Many people assume that having a disability means you can’t do anything fitness-related at all. As a consequence, your health deteriorates, and the overall standard of your life gets worse. However, this is simply not the case at all. Yes, a disability can hold you back and make healthy living slightly harder – mainly when your disability is physical – but it doesn’t mean fitness is impossible.
If you’re interested in learning how to stay fit while dealing with a disability, then check out some of my top tips here:
Join A Disabled Sports Team
For me, one of the best ways someone can stay fit while dealing with a disability is through a sports team. Sports teams are excellent as they get you in a team environment and encourage you to be active and get fit. Naturally, the benefit of this idea is that you join a team full of people in the same situation as you. Whether it’s a specific physical disability or downs syndrome, you’ll be put in an environment where everyone is on the same page. This creates a level playing field, which you wouldn’t get if you tried to join a regular sports team. It makes sports far more inclusive and is the best way to encourage disabled children to get fit and stay active. In fact, if you’re reading this to look for ideas on how to keep your children fit, then this is probably the main thing to look into once you’ve finished reading! Do a quick Google search, and you should find some local teams near you.
Try Non-Active Ways Of Getting Fit
Believe it or not, but there are ways you can get fit without being physically active. For people with severe disabilities that prevent them from really doing anything physical, then this is the best idea. One of the top things to try is CVAC (Cyclic Variations in Adaptive Conditioning), which is an interesting method that basically involves sitting in a pod for a short period. Each session lasts 20 minutes, while you’re immersed in different pressure changes and clean air. This causes your body to adapt to the various changes, and it ends up going through the same processes that your body would go through if you were running or doing a typical training session in the gym. Overall, it’s considered to give you all the benefits of regular exercise without having to actually move a muscle. As you can imagine, for someone who literally struggles to move muscles and be active, this is an ideal solution to staying fit and healthy. It might not be for everyone, but it’s certainly something to consider.
Find A Personal Trainer
You may be guilty of assuming that personal trainers are reserved for people who really like to hit the gym and get big muscles. But, there are loads of personal trainers out there who offer disability training. Regardless of the disability, these trainers can help someone get in shape and maintain a healthy lifestyle. They’ve undergone specific qualifications to ensure they know how to work with people that have certain disabilities. As a result, they can tailor training programs to each person, making them more accessible and easier to do. This might mean doing some unconventional exercises, and it could mean you’re training in a more private setting away from a commercial gym – which is often safer for a lot of disabled people. Either way, this is another excellent option for children or teenagers that are maybe struggling to get active because of their disability. Again, you can search online for disability trainers, and you should be able to find some relatively close to where you live. Image Link
Try Swimming-Based Exercises
This next tip is great for people with minor physical disabilities, but it’s also really beneficial for anyone with down syndrome. If you have a physical disability that makes it hard for you to stand up or move certain joints, then swimming is a really effective way of getting fit. It’s much easier to move your body in the water, which is why a lot of rehabilitation methods include water-based training. Plus, you can use assistance in the form of floats, and you can also swim even if you can’t use one arm or a leg. For down syndrome sufferers, this is an excellent idea as it’s something they’ll really enjoy doing. Especially if they’re young, as kids love swimming pools and it will feel like a bit of fun to them. If you are considering this – either for yourself or your child – then please make sure there’s constant supervision. There are obvious drowning risks involved in swimming, so it helps to have someone in the pool at all times helping out.
Train What You Can
This final tip is for anyone with a physical disability that might affect a certain part of their body. For example, you have leg paralysis so you use a wheelchair, or you have an arm disability, and so on. Here, there’s an obvious way to ensure you stay fit and get the health benefits of regular exercise; train what you can. What I mean is that you should train your upper body if it’s just your lower body that’s suffering from the disability, and vice versa. Every little helps, and you can still stimulate your heart rate, burn calories, and stay active.
I hope that this post has given you a few tips on how to stay fit while dealing with a disability. It’s worth noting that this is aimed at both anyone who’s disabled and anyone with disabled family members or friends. If you have a child with a disability, then use these ideas to encourage them to get fit and exercise more often. This will make them happier, improve their health, and lead to a better quality of life. There are so many benefits that come from regular exercise, so it’s a shame when people assume they can’t stay active just because they’re disabled. These tips prove otherwise, so give them a go right now!