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One last word on physical exercise

Physical exercise is very important irrespective of your age or gender.
For the average adult it is recommended 75 minutes of vigorous activity per week and 150 minutes of moderate intensity activity per week.

For one to be fully exercised so to speak, exercise should encompass the following four types of exercise;

  1. Aerobic exercise
    This is exercise that makes one breath harder, gets the heart rate up and targets the cardiovascular system. Indulging in such exercise reduces the risk of developing cardiovascular disease e.g. heart disease, high blood pressure and diabetes.
    Moderate cardiovascular exercise involves; brisk walking, water aerobics, cycling on flat levels, walking up stairs. Vigorous high intensity aerobic exercise involves; running, sprinting, biking fast uphill, basketball, wrestling, rugby.
  2. Strength exercise
    This builds muscle and involves weight lifting, push ups and crunches for example. This type of exercise is also instrumental in losing weight.
  3. Balance exercise
    This type of exercise is very important for the older adults and senior citizens who begin losing a sense of balance. This forms of exercise improve ones ability to control and stabilize ones body position. Those who have lost or gained a lot of weight or are pregnant may need this type of exercise.
  4. Flexibility exercise
    This involves stretches of muscles and improves range of motion at ones joints. It reduces risk of injury during sports and activity.

Depending on what age group one belongs to the vigour, duration and type of exercise may differ from age to age.

Children and Young Adolescents
They require at least 60 minutes of exercise three times a week. Children too can indulge in aerobic activity like walking, running or swimming. Children can build up their muscles through push ups and gymnastics. Bones can be strengthened by skipping rope. It is not advisable for children to do weight lifting but adolescents can.

Exercise for Young Adults
At any given time adolescents should engage in at least two types of physical activity from the four mentioned above. Adolescents should engage in moderate activity e.g. brisk walking for a minimum of 150 minutes a week.
They could also engage in vigorous activity for a minimum of 75 minutes a week.

Exercise for Older Adults
Older adults should engage in exercise for a minimum of 300 minutes a week. The older adults need moderate to intense aerobic activity and muscle strengthening at least two days a w week. The physical activities they indulge in should target all the major body organs.
Vigorous aerobic activities as captured earlier on in this article should be at the minimum of 150 minutes every week. Older adults are also encouraged to indulge in muscle training activities. Older adults need to apply more effort to maintain their physical fitness.

Now these duration of exercise mentioned; 75 minutes, 150 minutes and 300 minutes and so forth should not be taken as one big chunk but broken over the duration of a week to fulfil these time goals.

Please note that the type, duration and vigour of physical activity is dependent on ones fitness goals and health status. For this reason always consult a fitness expert or medical doctor before embarking on a new exercise regimen.

Now on a personal note from experience it is good to choose a physical activity that one enjoys rather than what the multitude does. For example there are those who like the gym set up, whereas there are those who prefer nature. In my experience it is good to get a good mix of both experiences for diversity and also to utilize what different types of physical exercise set ups have. Choose a physical activity that will be sustainable to you financially and that will fit in well with the rest of your lifestyle.
With those few tips, Happy Easter Weekend 2018 and do keep it fit!

“Wacha niKwambie”
March 2018 – Soaring in exercise

Kwambie Nyambane,
April 2018

This article  is just for awareness purposes. For one on one advice on the best exercise regimen for you please consult a fitness expert in conjunction with a medical doctor.