for better mental health

How to stay active at home

We know that staying active can be good for your mental health, but if you're unable to leave the house for any reason, staying active can feel like a challenge.

Here are a few suggestions for how you can stay active without leaving the house. Try and choose something you enjoy, and that fits into your daily life. You may need to try a few before you find something you like. You may also find that different things work for you at different times, depending on how you're feeling.

Try to sit less – if you spend lots of time sitting down, try to get up and move around a bit every hour. If you're worried you might forget, you could set an alarm to remind yourself.

Chair-based exercises – if you have mobility problems, a physical condition, or find it difficult spending time out of a chair, the NHS website has activity routines you can try while sitting down.

Play an active computer game – there are a few different gaming consoles you could try which involve actively moving your body while playing computer games.

Try exercises or stretches – the NHS website has lots of different routines, or you could try an exercise CD or DVD.

If you are a wheelchair user or have limited mobility, the NHS and Parasport websites have tips and routines to help you stay active, as well as fitness guides designed for wheelchair users.

Choose an online programme – there are lots of free, online exercise regimes designed for you to try at home, including everything from chair-based exercises to yoga, and workouts that let you choose your own level.

Do active household chores like hoovering, tidying or DIY.

Include exercise in your day-to-day routine – run up the stairs instead of walking, or do some gentle stretching while you're watching TV.

Dance – put on some music while you're cooking and dance around your kitchen, or have a mini dance party with your friends or family.

More information and tips

For a list of ideas and resources for getting active, see our Get Active, Feel Good page.

For more about physical activity and your mental health, see our information pages.

If you're staying at home because of the Coronavirus and would like more information on looking after your mental health, see our page on Coronavirus and your wellbeing.

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