The new year means new resolutions to lose those extra pounds. In addition to cutting calories, many of us want to move more to burn some calories. That can sometimes mean pain, so finding low impact exercises is important.

5 Low Impact Workouts

The key is intensity, but if you’re new to exercise, start slowly and then ramp up the workouts.

1. Walking

According to Prevention, walking uses almost every muscle in your body. Start with about 10 minute walks and add more each week. Alternate slow and fast walking or go up hills to mix up the workout.

Using small weights can also increase the resistance and burn more calories.

2. Zumba and Other Classes

These types of classes are great because you sometimes don’t realize how hard you’re actually working since there are many distractions like arm waving, good music, and fun movements.

If you’re new to a class, tell the instructor so they can pay attention to your form and make sure you’re getting the most out of the workouts.

Power yoga is also a good calorie-burning option. During power yoga, the room is often hot and because you only hold a pose for a few breaths, you’re in constant motion. This muscle engagement keeps the heart rate up. To increase the calorie burn, concentrate on what you’re doing so you can really feel your muscles working.

Barre classes are all the rage lately. They mix elements of ballet, Pilates, yoga, and exercises on a mat. The impact is low, but the workout is intense because the movement is continuous. Some classes have cardio sequences to burn more calories.

3. Swimming

Exercises in the water are great for the joints. Since water is more dense than air, the resistance is great for muscles. As you stroke, you’re using all of your muscle groups so swimming is a whole body workout.

Alternating strokes can help burn more calories. Focus on form. Improper technique can put stress on your shoulders.

Water exercise classes are also a way to burn lots of calories. Being in the water is a low-impact way to allow you to dance and move without stressing your knees.

Keep moving between songs to increase the calorie burn and try wearing aqua shoes to help you move better.

4. Cycling

Biking can burn a lot of calories and can get you out of the gym and into the great outdoors.

If you’re going to bike outside, you might want to go to a bike store for a bike fitting to make sure the bike fits you. That can help you avoid knee problems. Custom seats can also be a good idea.

If you want to bike inside, spin classes can be fun and tap into the competitive streak inside you. Recumbent and stationary bikes are also good for low-impact workouts.

To increase the calorie burn, use intervals changing the speed and type of ride from hills to sprints, etc.

5. Stair Climbing

Prevention says this is a great calorie burning activity since you have to physically move yourself from step to step. It’s also something you can do either outside or on the machines at the gym.

Elliptical trainers at the gym are like running, but without the high impact. For an upper body workout, use the arm handles.

With all machines, make sure not to lean on the handles or rails. They are there for balance, not for support. If you rest on them, you’re often not using proper form and won’t get the most out of your workout.

If you’ve overdone it a little and need some relief, the team at Flexogenix can assist with many non-surgical solutions to common problems. Make an appointment today.