3 Basic Strengthening Workouts For Wheelchair Users
Wheelchair users have to exert more effort when using their shoulders and arms. This makes it all the more important to improve upper body resistance through strengthening exercises that will help build muscle strength as well as improve upper body movement.
Currently, there are 2.2 million wheelchair users in the US, according to NICHD. The demand for wheelchairs is rapidly increasing together with the growth of the ageing population, which is why it is necessary to help seniors and disabled individuals improve their quality of life through enhancing upper body mobility and flexibility. If you believe that you need to start working on your upper body, start with these three basic strengthening workouts designed for wheelchair users.
Seated Tricep Dips
Using a wheelchair demands increased upper body strength, and this effective style of workout will help you meet that demand. The Seated Tricep Dips focus on the chest, triceps, and front of the shoulders. Start by sitting in a chair or your wheelchair and placing your hands on the armrests. Make sure to position the hands right beneath the shoulders; they should be aligned. Push your body up until your arms are completely extended. Lower your body slowly until you are seated properly.
Seated Knee Raises
The constant sitting down can make the hip flexors stiff. You need to strengthen these muscles to help you bend, transfer, and walk better. Start with the body seated properly and then raise the knee upwards at least a couple of inches off the ground. Slowly lower the knee and repeat the knee raise. Alternate knees once a set is finished.
Reverse crunches focus on the abdominal muscles. Strengthening your core is vital to your upper body workout. It also helps with balance and core stability. In this exercise, instead of an upward movement, you will do the reverse. Start by sitting down on the floor with the knees bent at 90 degrees. Slowly lower your back until your entire back touches the floor and then work your way to the seated position again. It is important to roll the spine when lowering down the body.
For all these exercises, you must complete three sets with each set consisting of 10 reps. You can rest in between the sets, 30 seconds to a minute shall suffice. Don’t overwork the body and give your stressed muscle tissues at least 48 hours to fully recover before working out again. Additionally, if you think that your weight is getting in the way of your progress, you shall try a 3-week diet plan to help with the weight loss.
For some people, wheelchair use is just temporary, while for some, it’s already a way of life. Let these basic strengthening exercises help you build upper body strength so you’ll be abler and more capable of taking on everyday tasks and preventing further decline in your muscle tissues.