Low impact exercise, among other things
August 16, 2019 11:27 AM   Subscribe

I love this routine from Les Mills and I really enjoy Fitness Marshall videos as well, because the only way to make me exercise is to make it as much like dance as possible, apparently. However, I do this at home and out of consideration for the downstairs neighbours, I tend to do all of it barefeet. Is that likely to be damaging to my (flat) feet/knees/some other body part that I haven't even considered? Am I just being paranoid and bouncing around in shoes wouldn't be as noisy as I think it would be or there are ways to mitigate the disturbance (nobody has complained...yet) Orrrrr, what sort of low impact exercises should I be looking at? Specific videos or folks I can follow on YT would be super helpful. That's pretty much it. Thank you so much!
posted by Nieshka to Health & Fitness (6 answers total) 17 users marked this as a favorite
It sounds like you'd like to dance at home, protect your feet, and not disturb your neighbors.

There are different sorts of mats that might help. Even a yoga mat will give you a little cushion and noise suppression. But there are pads that weightlifters work out on that are all over gym floors. They don't slip and they are thick and a bit padded

Maybe just check with your downstairs neighbors and see if there are locations or times of day that are particularly good for them.
posted by jander03 at 11:47 AM on August 16, 2019

I doubt that wearing shoes is going to cause much more noise than bare feet, and as someone with flat feet and bad knees, I can say that you're probably better off with shoes.

They sell foam mats at Lowe's/Home Depot that connect together so you can make them as big as you need, and then easily disassemble them and move them out of the way when necessary.
posted by jonathanhughes at 11:55 AM on August 16, 2019

Response by poster: I do not live in the US, but thanks for the foam mat tip. I can look up similar stuff here.
Additional resources in the same vein (more videos, easier exercises, something like that?) would also be super welcome.
This is a very scattered ask and I wish I had framed it better. But thanks for the inputs so far!
posted by Nieshka at 11:58 AM on August 16, 2019

I've done plenty of barefoot Zumba and Jazzercise in my day, and I sort of find it easier to be kind to my joints when barefoot. The contact with the ground makes me more conscious of stepping and jumping lightly, and engaging all my leg muscles to decelerate slowly instead of letting my bones and joints absorb the shock. But OTOH, I don't have bad feet or knees (yet, anyway), and I doubt it makes a difference noise-wise whether you're in bare feet vs. athletic shoes. The foam mats others are suggesting sound good, but even a thickish rug would probably help a lot if the room isn't already carpeted.

I only watched the first 5 minutes of your video, but it looks great and I want to try it! Zumba music and routines are not typically so... hip (? I'm so old...) as that. But they're still fun and there are millions of them on YouTube, albeit with much lower production values, on average. The biggest difference is that Zumba instructors don't typically call the moves out loud like the leader in your video did.

You might also look at some kickboxing-style videos and see if any of them look good to you. Some kickboxing workouts have a lot of jumping, but others mostly have you leave one foot in place for 30 seconds or a minute at a time while you do various kicks and punches with your other leg and upper body. Kickboxing isn't nearly so dancy, but the routines normally do have some background music.

Last suggestion as someone else who only likes to work out if it's choreographed --- those video games like Dance Central and Just Dance are pretty fun and challenging. It's an outside shot that you even have a console that supports those kinds of games, but if you do, it might be worth a shot to try one. There are soo many songs and different difficulty levels; it's a lot of bang for your buck.
posted by slenderloris at 4:03 PM on August 16, 2019 [1 favorite]

Oh also since you asked for specific people/videos, I like Euge Carro's Zumba videos. (A couple playlists.) She tends toward Spanish-language pop, so if you want more of a blend that includes American top 40, LiveLoveParty.tv is pretty active.

Also just to let you know, I typically go to Zumba in a classroom setting, and even though I know the moves and the hand cues, it would definitely take me a time or two to get the hang of these video routines that are new to me. Just mentioning that in case you're new to Zumba --- the fact that they don't do vocal cues means that the routines take longer to learn, but once you do get the hang of each one, it makes it easier to really commit to your own style in the dance.
posted by slenderloris at 4:48 PM on August 16, 2019 [1 favorite]

For covering an area big enough for one, search for 'jigsaw' or 'interlocking' mats.
posted by Homer42 at 5:39 AM on August 17, 2019

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