Exercise & Fitness Archive


Take a Nordic walk

Nordic walking mimics the motion of cross-country skiing with the use of poles to push the walker along. It is a popular way to enjoy the benefits of walking while getting a full-body workout. Studies have shown that Nordic walking burns more calories than regular walking and may help lower "bad" LDL cholesterol levels. The activity also is ideal for older adults as it can help improve mobility and balance.

Yoga skepticism

About 38 million Americans practice yoga, and three-quarters are women. Some people hesitate to try yoga because they wrongly believe they must be slender and flexible and need to buy costly equipment. But yoga's health benefits are plentiful and proven. Research suggests yoga eases depression, boosts sleep quality, improves chronic pain, and reduces cardiovascular disease risks. People can overcome their reluctance to try yoga by joining a class, taking a friend along, asking for modifications, and being patient with their progress.

Try this: Band practice

Resistance bands are versatile exercise equipment that can supplement people's usual workouts. They also help people who have trouble gripping or holding dumbbells or need greater control when exercising, like when recovering from an injury or managing joint pain.

Does tai chi beat aerobics to lower blood pressure?

A 2024 study found that among people at risk for high blood pressure, those who practiced tai chi for one hour four times a week for a year experienced an average seven-point drop in blood pressure, compared with a four-point drop in those who did aerobics instead.

Concussion in children: What to know and do

Concussion is one of the most common injuries to the brain, affecting about two million children and teens every year. Understanding signs, symptoms, questions to ask, and how concussion care has changed in recent years can make a difference in identifying concussion and recovery.

Two workout strategies that reduce cardiovascular disease risk

A 2024 study suggests doing a workout that's a combination of aerobics and strength training might reduce cardiovascular risk factors just as effectively as a workout that consists of aerobics only.

An easier way to do high-intensity interval training

A 2023 study found that people with chronic conditions who took part in high-intensity interval training in the water—called aquatic HIIT or AHIIT—experienced a similar boost in endurance (their maximum sustained physical exertion) as people who took part in land-based HIIT. An AHIIT workout includes a warm-up, such as treading water, followed by intervals of rest and intense activity (such as swimming laps or doing four or five pool exercises in a row, as quickly as possible), for a total of 30 minutes.

Stepping up activity if winter slowed you down

If you've been cocooning due to winter's cold, who can blame you? But lack of activity isn't good for body or mind during any season. Any day is a good day to start exercising, but if you aren't sure how to start, or if you have an obstacle to overcome, read on.

Hitting the activity mark

Common activity guidelines recommend a minimum of 150 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity and two muscle-strengthening workouts per week. However, these targets are meant for a broad population, and for many older adults, hitting just the 150 minutes per week poses a challenge. Experts suggest breaking down the 150 minutes into manageable segments, like doing 30 minutes of activity five days a week, and even dividing those 30 minutes into 10 minutes of exercise three times a day.

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