As new COVID-19 cases continue to
emerge, many healthy individuals are being requested to stay at home in
self-quarantine. In many areas, fitness
centers are temporarily closing to help with social distancing. However, staying at home for prolonged
periods of time can pose a significant challenge for remaining physically
active (and sane). Sedentary behavior and low levels of physical activity can
have negative effects on the health, well-being and quality of life. Physical
activity can be valuable tools to help you remain calm and continue to protect
your health during this time.
The WHO recommends 150 minutes of
moderate-intensity or 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity physical activity per
week, or a combination of both. These recommendations can still be achieved
even at home, with no special equipment and with limited space. The following
are some tips on how to stay active while at home in self-quarantine:
Take active breaks during the day. Short bouts of physical activity add up to the weekly
recommendations. Dancing, playing with children, and household chores such as
cleaning and gardening are other means to stay active at home.
Follow an online exercise class. Take advantage of the wealth of online exercise
classes. Many of these are free and can be found on YouTube. Some of these can
be quite challenging, so listen to your body and know your limitations.
Walk. Even in small spaces, walking around or walking on
the spot, can help you remain active. Walking outdoors is even better,
the fresh air can be stimulating and provide a boost of energy similar to a cup
Stand while working. If you are working at home it is ideal to reduce
your sitting whenever possible. Ideally, aim
to interrupt sitting every 20 minutes. Consider setting up a
standing desk by using a high table or stacking a pile of books or other
Exercise. Take time to do your exercises. Below are example exercises which can be performed individually, all together or in groups of 3.