• Aging Well Denver

Low Impact Exercise Doesn't Have To Be Boring

Updated: Jan 7, 2019

By Britney Menter

There is no question that a heart pumping, high-intensity workout feels like the most productive way to torch calories and lose weight. That may be true, but unfortunately, if those workouts include running, jumping or agility exercises you could be wearing out your joints and putting unnecessary stress on your hips, knees, and back. The more vulnerable your joints are, the more chances you have for severe injury, which could lead to you being benched for quite some time or even being forced to quit your workout routine altogether.

The good news is that there are many exercises and full workouts you can do that still burn mega-calories without the jarring impact. You may be thinking that low impact means boring - but no! We've put together a list of exercises options that keep things varied and fun, particularly with our amazing Fall weather and endless outdoor activities.

1. Swimming - This one is obvious, but not easy. According to a study done by The Metabolism Journal, researchers found that those who swam three times a week for 6 months lost more weight, improved their body composition, slimmed their hips and waist and improved their cholesterol levels better than those who performed a similar walking program for the same time. Hop in the pool and see how many laps you can do. You might be surprised how amazing you feel afterward.

2. Rowing/ Kayaking - Whether you prefer the gym or want to get out on the water, rowing is a great workout. Burn up to 500 calories an hour and work your arms, legs, back and core. Strengthening your back can improve your posture, helping you to avoid other injuries, prevent falls, help you sleep and so much more.

3. Yoga - Does sitting in a room for an hour stretching sound boring to you? Well then you haven't found the right class. Many studios throughout Denver offer different types of yoga classes to suit your specific needs. If you are craving a more movement heavy class you could try power yoga or even a hybrid class like CorePower Yoga's Sculpt class which combines free weights, with yoga poses, squats and lunges and pushups. If you think Yoga won't be challenging enough for you, think again!

4. Cross Country Skiing - While you may not be able to bust out the skis just yet, those days are just around the corner. What better way to take in our gorgeous Colorado scenery that while gliding on top of fluffy white powder? This winter try something new for your weekend workout and grab your poles. There are hundreds or flat, beautiful, trails to choose from just outside of Denver. Check out this article from last year by The Know Outdoors to see all of their recommendations.

5. Cycling - Indoors or out, cycling burns tons of calories and makes you sweat without stressing your joints. If you join a class, an instructor will guide you through a heart pumping workout where you control your results. Work as hard as you want to by turning your resistance up or down as you please. If you choose to take your workout outside, Denver has miles and miles or gorgeous biking trails - just make sure you grab a helmet. Either way, your legs and knees will thank you.

What is your favorite low impact workout? Are you part of any cycling or walking clubs? We'd love to hear from you so share your tips and ideas below in the comments!