (SUP): SUP is a fantastic full-body workout that engages the core muscles, promotes balance, and enhances posture. It can be a fun and relaxing way to spend time on the water while exercising your spine.
Gardening: Gardening is a therapeutic and spine-friendly activity if you use proper body mechanics. Take breaks, use kneeling pads or a stool for support, and vary your tasks to avoid prolonged bending or twisting.
Outdoor group fitness classes: Many parks and recreational centers offer outdoor group fitness classes during the summer. Look for courses focusing on core strength, flexibility, and functional movements to help support spine health.
Listen to your body, warm up before any activity, and use proper form to avoid strain or injury. True Potential Chiropractic wishes you a spine-happy, healthy, active summer of fun!