What’s the best workout for people with vestibular disorders? We get this question all the time here at The Vertigo Doctor, and our answer is always the same. Online fitness classes are an excellent way to workout if you have vestibular disorders, especially in the early stages of recovery when you might still be experiencing symptoms like dizziness and unsteadiness.
This guide will go over all of the reasons why online fitness classes, personal training, and general exercise are a great way to start living a healthy life again!
What is Vestibular Fitness?
While traditional workout routines focus on only muscular fitness, Vestibular fitness workouts focus on improving your senses of balance and movement, along with muscular and cardiovascular fitness. The more you learn about working out your vestibular system, the better equipped you will be to deal with vestibular stimuli and maybe even treat and prevent vestibular dysfunction.
Your vestibular system is designed to detect head and body movement and acceleration and help to keep you upright. Dysfunction of this system can lead to feelings of imbalance, dizziness, lightheadedness, and even vertigo.
Fitness is important for those with Vestibular disorders because research has shown that working out, whether intentionally or unintentionally, helps prevent dizziness flares and decrease the risk of acute vertigo episodes.
What Does Exercise do For the Vestibular System?
The vestibular system relies on movement for strength. Your vestibular system is a use-it-or-lose-it type system. The more you move, twist, turn, and play the stronger the system gets! Exercise does exactly that.
Exercising in the most basic form, walking really helps! Walking for 30 minutes/day does help to decrease dizziness and prevent attacks, however, moving in different planes and directions is even better for your system.
We know that the more we move, the stronger our muscles get. If you do enough bicep curls, for example, you will be able to see your arms become stronger and more toned. You can’t see your vestibular system, but you can feel its strength when you are less dizzy and more confident in movement. Vestibular Fit is the program we created to bridge that gap – completely virtual group exercise classes designed to strengthen your vestibular system without causing increased or excess dizziness!
Working Out at Home
Many people with vestibular disorders have trouble making it to fitness classes because of balance issues or nausea. For these individuals, working out at home may be a better option. That’s why Vestibular Fit and Vestibular Group Fit exist!
Working out from the comfort of your home may be better for you for many reasons:
- You do not need a gym membership. We all know these can be expensive, and many of us do not utilize all the services for how much we pay for the gym.
- You can participate without leaving your home, in a comfortable environment. Safety can be a big concern if you feel lightheaded or like you may fall over at any given moment. Workouts created to be in a safe environment and get your sweat on are vital to making sure you aren’t dizzy.
- You can fit it in anytime during the day. The best part about these workouts is that you can do them anytime during the day. Although group classes may be a good fit, you need to work them into your schedule instead of the other way around. With individual workouts that go at your pace and are made with your symptoms in mind, you can do them for any duration, at any time, and alter the workout as you see fit!
What Exercises are Safe for Vestibular Disorders?
This is a question I get asked a lot; are there better or worse exercises for Vestibular disorders? The answer is: it depends!
Confused? You’re not alone—many people with dizziness and vertigo avoid physical activity because they fear it will exacerbate their symptoms.
An amount of exercise that you can tolerate without excessive symptom exacerbation while still positively stimulating your vestibular and muscular system is a fine line to walk.
Right now, whether you are beginning to exercise or restarting, sprinting laps and going to spin class may be too much for you. It’s most important that you listen to your body. Starting slowly, even 5 minutes at a time, might be the best thing for you. I recommend people begin with timed walking and/or floor exercises.
Timed walking means you time yourself to see how you tolerate the exercise and work up from there. Starting slowly for all things is important. We especially know with Vestibular disorders – something is usually better than nothing, and beginning at YOUR beginning is personal to you and very important.
How to Improve at Home Exercises
Not everyone can get out and work out in a gym, especially with a vestibular disorder. Fortunately, there are plenty of great workouts you can do from home! Exercises like squats, push-ups, and bridges are fantastic exercises you can do from home. If your Vestibular disorder makes you feel unsteady on your feet when walking or standing up, use a countertop, table, or sturdy chair to support yourself. This will help prevent falls and ensure your safety. Exercise at home requires little more than willpower; it doesn’t need to be expensive or complicated!
Improving home exercise for those with Vestibular Disorders is why I created Vestibular Fit! Vestibular Fit intends to provide doable, scalable, and accessible exercises to help you get a workout without feeling dizzy.
What is Vestibular Fit?
Vestibular Fit and Vestibular Group Fit are fitness programs for Vestibular Warriors.
Vestibular Fit is a personal training program designed with you specifically in mind. Vestibular Fit’s workouts are changed every month and completely customized to your needs. Because it is personal training, the exercises are all 100% custom to your needs. Are you looking to return to running 5k’s? Let’s customize you a Return to Run program that focuses on your run speed, distance, and overall time!
Vestibular Group Fit is a group fitness program made for Vestibular Warriors – everyone else has fitness classes tailored to them, why not for dizziness and Vestibular strength? Vestibular Group Fit is a three-day/week group workout plan and 2 days a week of live workout classes. These classes will happen only once per day on workout days but will be available for 30 days after they’re published, then they’re stored in the Member’s Only Vault for access in the future! That way, if you can’t make it to live class, you will be able to work out with us on your own time!
Ready to begin?
We are SO excited for you to join the community!!
Premium Vestibular Group Fit
Access to: Facebook Support Group
5x/week live workouts
Monthly Balance Challenge
Return to Distance Running & Walking Protocol
Mindset chat in the Facebook Support Group
Access to All Previous Live Classes (the archive)
Discounted 1:1 workout sessions with Dr. Madison or Dr. Jenna