We all know that there are different types of physical activity - aerobic, muscle and bone strengthening, balance and flexibility. However, do we know which intensity level we should be exercising at?
Physical activities vary in terms of their intensity, duration, and the benefits they provide for your body. To get the most out of your exercise routine, it is recommended to include a variety of physical activities and work out at moderate or vigorous intensity levels to improve overall fitness and achieve health benefits.
Before you start engaging in any physical activity, take some time to learn more about the different levels of intensity to get more from your exercise routine.
How do I measure intensity? Intensity is how hard your body is working during physical activity. Let's take a look at how intensity levels are calculated and how to determine the right intensity levels to be working out in.
To help you gauge more accurately how hard you have been exercising, you can use the Activity Intensity Guide below and access this link to calculate your heart-rate range to identify your exercise intensity level.
[Note: Maximum Heart Rate = 220 – Your Age]
Take the following steps to determine your desired intensity:
Light-intensity physical activity causes little to no increase in breathing and/or heart rate. You should be able to talk and sing during the activity. Examples include:
Moderate-intensity physical activity causes a slight increase in breathing and heart rate. However, you are still able to talk but not sing during the activity. You may also be perspiring. Examples include:
Vigorous-intensity physical activity will cause your heart rate to increase significantly. You will find yourself breathing hard and fast, and find it hard to hold a conversation with someone. Examples include:
Note that the intensity levels for these activities may vary between individuals depending on the effort put in and an individual’s fitness level.
Now that you understand the difference in the types of intensity levels, it's time to get active.
Everyone can enjoy physical activity of any intensity level. However, if you have not been physically active and have a medical condition such as heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes or asthma, do consult your doctor on the type and intensity of physical activity suitable for you.
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This article was last reviewed on
22 Nov 2023
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