Gym memberships for individuals in wheelchairs can be expensive and many gyms struggle to provide accessibility options for getting around. Many gyms do not offer classes, provide equipment, or have accessible facilities for individuals in wheelchairs to fully utilize and achieve a good workout.
Fortunately, an alternative exists that solves these issues. Chair fitness is an affordable and accessible form of exercising for individuals in wheelchairs. Even better, it doesn’t require a trip to the gym; individuals can complete workouts in the comfort of their own homes. Essentially, chair fitness involves arm and torso movements that target the upper body. Workouts can include cardio, aerobics or strength training, and can vary from a beginner level to an advanced level. Here are a few of the many options available:
HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training)
With HIIT, you perform fast, intense spurts of exercise with rest periods in between. With this “No Equipment Beginner HIIT Workout for Wheelchair Users,” Ben Clarke for Adapt to Perform shows you 4 exercises you do for 30 seconds each with 30 seconds of rest after each (4 repetitions for a total of 16 minutes of workout).
“Wheelchairgirl2018 R” is a YouTube vlogger who is paralyzed from her T12 vertebrae down. She is super real with her audience and shares funny stories as well as fitness and workout tips like these easy core exercises using resistance bands and dumbbells.