Our health and well-being is the greatest gift we’ve been given, even when we have disabilities that make it more difficult to keep up with our non-disabled friends. But that doesn’t mean that there are ways (or reasons) that we can keep ourselves as fit as possible. From adaptive sports to habits that make your mornings the best part of your day, Ability Today covers a few quick topics for people with disabilities looking to maintain their overall physical health.
There are many different fitness options for people with disabilities. In the summer, consider mountain biking. In the United States, Maine Adaptive Sports & Recreation offers mountain biking adventures that put you in the woods and on the trail. Adaptive bikes make it possible to enjoy exercise in the great outdoors.
For those of you that are a bit more adventurous, consider Nordic skiing. This outdoor adventure takes you through the woods and pares you with a volunteer skier for an experience unlike any other. As a person with a disability, you should know that sit-down skiing is an option.
More Than Exercise
While exercise is obviously the key ingredient to having a wholesome fitness routine, your health requires more than moving your muscles. Our best piece of advice here is to create a healthy morning routine that inspires you to live your healthiest best. You might, for example, eat a wholesome breakfast while you read a positive news article and then meditate before you start work for the day.
You must also prioritise getting enough sleep in the overnight hours. As a person with a disability, there’s a good chance that you experience sleep deprivation, at least from time to time. Research shows that those with physical and intellectual disabilities often don’t get enough sleep, and this can make your everyday struggles that much more of a challenge. Give yourself at least eight hours each night, and ensure that your bedroom is conducive to healthy sleep hygiene. Lower the thermostat, find a cosy pillow, and keep things dark and quiet.
Safety is crucial for everyone, regardless of physical abilities. California Rehabilitation explains that warming up is the first step in keeping muscle injuries at bay. Stretching before and after workout prepares the body for exercise while also relieving stress. If you find that you hurt after exercise despite stretching, consider working with a personal trainer to improve your form.
If you plan to have a home gym, you’ll also want to prioritise safety here. This means you might have to look for equipment that fits your body and abilities. If you’re in a wheelchair, for example, there are special pieces made just for you. You can also utilise dumbbells and other pieces of common fitness equipment.
While all fitness gurus offer their own sound advice, the reality is that anything that you do to keep your body fit is a benefit to your overall health. Keep yourself well each day by starting off on the right foot with a healthy morning routine, and don’t forget to prioritise safety, whether you’re skiing the mountains or simply working out at your own home gym. Most importantly, pay attention to your body, and seek expert advice if your wellness measures hurt more than help.
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