kayaks, beach, pickle ball, yoga on beach

Living in the scenic coastal areas of Virginia provides many opportunities to engage in outdoor activities like pickleball, kayaking, beach walks, and golf. But what if physical limitations are keeping you from thoroughly enjoying these hobbies? This is where physical therapy can make all the difference. Physical therapy promotes an active lifestyle, and blogs by the Therapy Network team that provide physical therapy tips for outdoor hobbies are always popular. In this blog, we combined some of our top tips for hobbies enjoyed in the Hampton Roads region.





Physical Therapy Promotes Daily Lifestyle & Hobby Enjoyment





We often take our physical abilities for granted until they are compromised. Struggles with mobility, balance, or strength can hinder us from enjoying our favorite activities. But with physical therapy, you can improve these aspects and return to your active lifestyle more quickly than expected.





Man running on beach




Did You Know you do NOT need a physician's referral to start your physical therapy journey? Thanks to Virginia's Direct Access law, you can directly consult with our licensed physical therapists at The Therapy Network. Keep reading for information and a link to book your first appointment. 





Whether you enjoy pickleball, kayaking, golf, or just walking on the beach…Physical therapy promotes an active lifestyle, and The Therapy Network is here to provide services and tips.





5 Ways to Improve Your Pickleball Game with Physical Therapy 





Pickleball is increasingly popular, but like any sport, it comes with the risk of injury. Physical Therapy promotes an active lifestyle by rehabilitating you post-injury and helping you prevent future injuries. Here are some ways physical therapy can boost your pickleball game:









1. Injury Prevention: Therapists can identify weaknesses that might lead you to common pickleball injuries.





2. Strength and Conditioning: Target specific muscle groups used in pickleball to improve your game.





3. Flexibility and Range of Motion: Therapists will recommend exercises to keep your joints agile.





4. Balance and Coordination: Improve your footwork and reaction time on the court.





5. Injury Management: If you're already recovering from an injury, tailored physical therapy can speed up your recovery.





Visit our free information library and read about physical therapy's benefits for pickleball players.





Walking on the Beach in Coastal Virginia 





There's no better feeling than walking along the Virginia Beach Boardwalk or the soft sands of a secluded beach. Physical Therapy promotes an active lifestyle that makes this simple joy accessible. Follow these tips when embarking on a beach walk:





1. Start Slow: Sandy terrains are challenging. Start with short distances.





2. Wear Appropriate Footwear: Opt for sturdy sandals or shoes that offer support.





3. Walk at Low Tide: It's easier and better for your body alignment.





"The benefits of walking are numerous, but they're best-enjoyed pain-free. Physical therapy can help ensure that you can walk as far and as long as you want, whenever you want.”—American Physical Therapy Association.  





If walking on the beach becomes painful, The Therapy Network can help diagnose the issue and offer a solution. Read our full blog, “When Walking on the Beach is Painful.”









Before teeing off in any scenic golf courses across Norfolk, Virginia Beach, or Chesapeake, consider how physical therapy can help improve your game and reduce your pain.





golfer with back pain




1. Injury Evaluation and Treatment: Therapists can pinpoint the causes of your discomfort and create a treatment plan.





2. Pre-Golf Warm-Up: Learn about essential stretches and exercises.





3. Muscle and Mobility: Improve your swing and reduce the chance of injuries.





4. Injury Prevention Plan: A preventive approach can save you from long-term issues.





If you are a golfer, consider reading our blog with additional tips. Book your session at The Therapy Network to help you get the most out of your golf rounds.





Enjoy Kayaking in Coastal Virginia with the Help of Physical Therapy





Kayaking is a fantastic way to explore the waters of coastal Virginia, but preparing your body for the rigorous paddling is crucial.





Kayaking In Virginia Beach, VA
Kayaking in Virginia Beach, VA




1. Shoulder Strength: Enhance the muscle strength needed for effective paddling.





2. Elbow and Wrist Care: Physical therapy can prevent overuse injuries.





3. Muscle Imbalance: Target stabilizing muscles to avoid injury.





4. Core Fitness: A strong core is essential for kayaking.





If you enjoy paddle sports, read our latest blog about the benefits of physical therapy for kayakers. (Need link to latest blog here)





How Can The Therapy Network Help?





Physical Therapy promotes an active lifestyle that keeps you in shape and prevents injuries, ensuring you can continue enjoying all the outdoor activities that coastal Virginia offers. You do not need a physician's referral to start your journey to recovery or fitness. One is near your home or workplace, with six locations in the Hampton Roads area. 





