Exercises for the Handicapped

Exercise is an important factor in maintaining a healthy lifestyle for everyone. If you are handicapped, you may think that exercise is not a viable option for you; however, there are plenty of exercises that handicapped individuals can perform. If you work with your particular handicap instead of against it, you can participate in an exercise routine specifically designed for handicapped people.

  1. Individual and Team Sports

    • Handicapped people participate in sporting events just like their non-handicapped counterparts. People in wheelchairs play basketball and tennis in leagues and even professionally. This type of exercise generally involves slightly altered rules of play (for example, in wheelchair tennis, the ball can bounce twice before a return instead of only once) but is otherwise exactly like the traditional form of the sport. People with prosthetic limbs participate in several individual sports as well, including swimming and track and field. Participating in team sports can be beneficial as physical therapy training to keep you fit and provide a social outlet with other athletes.

    Strength Training

    • If you have a disability that has eliminated the use of your legs, use your arms in your workout program. Try lifting hand weights or working with gym equipment designed for the upper body. You can participate in many of these activities without leaving your wheelchair.
      If you have the use of your legs, you can try exercises like squats or leg lifts. You can also try running or walking for outdoor exercise options.

    Lifestyle Exercises

    • Getting exercise doesn't always have to mean "working out." You can incorporate physical fitness into your regular routine with a few simple changes. If you have the ability to do so, use your crutches instead of relying solely on your wheelchair to get around. Take some time on your lunch break to take a walk (or push yourself in a wheelchair) around your office building or the sidewalks outside of it. Stretch your body every hour or so as a refresher in the middle of your day. You can also try to join breakpal.com; this is a work-based workout program where you exercise while sitting at your desk, many of its exercises are manageable from a wheelchair.

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