How to Get Past Barriers About Exercising in a Wheelchair

Posted on June 1, 2018

When you or someone close to you rely on a wheelchair in a senior assisted living community, it can be hard to muster enough motivation to exercise. Even when someone is non-disabled and young, it can still be a challenge to gather enough motivation to get moving. Often, seniors give up when it comes to being fit, especially if they face a mobility limitation. Here at The Pavilion Senior Living, we try to encourage all our residents to get the exercise they need as often as they can. We offer fitness and wellness programsfor our assisted living residents. However, if you or someone close to you haven’t been active for a while, it can be intimidating to jump in and join a group. If this is how you feel, try working out with a close friend in a more private setting. Be sure to get confirmation from a doctor and have a work out buddy or physical therapist with you through the whole activity. If you and your close friend are still having trouble getting started, we are here to help you get past all the barriers.

Barrier: I Am Self-Conscious

Do you or your close friend feel self-conscious when considering a workout? Seniors in assisted living shy away from working out due to being embarrassed about their weight, an injury, or even disability. Exercise is not about being comfortable, and you need to push your boundaries and not worry about judgment. If this is not enough to convince you and your friend, then try working out early in the morning when there are fewer people around. Another option is to find an exercise group of similar individuals. If you or your friend are in a wheelchair, try signing up for a wheelchair yoga class that does simple yoga poses like these.

Barrier: I Am Afraid of Getting Hurt

When you or your friend are fearful of injuring yourself, consider consulting with a doctor before attempting any new exercise routines. You can also stick with low-risk exercises such as walking or wheeling around the community. Swimming is another excellent opportunity for exercise with a lifeguard on duty. When you have a workout buddy or act as an exercise partner to a close friend can help minimize the risk of an accident. 

Barrier: I Can Not Get or Stay Motivated

It is not an easy feat to motivate oneself to start exercising. If you or someone close to you need motivation, you can begin with visualization techniques. Visualize yourself losing that belly or having a broader range of motion and flexibility, which leads to a longer life and more independence. If you have a group of friends, you regularly spend time with, try and hold each other accountable to exercise and pump each other up. If you need help staying motivated, try setting incremental goals and rewarding them once they are achieved. You can also stay motivated by chatting with your exercise partner or listening to music you both enjoy during the activity. Having someone there can sometimes be enough motivation to keep going.

Having a workout partner can help you get over the barriers to working out whether you are in a wheelchair or overweight. If you still need some help, use these tips to get past the obstacles of exercising. Here at The Pavilion, we encourage our residents to regularly exercise and find a work out partner to stay motivated on your path to a healthier lifestyle. For more information on what we have to offer you or someone you are close with to working out, contact an expert today!


Tags: , ,