Is Gardening Good Exercise?

Springtime is upon us and many of us are looking forward to getting out in the sunshine and planting our beautiful gardens. Is gardening considered exercising? If you have spent all day in the garden or yard, you feel as though you have put in a full body workout, but have you? It all depends on the particular gardening task you are doing. Standing and watering probably will not cause your heart rate to increase but digging, pulling, and pushing the wheelbarrow will. Like any other form of exercise, you must be active for at least 30 minutes for there to be a benefit.

According to the Centers for Disease Control, gardening is compared to “moderate cardiovascular exercise.” Gardening 30 to 45 minutes a day can burn 150 to 300 calories.

Calories Burned Per 30 Minutes of Activity:

  • Digging: 150-197 calories
  • Planting: 135-177 calories
  • Weeding: 138-166 calories
  • Push Mowing: 150-200 calories
  • Raking: 120-157 calories

Gardening can provide many health benefits including the following:

  • Increases flexibility
  • Strengthens joints
  • Decreases blood pressure
  • Lowers cholesterol levels
  • Lowers your risk of diabetes
  • Slows osteoporosis

Gardening is just one way to promote activity when you otherwise might be sitting. Time passes quickly, and before you know it, you have racked up 60 minutes of exercise. Remember it is always important to start slowly if you are not used to much exertion.

For your comfort, safety, and for protection for your back and knees, keep these tips in mind:

  • Use a cushion pad under your knees for added comfort and support.
  • Avoid sitting on your heels and keep your back straight.
  • Stand up and stretch your legs every 10 minutes or so.
  • Use a long-handled shovel or spade that is lightweight, and do not overload it.
  • Bend at the knees and hips when picking up tools.
3/26/2021 3:04:52 PM
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