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Gentle fitness - Week 4

Total Body Workout

Build strength in this total body chair workout that will give you a sense of increased confidence in your daily activities.

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ListCat: Gentle Fitness Tips
ID: 4681

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Working out at home does not have to be as complicated as it sounds. Activity can be built into the day for a short energy booster.

It is encouraged that people get up and move and accumulate 150 minutes of moderate-to-vigorous activity per day in bouts of 10 minutes or more.

Here are some tips for working out at home.

Build it into your normal day:

  • Only fill up a cup of water half way. You'll get up more often for a short walking break to fill up water
  • Set a reminder to move every hour. Even a short walk around the house can help you feel energized again
  • Stack books solidly on a desk to make a standing desk
  • When in phone meetings, stand up to take the call
  • Set an alarm to remind you to take a short walk

Allocate time:

  • Take activity breaks throughout the day. Complete 10 to 20 reps of an exercise every hour on the hour. Example:
    • 9:00am Chair Sit to Stands
    • 10:00am Push-up variations such as wall push-ups
    • 11:00am Partial Sit to Stand Chair Exercise
    • 12:00pm Go for a quick walk around the block ensuring social distancing
    • 1:00pm Side Steps
    • 2:00pm Bicep Curls
    • 3:00pm Complete some flights of stairs in the house/condo/apartment or march on the spot
  • Exercise with a Loved-one
    • Finding time to work-out can be challenging if there is a lot going on. Grab a loved-one and make it a together thing! For more information, watch the Fitness Videos for inspiration on games and challenges for the whole family.
  • Skype, Zoom or Facetime a workout buddy and do your regular or a modified routine together. Laughter is the best medicine!
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There is risk of injury when participating in exercise, physical fitness and physical training programs. If you have any concerns or questions about whether or not you should participate in exercise activities demonstrated on this website or videos offered on this website, you should consult with a physician or other health-care professional before starting any exercises.

The purpose of this NOTICE AND DISCLAIMER OF LIABILITY is to inform you that this website offers health and fitness information and is designed for educational purposes only. You should not rely on this information as a substitute for, nor does it replace, professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.

BY PARTICIPATING IN EXERCISE ACTIVITIES FEATURED OR VIDEOS OFFERED ON THIS WEBSITE, YOU DO SO FREELY AND VOLUNATARILY AND ASSUME ALL OF THE RISKS AND HAZARDS OF PARTICIPATION, INCLUDING THE LEGAL RISK. THE CITY OF CALGARY DISCLAIMS ANY LIABILITY FOR INCIDENTAL OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES AND ASSUMES NO LIABILITY OR RESPONSIBILITY FOR ANY LOSS, PERSONAL INJURY (INCLUDING DEATH) OR DAMAGE (INCLUDING PROPERTY DAMAGE) SUFFERED BY ANY PERSON AS A RESULT OF THE USE OR MISUSE OF ANY INFORMATION, THIS WEBSITE AND VIDEOS MADE AVAILABLE ON THIS WEBSITE.

In consideration of performing or participating in these exercises shown on this website, you hereby agree to release and hold harmless The City of Calgary its officers, employees, volunteers and agents, against any loss, liability, damage, cause of action, cost, or expense of any nature whatsoever, including without limitation reasonable solicitors’ fees and other legal costs.


sitting posture check 

1. Sitting Posture Check

Hold 1 min.

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ID: 4682

Sit tall on a chair without the back supported, feet firmly planted, equal weight on the 'SIT' bones.

Start by lifting up through the low back with weight directly on the SIT bones, creating a slight arch in the low back. Next lift up through the breastbone, to straighten the trunk, but do not over arch. Keep the lower rib cage relaxed and down.

Gently draw your shoulder blades back. The head is back in line with the shoulders, keeping the chin slightly tucked, elongating the back of the neck.

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seated hip out and in

2. Seated Hip - Out and In

​8+ reps

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Row Count: 1
ListCat: Seated Hip - Out and In
ID: 4683

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Sit on a chair with tall posture.

Take your knees apart as much as possible.

Return to the middle and repeat.​

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seated trunk rotation

3. Seated Trunk Rotation (hold)

6 reps Hold 3 sec.

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ID: 4684

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Sit down on a chair with straight posture.

Place your hands behind your head and press your head into your hands gently.

Slowly rotate the trunk to one side as far as possible, to feel a stretch in your opposite side.

