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Safety tips for Physical Activity

Check with your doctor if you’re over 50 and aren’t used to exercising before starting an exercise routine. Other reasons to check with your doctor before starting an exercise program include:

  • Dizziness or shortness of breath.
  • Chest pain or pressure.
  • Blood clots.
  • An infection.
  • Sores that won’t heal.
  • Any joint swelling.
  • Recent surgery.
  • A hernia.

Wear loose, comfortable clothing and well-fitting, sturdy shoes. Your shoes should have good arch support, and an elevated and cushioned heel to absorb shock. Make sure the shoes are made for the type of physical activity you’ll be using them for. Shoes are specially designed for walking, running, tennis, or dancing, for example.

If you are not already active, begin slowly. Start with exercises that you are already comfortable doing. Starting slowly makes it less likely that you will injure yourself. Starting slowly also helps prevent soreness.

Exercise is only good for you if you are feeling well. Wait to exercise until you feel better if you have a cold, the flu or another illness. If you miss exercise for more than 2 weeks, be sure to start slowly again.

If your muscles or joints are sore the day after exercising, you may have done too much. Next time, exercise at a lower intensity. If the pain or discomfort persists, talk to your doctor. Talk to your doctor if you have any of the following symptoms while exercising:

  • Chest pain or pressure.
  • Trouble breathing or excessive shortness of breath.
  • Light-headedness or dizziness.
  • Difficulty with balance.
  • Nausea.
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