Staying fit during lockdown

Posted on 27 March 2020

Lockdown measures are crucial to minimise the spread of COVID-19. To minimise the impact on you – and your family’s – well-being while cooped up at home, consider these novel ways  for staying fit during lockdown.


During South Africa’s 21 days of lockdown, you are obliged to stay at home unless venturing out for groceries and medical supplies. The government’s control and prevention measures includes no dog-walking, running or any other form of outdoor exercise. Because keeping active is going to be key in maintaining your physical health – and boosting your mental health too – consider adding some of these to your lockdown exercise repertoire.

In fact, if you’ve been postponing that exercise programme for months, this is the perfect time to start a healthy routine.


General guidelines

According to the World Health Organization (WHO) adults should do at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic physical activity a week or do at least 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity aerobic physical activity. At least two days a week, you should do some muscle-strengthening activities. Consider breaking your exercise up into 10 minute sections — 10 minutes in the morning, 10 in the afternoon, and 10 in the evening. When you’ve established that as a daily routine, then your day will be better structured as well.


Get into the garden

If you’re fortunate enough to have access to a patch of greenery, make a concerted effort to keep it ­– and your physique – in tip-top condition during lockdown. Not only will your garden reap the benefits of weed-free beds and well-composted soil, you’ll be toning your arms and shoulders. Just mowing the lawn in said to burn up to 280 calories an hour – and squatting while weeding is a great workout for your glutes and quads.


Run a marathon

Nope. You won’t be breaking the rules. The Mzansi Lockdown Marathon encourages you to run 2kms a day for the 21 days while you’re confined to your home. Round the garden. Run to the front door and back. Run on the treadmill. Or simply run on the spot. You’ll be clocking up the kilometres without even realising it.


Go online

Many fitness gurus  — from yoga and Pilates instructors to personal trainers and dance teachers — are offering their classes online, some of them for free. Just grab a mat or a clean towel and stream via a reliable internet connection. Yoga is particularly suitable for anyone who is feeling anxious, as the need to focus on your breathing will transport your mind elsewhere.

Try these for size:


Thousands of people now tune in daily at 8am or 3pm for 30-minute live workouts led by Johno Meintjes and his family in the mornings, and the exceptional JEFF coaches with their kids in the afternoons.

Yoga with Adrienne

Actress and international yoga teacher Adriene Mishler publishes free yoga and mindfulness videos. With a library of over 500 videos, you’ll be inspired no matter what your age and stage.


Get your groove on

A surefire way to relieve stress and boost endorphins? Pump up the volume and dance to your favourite playlist. Do it solo or with the family – and if you’re busting some proper moves, why not share your brilliance? Create short dance videos on TikTok, the Chinese video-sharing social networking service. Who knows? You might even go viral.


Published in Covid-19

In the interest of our patients, in accordance with SA law and our commitment to expertise, Mediclinic cannot subscribe to the practice of online diagnosis. Please consult a medical professional for specific medical advice. If you have any major concerns, please see your doctor for an assessment. If you have any cause for concern, your GP will be able to direct you to the appropriate specialists.