10 Tips To Stay Active This Winter

The winter season can be a challenging time to stay active with colder temperatures, slippery conditions and shorter daylight hours. Active Southern West Virginia has 10 tips to get motivated to be active this time of year.

1. Join a free indoor physical activity program with Active Southern West Virginia such as ReFit Dance Aerobics, Qi Gong, Pickleball, Gentle Yoga or an Indoor Walking Group. Are you outside of our southern West Virginia area? Ask your local community center for resources for free programs or start your own walking group!

2. Join an Active Southern West Virginia winter hike. Sometimes you just have to get outside. Our trained Community Captain volunteers can guide you on a winter appropriate hike and provide added safety though group activity. For more information on local trail resources click here. You can also consult local town, county, state and even national parks for more resources and condition reports.

3. Walk at the mall. Shopping malls and other large public buildings offer a warm and safe space to walk. These buildings get bonus points for being extra friendly for families with strollers and individuals getting active in wheelchairs.

4. Take up a winter sport. Embrace the cold and take a skiing lesson or try ice skating. You can also follow the Active SWV event pages for free pop-up winter physical activity programming such as snowshoeing and sleigh-riding.

5. Play with your kids… or maybe just like one! Pulling your sled up a hill is a great workout with a fun downhill payoff. Rolling out a snowman, making a snow angel or throwing some snowballs are all exciting ways to keep moving.

6. Hit the stairs. Hit up the stairs in your workplace or home a few extra times throughout the day. Take the stairs whenever you can. Download Active SWV’s free Physical Activity Posters for some added motivation here.

7. Shovel snow for someone in need. When the snow comes down, think about someone who could use their walkway or driveway cleared. You just might find it benefits your heart in more way than one.

8. Dress for success. Check your local conditions and dress appropriately. Prepare for changes in the weather. You are going to enjoy being active outdoors much more if you are comfortable. Wear layers and clothing that can wick moisture. Read more about hiking safety from one of our local New River Gorge National Park Rangers here.

9. Bring a class to your living room. Visit your local library for exercise DVDs that you can watch and participate with at home. Snowed in? YouTube offers many free channels for all kinds of physical activities.

10. Register for an event. Sometimes you need to have something to look forward to and work towards to stay motivated. Register for an event such as the Active SWV Family Triathlon or the Active SWV Bridge Day 5k.

Did we mention there was a number 11? Surprise! It’s volunteering. You could start your own walking group, lead a fitness class or coach a Kids Run Club. Visit our website to learn more about becoming a Community Captain and the many ways you can volunteer with Active Southern West Virginia.

Medical Disclaimer: Always consult your physician before beginning any exercise program. This general information is not intended to diagnose any medical condition or to replace your healthcare professional. Consult with your healthcare professional to design an appropriate exercise prescription. If you experience any pain or difficulty with these exercises, stop and consult your healthcare provider.

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