Different forms of exercise do different things inside your body. This makes sense, right? After all, you wouldn’t expect that you would receive the same benefits from going from a half hour run that you would enjoy from ten minutes of weightlifting.
To lose weight, get fit, or even build your muscles, you need to get sufficient exercise. There are mainly four forms of exercise and physical activities: strength, balance, endurance and cardio, and flexibility. Most people are unaware of these different forms of exercises and the effects they have has on their wellbeing.
Focusing on only one type of activity or exercise will bear limited results. Mixing up different forms of exercise helps reduce boredom and the risk injury. For this reason, most people who keep up a successfully active lifestyle will usually include many – if not all – these forms of exercise in their average week. This is great for both the body and mind due to the benefits they produce
Here’s how the body responds to different forms of exercise:
As the name indicates, strength exercises help make your muscles stronger. Even small increases in strength can have a huge impact on your body as it enables you to carry out daily activities more efficiently, such as climbing the stairs, racing around and carrying groceries. Exercises which build up your strength are known as “resistance training” or “strength training.” These include lifting weights and using a resistance band. Strength exercises are good for your muscles and also boost your stamina.
Balance exercises are among the forms of exercises that help prevent falls, a common problem faced by older adults. These exercises strengthen your lower body and help improve your balance. Balance training helps athletes do better in their field as their body coordination improves. Some benefits of balance training are:
Some balance exercises include standing on one foot, yoga, Tai Chi, and heel to toe walking.
Endurance activities or aerobic activities are designed to increase your breathing and heart rate. These exercises keep your lungs, heart and circulatory system healthy and active, thus improving your overall fitness. Building your endurance helps you carry out many daily activities with ease. Some healthy benefits of endurance training are:
Some examples of endurance activities are brisk walking and jogging, dancing and even yard working.
Flexibility exercises are exercises which cause you to stretch your muscles, helping your body stay limber. Being more flexible allows you more body movement for other exercises and for daily activities. Some benefits of flexibility exercises are:
Some examples of flexibility exercises are yoga, shoulder and upper arm stretch.
Now that you understand the different forms of exercise, it’s easy to see why it’s so beneficial to include them all in your lifestyle. As much as it may be great to do one or two, if you want a complete range of mental and physical health benefits, it is usually best to work them all into your week.
If you haven’t been doing this until now, you may want to speak with your doctor to be sure that all these forms of exercise are appropriate for you. That way, you can know they will be safe for your body type and medical needs. Your doctor may even recommend certain specific types of workout or sports, might recommend that you speak with a personal trainer.
A professional trainer has experience in designing weekly workout routines that include all the necessary forms of exercise and that will be incorporated at a fitness level appropriate to you.
* This article is for informational purposes only and not to be taken as medical advice. Always consult with your doctor before making any changes to your medications, supplements, diet, or exercise routine.