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Diabetic Exercises That Work (2023 Update)

Are you diabetic? Does this story about diabetic exercises sound familiar?

So you’re looking after your diabetes and everyone is telling you to exercise more. You’re trying your best.

But, your doctors, podiatrist want more.

You’re walking as much as you can and checking those sugars but they still peak up every now and then. You tried going to the gym but everyone there looks like they are sweating it out for some kind of bodybuilding contest you want no part of.

You’ve tried yoga, and tai chi, and zumba, and aerobics, but none of them really get you.

Well let me introduce you to one of the hidden secrets in managing your diabetes. 

Diabetic Exercises with Exercise Physiologists

In Pascoe Vale, your Exercise Physiologist, known as EPs are Mike and Aidan.

EPs are exercise professionals. They have at minimum a 4 year university degree behind them so they get the science of exercise. If you’re lucky and live near Pascoe Vale you also get over 20 years experience from the team in prescribing exercise programs for all manner of health conditions, in particular diabetes.

We asked our EPs what are the best diabetic exercises, and if they can share any other tips.

Here’s their important advice about diabetes and exercise that can save lives and lead to greater quality of life.

To optimally manage diabetes you need at least 150 to 300 minutes of cardiovascular exercise every week. 
Plus 2 sessions of resistance training per week.

Mike Fitzsimon, Exercise Physiologist. Also Diabetes Australia and other sources.

For those of us who don’t have a love of the gym and lead active lives, how are you supposed to get that done?

By engaging an expert.

Exercise Experts

In Pascoe Vale Mike and Aidan run one on one sessions for goal setting, exercise prescription, planning and therapy. They also have a diabetic group exercise program called Sugar Burners 🔥. In the program you come through and perform your own, personal exercise plan in a supportive group of up to 6 people. 

These sessions are perfect for people with diabetes looking to get their diabetes management from good to great. And there’s some great news. If you have diabetes in Australia you’re eligible for medicare rebates for a one on one session and 8 group sessions every year.

If you’re not an Australian citizen and don’t have medicare, or you’ve already attended 8 sessions this year you can get your exercise class fix for only $25. With private health insurers picking up the tab (if you’re covered) you might not be out of pocket much at all.

To get medicare to pay for your exercise therapy you will need a referral to the EPs from your GP. They simply need to write up a diabetes group services referral. That’s it. Once that’s done medicare will pick up the tab for the initial consultation (nothing out of pocket) then your group sessions are only about $9. Just amazing value.

So, what are you waiting for? 

The best time to start exercising is now. Tomorrow we’re all a day older and habits become harder to form. Just listen to what Jim has had to say about his diabetic exercise experience with Mike.

Your first step is to book in with our EPs in Pascoe Vale for your one on one session.

If you’re going to get medicare to pay the bills then make sure you have your referrals ready before you see the EPs.

Diabetic Exercises at Home

Attending a small group class or even one on one sessions might not be for you. While the results of improved diabetes management, feeling better and more energetic are desirable, attending in clinic can pose some challenges.

There’s options. One of which is completing guided exercises sessions with your EP from the comfort of your own home. Starting in 2020 our telehealth offering with our EPs has been one of our most popular services.

Zooming in to start your personal session with your EP you’ll get all the benefits of your exercise expert at a time and location that suits you.

Example Diabetic Exercises

We can only provide broad examples of the best diabetic exercises like these calf push-ups. What is best for you will be a combination of different exercises that are individualised and specific to your needs. The best exercise for me is different from the best exercise for you. As is the dosing. I might need to ramp up my cardiovascular work whereas you need to lift more.

That being said, there are some core exercises that need to completed.

Cardiovascular Exercises

Increasing your heart rate safely to optimal training zones with cycling, brisk walking, jogging or swimming is important.

Resistance Exercises

Lifting weights which can include our bodyweight are the most misunderstood and missed opportunities for most of us. Examples include calf raises for leg strength, using dumb bells, kettle bells or other objects in the gym or around the house. A combination of pushing and pulling movements are vital.

In the following videos our team members demonstrate some examples of pushing or pulling exercises.

A calf raise “pushing” exercise for the legs.
A “pulling” exercise known as a Monkey Shrug

While these are just two examples a thorough diabetic exercise plan will include everything that is just perfect for your needs.

So what are you waiting for?

Let’s get moving and start your journey to improving your health with our EPs.

Appointments can be made online here with the exercise physiologists.

While you’re here our podiatrist have put together this post about how important your feet are when you have diabetes.