4 Types of Exercise

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Do you know the 4 basic categories of exercise – Endurance, Strength, Balance, and Flexibility. Most people tend to focus on one activity or type of exercise and think they’re doing enough. Each type is different, though. Doing them all will give you more benefits. Mixing it up also helps to reduce boredom and cut your risk of injury.

 

(1) Endurance

Endurance, or aerobic, activities increase your breathing and heart rate. They keep your heart, lungs, and circulatory system healthy and improve your overall fitness. As a result, they delay or prevent many diseases that are common in older adults such as diabetes and heart disease. Building your endurance makes it easier to carry out many of your everyday activities.

  • Zumba
  • Brisk walking or jogging
  • Dancing
  • Swimming
  • Biking
  • Climbing stairs or hills
  • Playing tennis
  • Playing basketball

 

(2) Strength

Strength exercises make your muscles stronger. Even small increases in strength can make a big difference in your ability to stay independent and carry out everyday activities, such as climbing stairs and carrying groceries. These exercises also are called “strength training” or “resistance training.”

  • Lifting weights
  • Using a resistance band
  • Pilates

 

(3) Balance

Balance exercises help prevent falls, a common problem in older adults. Many lower-body strength exercises also will improve your balance.

  • Standing on one foot
  • Heel-to-toe walk
  • Tai Chi

 

(4) Flexibility

Flexibility exercises stretch your muscles and can help your body stay limber. Being flexible gives you more freedom of movement for other exercises as well as for your everyday activities.

  • Shoulder and upper arm stretch
  • Calf stretch
  • Yoga