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Does Exercise Lower Your Blood Pressure

What If I Have Trouble Standing Or Walking

Can exercise lower blood pressure as effectively as medicine?

While exercise such as walking or dancing is best for relieving high blood pressure, not everyone can easily stand or walk, which is where chair exercises come in. Chair-based exercises are simple to perform at home and dont require any special equipment more than a chair with arm rests, though you may be able to work up to adding stretch bands and/or light weights too.

But mostly, chair exercises are simple ways to work your heart while sitting down. For instance, from an upright seated position, push both your hands forward at shoulder height while keeping your wrists extended before returning them to the armrests and repeating. Do this four to five times to start or as many times as you feel comfortable. Rest and repeat.

Can Exercise Lower Blood Pressure

Regular exercise strengthens the heart and improves its ability to handle stress and added pressure. Aiming to achieve a moderate blood pressure after exercise makes it less likely to cause any hypertension-related health issues.

Blood pressure is determined in millimeters of mercury . The normal blood pressure range is below 120 mm Hg for the systolicnumber above and below 80 mm Hg for the diastolicnumber below.

Your loved ones can significantly cut down on average blood pressure levels when they become more physically active, especially when undergoing regular, light physical activity such as hip exercises.

Regular exercise keeps the body fit, reduces calories, and maintains a healthy body weight another crucial way to manage blood sugar levels.

Tips For A Great Workout When You Have Hypertension

When making any lifestyle changes, the easier they are to maintain, the more likely you are to stick with them. Dont dread having to exercise. Make it fun!

Find an activity you enjoy. Grab a friend and bring them along with you. If you already have a gym membership, see if they have any group classes. It wont seem like as much of a chore if you enjoy it. It is also much more likely you will continue if you have a group or buddy to do exercise with! The community aspect can be a huge motivational factor for sticking to a hypertension exercise routine.

Start slow with your new exercise routine. If you have hypertension and are beginning an exercise routine for the first time in a while, it is ok for you to pace yourself. Do not overdo it on day one!

The next tip is to always warm up before your activity and cool down afterward. You dont want your pressure levels shooting sky-high too quickly or plummeting suddenly. The warm-up and cool-down allow your heart rate to increase gradually and decrease without the sudden changes that could cause trouble.

A simple way to warm up for exercise is to move your arms in circles for 1 to 2 minutes. The circular movements will get blood flowing and pumping with out drastically increasing your heart rate for a nice and easy warm up Dr Norm Shealy Says.

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The Good Exercises For Lowering Blood Pressure

According to the health experts at the charity Blood Pressure UK, the best exercises for lowering your blood pressure are aerobic exercises such as cycling, brisk walking, swimming, dancing, gardening, tennis, and jogging. “Aerobic exercises are repetitive and rhythmic movements which get your heart, lungs, blood vessels and muscles working,” the experts explain. “They use the large muscle groups of your body, such as those in your legs, shoulders and arms. Walking, jogging, swimming, dancing and heaving gardening, such as digging, are all aerobic activities.”

But the site also notes some exercises that aren’t so good at lowering your blood pressure, such as

What Questions Should You Ask Your Doctor

What Is Best Exercise For High Blood Pressure?

High blood pressure is a dangerous condition, and the more information you have, the better. This means dont be shy with the questions, though your doctor will also provide you with plenty of information to begin with.

But questions about how intensely you should exercise and how quickly exercise and diet will lower your blood pressure are a good place to start. You may also ask your doctors opinion on the use of blood pressure medications, along with lifestyle changes or how dangerous your immediate condition is.

But the important thing is that you ask questions and gather all the information you can. Dont worry your Intermountain Healthcare team will be happy to answer all questions that you have, since they know as well as anyone that theres no such thing as a silly question, especially when it comes to your health!

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Wrapping Up The Easy Exercises To Lower Blood Pressure

Give these easy exercises a try to help lower your blood pressure. You can pick one or try them all on different days. The idea is to get your body moving and elevate your heart rate. Research has shown lifestyle improvements are beneficial for your health and blood pressure.

The U.S. department of Health and Human Services recommends at least 150 minutes per week of moderate-intensity aerobic activity or 75 minutes per week of vigorous. They say its best to spread out your exercise time instead of doing it all at once 9.

Spend less time sitting and get moving. Even light-intensity activity can offset some of the risks of being inactive. After starting off easy, you can always increase the amount and intensity over time. Dont forget to consult with your physician.

