EB 82 – Exercise Lite
One of the this year’s buzz phrases is “too much sitting”. It’s true, sitting for long periods of time behind a desk, in a car or on an airplane, can be dangerous for an older person. Too much time spent on a couch watching endless television can be deadly.
Try a couple of these movements and stretches while you are watching TV or working at a desk and you will get a little bit better blood circulation, and if you breathe deeply while you do them, you will reap enormous benefits.
Move your ankles forward and back fifteen to twenty times, and then rotate your feet at your ankles in a circular motion ten times in each direction. It loosens up your ankles and gets the blood circulating in your lower extremities. It’s not particularly important for a younger person, but for an older person, it can be very important. As we get older, we sit more and aren’t on our feet nearly as much as our younger brethren. So we need a way to circulate the blood as well as activate the muscles, joints, tendons and ligaments in the outer parts of our body. Open and close your toes as wide and as tight as you can for ten or fifteen times. Do the same with your fingers.
A couple of minutes of that and similar movements a few times a day is something you need to at least stimulate a little circulation, and you can do it while you’re reading the paper, or even when you’re watching “the box” or wasting (I mean spending) your time on facebook.
I used to call exercises like foot or ankle rotations and other similar exercises, “wuss exercises” until I realized how valuable they are after sitting in the car for long periods, or writing at a desk or table for hours on end.
Squirming in your seat is another example of an “exercise” that can help keep your body circulation process going. If you are sitting for what seems like it will be a long time, move your butt around in circles on the seat in both directions. It provides space for circulation to flow and gives your butt a massage at the same time.
Try doing shoulder shrugs while you’re sitting. Lift one shoulder at a time toward your ear. Then rotate both your shoulders forward and back. Try raising one arm over your head, and then the other, bending sideways slightly in each direction while you are sitting at a table or desk.
These exercises don’t really do anything to get the heart beating any faster but they do stimulate joints, ligaments and tendons, and even the local muscles. Give these moves a try and see if they don’t refresh you a bit.
You don’t have to do them in public when you think other people will stare at you, unless you’re comfortable in your own skin, and don’t mind other people knowing that you take care of yourself. I’ve stopped letting the “wuss exercise” label hold me back, and I feel a lot better during the day as a result.
Doing just those simple moves alone will not get you fit. They will help your circulation, mobility and overall well being. They should not replace a regular exercise program, but are simply things you can do short term to keep your blood circulating and your joints loose. Give them a try while you read this post. You’ll feel better.
Thanks for reading.