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Exercise for People with Disabilities and Mobility Problems

June 15, 2013



Exercising regularly is something that can make a big difference in both your physical and mental conditions. The endorphins that are released during exercise contribute to stress relief and your general state of well being. Regular exercising can also help in preventing or detaining various conditions such as heart diseases, Alzheimer and even hearing conditions.

If you have suffered an injury that led to mobility problems you may have noticed how the lack of physical activity has led to a moderate or severe state of depression. Contrary to common belief, people with disabilities and mobility issues can and should exercise.

While some conditions, such as hearing impairments, should not stop you from maintaining a regular exercise routine, mobility problems can be overcome simply by adjusting your exercise route.

Recommended Exercise Types

Let’s focus of some exercises that are recommended for people with mobility issues. Before we begin, we would like to remind you to consult with your doctor before starting with your exercise routine. Your doctor may recommend the type of exercises and their duration and will point out exercises you should avoid, based on your specific condition.

It is important to combine three types of exercises into your daily routine: Flexibility exercises, cardiovascular exercises and strength training exercises.

Flexibility exercises, such as yoga and stretching will help you to avoid injuries and may prevent stiffness as well as relieve pain. People with limited mobility can avoid muscle atrophy by keeping a regular flexibility exercising routine.

Cardiovascular exercises are important for maintaining and increasing your endurance and raising your heart rate. Cardiovascular exercises include water aerobics and swimming, running, cycling and walking.

For people with mobility issues, water activities can serve as an ideal solution. Water supports the body and reduces joint and muscle discomfort risks to a minimum. Swimming and water activities make it possible for wheelchair bound people to conduct a healthy cardiovascular exercise routine.

Strength training exercises are done in order to build up bone and muscle mass and normally involve weights. They serve to improve your balance. People with limited leg mobility can focus on upper body strength exercises, strength exercises like this, while people that suffer from upper body injuries should focus on strengthening their abs and legs.

Starting your Exercise Routine

Once you’ve consulted and got clearance and specific suggestions from your doctor, it is recommended to start your exercise routine slowly and increase the difficulty level gradually. Start with the activity that you enjoy the most and give yourself realistic goals. Accomplishing the daily goals you set up for yourself will help you to gradually increase your confidence and maintain high motivation levels.

It is important that your exercise routine will be a part of your daily life, that you set up a specific time for exercising and that you diversify the exercises to avoid boredom.   If you experience any pain or symptoms such as dizziness, nausea or any other physical discomfort, you should stop immediately and consult with your health care provider. Most importantly, stick to the daily exercise routing and expect some motivational ups and downs before exercising becomes a natural part of your life.


Tom Regev is a professional writer specializing in hearing aids and hearing conditions, disabilities and medical conditions.


Works Cited

(1), In Scopus. "ScienceDirect - Journal of Physiotherapy : Strength Training Alone, Exercise Therapy Alone, and Exercise Therapy with Passive Manual Mobilisation Each Reduce Pain and Disability in People with Knee Osteoarthritis: A Systematic Review." ScienceDirect - Home. SciVerse, 12 Mar. 2011. Web. 11 June 2013.

"Aquatic Therapy for People With Disabilities." WebMD - Better Information. Better Health. N.p., n.d. Web. 11 June 2013.

"Exercise (Physical Activity) for Older People and Those With Disabilities." American Heart Association. N.p., n.d. Web. 11 June 2013.