Book an appointment today and continue enjoying all your favorite hobbies in Virginia. 



Finding five ways to exercise living near or visiting Virginia Beach, Virginia has many benefits. One of, if not the largest benefit, is our famous stretch of beach and boardwalk. Virginia Beach has a world-renowned sand beach and 3-mile long boardwalk that provides numerous opportunities for exercise and has frequent national events including sand soccer, volley ball, Something In the Water, and even Monster truck rallies. When you combine any two of these activities, you can find at least five fun ways to exercise at the beach.





Something In The Water Crowd - WTKR TV




You do not need a gym membership to find fun ways to exercise in our region. Recently, we published a blog about Coastal Virginia walking trails that provide a great starting point for your exercise journey.





From sunrise walks to yoga and biking, there are many ways to enjoy our regional beaches. Here are our five fun ways to exercise at the beach…and tips.





Go For A Walk





People walking on beach
Exercising at the beach




Go for a walk on a sandy beach in Virginia or walk along the Virginia Beach Boardwalk. Both provide healthy and free exercise. If your choice is to walk on a sandy beach, be sure to follow these tips from The Therapy Network: 






  1. When walking on sand, start slow and practice moderation. Walking is low-impact aerobic exercise, but you do have to adjust to each step sinking in the sand.




  2. Wear shoes. You may be tempted to walk on the beach barefoot, but being barefoot puts more tension on your tendons and joints.




  3. Set your beach walking schedule around low tide. You can avoid the slope of the sand if you walk at low tide and near the water.





Enjoy a walk at sunrise, a mid-day workout, or an evening stroll. Walking on the beach or the adjacent boardwalk is a fun way to enjoy the beach and the benefits of exercise.





Yoga and Pilates









Many use yoga and Pilates to reduce stress, exercise, and tone. Add beautiful beach scenery and you have the perfect recipe for a fun activity on the beach. Here are some helpful tips for beach yoga and Pilates from the therapists at The Therapy Network: 






  1. Leave the mat at home. It is perfectly OK to leave your yoga mat at home for your next beach yoga experience. Let the soft Virginia sand be your mat.




  2. But remember the sunscreen. Beach yoga and Pilates reduce stress and help you relax, but do not relax your efforts to prevent skin cancer. We always suggest sunscreen when exercising outdoors, especially at the beach.




  3. Remember to hydrate. Bring your favorite water bottle and remember to hydrate.





If yoga or Pilates is part of your fitness routine, we are sure you will want to add it to your five ways to exercise at the beach.





Go For a Run





You may be a runner that has a bucket list of favorite runs. Running along the water's edge on a Virginia Beach may be on that list. But running on the beach comes with a set of challenges, and it is crucial to follow these tips below to stay safe and prevent injury:  






  1.  Keep long runs to the boardwalk. Running on sand is challenging, making it difficult to run for a long time.




  2. If you do decide to run on the soft Virginia sand, ensure that you change direction often to compensate for the slope of the beach. Set your schedule to run at low tide and on the firm sand along the waterline.




  3. As with walking, always wear shoes when running on the beach.




  4. With any exercise on the beach, stay hydrated and wear sunscreen.





If you are new to running, be sure to discuss both your running plan and your beach running plan with a professional. A professional therapist can provide custom tips and ensure your shoes are well-fitted.





Swimming in the Ocean or Chesapeake Bay





Although swimming is an excellent source of exercise, swimming in the ocean's open waters or Chesapeake Bay takes some pre-planning and experience. Here are some essential tips:






  1. Review the NOAA Rip Current Survival Guide  




  2. Only swim in a lifeguarded area




  3. Never swim alone




  4. Be Aware: Heed weather and water conditions and warnings.





Although swimming is of the top five ways to exercise at the beach, it is crucial to swim responsibly and heed all warnings.





Biking, Kayaking, and Paddle Boarding





Coastal Virginia has a unique infrastructure for biking, kayaking, and paddle boarding. All three are fun ways to exercise at the beach and surrounding waterways.









Need a bike? A favorite place to bike is along the flat, safe Virginia Beach Boardwalk. You will find beach bikes to rent along the way. Warm weather brings many visitors to the boardwalk. Some will be on bikes while others run or walk. For safety, we always suggest that you wear a helmet and be aware of your surroundings. Please make sure to watch for those stopping to take photos.





