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Are Chair Exercises Beneficial?

The answer to the question is a definite HUGE yes! There are many reasons why people choose chair exercises over standing exercises. Whatever your reason is, please know that chair exercises can provide you with an amazing workout with all of these benefits:

-increased blood circulation (everywhere, including to the brain)

-better flexibility and range of motion (easier to move)

-increased muscle strength and better balance (less chance of falling)

-less joint stiffness and pain (which will make life more enjoyable)

-better concentration and improved mental health (such a bonus!)

-lower levels of stress and anxiety (phew!)

-decreased chance of dementia (yes, exercise does this!)

First of all, if you are new to exercise or just getting back into exercise, the first step is starting an exercise program. It doesn’t matter how slow or how little you do, the fact is you are starting and you ARE doing it. That is the beginning. After starting, it gets easier and if you keep at it, it’ll become a habit and you’ll want to work out daily. You’ll miss the workouts if you stop (yes, seriously).

Depending on your reason for doing chair exercises will determine what you are capable of doing in the beginning. If you have injuries or medical conditions, listen to the advice of your doctor and health team and get approval first. Once you start, keep at it and over a short period of time, you’ll be able to do more. Our bodies adjust and benefit from the effects of exercise quickly. The main thing to keep in mind for any exercise is to go at your own pace and do what works for your body. You’ll find lots of chair exercises on the ‘Improved Health’ website from gentle to intermediate options. Find what works best for YOU and set a realistic goal. Maybe it’s starting with 5 minutes, 10 or 15. Whatever it is, set that goal and remind yourself of the benefits listed above. You will be a happier, healthier you. If you want to share how it’s going for you, I’d love to hear about your progress!


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Hi, I am a recreational therapist in Dunedin, New Zealand. We use your gentle chair exercises and love them. We find being able to do one movement at a time very helpful. The residents wanted me to let you know how much they enjoy your class. We call you ‘the blue lady’ and we have become very fond of you, like an old friend.

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Hi Susan (and fellow RT)! Please say hello to your group for me and let them know I backpacked through NZ twice, and made it to Dunedin. I adore NZ and have very fond memories of being there. I definitely look forward to going back again. If your group has any exercise video requests, please let me know!

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