Getting in a fun and challenging workout is possibly one of the best feelings in the world. Post workout you’re sweating and endorphins are buzzing, making you feel energized and healthier than when you started. However, while working out is great for relieving stress, it is also incredibly important to remember the physical stress some workouts can put on your body. Depending on your age and fitness level, these high impact workouts may not be suitable for your body. At a younger age, your joints, muscles and bones can take the force of high impact exercises like, running, cycling, lifting, as well as, most sports. They can absorb the impact and recover in a timely manner; however, these exercises will take a youthful body and age it drastically, creating problems over the years that are much more difficult to manage while working out.
For starters, what is the difference between low-impact and high impact exercise? High impact is when your body is making significant contact with the ground, (pounding, jumping, etc.). A few examples of high impact exercises are running, boxing, CrossFit and power lifting. These forms of exercise cause incredible stress on your joins, bones and muscles, which can cause many problems. Low impact exercise generally means you are not putting as much force onto the ground when you step. Walking, biking and rowing are great examples of low impact exercises that can still give you a great workout.
When you think about high impact and low impact workouts, it is very important to recognize that low impact can still be very challenging workouts that can get your heart rate up, work your muscles, and make you break a sweat. A great low impact workout that truly works every part of your body, in a non-stressful way, is rowing. By simulating a water rowing boat, the rowing machine (or erg) works almost every muscle in your body while also engaging your heart and lungs, allowing you to build your stamina with cardio. This increase in muscle movement and stamina allow you to work on calorie burning and strength training all at once. It’s perfect for any age is because it easy to use and gives you a great low impact high intensity workout.
Not allowing a high impact workout to ruin your joints and muscles, at any age, is important because you want to be able to continue to get a great workout without doing damage to your body. While running, cycling, and lifting, may burn calories and increase cardio strength, the benefits of low impact/high intensity workouts are greater due to a lesser chance of injury. Low impact/high intensity workouts, such as rowing, allow you to get your heart rate up, break a sweat, build muscle AND take care of your body in so many ways. Just remember that low impact workouts, can have high results!
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