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The pool offers a series of options for working out without your feet.
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If you want to maintain or improve your fitness, lower-body injury or foot pain can seem like a serious show stopper. While there have always been plenty of upper-body based strength training workouts, it's now easier than ever to get a cardiovascular with your upper body. Whether you're in a chair or in the pool, you'll be able to stay fit without ever standing on your feet.
Stay in Your Chair
Even if you can't use your lower body at all, you can easily do serious strength training in a chair. Biceps curls, triceps extensions and shoulder presses are all common arm exercises that can be completed in a seated position. Do two or three sets of eight to 12 repetitions and make sure you're holding enough weight that the last rep is challenging to complete. If only your feet are out of commission, you can also do leg exercises that don't require the use of your feet. For example, while sitting in a chair a leg extension only requires that you raise your leg so it's in line with the chair. A hip flexion exercise only requires that you lift your leg a few inches off of the floor.
Workout in The Pool
In the pool you can get a total-body workout without your feet ever touching the floor. The pool is easy on the joints, so it's a great workout tool for those suffering from an injury. In terms of calorie burn, swimming is comparable to running and is a great cardiovascular workout. Many gyms or pools offer water-based aerobics or yoga classes that are easy on the feet. If your entire lower body is out of commission, some pools even offer water workout classes tailored for wheelchair users.
Cycle Your Arms
Now available at many gyms, the arm cycle (also called a hand cycle) is like a stationary bicycle that you power with your arms instead of your feet. An arm cycle provides both an exhausting arm workout and a great cardio workout. Models are available with an attached seat or without for wheelchair accessibility.
Try Some Boxing
An upper-body boxing workout is a great way to add variety to your exercise regimen. Straight punching, uppercuts, hooks and speedbags are just a few options for punching you can incorporate into an upper-body boxing workout that can be accomplished from a seated position. Increasing your speed and completing the workouts with dumbbells in hand are easy ways to make the workout more difficult.