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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!

Could a Weighted Blanket be the Answer?

 

The year I turned six, I asked for what was probably the most unusual birthday present ever. I announced that I wanted a lead apron like they used at the dentist’s office. For those who may be unfamiliar, this is made of some indeterminate material on the outside, and presumably has small grains of lead inside, which makes it so heavy. It is draped over the patient’s torso to prevent harmful radiation during X-rays. I couldn’t have cared less about radiation at that age, but I loved how the lead apron made me feel. I have always tended to be cold, and it made me feel warm and somehow secure. It wasn’t that I generally felt insecure, but that I felt so much better for the brief times I wore it.

About ten years back, I started hearing about weighted blankets and how they helped some children with autism. I do not have autism, and I’m not a child, but I was intrigued. Over the years, I have seen more research which discusses the effectiveness of weighted blankets for treating a variety of conditions. It has been shown that use of a weighted blanket can help people of all ages with autism, as well as those who have insomnia and PTSD. I purchased a weighted blanket in March, and I find that the added weight on my legs seems to improve my edema, and using the blanket in general seems to help regulate my low cortisol levels. Research has shown that the added weight of the blanket releases neurotransmitters like serotonin and dopamine, which produce a calming effect.

When purchasing a blanket, a general rule of thumb is to buy a blanket that is ten percent of your body weight plus one pound. If, for example, you weigh 140 pounds, then ten percent would be fourteen pounds. Add the extra pound, and you should consider purchasing a fifteen-pound blanket. If you are more than about twenty pounds overweight, then use the number you think you should weigh.

There are many places where you can purchase weighted blankets, which come in a variety of sizes and colors. While not inexpensive, the results can make this a very good investment. I purchased mine from Amazon, through a company called Weighted Blankets LLC.

If you are interested, you can also read this excellent article from Forbes about the inventor of the concept.

If you have used a weighted blanket, we’d love to hear about your experiences.

 

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