Category Archives: Adapted workouts

Getting an Adapted (and Inexpensive) Workout at Home’s face it, it’s not easy getting a workout when you have limited mobility. It’s not like you can just buy an old pair of running shoes and become a marathoner out of the blue. Ummm not that easy…

And on top of that, many of us could never afford one of those expensive adapted workout machines. Vitaglide, those beautiful universal gyms for wheelchair-users, a $2,000 handbike….they all sound great, if you’re loaded that is. This is why I’m a huge fan of getting my workout at home. There is no way I could ever afford any of these prices.

Even if could afford the equipment, I would have nowhere to put it in my tiny place. What are we supposed to do then? It’s not like a mainstream workout club offers everything we need.

So since I refused the “no option” option, I figured out some smart ways to get a workout at home without wasting a boatload of money. It wasn’t easy, but I now have a few solid go-to’s. Check them out below.

Adapted workout DVDs

One of the first things that came to mind on my quest of working out at home on the cheap was of course the stand by – workout videos. All I could picture though were Jane Fonda and Billy Blank’s Tae-Bo videos….were there any videos for people with disabilities? After a quick search online I found out in fact that yes there were, and they were amazing.

I was thrilled. There are in fact severaladapted workout videos out there for people with disabilities, and featured a variety of workout styles . And even better, many of these are available for free on YouTube. A quick “wheelchair workout video” search will uncover dozens.

There are also several more you can purchase on I am in one of them in fact. It’s called Beyond Disability, an at-home yoga practice DVD showing how to do yoga in your wheelchair. This video was produced by the Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation and was created by the yoga studio I go to (founded by paraplegic Matthew Sanford), Mind Body Solutions.

This DVD gives you an hour-long yoga workout. It’s much cheaper than going to an adapted yoga class, especially if there are non any available near you anyways. There are also several workout DVDs for people disabilities on other workouts like aerobics, cross-fit, weight lifting and Zumba.

Wii Boxing

A heck of a lot cheaper than going to boxing classes, buying a used Wii for around $50 – $75 dollars is one of the best things you can buy to get a workout at home.  Every Wii should come with the default Sports game, and this is the game you want because it includes the boxing game.

It also has bowling, baseball, tennis and a few others. When you play the boxing game, even a five minute session can make you start huffing and puffing. Who knew boxing was such a good workout?  If you really want to get a cardio workout, just play the boxing game for an hour and you’ll burn around 680 calories.

Seated Aerobics

You can also make up your own seated aerobics and do it at home. I actually do this quite often, however I would never have the guts to do it in front of anybody (lol). I just turn up my favorite music and start to jam out. My aerobics definitely tend to be more on the “dancey” side, and that’s just find too. Whenever it takes to get you to move your body. I always find myself doing a lot of arm punches.


Even if you don’t buy the yoga DVD, you can just make up your own yoga poses at home.  Don’t go crazy and stretch your body in weird ways, but also do what feels good. Yoga is very much that. Or…you can go to a few class, learn some poses, then you can confidently begin your at-home practice.  If you aren’t sure you can do it alone, have your PCAs or a friend help you hold your poses.

Arm Biking

The one piece of adapted workout equipment that’s actually pretty affordable is everyone’s favorite – the classic arm bike, such as the Mini Pedal Exerciser Bike FitnessExercise Cycle Leg/Arm with LCD Display.

All you need to do is put this on a table, pull up to it and begin peddling.You will get a great cardio workout from this too, burning around 500 calories in an hour.

So there you have it. You don’t have to be drowning in extra money to get the workout you deserve. With a little bit of digging and smart thinking, you really can work out at home in spite of a disability. See, the workout Gods can be kind; you just got to work with them.

Are you disabled? How do you get a great workout at home?

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