Staying Active Indoors

Most of us face periods when either inclement weather or work/life schedules make outdoor
exercise difficult. What are the best options for indoor activity, particularly if you don’t have a
gym membership, or lack the extra time for driving to and from an off-site facility? One of the
positive outcomes of the COVID-19 pandemic was a huge increase in virtual and online training
programs. Understanding that persons stuck in the house didn’t always have time (or financial
resources) to build a home gym, these programs require minimal equipment.

A good place to start is AARP’s Senior Planet website, which contains links to online classes for
Tai Chi, balance, strength and flexibility training, mindfulness/meditation and Barre. What I like
about these classes is that they also work for persons needing safe options for chronic back

SilverSneakers On- Demand is the virtual version of the popular fitness classes for older adults.
Some insurance plans including Medicare Advantage will cover the cost of membership. Online
options include strength, stretching and cardio.

The Mayo Clinic also offers a series of free online fitness classes for people with chronic pain
conditions. Weekly classes run through mid-March of 2023.

Finally, consider combining some of your strength and flexibility exercises into a circuit course.
Aerobic exercise can include any physical activity that raises your heart rate for a period of at
least 5 minutes. Here is an article from the Centers for Disease Control on how to find your
target heart rate for aerobic exercise.

Using the exercises in the back book, a circuit training program might begin with the balance
sequence, followed by bridging, sit-to-stand, ball wall squat and the door frame touch.
Performing one set of each exercise, followed by the next to form the circuit. Try to complete 2-
4 circuits for a good aerobic workout.

Nina Russin, a veteran journalist for over 30 years, is currently pursuing her doctoral degree at
Arizona State University College of Health Solutions.

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