It might seem pretty logical that it is important to train all the major muscle groups in the body. Many people do not train their whole body. For many assume getting out and walking everyday provides all the exercise they need to stay healthy. However that neglects the upper body and core muscles. The muscles of the upper body will tire rapidly when subjected to moderate to heavy upper body workloads such as shoveling, raking, lifting, and overhead arm work. That is because there is no carry over from leg work to arm work, training your legs with walking won’t improve your arm endurance. Thus, it is important to train both.
Initially many with heart disease will find it is hard to do exercise that works both. Working both can also be an angina trigger depending on how much heart damage one has. It is something that you have to build up as tolerated. It is advised to warm up just doing a leg activity for 5-10 minutes at light workloads, then progress to adding the arms into the work. If they tire, become heavy or you feel short of breath, then drop the arms and continue with legs only. Be alert for the following signs of unstable angina:
- unexpectedly becomes worse than usual at a given level of exertion
- starts with lower levels of exertion
- starts while resting
- continues after stopping exercise or taking nitroglycerin medication
If symptoms don’t resolve then stop exercising. It is recommended to progress arm exercise by performing intermittent arm exercise. For instance if on the Schwinn Bike after warming up, then doing a few minutes at higher workloads, add the arms in for 1-5 minutes, then go back to legs only for up to 5 minutes, then add the arms back in. Building arm endurance as able. It is important to actively use the muscles don’t just let the ride along. Think push or pull!
If you are someone who walks for exercise you can work arms at the same time if you carry light weights and actively pump the arms, walk with ski poles.
- increased overall strength and endurance in the core muscles and the entire upper body
- significant increases in heart rate at a given pace
- increasing vascular pathways and oxygen delivery efficiency
- greater ease in climbing hills
- burning more calories than in plain walking
- improved balance and stability with use of the poles
- significant un-weighting of hip, knee and ankle joints
- provides density preserving stress to bones
This is my ski pole dealer. http://www.skiwalking.com/index.asp
What about walking with weights?
Gym Equipment that will improve upper body endurance:
- Stationary Bikes with upper body
- Recumbent Steppers
- Rowing Machines
- Upper Body Ergometers
- Weight Machines
- Kettle Bells
Take Classes that work upper body and core.
- Tia Chi
- Belly Dancing