Like anyone else, people who use wheelchairs want to get their bodies in shape for the summer. We spend a majority of each day in our chairs, so it’s important to be as physically active as possible. There are a variety of ways to be active while sitting in your chair.
I participate in physical therapy weekly to keep my extremities loose and limber. Stretching and range-of-motion exercises allow me to maintain physical independence. The therapy also prevents my muscles and joints from tightening and causing contractions.
I also have a workout routine on an arm bike to build endurance and get my heart rate elevated. This exercise allows me to have more energy throughout the day and gives me the strength I need to complete tasks. I’ve noticed over the last few months that my ability to grip and manipulate items has improved.
In addition to therapy, participating in adapted sports is another form of exercise. Playing sports enables you to build muscle tone and get a cardiovascular workout. For those who use manual wheelchairs, pushing themselves in their chairs is an added form of exercise.
Exercising is not only good for the body; it can be fun at the same time. Don’t be afraid to break a sweat!
What are some ways you stay physically fit while living with a disability?