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Accessible Fitness, more choices for more people

Fitness has always been a concern with regard to both mental and physical health regardless of age, gender, or any other variables that make each one of us unique. And for those in the blind community, fitness is every bit as much—if not more—important.

Exercise for the visually impaired is something that should be incorporated into a weekly, if not daily, routine for a variety of reasons that are both similar and different from people within the sighted community. For those with total loss of sight as well as for those who are low sighted, a lack of regular exercise can bring on a host of other issues, including weight gain, sluggishness, and perhaps worst of all for many, insomnia or a circadian rhythm that has been thrown completely off track.

A quality workout done at the right time of day and at the right pace to meet your unique physical and mental needs is just what the doctor may have forgotten to order. For many blind people, fitness has been a challenge: without someone to guide you and without the ability to drive yourself to the gym, it becomes obvious why so many visually impaired individuals give up—but with the BlindAlive line of Fitness Workouts for blind people, you’ll never have to depend on anyone else again.

Yoga and Strength Training with wieghts for blind people along with a variety of other cardiovascular exercises help our bodies stay toned, help us gain muscle mass and lose weight, but most of all, can help lead a blind person away from a sense of helplessness.

Are you ready to sweat? Come get healthy and leave all your notions of not being able to get fit due to your visual impairment behind with BlindAlive!

A Good Morning Stretch… There’s a Word for That - Pandiculation!

“Pandiculation”

Cats and Dogs Do It, Do You?

Cats and Dogs Do It, Do You?

Isn’t this a cool word? I love words. I try to guess the meaning of a word before I look it up in the dictionary. This one is a new one for me.

While I was doing some research on our latest program, Eyes-Free Fitness® Whole Body Stretch, I came across this word, “pandiculation.” According to the dictionary, it means; “a stretching and stiffening especially of the trunk and extremities (as when fatigued and drowsy or after waking from sleep.)”

What is the first thing you do when you wake up?

I usually uncurl my body and stretch out as long as I can make it. I point and flex my feet and tighten all my muscles in my whole body. Yawning and exhaling with large, silly noises. It reminds me that I am a lot like my cat and dog. They do the same thing upon wakening or after taking a little nap. It is instinctual. It feels wonderful and somehow necessary.

Our bodies naturally want to unfurl after being curled up tight, either from sleeping balled up or from sitting all day in a chair. Our bodies want and need to restore active circulation. Blood and fluids can pool over night and when we stay sitting still for long periods of time. Stretching this way gets our engines running again.

Unfortunately, this one-time stretch in the morning really isn’t enough. With today’s lifestyles, there just is not enough activity to keep us stretched out with blood well circulated all over our bodies. We need to give ourselves a helping hand.

Stretching with intention and deep breathing everyday can go a long way toward keeping our bodies free from pain. It helps to hydrate our muscles, and it will wash away the metabolic waste that collects when stillness is prolonged.

Stretching the whole body with specific movements can also lubricate joints, making pain melt away. It is a good idea to stretch your body a few times a day.

Whole body stretching also feels good. It opens up our chest which creates breathing space. It relaxes and rejuvenates at the same time.

This is the reason why I created The Whole Body Stretch as part of my audio described programs for the blind and the visually impaired.

Together with Barbara Seiden from KickSmart Swimming, we have designed a whole body stretch, which can be done multiple times throughout the day. Once you learn these stretches, you can adapt them to your lifestyle.

Many of the stretches are performed while sitting which is perfect if you work in an office. Others can be done in your bed or on the floor. Every muscle and joint in your body will become more fluid and elastic. This is what our bodies crave.

The Whole Body Stretch is the latest addition to the Eyes-Free Fitness® collection and will be released in a few days. Look for an announcement. If you haven’t signed up for our E-newsletter, now would be a perfect time to do so.

Good health to you,
Mel Scott

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