One of the leading causes of sleep apnea is obesity. For this reason, it is vital that we help our patients remain healthy and active–it just might help them in more ways than one. However, stay-at-home orders during the COVID-19 pandemic might pose an obstacle for many people unsure of how to continue their workouts without gyms. Between working from home, caring for kids and finding spots around town that are open, how can your patients remain active–and safe–during the pandemic?

Here are some tips to share with your patients to help them remain active during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond.

Take your workout outside 

Most public gyms are closed, but some might be open. If yours is one of the few that are open, we still recommend avoiding it until public health officials say otherwise. In the meantime, take your fitness outside! You might want to try a new hiking path or if there is a lake or river close by, try kayaking when the weather permits. You can also go for a walk or a run outside, but try to go in areas that aren’t as populated.

Choose a workout buddy

If you are choosing to go outside for fresh air and physical activity, invite a friend or family member, but avoid groups of 10 or more. It is important to choose activities that allow you to maintain an appropriate distance between each other, such as hiking, biking or walking. Do your best to minimize direct contact and save your high-fives for another day. 

Avoid activities that require physical contact

It is key that you limit physical activity that might have contact. Keep in mind activities that require no contact and allow for spacing of six feet between everyone involved. By limiting physical contact, we can prevent the spread of COVID-19. 

Some activities to try include biking or tennis. You can also go running or perform bodyweight workout routines while spaced apart from other people–or simply do it on your own at home. 

Try at-home exercises and workouts

Part of remaining healthy and active is having a strong core and an aerobic fitness level that is appropriate for remaining fit. While at home, you can work on strengthening your core and cardiovascular condition without compromising your safety or those around you. If you have your own home gym, use it! 

There are also videos on YouTube that can guide you through at-home workout routines, even if you don’t have weights to use. There are also fitness instructors that offer online workout classes and routines to help.

Go virtual with your fitness community 

We cannot stress this enough: it is important to stay in touch with those that inspire you and hold you accountable. If you have a fitness community that you worked out with prior to the pandemic, make sure you are in touch with them virtually. 

This can mean setting up Zoom calls or creating a Facebook fitness group. Whatever you need to do to remain accountable and in touch with your crew is vital to maintaining your health and well-being.

What other ways are you encouraging your patients to remain active during the pandemic? Remember, your patients’ health and well-being can help minimize their sleep apnea symptoms along the way.