Making moves to be healthier can be incredibly difficult, especially if you are overweight. The good news is there is gentle exercise for obese people can use to help get in better shape and improve overall health. Find a workout for obese beginners that works for you.

Obese person weighing their waist with a tape measure

From simply getting out for a walk to hitting the gym, every small move you make can help work towards a healthier you. These gentle exercises for obese people are a great starting point and over time you can keep trying new things to help reach your goals and keep exercising interesting no matter where you are on your fitness journey.

Remember that even if these exercises may be a bit much when you first start out and never push to the point of injury and allow your body to adjust to exercise when you first start out. This will help prevent injury and burnout so you can stick to your new lifestyle. 

Remember, before starting ANY kind of exercise, consult with your doctor to make sure they recommend it.

Walking is often recommended as the best exercise for obese people because it is low impact yet able to raise the heart rate enough to start burning off fat. Walking is easy and requires no special equipment, a trip to the gym, or assistance. The trick with walking is to take it slow to start and give work your way up to walking more and more as the weeks go by. This can be done with the whole family by choosing to take a walk after dinner.

Swimming is one of the best low-impact activities anyone can do. Swimming is gentle and perfect for obese people because the water tends to take pressure off of sore overworked joints and makes movement easier for those with limited mobility. Swimming is a great full-body workout that not only can help with weight loss but can help to tone the entire body.

If you would prefer something in the gym or at home that is low impact, a stationary bike allows you to work out in the gym or in the privacy of your own home and burn calories without putting a lot of impact on weak or damaged joints.

obese person stretching on a mat

Gentle core exercises

If you would like to start with bodyweight exercises to help work on building strength try wall or counter-modified push-ups. To do these simply put your hands on the wall or counter and lean forward to perform a push-up. This will put less of your body weight onto your arms allowing you to build muscle by performing push-ups even while your weight makes it too difficult to do them on the floor.

One of the best gentle exercises for anyone including obese people is yoga. Yoga helps to calm the mind, increase flexibility, increase strength, and reduce the risk of injury. Because of these amazing benefits, it makes for the perfect workout for those that suffer from obesity and wish to improve their overall health.

For those that suffer from obesity, there may be some need to modify yoga positions to fit your personal abilities. Do not be afraid to only go as far into a move as feels comfortable for you. This will get better over time and eventually you will be able to do most if not all yoga moves without modification.

There are great yoga tools available to help make modification easier. Try using yoga blocks to help when you can not comfortably reach the floor. If yoga blocks are not enough for you yet you can even opt to use a chair to help modify yoga moves. There are even great yoga programs designed to be modified like DDP Yoga where they will walk you through modification options so you can make any workout your own.

All exercise, but particularly yoga is wonderful for mental health as well as physical health. There are more benefits to exercise than you could imagine.

obese woman doing modified exercise on a mat

Weight lifting for obese

The kettlebell swing is one of the easiest weight training moves you can do that effectively works the entire body from shoulders to feet. The best part is that you can do this with a low-weight kettlebell allowing you to take advantage of low-weight high repetition weight training to help burn off body fat while keeping the overall impact on your body relatively low.

If you do not have a kettlebell you can get a similar result by using a modified squat with weights to work as much of the body as possible. Many people that suffer from obesity have a limited range of motion when starting out with exercise. Start by reducing how deep you get into the squat. As you get stronger and more flexible you can work your way into a dealer squat. Remember to never go further than your knees feel comfortable with.

When you come up from your squat press your weight up into the air above your head. This will activate those smaller muscles in the same exercise as the larger muscles in your legs for maximum fat burn in one gentle move.

When you chose a gentle exercise for obese people, it’s the first step toward wholeness and wellness. I can’t wait to hear all about your journey!

Set some fitness goals and get started on your new healthy life today!