When you think about winters — even the best fitness enthusiasts find their workout routines taking a back seat. When it is cold. our body automatically goes into a dormant mode due to reduced circulation and spasms in the muscles.
“This is because the cold weather makes the muscles lose more heat which makes them contract. In turn, stiff muscles cause more pressure on the nerves causing impingement,” shares Dr Manoj Kutteri, wellness director at Atmantan Wellness Centre. Ahead, he shares a few exercises which can help you maintain the health of your joints and promote circulation in your body.
Stretching is an underrated activity but one which can set things right in winter because it helps in enhancing joint health and also helps lubricate them while correcting your posture.
“Careful and well-coordinated stretches are important to improve the range of motion at the joints. If you are already suffering from any compromised functioning of the joints, then you must do mostly static stretches whereby you stretch and hold it for some time until the initial pain and stiffness ease-out,” suggests Dr Kutteri.
Walking might seem like a low impact exercise but it has long-term health benefits. Joint movements while walking help increase the blood flow in turn making them more lubricated. He adds, “Walking is also a good form of cardio that helps maintain the warmth of our body, making the muscles and ligaments attached to the joints much relaxed and supple.”
Practising yoga during winters cannot be stressed enough. He suggests doing the Sookshma Vayama (loosening exercises) in yoga which specifically targets various joints in the body. “Regular practice of yoga also helps to improve the cardiac efficiency and better the working of the nervous system. Intense practices in yoga such as suryanamaskar etc can also be practiced by someone who does not have any joint problems,” adds Dr Kutteri.
Aerobics and cycling are a great way to not only start your day during winters but it is also the best way to get fit because not only does a 30-minute cycling or aerobic session warm your body but makes sure you are burning a good amount of calories too. “Resistance training and moderate impact practices are a great way of preventing osteoporosis and also good for bone mineralisation,” says Dr Kutteri.
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