Let’s face it. We’re in the dog days of summer and motivating yourself to be active outside is not just a matter or will, it’s a matter of safety. Anyone with a chronic illness can relate – warm weather causes our heart rate to quicken but our bodies want to slow down.
So, what are you supposed to do? Keep on doing only indoor classes and workouts? When everyone else is outside? Not a chance. With the proper planning, you too can enjoy the “dog days” of summer and stimulate your senses with warm weather outdoor workouts perfect for people with Parkinson’s.
Top 4 Tips for Avoiding Heat Stroke or Heat Exhaustion
- Avoid being outside between 10 am and 4 pm. Depending on where you live, it may already be hot by 8 am, so you may need to become an early bird instead of a night owl. You can easily see hour by hour temperatures on a weather app like My Radar on Android or the Weather app on an iPhone.
- Lightweight, Loose, and Light colored clothing ONLY
- Drinking plenty of water before, during and after your workout. If you drink anything other than water, we recommend electrolyte drinks like Nuun or SmartWater.
- Look for shade or cover to stay out of the sun’s direct rays
Low impact outdoor activities:
- Yoga – You may not even need a mat if you’re practicing on sand or grass or a towel will do in a pinch if you don’t have a yoga mat. We like to move through cat and cow pose and sun salutations or follow along with a video on a tablet or our phone for inspiration. Try one of our recorded yoga classes with Shruti.
- Walking – Walk in a park or garden so there’s plenty of wildlife and flora to take in. If not, listen to music or a podcast in one ear so you can hear others approaching from behind.
- Golfing is a moderate aerobic activity so long as you’re walking the course. There are many public golf courses with 9 or 18 holes so you can choose the length of time that works best for you.
- A newer sport than golf, but one that shares lots of similarities (putting, drives, etc) is disc golf. To find a disc golf course near you, look here. Or to watch a quick video to become more familiar with it.
- Swimming is a full body exercise that tones and strengthens and you stay cool while doing it. Get to your local pool before Labor Day closures!
- Biking – Non-electric, two wheeled or a three wheeled trike! Rent one to try before you buy!
- Water sports like paddleboarding – feel free to stay seated and enjoy the breeze and close proximity to water. Kayaking is another easily accessible water sport that acts as a moving meditation and works out your abdominals, biceps and triceps. Use an app like Go Paddling to find a place to launch your craft near you.
Working out in warm weather requires common sense and knowing your limitations. Follow the four tips above and select an activity that is low-impact that you actually ENJOY doing. That’s the key to making sure you’ll be able to create a habit.
Nevertheless, be able to recognize the signs of heat exhaustion:
Finding enjoyable ways to move during hot weather months is important to your own personal Parkinson’s journey. Exercise and physical activity can not only maintain and improve mobility, flexibility and balance but also relieves non-motor PD symptoms such as depression or constipation. Join us for classes and programs that meet your Parkinsons needs by clicking here