The four main components of fitness

Let us look at the four main components of fitness : strength, speed, stamina and flexibility. We have seen  such powerful evidences of the benefits of exercising


The four main components of fitness are :

Cardiovascular fitness/Endurance

Aerobic exercises help train your endurance by increasing your heart and breathing rates. They ensure your lungs, and circulatory system healthy and will work to improve the state of your overall fitness. In addition, increasing your endurance makes it easier to carry out many of your everyday activities.

The term cardiovascular is used in reference the heart (the cardio part) and blood vessels (the vascular bit), and is used when talking about how effectively the heart pumps blood around the body. So if anyone talks about cardio fitness they would be talking about making the heart work and in turn pumping the blood. That means it’s all the activities that make your heart work harder; like running, cycling, dancing etc

The point of improving your cardiovascular fitness is to get your heart pumping at a higher level and then maintain it for an extended period of time, around 45mins to an hour

There are alternative ways of bringing your heart rate up like doing short fast spurts of speed mixed with some recovery running, these sessions are called tempo or interval training

  • Water aerobics.
  • Swimming
  • Brisk Walking.
  • Running or jogging.



Strength exercises make you muscles stronger, simple as they sound. They may help you stay independent and carry out normal activities, such as climbing stairs and carrying groceries. These exercises also are called “strength training” or “resistance training.”

This is when we do exercise or activities to build and strengthen our muscles. It usually means giving your muscles a weight or some resistance and getting them to lift it or move it over a certain course with several repetitions. After a few weeks of doing this resistance work, the muscles respond, by growing and getting stronger, now stronger you have to add more resistance to continue to grow the muscles and strengthen them. Strength training is good for toning and the stronger and bigger the muscles the more calories they burn. Strength training is also good for maintaining bone structure.

  • Lifting weights
  • Using a resistance band
  • Using your own body weight


Flexibility exercises stretch your muscles and can help your body stay limber. Being flexible allows you a greater degree of freedom for your body, in both exercises and as well as for your everyday activities.

Flexibility refers to just being able to go thorough daily life, moving freely and not be in pain. Ideally we want every joint in our body to perform the FROM (Full Range of Movement), and flexibility allows that. To be able to get in and out of the car without pain, go up and down steps, get out of bed etc, once we have trouble doing those things or experience pain doing them, then it is time to look at working on your flexibility. Stretching after sporting activities, yoga and Pilates or exercise in water are all really good at improving flexibility

  • Shoulder and upper arm stretch
  • Calf stretch
  • Yoga
  • Pilates


Balance exercises help keep you up, falling being a common problem in older adults. Many lower-body strength exercises also will improve your balance.

  • Standing on one foot
  • Heel-to-toe walk
  • Tai Chi
  • Yoga