Last Updated on January 23, 2024

Exercise generally falls into four main types: endurance, strength, balance, and flexibility.


Be active 4 ways everyday! Endurance, strength, balance and flexibility.

Some activities fit into more than one type of exercise; for example, some endurance activities help build strength, and some flexibility exercises also improve balance.Your goal is to be creative and choose exercises from each of the four types. Mix it up, and you’ll see the benefits!

Endurance. Exercises like brisk walking, dancing, or hiking improve the health of your heart, lungs, and circulatory system. They can make daily activities easier, such as mowing the lawn or climbing flights of stairs.

Strength. Strength training—like lifting weights or using resistance bands—can increase muscle strength and help with everyday activities like carrying groceries or lifting gardening supplies.

Balance. Balance exercises, such as standing on one leg or doing tai chi, can make it easier to walk on uneven surfaces and help prevent falls.

Flexibility. Stretching exercises can help your body stay flexible. They give you more freedom of movement for daily activities, such as bending to tie your shoes or looking over your shoulder as you back out of the driveway.

Quick Tip

Make a weekly exercise and physical activity plan—this will help you incorporate all four types of exercise into your daily routine. Find an exercise plan worksheet at the Go4Life website.

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Source Agency: National Institute on Aging (NIA)