Skip to main content

We are constantly being told to stay active and workout regularly but what does that mean? Did you know there are 4 different types of exercise you should be doing regularly to get the most benefit from your workout routine?

Aerobic (Endurance)

Aerobic exercises are those which get your heart pumping faster and your breathing rates up. They are most beneficial for improving the health of your heart and circulatory system as well as reducing your risk of developing other chronic diseases such as diabetes. Some examples are walking, running, cycling, swimming or dancing. Start gently with these exercises and gradually work up to longer distances or faster times as your fitness improves.

Strength

These exercises are focused on building the strength of your muscles (not necessarily their size). You can use weights to achieve this, but even body weight exercises (such as push ups) or using resistance bands can help to build your strength. It is well documented that muscle mass decreases with age and regular strength training can help rebuild your muscles and even slow this decline.

Balance

This is exactly what it sounds like. Balance exercises improve our ability to stay on our feet. This, of course, can dramatically reduce the risk of falls. Tai Chi is a common exercise program for improving balance but many other forms of exercise include elements of balance.

Flexibility

Stretching helps improve our flexibility which makes it easier for us to move. This can make simply everyday actions like putting on shoes easier.

Each of these different types of exercise is important. However pure cardio workouts without making time for balance training will not give the best results long term. A balanced exercise regime will include elements of each. Instead of using arm weights standing flat footed, why not hold a lunge position while you work on your strength? Can you warm down from your run with a few planks? Or finish off your walk with some stretching?