Some people mistakenly think that they cannot exercise enough to stay heart healthy when they are wheelchair-bound and require a platform stairlift. When in reality, there are exercises that can be performed from a wheelchair not only to keep heart healthy, but also maintain the rest of their body strong and fit. If you are mobility impaired, check out some of these effective exercises that are ideal for those who are wheelchair-bound. Always confirm with your doctor before starting any new exercise regimen.
Note: Sit with your back straight and head looking forward for the starting position of each of the exercises highlighted below.
1. Sunshine Arm Circles
Hold a ball that is about the size of a basketball with both your hands and over your head. Be sure your elbows are slightly bent. Picture this position as 12 on a clock. Slowly and deliberately move both arms in a clockwise position while holding the ball. Move counterclockwise then in the same manner when you reach 12 again. You need to alternate the circular movements for a total of 8 repetitions. Rest for a few minutes and then perform another 8 repetitions.
2. Neck Stretches
From the starting position, lean your head to the right keeping your shoulders straight. Hold position and count to 8, and then slowly roll your head forward with your chin pointing at your chest. Continue this motion until your head is leaning over the left shoulder. Hold and count to 8. Slowly lift head back into the starting position. Reverse directions for the next neck stretch. Repeat 4 times in each direction. Move gradually throughout this exercise to ensure you perform it safely.
3. Wheelchair Excursions, Races, or Games
If you want to perform cardio in a wheelchair, use the chair to travel around a local track. Visit the track during quiet times of the day when you do not have to compete with walkers and joggers. You will be strengthening your arms as you increase your heart rate. Other options for this include competing in wheelchair races or games. Local recreation centers often have physical-activity programs for wheelchair-bound people looking to stay fit.
4. Bicep Curls
Use hand weights for this version of bicep curls. Take one weight in each hand and hold your arms on your lap with palms up and elbows bent. Slowly bend the elbows to lift the forearms up until the weights meet the upper arm and hold for a few seconds then gradually lower the arms into the starting position. Perform this exercise 8 to 10 times and rest for 3 to 4 seconds. Repeat for a total a 2 sets.
5. Air Boxing
Pretending to be in a boxing ring with an opponent is another ideal cardio for those in wheelchairs. For this one, just punch in the same manner you would box with an opponent, but fast enough to increase your heart rate. Perform this physical activity until your arms feel fatigued. Rest and repeat for at least 2 reps if not more.
6. Calf Raises
By performing calf raises, you will build the muscles at the back of your calves. Start in the starting position, but with both of your feet flat on the floor and toes pointing forward. Place a wrap-around ankle weight on each leg. Ask for assistance from a family member or friend if necessary. Lift both heels off the floor as high as possible with your toes still on the floor. Slowly lower the heels back to the floor. Repeat this action 10 to 12 times. Rest and repeat again for set number 2.
Dermer Stairlifts Offers a Variety of Platform Stairlifts for Your Convenience
Using a platform stairlift to get around your home is a safe way to remain independent. Staying heart healthy by engaging in a daily exercise program with the approval of your doctor is key to overall health. Check out our catalog of specialized platform stairlifts today. Call us at (866) 454-3896 or contact us online for your free in home estimate. Dermer Stairlift will go to your home and install your stairlift!