Here are my top ten tips to starting exercise…

  1. Start off slowly and gradually build up rather than trying to do too much too soon.  Just 15- 20 minutes of moderate intensity exercise every day will help you stay stronger and more mobile.  
  2. Listen to your body; when you start using muscles that you haven’t used for ages you may well feel a little fatigued or stiff at first, so take it steadily and remember not to do anything that causes you sharp pain. It’s a good idea to check with your GP if you have any medical conditions before starting a new exercise programme.
  3. Always do a warm up to prepare your joints, muscles and mind for exercise.  
  4. Also remember to cool down, stretching and relaxing allows your muscles to return to normal and aids recovery.
  5. Find something that you enjoy, as you are much more likely to stick at it.  
  6. Exercise in a group, or with one other person, as this helps to motivate and keep you going.  
  7. Try something new.  It’s good to engage in activities we’re not used to, as it forces our brains to think harder and encourages our bodies to adapt .
  8. Use your whole body.  We tend to focus on using our arms and legs when we exercise, but try to include exercises that also strengthen your core, pelvic floor, even your ankles and fingers.     
  9. Think functional fitness, not fashionable fitness. Exercises that allow you to feel better and enhance your everyday life.  Eg. Squats so you can sit to stand easily. Stretching and reaching up, so you can get something off the top shelf.
  10. Work on your balance.  Balance is crucial to help prevent falls.  Studies have also shown that balance exercises improve life quality and the ability to perform daily tasks.