Hold the position. Repeat on the other side.​​


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partial sit to stand

4. Partial Sit to Stand – Staggered

8+ reps

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Row Count: 1
ListCat: Partial Sit to Stand
ID: 4685

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Sit on the edge of a chair that has been placed against a wall to avoid slipping.

Bend your knees and place your feet staggered on the floor.

While keeping your back straight, shift your weight to your feet, reach forward and begin to stand up until you are a few inches off the seat. Sit back down. Keep your motion controlled and smooth; do not use momentum.

Repeat and then switch sides.


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sit to stand

5. Sit to Stand

8+ reps

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Row Count: 1
ListCat: Sit to Stand
ID: 4686

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Sit on a chair that has been placed against a wall to prevent slipping.

Bring your arms forward, or use the chair to help you move to standing.

With your feet slightly apart and your hips at the edge of the seat, lift your hips up from the seat to stand. Slowly return to sitting.

*If you find it difficult to go from sit to stand, you can simply transfer a little of your weight into your legs and then relax. You don't have to standup.​


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active arm arc

6. Active Arm Arc

6-8 reps

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Row Count: 1
ListCat: Active Arm Arc
ID: 4687

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Lean over a chair, holding the chair with one hand. Keep your back straight, shoulders back and knees slightly bent.

With one arm, reach under the other as far as possible rotating and rounding your upper back slightly. Bring your arm back and reach in the opposite direction. Keep your elbow bent to 90 degrees and look towards your hand at all times.

Repeat on the other side.​​


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leg side to back

7. Leg Side to Back

6 reps

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Row Count: 1
ListCat: Leg Side to Back
ID: 4688

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Stand facing a chair that you can use for support. Bend slightly at your waist and hold onto the chair for balance and support.

Lift one leg out to the side and up, keeping your knee straight. Slowly bring your leg directly behind you. Keep your leg as high as you can throughout the motion. Your hips should be level and your leg straight.

Repeat on the other side.​​


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crossed leg hamstring hold

8. Crossed-leg Hamstring Hold

8 reps

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Row Count: 1
ListCat: Crossedleg Hamstring Hold
ID: 4689

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Sit at the edge of a chair with your ankles crossed (working leg is on top).

Turn your foot towards the outside and try to bend the top leg by pushing your ankles together as much as you can without moving.

*Modification: If you are unable to cross at the legs, try a heel slide by simply taking one leg at a time and sliding the heel back under the chair.

Relax and repeat.​


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shoulder raise

9. Shoulder Raise

8 reps

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Row Count: 1
ListCat: Shoulder Raise
ID: 4690

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Sit up straight in a chair and look directly ahead of you.

Raise your arm in front of you with your elbow straight, as high as you can. Return your arm to the original position. Do not shrug your shoulder or arch your back. Move only your arm.

To progress, repeat with a light weight.​


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side block

10. Side Block

8 reps

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Row Count: 1
ListCat: Side Block
ID: 4691

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Sitting on a chair (not a ball/unless you have one and are comfortable using it) raise your elbow sideways to armpit level.

Shoulders should be down and back.

Repeat on the other side.​


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external rotation

11. External Rotation

8 reps

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Row Count: 1
ListCat: External Rotation
ID: 4692

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Stand upright or sit in a chair, using a dumbbell or a soup can.

Flex the elbow to 90 degrees and keep it close to your side. Externally rotate to the maximal range of motion that you can get without rotating the trunk.

Keep the head and trunk still. Keep the wrist in line with the forearm at all times.

Repeat on the other side.​​


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shoulder extension

12. Shoulder Extension

8 reps

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Row Count: 1
ListCat: Shoulder Extension
ID: 4693

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Stand or sit straight with your chin tucked in and your arms at your side, holding a weight in your hand.

Pull the tip of your shoulder backwards and raise your arm backward as high as you can. Lower your arm slowly and repeat.

Repeat on the other side.


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trace the alphabet

13. Trace the Alphabet

1 set

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Row Count: 1
ListCat: Trace the Alphabet
ID: 4694

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If you need support for balance, hold onto a chair or the wall.

Stand on one leg with your knee straight. Have the opposite leg move forwards and draws the letters of the alphabet in the air, trying to keep your balance on the supporting leg.

Increase the difficulty by slightly bending the supporting/stance leg. *Modification: try tracing your signature.

Repeat on the other leg.


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