What Is The Fastest Way To Bring Down High Blood Pressure

Here are some simple recommendations:

  • Exercise most days of the week. Exercise is the most effective way to lower your blood pressure. …
  • Consume a low-sodium diet. Too much sodium causes blood pressure to rise. …
  • Limit alcohol intake to no more than 1 to 2 drinks per day. …
  • Make stress reduction a priority.
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    Exercise Reduces Your Body Weight

    Being overweight or obese increases your risk of hypertension. The two are closely linked. With each incremental rise in your weight, your blood pressure does the same. This happens because the heavier you are, the harder your heart has to work.Exercising increases your energy expenditure, which can help to create a calorie deficit. When you burn more calories than you consume, your body is forced to break down energy stores. This can help to decrease your total body weight.A study published in 2001 in the Medicine & Science and Sports & Exercise journal examined the effects of exercise and weight loss on blood pressure. In the group of 112 participants with hypertension, exercise and weight loss drastically reduced blood pressure readings. This has been supported in more recent research among participants with normal blood pressure, like in a 2013 trial, which found that exercise has a beneficial outcome on blood pressure regardless of your starting point.

    What Type of Exercise Is Best for Lowering Blood Pressure?

    Try A Heart Rate Watch

    Exercises to Lower Blood Pressure

    Gadgets can help you focus and stay on target. Heart rate watches let people quickly assess their pulse rate. To use one: Apply the band that comes with it onto your chest underneath your shirt. You can see your actual heart rate as you work out by looking at the watch during exercise. This is an accurate measurement and is a good alternative to taking your pulse manually. Optimal training zones for pulse rate vary significantly. Ask your doctor to recommend the best target heart rate zone for you.

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    Aerobic Exercise To Lower Blood Pressure

    Aerobic exercise is a term used to describe exercise that focuses on pumping oxygenated blood through the arteries and into the muscles.

    It is performed at various intensities, and even moderate-intensity aerobic exercise can have some big benefits for blood pressure.

    Some examples of aerobic exercises for blood pressure include:

    • Walking
    • Cycling
    • Dancing

    In my opinion, walking is the best exercise to lower blood pressure, especially if you have high blood pressure, pre-hypertension, and hypertension.

    First off, walking is low impact and will not put much of a burden on your joints. Secondly, its extremely accessibleall you need is some shoes and a street.

    Finally, it allows you to maximize your time because you can easily talk on the phone, listen to a podcast or audiobook, or dedicate your brain power to something else.

    A number of studies have shown that walking has big benefits. For example, a Korean study noted that people with hypertension or pre-hypertension were able to regulate and drop their blood pressure by five points by going for a brisk 40-minute walk each day.

    A brisk pace means that youre going about three to four miles per hour. Thats fast enough to work up a little sweat but not to the point where you couldnt maintain a conversation.

    When the 40 minutes was distributed over four 10-minute walks throughout the day, blood pressure dropped by an average of three points.

    Is It Ok To Exercise With High Blood Pressure

    Is it safe to exercise if you have high blood pressure? For most people, the answer is yes. If you have high blood pressure, you should be able to be more active quite safely. But to be on the safe side, its always a good idea to speak to your doctor or nurse before you start any new physical activity.

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    When To Seek Professional Treatment

    You should see your doctor regularly for health screenings as part of a good preventive care program. If you are doing this, your healthcare provider can see trends developing with your blood pressure and other health factors and give you advice on how to head off serious problems.

    If you don’t regularly see a doctor and have a onetime high blood pressure reading, you should schedule an appointment with a healthcare provider for follow-upespecially if you are experiencing symptoms like chest pain or dizziness.

    Identifying High Blood Pressure

    How to Lower Blood Pressure

    Generally speaking, people will not be aware that they have high blood pressure unless they are tested for it. Otherwise, it will be picked up on when other conditions are developed.

    Adults over 40 are advised to get their blood pressure checked at least every five years. This can be done by your GP. However, it may be worth getting tested more regularly if you are in any of the following risk categories:

    • Overweight
    • Regularly drink alcohol or caffeine-based drinks
    • Smoker
    • Black African or Caribbean descent
    • Are over 65

    If you are found to have high blood pressure, your doctor will offer advice on bringing your blood pressure back down. You will likely need more tests to keep track of your blood pressure until it’s at normal levels again.

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    Increasing Physical Activity And Exercise

    Many people have jobs that involve sitting for long periods. In their free time, a person may also prefer sedentary activities, such as watching television or playing computer games. Some studies have found a link between a sedentary lifestyle and hypertension.

    One of the best ways to prevent or resolve hypertension is to be as physically active as possible.

    A investigated the immediate effects of exercise on blood pressure. The analysis, which included 65 studies, found that blood pressure readings were significantly lower following exercise.

    This reduction was greater in:

    • males
    • people who were already physically active
    • people who did not take medication to control hypertension

    Physical activity can also help with losing weight, and losing of body weight can help lower blood pressure, according to the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute.

    In terms of the intensity of exercise, have found that intense and moderate physical activity are equally effective at reducing blood pressure. This means that a person may still benefit from shorter or less intense exercise sessions.

