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!

GWS Part 1 - Light Warm Up and Stretch

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1 - Seated Walking in Place and Step Touches

Play Seated Walking in Place and Step Touches MP3

We like to begin nearly all our workouts with a gentle walk or march in place because it's a natural movement which helps lubricate the joints, and gets the heart pumping. You can begin walking as soon as you hear the music start. If you become tired during an exercise, or you are not sure what to do, you can always walk until you come to something that is familiar. You can sit or stand, moving your arms and legs as you are able.

You can do this standing or seated. Just step your right foot out to the side, then bring your foot back in next to your left foot. Then step your left foot out, and bring it back to center. If you like, you can also stretch your arms straight out to the sides, then bring them back down each time you step out.

2 - Seated Knee Chest Pulls

Play Seated Knee Chest Pulls MP3

Sitting in yor chair with both feet on the floor, lean forward at the hips, and wrap both hands around your right knee. Keep your elbows tucked in, and spine straight. Lift your knee up as far as you can, breathing into the stretch. Bring your foot slowly to the ground. Repeat on your left side.

3 - Ankle Circles, Toe Point and Flex

Play Ankle Circles, Toe Point and Flex MP3

Sit tall in the chair with your right foot flat on the floor. Hold your left knee with both hands so your knee is pulled toward your chest. Circle your ankle in one direction, then the other. Then, point your toes down toward the ground, then flex your toes so they are pointing up toward the ceiling. Repeat the exercises on the other side.

4 - Chair Core Rotations

Play Chair Core Rotations MP3

Sit forward in your chair and drape your right arm over the back of the chair, and place your left hand on your right thigh. Sit tall, and inhale. As you exhale deeply, turn as if you are looking over your right shoulder. Feel the stretch along the sides of your body. Repeat. Then change sides by placing your left arm over the back of the chair and your right hand on your left thigh.

5 - Shoulder and Elbow Circles

Play Shoulder and Elbow Circles MP3

Sit tall in your chair, and pull your shoulders back and down. Place your hands on your shoulders -- right hand on right shoulder, left hand on left shoulder. Your elbows are sticking out to either side of you. Make circles with your elbows in one direction, then the other.

6 - Wrists Rotations and Finger Stretches

Play Wrists Rotations and Finger Stretches MP3

While you are walking or marching in place, rotate your wrists in circles, first in one direction, then in the other. Then, turn your palms upward, make a tight fist, then stretch your fingers wide. Make a fist, stretch, and repeat.

7 - Wrist Stretches

Play Wrist Stretches MP3

This is a fabulous stretch if you are working at a computer all day or doing other repetitive motions. Stretch your arms out in front of you at shoulder height with fingers pointed toward the ceiling. Gently grasp the fingers of your right hand with your left hand. You want to do this so your left hand is behind your right hand. Gently pull the right fingers back until you feel a stretch in the palm of your right hand, then release. Repeat by grasping the fingers of the left hand with the right hand and gently pulling back until you feel a gentle stretch in the palm of your left hand.

8 - Neck Stretch

Play Neck Stretch MP3

Sit tall in your chair with shoulders back and down, and drop your right ear to your right shoulder. You will feel the gentle pull in the left side of your neck. Then, turn your head so your nose points toward your right shoulder. This will stretch different muscles. You need to hold each of these for 20-30 seconds. Be sure to come up from these stretches very slowly. Then, drop your left ear to your left shoulder, repeating the same procedure on the left side. You will feel the stretch on the right side.