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Overview

Why is exercise important?
A regular exercise regime is important for keeping a fit and healthy body. It helps to:
 
  • control weight
  • build strength and stamina
  • improve flexibility of joints and prevent injuries
  • relieve stress
  • improve appearance and self-esteem
  • strengthen bones and joints
  • reduce menstrual cramps
  • maintain strength and independence in old age
  • If you are just beginning:
     
    • Get your friends, colleagues or family members to join you
      They can keep you company and provide encouragement to carry on
      Choose a game or sport that you enjoy or are interested in so that you will keep it up.
      Start slowly - don't be too ambitious or impatient. If you do too much too fast, you may injure yourself or become discouraged.
      Check with your doctor first if you are
      a male older than age 40 or a female older than age 50
       have heart disease, high blood pressure, high blood cholesterol, diabetes, asthma or are overweight.


       

The F.I.T.T (Frequency, Intensity, Type of exercise and Time) guide offers a good reference on adequate exercise frequency and intensity. You may like to refer to it when planning your exercise regime:

Frequency:
Exercise on 5 or more days a week.

Intensity:
If you have not been active, start with exercises which make you feel warm and breathe heavier, yet be able to talk comfortably. Examples are brisk walking, dancing, leisure swimming, low-impact aerobics.

If you have been active, engage in exercises which make you sweat and breathe heavily. Examples are jogging, swimming continuous laps, high-impact aerobics.

Types of exercise:
GymThere are many different types of exercise available for different individuals, aerobic exercise and callisthenics exercise being two of them.

Aerobic exercise is any exercise that makes you move your large muscles rhythmically. It moves you fairly continuously and makes you perspire and breathe deeply. Aerobic exercises help improve heart and lung fitness. They also improve stamina and reduce fat. Examples are jogging, swimming, badminton, basketball and football among others.

Callisthenics exercises warm you up and cool you down before and after aerobic exercise. They improve muscle strength, endurance and flexibility.

Time:
Exercise for 30 minutes a day. You may exercise for 10 minutes, three times a day to make up the 30 minutes.