Perhaps running isn’t your thing or maybe jumping hurts your knees. You may want to be gentle with your joints. Regardless of the cause, you must do a low-impact workout, especially as a woman. Well, good news: You’re in good hands. We consulted fitness experts and conducted extensive research to compile a list of the top low-impact workouts.
Here are some workout options that will give you the endorphin- and heart-pumping effects you desire without putting additional strain on your joints and ligaments.
- High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT)
Although its name might be high-intensity interval training, it is manageable. HIIT is a training technique that involves short bursts of maximum-effort exercise followed by rest intervals.
Your aerobic and anaerobic capacities will both grow as a result of HIIT.
The capability to operate at high intensity for brief periods is known as anaerobic capacity. The capacity to work for an extended amount of time with little effort is known as aerobic capacity.
Two examples of HIIT exercises are low-impact speed squats with a dumbbell on each shoulder or a straightforward bodyweight plank.
Perform the next four exercises for 20 seconds each, followed by a 10-second break.
- Up-downs on a plank
- Overhead press to squats
- Lunges laterally
Repeat the exercises once more when you have finished the sequence.
Cycling is a non-weight-bearing, low-impact exercise that can be done indoors or outdoors. You can exert yourself without putting undue strain on your joints. Take a spin on Upright Exercise bikes with movable handles and a large fan in front if you want a challenging cycling workout that also works your upper body.
Pedaling as quickly as you can for thirty seconds and then pausing for 10 seconds might fulfill that workout. Repeat that series three more times after that.
But bear in mind that cycling may not be the best low-impact activity for some people, such as those with knee problems. Therefore, you should forego cycling if you feel uncomfortable doing so.
A ballet-inspired exercise technique called Barre, focuses on numerous tiny, pulsating motions. The exercise strongly emphasizes mobility and flexibility work, two aspects that many of us could use to improve. Your balance and stability can both be improved by barre. Additionally, depending on the kind of Barre exercise you do, you’ll get a decent workout in your cardiovascular system and your muscles’ endurance.
But what is the best part? All of those advantages are provided by barre without damaging your ligaments and joints.
- Kinetic Stretching
The low-impact workout technique, often referred to as KinStretch, involves extending a joint’s full movement. You also cause tension in the entire body at the same moment.
You may, for instance, tense every muscle in your body, then rotate your arm as widely as you can. Your joints will be lubricated, and this mixture will improve your mobility.
Additionally, because it feels intense, you could sweat a little. But always make sure that you’re making the most from your workouts. Maintain a good form, and focus on your diet.
It’s likely that you only row a little if you’re a member of the crew team. You’re also skipping a full-body exercise that offers effective cardio and stamina training.
Additionally, rowing develops your legs, arms, and core. Additionally, the activity could strengthen your upper back and enhance your posture.
In addition, if you push yourself and row hard, you could burn up to 500 calories in an hour. The rowing machines are also more likely to be available and ready to offer you a workout when you walk into the gym, as opposed to the treadmills, which are usually always in use.
Due to the tremendous drag force of the water, swimming is a low-impact exercise that nonetheless provides good resistance training.
Researchers looked at individuals who had osteoarthritis in their knees and were postmenopausal women in a study that was published in 2017 in Osteoarthritis and Cartilage.
After a four-month water resistance training regimen, the participants reportedly lost weight and increased their walking pace.
The researchers also found no dangers or disadvantages to swimming as exercise, similar to earlier studies looking into the health advantages of swimming.
The shoulders, core, back, and legs can all be strengthened through swimming. Additionally, it is very adaptable; you can modify your distance, speed, and stroke type to alter the intensity of a swim session.
- Kettlebell Training
Working out with the slimline free weights has less effect on your skeletal system and can provide excellent cardio and total-body training.
Kettlebell training is great because you never leave the ground.
Additionally, because of its handle, you can perform more dynamic movements with a kettlebell than with other free weights like dumbbells or plates. A kettlebell can be a valuable, adaptable item in your toolbox.
