Are You Wheelchair Bound ? Easy Wheelchair Exercises You can Do While Sitting
Being in a wheelchair does not mean you have to active. Even if you are in a wheelchair, if you have the will to stay in shape, then we’ve got the routine for you. Not all of these techniques are suitable for everyone. So, pick and choose or adjust them a little depending on your personal functional ability. This article is not to be used as a replacement for any medical advice from a physician. These are just some tools to ensure that you maintain your strength, endurance and overall functionality. Everybody has a unique situation and you never want to over exert yourself; it can result in further injury. However, there is a little something for everybody in this routine, so don’t fret. If you incorporate these exercises into your routine 3 to 5 times a week, you will get the hang of it in no time. Be sure to pump your brakes, stay seated and stay tuned.
First, we will be going over a few stretches. These are perfect for warming up for a work out or just casually throughout the day to stretch your muscles.
1. Downward Reach
For this stretch, make sure you’re are in a straight up position in your chair. Now, simply reach down towards the ground, with one arm after the other. Do this for about 10 seconds to start off.
2. Shoulder Shrugs
For this stretch, shrug your shoulders up and down. You want to be sure that your arms are extended straight down to the side of your chair as you do this. I recommend doing this stretch for about 15 seconds.
3. Arm Crosses
For this stretch, grab your right elbow with your left hand, and push your elbow to where your right arm is stretched across your chest. Hold this position for about 5 seconds and do some deep breathing, while you are there. Then you want to switch sides and do the same thing with your left arm.
4. Twist Side Stretch
For this stretch, take your right palm and place it on your left knee. Now, push down with your right hand and look behind you to the left. Hold this position for about 5 seconds and then do the same on your right side.
5. Chest Stretch
To do this stretch, lean back and open up your chest. Raise your arms up and out to the side, fully extended. Hold this position for about 10 seconds.
6. Touch the Sky
For this stretch, you are going to raise your arms up on both sides as if you were trying to touch the sky. You want to inhale as you are going up and exhale as you are coming down. Continue to do this for about 15 seconds.
Depending on how you feel, you may want to do a bit more stretching. That isn’t a problem. Just go through the list another time or as long as it takes. Next, we will give you some exercises that you can do, while remaining in your wheelchair.
To do this exercise, begin by reaching down with your right arm. Then just move it around in a circle, while leaning to your right side. Then stop and begin doing circles again, but this time counterclockwise. Do not overdue it, lean as far as you can. Do this for about 10 seconds on each side.
For this exercise, stretch out your right arm as if you were reaching for something. Reach out as far as you can, then quickly switch to your left. Now, you want to go back and forth between arms at a fairly quick pace. Do this exercise for about 10 seconds.
To do this exercise, start off by having your arms out to the side at about a 90-degree angle. Now, raise you arms up over your head towards each other (when they are up it should look like you are a super hero). After that you simply want to pump your arms up and down; each time you come down coming back to the 90-degree angle. If you are able, then you can add dumbbells to this exercise, but be careful. I recommend starting off with reps of 10 in this work out technique.
To begin this exercise, put your arms in front of you in a 90-degree angle and then lift them up towards your chest. You can do this one arm at a time or with both. You can also add dumbbells to this exercise as well to raise its intensity. If so, I recommend doing it one arm at a time, so that you can use one arm to stabilize yourself. You should this exercise in sets of 10.
To start this exercise, you want to hold your elbows up high to your side. Then push down with your arms, extending them towards the floor. After that, lift them back up to the original position. Do this for about 15 seconds and you should feel it in your triceps.
To start this exercise, hold your arms down at your side. Then lift them up and out to the side of your body with your forearms pointing forward and your elbow at a 90-degree angle. Make sure that you are at about shoulder level. After that lift your arms up and down at your side. This exercise is great for deltoids, which are at the top of your shoulder. I would do this exercise in 10 second intervals.
To start this exercise, put your elbows in a right angle. After that start with a nice jog, while still in sitting position. If you can move your legs at all do so, but if not just move your arms. Do this for about 20 seconds. This is mainly a cardio exercise to get your heart rate going.
To do this exercise, begin by extending your right arm straight out to your side. Now, lift your left arm and extend it across towards your right side as far as you can. After that you want to swiftly move your arms from the right to the left; back and forth. Do this as quickly and smoothly as you can for about 10 seconds.
To do this exercise, start by having your arms extended out in front of you. Then, you want to pull back, bending at the elbow and squeezing your shoulder blades together. Your elbows should be at about shoulder height. You are also able to add a resistant band to this exercise to make it more difficult. This exercise is very beneficial to your upper back, shoulders and biceps. I recommend doing these in sets of 10.
To begin this exercise, extend your arms out to the side. Then simply do arm jumping jacks, going up and down at a steady pace. I would do this for about 20 seconds per set to get the best results.
To begin this exercise, get your arms up, keep your elbows bent and your hands right under your chin. Then use your left hand to do a jab right in front of you at about shoulder height. After that, immediately do a right punch across to your left side. Then use your left hand to do the same thing and punch towards your right side. Continue doing this for about 30 seconds and you will be good to go. This exercise benefits your heart rate as well as your abs and obliques.
To do this exercise, place your arms to the side and your hands on either your wheel or your arm rest. Double check that your wheels are locked by the way. Now, slowly push up, raising your butt off of the chair and sit there for a few seconds. Go back down to the sitting position and then do it again. I recommend doing this exercise 10 reps per set. You may need to start a little bit lower at first.
These are a range of great exercises that should be able to help anybody stay in shape. Whether you are in wheelchair permanently, or you need to keep your range of motion for when you are out of it. This routine gives a little something for everybody. If you feel too much pain during any of these exercises, then slow down or even stop if you need to. Just remember, it will get easier with time.