What are the best exercises for diabetes?

Exercise for Diabetes. Exercising,  can make a big difference in diabetes management and stabilizing the blood sugar level. Thus in the long term, it can reduce the risks of stroke, heart attack, and other cardiovascular problems.

What are the best exercises for diabetes? Here, we listed the top 10 routines you can do at home or in the gym. We promise the list below will benefit your diabetes management routine::

  • Walking

The first exercise that you can do is walking. Simple, isn’t it? Well, for people with diabetes, walking can have a significant positive impact on their blood sugar levels.

The ADA (American Diabetes Association) recommends having 30-minute to 1-hour brisk walking daily. It can improve blood pressure and glucose levels. If you are not fond of brisk walking, you can go outside and walk for a few minutes in the fresh air. This routine is probably the handiest as it does not require a gym membership or expensive gear.

  • Cycling

Arthritis is one of the complications of type 2 diabetes. This condition refers to joint strains, which can affect proper body movement. If you have been suffering from the said condition, opt for a low-impact routine, such as cycling. It improves bone and joint structure, plus it’s an excellent way to boost your heart and lung health. You don’t need to have an expensive bike to enjoy cycling. An old model can do the job.

  • Swimming

Besides cycling, aquatic activities like swimming can improve your joints’ condition. If you have diabetes, this exercise can reduce blood sugar levels by lowering cholesterol and burning excess body calories. Additionally, swimming allows all muscles of your body to function. It not only boosts fitness but also your heart’s health and overall well-being.

  • Yoga

When it comes to low-impact exercise, yoga tops the list. This exercise involves low movement, body and mind meditation, and proper breathing. But how does it benefit those who have diabetes? Yoga improves balance and strength. People with diabetes, especially older adults, may have problems with body balancing. It means that participating in yoga classes can help them remain stable and become strong enough to prevent the risk of falling or trembling. Additionally, this exercise boosts the quality of sleep. A restful and relaxing sleep can overcome the stress and anxiety that diabetes brings.

  • Team sports

Lack of motivation is one of the obstacles to exercising. That’s why it is best to participate in team sports to allow yourself to socialize but also to sweat and help your blood sugar improve. You can consider playing volleyball, basketball, tennis, or frisbee. Just a note – you don’t have to play competitively! Remember that your only goal is to exercise and manage your condition.

  • Weightlifting

According to the ADA (American Diabetes Association), weightlifting can help people with diabetes burn a number of calories. Although this physical activity is mainly done for building body mass in competitive stages, it can also be a part of someone’s daily life routine, especially if it’s for the goodness of someone’s health. It is a strength training that makes the muscles and bones stronger.

  • Pilates

If you are into fitness, you have probably heard about Pilates. It is a program specifically designed to stabilize core strength, improve body coordination, and enhance balance. According to studies, Pilates can help regulate blood sugar. It is suitable for older women diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. It is not a cardio routine but boosts flexibility and joint mobility. 

  • Aerobic dance

One of the most popular aerobic dances is Zumba. In a 2015 study, it was said that women with type 2 diabetes who participated in Zumba classes saw a significant improvement in their blood sugar control. Aside from that positive note, this aerobic fitness program allows people to lose weight, which can instantly help in preventing complications of type 2 diabetes.

  • Running

If you have been doing brisk walking several times, you can upgrade the routine to running. Compared to walking, running is a faster-paced exercise that requires you to be quick and agile. Although it can sometimes be challenging, your pace should only meet what your body can give.

Its benefits include:

  • Boosting your mood.
  • Enhancing energy levels.
  • Improving your cardiovascular health.
  • Controlling and stabilizing your blood sugar levels.

Resistance band activities

Did you know that you can use resistance bands to exercise? Aside from using weights to strengthen your muscles, these bands are also available to help you in your fitness program. It can increase your strength, as well as control your blood sugar.


Trying out the easiest routines is recommended if you are not exposed to daily exercise. Only try activities that your body can hold and endure. Finally, ask your doctor for advice on properly managing your condition by getting yourself to move and doing any of the mentioned exercises.