If kayaking or paddle boarding, tell someone about your plan and when to expect your return. And ALWAYS wear a Personal Flotation Device (PFD). If you are looking for places to launch your kayak or SUP, check out the website Virginia Water Trails





The Therapy Network





After reading this blog, you may be thinking about enjoying these five fun ways to exercise on the beach. Fitness for these fun activities should be within your reach. However, if you are looking for a little help getting started, The therapists and athletic trainers at The Therapy Network are available to review your fitness level with a free wellness check. Remember, you never need a prescription to visit The Therapy Network.





If you live in the Hampton Roads area, there is a Therapy Network clinic near your neighborhood or place of work. We have appointments available today and do NOT require a prescription. Browse our website and make an appointment at one of our therapy centers today.


two women walking

Walking is a simple and effective way to improve overall health and fitness. It is a low-impact exercise that can be done anywhere, anytime, without equipment. Walking is an excellent option whether you are trying to lose weight, reduce stress, or improve your cardiovascular health.





This blog includes tips to help you get the most out of your walking routine. It also has popular local trails to walk your way to health in Hampton Roads, Virginia.





Walking Tips for a Healthy Lifestyle





A walking routine promotes a healthy lifestyle, but it is also essential to follow tips provided by the therapists at The Therapy Network. Here are eight top tips for starting a routine to walk your way to health.





Start Slowly: If you are new to walking or last exercised a while ago, it is essential to start slowly. Begin with a short walk around your neighborhood or local park. As your fitness improves, gradually increase the distance and duration of your walks.





Wear Comfortable Shoes: Invest in a good pair of walking shoes that fit well and provide proper support. Avoid wearing old or worn-out shoes, as they can cause discomfort and increase the risk of injury.





Stay Hydrated: Drink plenty of water before, during, and after your walk, especially if you are walking in the hot or humid conditions in Hampton Roads. Dehydration can cause fatigue, dizziness, and other health problems.









Use Proper Posture: Good posture is essential when walking. Keep your head up, shoulders relaxed, and arms swinging naturally at your sides. Avoid slouching or leaning forward, which can strain your neck, shoulders, and back.





Warm Up and Cool Down: Before starting your walk, warm up by stretching your muscles and gradually increasing your pace. After your walk, cool down by slowing your pace and doing some gentle stretches to help prevent soreness and stiffness.





Stay Safe as You Walk Your Way to Health





From urban areas to country paths and mountain trails, everyone should have a "Stay Safe" plan. Here are some of our top tips for staying safe while walking.





Find a Walking Buddy: Walking with a friend or family member can make your walks more enjoyable and motivate you to stick with your routine. It can also provide a social opportunity to catch up and connect with others.





Vary Your Route: Walking the same route daily may become dull and make it harder to stay motivated. Explore new neighborhoods, parks, or trails to keep your walks interesting and engaging.





Stay Safe: Walking is generally a safe exercise, but it is vital to take precautions to avoid accidents and injuries. Walk in well-lit areas, wear reflective clothing if walking at night, and be aware of your surroundings. Avoid walking alone in isolated areas.





Set Goals to Walk Your Way to Health





Set Goals: Setting goals can help you stay focused and motivated. Whether walking a certain distance, increasing your speed, or walking more days per week, having a clear plan can help you track your progress and celebrate your achievements. Here is some advice from the Mayo Clinic:





“As a general goal, aim for at least 30 minutes of physical activity a day. If you can't set aside that much time, try several short sessions of activity throughout the day. Any amount of activity is better than none at all. Even small amounts of physical activity are helpful, and accumulated activity throughout the day adds up to provide a health benefit.” MayoClinic.org





Listen to Your Body: Pay attention to your body and how it feels during your walks. If you experience pain or discomfort, slow down or stop and rest. If you have a health condition, such as diabetes or heart disease, talk to your doctor before starting a new exercise routine.





Hampton Roads, Virginia, Walking Trails





Here is a list of popular walking trails in Hampton Roads:





For a list of trails across the entire region, check out this website from AllTrails.   This website provides feedback and reviews of each trail. 





For Trails in Hampton Roads, click on these links:









Recommendations for TTN Team Members:









Happy Walking





As you walk your way to health, consider a free wellness check with a physical therapist at The Therapy Network. While browsing our website, sign up for our monthly newsletter with tips to lead a healthy lifestyle. 





In conclusion, walking is a simple and effective way to improve your health and fitness. By following these tips, you can make the most out of your walking routine and achieve your health and fitness goals. Remember to start slowly, wear comfortable shoes, stay hydrated, use proper posture, warm up and cool down, find a walking buddy, vary your route, set goals, listen to your body, and stay safe. Happy walking!





If you are thinking about beginning to walk, a great way to make sure you are prepared is a free wellness check at The Therapy Network. Just request an appointment and note free wellness check.