    While any amount of physical activity is helpful, the official recommendations for adults are:

    Aerobic activity, such as walking or running:

    • A person should do at least 150â300 minutes of moderate activity or 75â150 minutes of vigorous activity per week.

    Muscle strengthening:

    • A person should work to strengthen all major muscle groups on 2 or more days per week.

    When Should You Exercise And For How Long

    It isnt clear exactly how much exercise is needed to reduce blood pressure. This is because the causes of hypertension and benefits of physical activity are multifactorial so they can only be determined on an individual basis.

    However, studies showed significant benefits for certain groups of people when they exercised for 61-90 minutes a week . A 2015 study also examined the recommendations given by a variety of official bodies and organisations. The general recommendation was at least 30 minutes of aerobic activity, such as brisk walking, for 4-7 days a week .

    I would recommend removing the following section there are too many variables and ifs to really make this applicable to a wide population without causing significant questions or concerns from the public, that are probably unnecessary and do not really apply to exercise recommendations in regards to BP control.

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    How Much Do I Need To Exert Myself

    Once you know your resting heart rate, you can then determine your target training heart rate. Target heart rates let you measure your initial fitness level and monitor your progress in a fitness program. You do this by measuring your pulse periodically as you exercise and staying within 50 to 85 percent of your maximum heart rate. This range is called your target heart rate.

    How Do I Calculate My Heart Rate

    Exercise Your Way to Lower Blood Pressure

    To calculate your target training heart rate, you need to know your resting heart rate. Resting heart rate is the number of times your heart beats per minute when it’s at rest. The best time to find your resting heart rate is in the morning after a good night’s sleep and before you get out of bed. Typically, an adults resting heart rate is 60-100 beats per minute. However, for people who are physically fit, it’s generally lower. Also, resting heart rate usually rises with age.

    • The best places to find your pulse are the wrists, inside of your elbow, side of your neck or top of your foot.
    • To get the most accurate reading, put your finger over your pulse and count the number of beats in 60 seconds.

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    Know What Moderate Means For You

    If you injure yourself right at the start, you are less likely to keep going. Focus on doing something that gets your heart rate up to a moderate level. If you’re physically active regularly for longer periods or at greater intensity, you’re likely to benefit more. But don’t overdo it. Too much exercise can give you sore muscles and increase the risk of injury.

    Whats The Best Type Of Exercise For Lowering Blood Pressure

    Aerobic exercise which includes most activities that make you moderately out of breath can help reduce your blood pressure by up to 10 per cent. This could be fast walking, jogging, cycling or swimming, but even mowing the lawn, digging the flower beds and dancing count, explains Daniel.

    There is also plenty of research now to suggest that resistance training, when combined with moderate activity, can help to reduce BP, if done correctly. Dynamic resistance training includes activities such as weight lifting and circuit training.

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    How Does Aerobic Exercise Lower Blood Pressure

    You can lower blood pressure through exercise very effectively because exercise affects blood pressure in several ways.

    Image by Donna McNiel on

    Physical benefits of exercise for blood pressure

    Firstly, it strengthens your heart and lungs. This is vital to good health anyway, but especially important for healthy blood pressure. The stronger your heart is, the more efficiently it can pump blood with less force, and with lower blood pressure as a result.

    Exercise also improves the way your body processes and regulates sugar which is pretty crucial since too much sugar is a major factor in the increase in high blood pressure, diabetes and obesity in modern Western societies.

    Regular exercise also, obviously, helps you lose weight, which can also be vital for quite a lot of people in lowering their blood pressure. Being overweight on its own is likely to increase your blood pressure, and losing weight to reduce it.

    Psychological benefits of exercise for blood pressure

    Perhaps the biggest exercise benefit for many, these days, is that exercise helps reduce stress. Doing exercise helps use up any stress hormones that are running around in your body, so it can help you mitigate episodes of stress. However, exercising regularly also helps you become more resilient to stress, so that youre less prone to stress and less negatively affected by it when it does come.

    Is It Safe To Exercise If You Have High Blood Pressure

    Blog: Best Exercises for High Blood Pressure

    For most people, the answer is yes. If you have , you should be able to be more active quite safely. But to be on the safe side, its always a good idea to speak to your doctor or nurse before you start any new physical activity.

    Physical activity will cause your blood pressure to rise for a short time. For most people, this is nothing to worry about, and when you stop the activity it should quickly return to normal.

    If your blood pressure is relatively high, your doctor or nurse may prefer to lower it with before you start exercising. If its very high, avoid any new activity without talking to your doctor first.

    Use the table below to get an idea of whether its safe to exercise, but speak to your doctor or nurse about whats safe for you.

    Dont start any new activity visit your doctor or nurse as soon as possible

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