Exercise & Chronic Disease

Exercise is effective in the management and control of chronic illnesses. Not only does exercise improve your health and fitness levels, it also helps you to de-stress and lift up your spirits. Here, we look at the types and intensity of exercises suitable for people with the following chronic illnesses.

Exercise & Hypertension

Front-Raise---hypertensionIf you have hypertension, it is recommended that you do aerobic exercise such as brisk walking, cycling or dancing. You can also engage in strengthening exercises such as knee lifts and front raise to strengthen your major muscle groups.

Types of exercise Frequency Duration Examples
Aerobic 3 times a week 30 – 60 minutes Walking, cycling, dancing
Strengthening 2 – 3 times a week, 1 rest day in between 10 minutes Knee lifts, front raise

 

Exercise & Diabetes

If you have diabetes, aerobic exercises such as brisk walking, jogging and swimming will be helpful. You can also do strengthening exercises such as bicep curls and squats.

Types of exercise Frequency Duration Examples
Aerobic

150 minutes a week

Moderate

Brisk walking, jogging, swimming

Strengthening

2 – 3 times a week, 1 rest day in between

Moderate

Bicep curl, squats

Exercise & End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD)

Triceps-extension---ESRDIf you have ESRD or kidney failure, you can still exercise. Some of the exercises you can enjoy include taichi, cycling and brisk walking. You can also do strengthening exercises to strengthen your muscles and increase functional capacity.

Types of exercise Frequency Duration Examples
Aerobic

3 times a week

30 to 60 minutes

Taichi, cycling, brisk walking

Strengthening

2 – 3 times a week, 1 rest day in between

10 minutes

Triceps extensions, forward lunges

Exercise & Osteoporosis

If you have osteoporosis, it is recommended that you do weight bearing aerobic exercises, such as climbing stairs or brisk walking, which can help to prevent the progression of the disease. You can also do strengthening exercises and stretching exercises, climbing and brisk walking.

Types of exercise Frequency Duration Examples
Aerobic

3 – 5 times a week

30 to 60 minutes

Stair-climbing, brisk walking

Strengthening

2 – 3 times a week, 1 rest day in between

10 minutes

Shoulder press, side lunges, squats, heel raise

Stretching

3 times a week

10 minutes

Arm stretch, upper back and chest stretch

Exercise & Obesity

Dips---Obesity1

Place chair against wall as a safety precaution

If you are obese, it is recommended that you do aerobic exercises, such as jogging, spinning or swimming. However, while weight-bearing and impact exercises such as hiking, jogging and dancing generally burn more calories, they are also related to increased risk of musculoskeletal injuries, so do exercise precaution while engaging in such activities. You can start with 30 to 60 minutes of aerobic exercise a day for at least 5 times a week and aim to progress to at least 150 to 300 minutes of exercise a week.

At the same time, you can also do strengthening exercise and stretch your major muscle groups.

  

Types of exercise Frequency Duration Examples
Aerobic

5 times a week

30 to 60 minutes

Jogging, swimming, spinning

Strengthening

2 – 3 times a week, 1 rest day in between

10 minutes

Dips, resisted hip adduction and abduction, planking

Stretching

3 times a week

10 minutes

Arm stretch, upper back and chest stretch

Exercise & Osteoarthritis

Arm-curl---OsteoarthritisIf you have osteoarthritis, it is recommended that you engage in exercises that do not put too much stress on the joints. Examples of exercises you can enjoy are swimming, aqua aerobics or seated aerobics. You may also do strengthening exercises at a low intensity or at the intensity which you can tolerate.

Types of exercise Frequency Duration Examples
Aerobic

5 times a week

30 to 60 minutes

Swimming, aqua aerobics, seated aerobics

Strengthening

2 – 3 times a week, 1 rest day in between

10 minutes

Bicep curl, knee lift, leg extension

Stretching

3 times a week

10 minutes

Arm stretch, upper back and chest stretch

You may refer to Hues of Health for more examples of strengthening and stretching exercises.