You’d be hard pressed to come across a physician or nutritionist who doesn’t recommend exercise as a method of staying fit and healthy. It should not be assumed, however, that exercise is only meant for those without any physical limitations. In fact, it can be argued that those who do have mobility issues should engage in some forms of light exercise to better their overall balance and strength.
That includes individuals who use walkers. Naturally, walkers are walking aids that are meant to help those who can walk, but may have some balance and strength issues, to remain upright and comfortable when taking their steps. You may be wondering, however, which exercises are safe for walker users to perform.
Here are three:
Squats require a person to engage in the act of taking a seat without any chair being there. Repeating the act of bending at the knees and standing back up is a great way to increase leg strength. With the help of a walker, squats can be done without losing balance and falling over. Health and fitness expert, Lisa Hausler elaborates on GetHolisticHealth.com.
“A walker can be used for doing squats, which is one of the best exercises for the lower part of the body,” she writes, “In fact, squats help with strengthening the joints, hips, thighs and the bones. Nothing else is needed except the walking aid.”
As you may have guessed, we’re not talking about weightlifting in the traditional sense. For this particular exercise, no barbells or dumbbells are needed. Instead, the walker itself can be used as the weight. As long as the walker user is positioned in a way that allows for good balance to be maintained, the walker can be lifted and placed back down repeatedly for a good workout.
“If you have good balance then try simply lifting your walker off the ground,” suggests Jonathan Penney on behalf of National Academy of Sports Medicine on Sharecare.com, “Of course you want to be sure you have the balance so step away from your walker first to see if balance is present. If so, take your walker and simply lift it an inch or two off the ground. This will require balance, core stability, and shoulder strength.”
It may sound silly to include this one on the list, but it is necessary nonetheless. Never forget that the act of walking, in and of itself, is a great exercise. Since walkers and rollators are meant to help people walk without falling, they should be utilized to do just that!
“Walking from one end of the room to another with an aid is easy and does not even require any other equipment,” Hausler points out, “Some studies indicate that walking increases the likelihood of staying independent by over 40 percent for the elderly.”
At Advantage Home Health Solutions, we offer basic walkers, two-wheel walkers and four-wheel walkers (rollators) and we’d be happy to consult with you to help you choose the mobility solution that is right for you. For more information about our mobility solutions, please don’t hesitate to give us a call at 403-460-5438. You may also email us by filling out the form on our Contact page!