The SkiErg may have caught your eye at the gym, but you still needed to understand what it was and how it operated. In essence, it’s a rowing machine that emphasizes upper body motion.
Imagine pulling two cables down while standing up to resemble the motion of skiing. The SkiErg can therefore be a great choice for people who have lower-body ailments. It’s a fantastic choice for anyone looking for a joint-friendly way to increase their strength, power, and endurance.
However, based on how you use the SkiErg, it can also burn calories throughout your entire body.
The SkiErg is a fantastic piece of equipment since it works the entire body, including the glutes, hamstrings, triceps, lats, and shoulders.
Pilates is a low-impact exercise method that emphasizes posture, breath control, and core strength. Pilates successfully enhances life quality, balance, and muscle strength.
However, Pilates might not provide a very challenging cardio workout. The difficulty, though, will vary depending on the class you select and your level of fitness right now.
However, the workout’s emphasis on core strength makes it a great cross-training exercise for other pursuits like running and weightlifting.
The elliptical is a well-known piece of exercise equipment and a great choice for low-impact cardio.
While concurrently working out numerous large muscle groups, an elliptical offers the advantages of jogging without stress. The arm handles on many ellipticals resemble ski poles. So you may develop your shoulder, arms, and upper back muscles while also using your upper body muscles to increase your calorie burn.
The Advantages of Low-Impact Exercise
Along with many other benefits, low-impact exercise is good for your joints’ health and longevity. Here are a few major advantages of low-impact exercises.
- Simple to Include in a Regular Exercise Routine
You can exercise more frequently because low-impact exercises are easier on your body and joints. With low-impact training, you’ll spend less time resting and more time exercising, which might be essential for developing a regular exercise routine.
For a lot of people, it’s simpler to stick to workouts that feel nice (while still providing those physical advantages) than it is to push themselves to their limits consistently. Low-impact exercises can be a method to ease into a workout regimen without feeling stressed or, to be honest, extremely sore for days afterward for people who are new to fitness or who are having trouble recommitting to regular movement.
- Most Effective for All Fitness Levels
Since low-impact exercises are performed more slowly, beginners can benefit from using a low-impact movement to learn proper form before performing the same move more vigorously. For example, after performing a series of weighted squats, a beginner might gradually work up to a jump squat after performing a series of weighted squats.
Low-impact exercises like using a rower, climbing machine, or bike can still get advanced fitness aficionados to sweat. Without the strain that high-impact exercises put on your joints, your body will recover more quickly in the near term, and your joints and ligaments will last longer in the long run if you can avoid that high-impact stress. If you feel like you’re regularly working out for a long time but can’t see or feel any difference, other factors can hinder your exercise.
- Improves Mood and Reduces Stress
Even low-impact exercises significantly positively affect our general mood, stress levels, and even happiness. Low-impact exercises nevertheless cause the release of endorphins, which assist in managing stress, fighting depression, and improving mood generally. In fact, even a 10-minute stroll at a brisk pace can help us feel better. According to a study published in Psychology of Sport and Exercise, low-impact exercise is one of the best ways to enhance mental wellness. Researchers found that participants’ sentiments of enthusiasm and attentiveness increased with just 30 minutes of low-intensity aerobic exercise three to five days a week.
- Less Injury Risk
Low-impact exercises are less taxing on the body, which means there is a far lesser chance of injury. Low-impact physical activity has an injury risk of a third or less than higher-impact activities. Injuries are less likely to happen because low-impact workouts are performed slowly and with less force applied to joints. Low-impact exercises are advised for inexperienced exercisers and those with pre-existing joint ailments (particularly those with prior back, knee, and shoulder injuries).
Even while low-impact exercise is frequently safe, paying attention to your body when engaging in any activity is still crucial. Stop exercising if it hurts or is uncomfortable especially low-impact exercise, and seek medical advice as necessary.