From daily dusting and vacuuming to an annual Spring clean, there’s no getting away from the chore of housework. It can feel like a bit of a burden but with a bit of creative thinking you can turn each task into an exercise to help improve strength, stability and fitness.
Adding some wearable weights, such as wrist or ankle weights, will help increase stamina, stability and strength.
So choose some of your favourite music to workout to, crank up the volume and get fit while cleaning up!
When dusting surfaces try to use circular motion (in both directions). This will give your triceps and shoulders a gentle workout. Dusting the house requires us to squat and crouch to reach low areas such as skirting boards, and stretch or stand on our toes to clean higher up areas. These are all fantastic to promote joint health but do take care not to overstretch or risk injury.
Using the vacuum can give you a great all round workout, making use of your legs, core and upper body. Get extra benefits by doing walking lunges while vacuuming, taking care to engage your core. Avoid twisting your body and be careful to maintain good posture. To add extra resistance, use the brush tools to clean your upholstery/stairs.
Sweeping and Mopping
Like vacuuming, sweeping and mopping is all rounder. Engaging your core and making use of your arms and upper body as well as your legs for a full body workout. Try to swap arms so you work on both shoulders and and avoid twisting or overstretching.
Use circular motions to work your shoulders and triceps. Stand on your toes for a calf stretch as you do the higher parts. If you have glass doors or full length windows/mirrors you can add in squats to do the lower parts of the glass. Always swap arms to make sure you work on both sides.and ensure you engage your core.
Now is a great time to tidy the garden and start planting. Weeding, sweeping and watering plants gives you a great workout all with the added benefits you get from being outside.
Try to combine a few tasks to get the most benefit, maybe dusting and vacuuming one day, mopping and cleaning the windows another day. Combining everyday tasks like housework with your usual exercise classes or routine will help strengthen your body, improve your balance and fitness. Taking a tea break between tasks? While you wait for the tea to brew you could try these standing exercises from Move It Or Lose It!
Please contact Amanda if you would like more advice on exercising safely.
📷 Credit: Sunflowers grown by a Move it Or Lose It Fitness class member, working out in the garden during Lockdown 2020.