How to Return to Physical Activity Safely During COVID-19
We have all faced a new challenge in our fitness routines this year with COVID-19 keeping us confined to our homes. As a result, many people may not have kept up their physical fitness levels. With the changing of seasons upon us and the start of a new school year, many of us feel a desire to return to routine, including our fitness routine.
While you may want to dive back in, you should go easy as you build back up to your pre-COVID training regime to avoid any kind of injury. Whether you’re an athlete or not, easing back into it should be your priority. We have gathered some tips to get you back on track — safely.
The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted more than just our fitness routines. To keep a healthy balance when resuming your physical activity and training schedule, don’t forget about the rest of your daily patterns, such as sleep habits, meals, work/household/academic responsibilities, and safe social activities.
Be aware that after periods of inactivity, the likelihood of muscle soreness increases. Too many hours on the couch scrolling through Netflix can lead to a loss of strength and flexibility! In order to combat this, a 10 to 20-minute dynamic warm-up should be done before workouts.
A dynamic warm-up is important to prepare the body for more complex movements. It starts with basic activities to progressively elevate the heart rate and increase mobility, which can then progress into movements or specific activities such as jogging, sprinting, pivoting, lunging, and jumping.
Easy Does It
After a period of inactivity, strength and resistance training sessions should initially take place no more than three times per week and should focus on basic movement patterns. In the first month, avoid performing exercises to fatigue or doing physically exhausting drills.
Make sure you're doing all the right things to reduce the risk of spreading COVID-19; if training in a gym avoid large groups, maintain two-meter distancing, follow all cleaning protocols, opt for areas with fresh air ventilation and low humidity, and if you’re not feeling well – stay home!
Movement Has Benefits
While the COVID-19 pandemic is a stressful and uncertain time for us all, getting back to physical activity will benefit both your physical and mental health. Following these tips can help minimize the risk of injury and ensure a successful return to your physical fitness routine.
If you'd like support to build back your activity level, schedule an appointment through virtual physio or in-person services by contacting us today or book an appointment online.