Low-Impact Exercises: why minimal effort equals maximum results…
Words Georgie Rutherford
The love of exercise doesn’t come naturally to everyone – especially when it comes to sweat-drenching HIIT (high intensity interval training) classes. However, experts have recently decided that LISS (low-impact steady state) workouts can be just as effective for relieving stress and keeping us in shape. Can stress relief get any easier? Sign us up!
Walking is a stress-free way to get moving. Taking a brisk walk in the fresh air clears the mind and burns calories. Make sure to stretch your legs on your lunch break to boost that metabolism. If taking a leisurely stroll is far too easy then up the intensity by adding weights (dumbbells or ankle weights) to get that heart pumping.
If you want to zen out, yoga is an excellent stress-relieving exercise which will have you feeling the burn without feeling the pain. Yoga can strengthen your body’s natural relaxation response and bring you into a healthy balance. If you want to spice it up, try aerial yoga to really take your practice to new heights.
Cross trainers are a perfect alternative to a run outside if you’re looking for a lower impact workout. This machine gives you an all over body workout and decreases the stress on your hips, knees and back, as both feet remain grounded at all times. It’s a real calorie burner too!
Strengthen that core without putting too much strain on your joints. While floor-based Pilates is fantastic for your core, classes using a reformer machine are in a class of their own when it comes to lengthening limbs and stretching out hunched shoulders.
Swimming is another effective stress-relieving exercise. Whether you’re doing leisurely lengths or an aqua aerobic workout, it helps to release feel-good endorphins while reducing anxiety.