Are you wanting to get back into shape, but your obesity is keeping you from doing all the exercises and physical activities you used to be able to do? While you may not be able to jog a few miles, ride your bike for hours, or pump iron like you used to, there is a low impact workout for obese beginners that are perfect for anyone!

Along with a proper diet, regular exercise is one of the best things you can do for your health, flexibility, and all-around well-being. However, it can be difficult to know where to start if you are an obese individual–most exercises are designed for those who aren’t battling health issues like you are. If you are thinking about bariatric surgery, you may even need to lose a little weight before a procedure.

It can seem like a vicious circle: you want to work out to lose weight, but you just aren’t able to, feel like you can’t because of your weight, or you’ve never worked out in your life. However, with these low-impact workout exercises for obese beginners, you can take those first few steps toward a healthier lifestyle.

Low Impact Workout for Obese Beginners

Low-impact workouts are an excellent choice for people with obesity that are beginners as they provide a gentler way to get active while minimizing stress on the joints. Remember to start slowly and listen to your body while doing these workouts:

  • Walking
  • Swimming
  • Cycling
  • Elliptical Trainer
  • Yoga
  • Tai Chi
  • Pilates
  • Chair Exercises
  • Resistance Bands


Not only is it a chance to step away from screens and electronic devices, but it can also be a powerful form of exercise. You can customize your walk to fit your current fitness level: begin with shorter, leisurely walks, increasing your time up to 30 minutes a day. As your endurance improves, gradually increase the duration and intensity to create a challenging workout that leaves you feeling energized and refreshed.


Swimming is a fantastic full-body workout suitable for obese individuals looking to protect their joints, even if you’re just walking around in the water. For those looking to mix it up, water aerobics classes offer a unique twist on swimming, providing an excellent option for burning calories in the water.


Riding a bicycle is an excellent way to improve your cardiovascular health, strengthen your leg muscles, and get a low-impact workout. It’s a great way to stay active and get outside, whether you’re obese or not. If you’re not ready to venture out on the open road, don’t worry–a stationary bike is a good alternative.

Elliptical Trainer

Not only will it provide a full-body workout, but it’s also a low-impact option that is gentle on the joints–perfect if you’re obese. By adjusting the resistance, you can tailor the workout to your individual fitness level, regardless of whether you’re a beginner or a pro. These machines can be found in most gyms, making them an accessible and convenient option for those looking to up their fitness game.

Low Impact Workout for Obese Beginners: Yoga

Yoga is an excellent fitness option for obese beginners, focusing on flexibility, balance, and relaxation. This low-impact activity can be modified for different fitness levels, making it an ideal choice for those starting out on their weight loss journey. Finding a beginner-friendly yoga class or online video tutorial is easy, and the only equipment you need is a yoga mat!

Tai Chi

Tai Chi is a powerful practice that improves balance, flexibility, and relaxation, all incredibly important aspects of physical and mental health. One of the great things about Tai Chi is that it’s suitable for people of all fitness levels. Whether you’re young or old, athletic or simply looking for a way to be active, Tai Chi can meet you where you’re at.


Pilates is a low-impact exercise that focuses on core strength, flexibility, and posture. It can help improve overall body awareness and sessions can be crafted to fit any body size and any fitness level. Like Yoga and Tai Chi, no equipment is needed and you can start at almost any time (as long as your physician okays it of course).

Chair Exercises

If mobility is a concern, you can do seated exercises using a sturdy chair. This includes seated leg lifts, seated marches, and seated side leg lifts. There is very little strain on the joints, you don’t need to leave the house, and you can even do these exercises while watching TV. An excellent way to get back into the swing of things and build up an exercise routine that’s easy to stick to.

Resistance Bands

Incorporating resistance bands into your workout routine can help build strength without putting too much stress on your joints. They come in various resistance levels and can be used while sitting down or standing up. As far as equipment goes, they are also relatively inexpensive, too. Resistance bands are often used when people are rehabbing injuries, so they are designed to ease you back slowly into using muscle you may not have used in a while.

At the start, avoid lifting weights or trying to build muscle through strength training. If you aren’t sure what you’re doing, you could seriously hurt yourself. Remember to start slowly and listen to your body. It’s crucial to consult with a healthcare professional or fitness trainer before beginning any new exercise program, especially if you have any underlying health conditions.

They can provide personalized guidance and ensure you’re choosing the right low-impact workouts for your needs and goals. Additionally, stay hydrated, wear appropriate footwear, and prioritize safety during your workouts. Gradually increase the intensity and duration as you progress on your fitness journey.

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