Stretches prior to outdoor activities:
Stretches to do before participating in outdoor activities:
Lower back and legs
- While standing, place hands firmly on hips. Bend backwards until you feel a stretch.
- Clasp hands together over head. Lean to one side, keeping back straight, until you feel a stretch in your side. Repeat on other side.
- Using a wall for support, grasp ankle behind you. Push leg back to stretch front of thigh, keeping thigh inline with body. Repeat on other side.
Being active helps slow down bone loss and improve strength and balance.
Weight-bearing exercises, such as gardening, are important for maintaining healthy bones and preventing osteoporosis, a condition whereby bones become weak and break easily, says Emily Cooper, a research assistant with Toronto General Hospital. Another bonus from getting outside all year long is the vitamin D your body produces from being out in the sun (but remember to cover up after 15 minutes or so to protect against excess sun exposure). Vitamin D works with calcium to build strong bones and reduce the risk of fractures.