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Coronavirus: Staying active at home

Stay active at home

If youíre stuck at home because of coronavirus (Covid-19), or your normal activity has been cancelled, itís still important to stay as active as you can. Even a small amount of activity will have a positive impact on your physical and mental health, and thereís plenty you can do at home Ė here are some ideas to keep you moving.

Everyday activities count!

You donít need gym equipment at home to stay active. Everyday activities such as doing the vacuuming, hanging out the washing, and mowing the lawn all count towards your daily activity levels.

Try to break up long periods of sitting by getting up and moving for at least five minutes each hour. You could put on a home disco with your favourite tunes and have a dance, or walk up and down the stairs.

Home workouts and seated exercise

These easy-to-follow workouts are a great way to get active at home:

If youíd rather follow a video youíll find lots for different ages and abilities online:

As with any kind of physical activity, start slowly and gradually build up the time and intensity of your workouts, and donít forget to warm up and cool down!

Get the whole family moving

Kids need to burn off some energy? Get the whole family moving with these fun, free resources:

Get some fresh air, if you can

The current government advice is that if anyone in your household has coronavirus symptoms, the whole family needs to self-isolate for 14 days and that means you shouldnít go outside at all.

However, for families who havenít had any symptoms itís still fine to get out for some fresh air, to walk the dog or go for a run, as long as you stay more than two metres away from other people.

Walking and jogging are great for your physical health and have proven benefits for your mental wellbeing.

Mental health and wellbeing

If youíre isolated or just feeling anxious about coronavirus, here are some ideas to look after your mental wellbeing:

  • Gardening can help tackle depression, stress and anxiety, and reduce high blood pressure, as well as improve your physical health, so itís a great time to get outside and brighten up your patch. Donít have a garden? You could try planting some flowers in a window box, growing herbs indoors, or putting out food for the birds where you can watch them from a window.
  • Practise relaxation and mindfulness to boost your mood. You could follow an NHS yoga workout to improve strength and tackle stress, try this mindful breathing exercise from Every Mind Matters, and read hints and tips on mindfulness from the NHS.
  • Look to the future. You could research walks you want to do, plan a new cycle route, or get the kids to make a list of five new activities theyíd like to try.
  • Information for care providers from the Hertfordshire Care Providers Association

Mental health charity Mind has put together detailed advice and information on coronavirus and wellbeing.

Finally, please continue to follow the governmentís guidance on how to prevent the spread of Coronavirus, by reviewing the advice provided by the NHS.

With thanks to Herts Sports Partnership

Derek Thorpe says "Keep active, wash your hands and stay healthy"