Best 5 Exercises for Diabetes in the Middle-Aged or 50s

Diabetes is a common condition that affects many people in today’s population. It is a chronic condition that affects how the body controls glucose/sugar. There are two types of diabetes; type 1 which is typically identified at childhood or during teenage years. Type 1 a a result of the insulin not producing sufficient insulin. Insulin is the hormone used to control and regulate glucose/sugar levels in the blood. Type 2 diabetes often occurs in adulthood and is a result of the body becoming resistant to insulin.

Exercise can help improve the management of diabetes because it helps the body to use glucose and insulin in an effective way. During exercise there is an increase demand for glucose, insulin helps transport glucose from the blood into the muscles. Therefore, lowering/controlling blood sugar in the bloodstream.

Regular exercise can also help reduce the risk of other complications like cardiovascular diseases, this is often linked with diabetes. Exercise with guidance from a physiotherapist is a safe way to approach diabetes management. Physiotherapist can help with education, exercise prescription, pain management, improve strength and mobility. Furthermore, physiotherapy can help manage nerve symptoms such as tingling, numbness or pain in the legs and feet.

Follow these simple steps to reduce your diabetes or even reverse it:

  1. Exercise
  2. Eat less
  3. Significantly reduce carbohydrates and sugars

Exercise can help regulate blood sugar levels, when you exercise your muscles use the sugar in your blood to produce movements which reduces the overall sugar levels in the bloodstream. This effect can last many hours after you have stopped exercising. Therefore, making it an effective way to control your diabetes. Exercise can also help with weight loss, improve circulation, reduce the risk of heart disease and reduce blood pressure. It is also good for your mental health as it can help with the release of dopamine (happy hormone). Exercise also helps “burn fat” to use for energy.

Eat less. Seriously. Just have smaller meals. Stop padding them out with potatoes, rice, pasta and bread. Eat less. When you eat less, you’ll reduce weight.

At Surrey Physio we have experienced physiotherapists who are able to provide tailored exercise programs to your individual needs and unique goals. We treat you as a person and work with you on a one-to-one basis. We use up to date research and latest NICE guidelines to help guide you to control your diabetes. We can help with exercising safely using correct technique and we use a holistic approach taking in consideration any other conditions or medications you may have.

Furthermore, Surrey Physio also offers other services such as massage therapy which can improve blood flow. Acupuncture has been shown to improve and manage pain and reduce stress. These services can be beneficial for people with diabetes.

We have developed 5 exercises we think can be helpful for managing your diabetes. Please give them a try.

Walking or Running on a Treadmill

Maintaining a good upright posture, walk. Concentrate on a heel-strike to toe-off action. Make sure you keep your head up, with your eyes on the horizon line. Aim to walk at least 20-minutes per day. If you feel comfortable, speed up to a gentle jog.

Stationary Bike | Machine | Strength and Conditioning Exercises

Start with a slow pace in as much of an upright position as possible and drive the pedals round at the desired pace, driving your feet in a circular motion and engaging the hamstring at the bottom of the motion. Continue for the allocated amount of time.

Walking Lunges | Lunge | Strength and Conditioning Exercises

Take a large step forward landing onto your heel with your front foot, with your back foot go onto your toes and bend your knee. Sink down so that your trailing leg lightly touches the floor, once completed lean slightly forward and drive yourself forward so that your trailing leg meets your front leg in a standing position. Repeat for the other leg moving forward down the length of space.

Rowing machine

Start with ensuring your feet are in the right placement with the strap over the midline of your foot, hands in a comfortable position on the handle in an upright position. Move forward while bending your knees with your arms out straight, once reaching as far as you comfortably can drive yourself back and bring the handle to sternum height. Repeat the movement for the desired amount of time or distance.

Cross Trainer | Machine | Strength and Conditioning Exercises

Press the start button and begin with a slow pace in an upright position, holding onto the stationary handles or moving handles while driving each leg forward continuously. Repeat for 20-minutes.

Diabetes can be reversed. Our physios will help guide you, and be your accountability coach. Get support to lose weight, to exercise safely, and to eat the right foods.

(Therapists, osteopaths, sports massage therapists, chiropractors reading this page… if you love the exercises here, then please check out the amazing exercise prescription tool You can sign up for a free 14-day trial, and it’s affordable to buy, with pricing starting from £11.23 per month.

If you are a patient, in pain, or elite performance, please call us to discuss your case further. Surrey Physio have an amazing team of therapists to help you recover from pain, but also to achieve top performance. Call us on 0208 685 6930 or click the link at the top to book online.)