With COVID-19 and related restrictions, many of us are staying at home and engaging in less physical activity than we are used to. But at a time like this, it’s very important for people of all ages and abilities to be as active as possible. 

Why is this so important? Today’s children won’t live as long as their parents due to an alarming decrease in physical activity and the many diseases and health issues caused by inactivity. Our adults and seniors are facing chronic health conditions that lead to medical interventions and worsen due to a lack of exercise and recreational activities. We believe that to effect change upstream and keep people out of the hospital, a healthy lifestyle is key. Peace Arch Hospital will always be here if you need it, but with committing to a being as healthy as possible, hopefully you won’t.

Remember – Just taking a short break from sitting, by doing 3-4 minutes of low-intensity physical movement, such as walking or stretching, will help ease your muscles and improve blood circulation and muscle activity.

Regular physical activity benefits both the body and mind. It can reduce high blood pressure, help manage weight and reduce the risk of heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, and various cancers – all conditions that can increase susceptibility to COVID-19. It also improves bone and muscle strength and increases balance, flexibility and fitness. For older people, activities that improve balance help to prevent falls and injuries.

Regular physical activity can help give our days a routine and be a way to stay in contact with family and friends. It’s also good for our mental health — reducing the risk of depression, cognitive decline and delay the onset of dementia — and improve overall happiness. 

Try introducing one or more of the following activities into your day to ensure you are Moving For Life! 

  1. Take a walk around the block. Keep things interesting by exploring a new neighbourhood or trail. A full list of White Rock’s parks and trails can be found at https://www.whiterockcity.ca/398/Parks-Trails
  2. Create a home workout area. Stay active and home and try using resistance bands, water bottles, or your own body weight to perform light resistance exercises.
  3. Dance like nobody is watching! This simple and effective activity will get you moving while you enjoy your favourite tunes.
  4. Complete a virtual workout. Many fitness organizations and gyms are offering virtual classes (i.e. yoga, pilates, or strength training) through streaming services like Zoom and FaceTime.
  5. Tune into Sport for Life’s series of short videos called “Physical Literacy at Home”, created with the purpose of supporting parents, guardians, and children to develop physical literacy at home during the COVID-19 pandemic. Learn more at https://sportforlife.ca/facing-covid-19-together/