Physical activity tips for bariatrics

The practice of physical activity is always challenging, especially for those who underwent bariatric surgery. In addition to accelerating the results of the procedure, physical activities in the postoperative period are of fundamental importance for the recovery of the surgery.

Thus, the exercise routine must respect this phase and must be accompanied by qualified physical education professionals. Even before surgery, performing exercises is essential to prepare the body in order to reduce the risk of complications in the postoperative period and facilitate recovery.

The practice of the activity needs to be adequate and incorporated into the patient’s routine in order to avoid weight regain. But do you know which exercises are indicated for bariatric patients? Follow along, because we will talk about the exercises indicated for bariatric patient.


Walking, in general, offers several health and well-being benefits, starting with energy gains, increases disposition and also helps to reduce stress.

As it is a very easy and simple physical exercise, walking is among the most suitable activities for bariatric patients, during the pre and postoperative period. And it can be performed outdoors or in the gym, in a group or individually.

To optimize the gains from the exercise, it is important to use some variations, such as, for example, alternating the speed of your strides or walking on terrain with different unevenness.

Other options can be going up or down hills, stairs, counting steps and most importantly, combining this sport with healthy eating habits.

However, walking should not be seen as the only physical exercise. It is important to maintain conditioning and cardiovascular optimization, but it is a complementary exercise.


As it is a physical activity of strength and resistance, weight training is a great option for post-surgical. With professional monitoring and respecting its limits, it will help the patient to strengthen joints, such as knees and spine, which were previously burdened by overweight.

In addition, the practice of weight training allows a better recovery after surgery. Bodybuilding is indicated since before bariatric surgery, as it helps in preparing the body for the impact that will occur with the surgery.

In either case, it is essential to follow the guidelines of the transdisciplinary team. Because a specific program will be developed for the patient’s needs, so that the practice must be really safe, beneficial and pleasurable.

From when should you start physical activities after surgery?

Each patient has an individual orientation from the team that is accompanying him. But, in general, you are allowed to take light walks from the first days after surgery. Because this will prevent inflammatory complications, fluid retention and aid recovery.

After 30 days of surgery and the surgeon’s permission, you can start weight training or functional exercises with restrictions. At this stage, you should not perform sit-ups, nor those involving the abdominal region, such as leg presses and squats.

Aerobic exercises such as walking, biking and ellipticals should be performed for a maximum of 15 minutes. At this stage, it is important to perform muscle strengthening exercises. After 60 days, the patient can perform light abdominal exercises on the machines to reduce the overload.

Aerobic exercises are allowed for a maximum of 20 minutes.

After six months, the patient will be released for all bodybuilding exercises, functional exercises, dance, water aerobics and swimming. Aerobic exercises should still remain at 30 minutes daily.

Remember that following the guidelines of the transdisciplinary team and adopting a daily routine of physical activities is essential to avoid weight regain in the postoperative period and maintain the patient’s quality of life and health.

When to start physical exercises after surgery?

As soon as possible. In the first post-surgery stage, activities must be monitored for 30 days. Progressive walks and specific exercises are individually guided. Normally, after 40 days, most activities can be carried out, following medical restrictions.

What exercises to practice and how often?

Start by walking and gradually increase the pace, both in time and in speed. Walking is the basis for other physical activities.

But they are also fundamental, in the composition of the training program, in the coordinated exercises, aerobic or not. The choice will depend on the physical conditions and goals of each.

Water activities, such as water aerobics, are another great option for weight loss. As for intensity, three to five times a week are enough not only to keep losing weight, but also to stay healthy.

What physical exercises are indicated in the long term?

This depends on each person’s goals. Personal characteristics such as sex, age, weight, height and body composition must also be taken into account.

In general, it is important that planning involves aerobic exercises such as walking, cycling, swimming and water aerobics, stretching, flexibility and overload exercises.

How long should I practice physical activities?

Forever. Even if you’ve acquired the body of your dreams, maintenance requires discipline and needs to be permanent. Staying physically active is essential for anyone to improve their quality of life, regardless of whether they have had bariatric surgery or not.

And remember that no one, not even an operated patient, is immune to weight gain. For all that, start a physical activity program. More than helping you fight the scales, this will contribute to making your life healthier.

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