Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we have been confined at home for more than one month and although it is well known that staying active is necessary, notwithstanding your possibilities and/or the size of your house, it is possible that the fact of not being able to go out has discouraged you and you feel reluctant to perform physical routines, which can certainly be repetitive or boring.
As experts in physiotherapy, we encourage you to step out this stage, to have determination and to decide to do some exercises in order to increase your strength muscle and to obtain benefits.
Physiotherapy uses different techniques such as the application of heat, electromagnetic impulses and even the use of topical medications. However, a key element is the work in physical movements that generate strength in the different muscles, in order to re-educate them to be more functional for the benefit of your health and wellbeing.
Why is it so important to increase your muscle strength and to do exercise regularly?
Muscle strength is the amount of tension your muscle supports when lifting a certain weight while it is contracting. It has an essential role in physiotherapy and it consists precisely in strengthening areas that, by habit or lack of use, are weak.
When you have enough muscle strength, you can cope with unexpected moments of intense use of your muscles without the risk of suffering an injury.
For example, if at any time you have to make an effort or hold something very heavy, to prevent it from falling.
Avoid the risk of chronic non-communicable diseases
Being active daily will take you away from sedentary lifestyle or lack of physical activity, in order to avoid one of the strongest risk factors in diseases like diabetes, cardiovascular events, kidney failure, cancer and chronic respiratory conditions.
When you have strong muscles you are less likely to lose balance, your reflexes are more agile and your full body has more flexibility. This will help you decrease the chance of accidents or unexpected falls.
Locomotor system functionality
Your locomotor system is the one that keeps you standing and walking, it allows you move around and be really autonomous. While we are in good condition, generally we don’t appreciate it, but keeping it properly active and healthy for a long time will mean a true quality of life in the years to come.
How to get stronger while at home?
We suggest you to have physical activity even during this COVID-19 situation.
But before this, let us give you some suggestions to do it properly.
Do it gradually and with caution
If you have never done it or if you haven’t exercised in a long time, go little by little and stop if you feel any discomfort. Talk to your doctor if you consider it necessary, as in the case of some very strong palpitation heart or if you feel you cannot breathe comfortably.
Do warm up exercises before an activity
Make some slow, wide movements to increase gradually your body temperature. This way you will adapt your blood vessels as well as your lungs for a more intense activity.
Have a proper diet
Our body is a complete system and so that it can work correctly, eating properly is a must. If you want to increase your muscle mass, your body needs protein to build it up and, of course, a balanced diet is essential.
Up to 80% of the human adult body is water. Our blood and even our muscles are
mainly water. Therefore, I invite you to constantly monitor your consumption of this vital liquid to stay in the best healthy conditions.
Gradually increase the weight of your sports equipment
The weight that your muscles are going to support should be gradually increased little by little. Begin with its own weight. Later, you can add more, depending on what you can hold.
Do some stretching exercise when you finish
Stretching helps you relax your muscles and also promote elasticity and flexibility, a condition that will give you greater agility in all aspects of your life.
5 exercises to work muscle strength at home
We start with some initial basic exercises, in order to build strong muscles. Two exercises to strengthen shoulders and arms, two exercises for legs and the last one for the abdomen.
Lifting exercises. Sitting in a chair, with your feet hip width-apart and your shoulders, lean your back forward slightly. Lift your arms up to your head and go back to the starting position. Do 10/12 repetitions. Breath calmly while you are doing this exercise and take a break if you consider it so.
Opening. Stand up with your legs neatly side by side, both of them hip width-apart, flex both slightly and lean your back forward, positioning it at a 45-degree angle. Then, hold your arms out in front of your body and spread them apart like big wings and go back to the starting position. Do 10/12 repetitions. Breath calmly while you are doing this exercise and take a break if you consider it so.
Leg raises. Stand up and hold yourself onto the back of a chair, so as not to lose the sense of balance. Raise one leg backwards, without bending your knee and without pointing your toes. The leg that remains on the floor may be slightly flexed while doing 10 to 12 repetitions with each leg. Always without forcing youself and without exceeding your limits.
Rushes. Stand up and hold yourself onto the back of a chair, so as not to lose the sense of balance, take one big step back with a straight back and a contracted abdomen, lower your torso by flexing both knees and bring your hind knee as close to the ground as possible. Repeat 10/12 times with each leg.
The bike. Lie on your back on a firm surface, lift one knee up to a 90 degree angle. place your hands behind your head (nape). Keep your elbows open at both sides. Raise your torso and bring the opposite elbow close to the flexed knee. In quick succession exchange shoulders and arms. Do 10/15 repetitions for each side.
We please ask you to listen to your body and to take a rest or to decrease the number of repetitions if necessary.
These are just some of the exercises you can do at home during the remaining days of confinement. The most important thing is to have determination and a positive attitude. Do not expect to have great results immediately, however moving our joints and oxygenating our blood with exercise, will help us feel better inside and out.
Please, do not hesitate to contact us for any further questions or doubts you may have. We will offer you a solution precisely tailored to your needs at Nordicfysio.