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Challenges of online exercise

Challenges of online exercise

How to “keep fit”without creating new problems! 

The Covid phase has brought about changes in people’s attitude to exercise and altered how we keep fit.  Much of this has been very positive, people have spent more time outside, walking/cycling/running and families have also exercised together, providing a great combination of more fresh air and sunshine, increased levels of fitness and more family interaction. 

People have also been more interested in home exercise options, often buying gym equipment for home or trying online exercise classes.  My patients have often used the opportunity to sample yoga, pilates, Zumba, HIIT or many other things they had never had time to do. 

Again, this has all been hugely positive.  The obvious negatives have come about if people have decided to start with advanced options and ended up overdoing it!  However, we have also found a number of patients coming in with spinal issues, most commonly the neck area where we have traced it back to trying to watch the instructor on an iPad or phone placed at a difficult angle whilst in an unfamiliar posture/exercise position. It is well worth looking at your “exercise station” set up, just as people have now realised their “home work station” set up is very important in helping avoid neck/shoulder/low back issues. 

Things worth considering are:- 
1. If possible, use a large screen/TV to watch the class on, so it is easy to see from all angles.  If not, placing your iPad on a chair so it’s level is much better.
2. Use an exercise mat so your spine or pelvis are more comfortable when doing floor exercises.
3. Start with a beginners version if you’ve never done the class before.  It’s also useful to watch the video first, so you can carry out the exercise just by listening to the instructor.
4. Choose a quiet space with as much room around you as possible, it’s easier to concentrate, relax and helps to avoid hitting any objects!
5. Most of all, enjoy the opportunity to experiment and experience different activities.  It keeps your mind challenged, relaxes and strengthens your body and may give you inspiration for a group class to try once we get back to some normality. 


Jo Cheaney
Bramhall Osteopathic Practice

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