Living with Dyspraxia: Exercise


Exercising can be difficult for an adult with dyspraxia. It is when exercising that the physical characteristics of dyspraxia can become apparent. It is common for dyspraxia symptoms in adults to display weak muscle strength making it more difficult to run, jump and hop, etc.  These dyspraxia symptoms can make events like sports day or physical education can leave someone with dyspraxia feeling isolated.

Now, there are many types of dyspraxia in adults and no two adults with dyspraxia are the same. But many will relate to common circumstances and issues they have faced.

Choose your exercise carefully:

Having developmental co-ordination disorder can at first restrict what kind of exercise you can undertake. You have to accept and not just the non-dyspraxics but everyone, that there will be some things that we are just not great at. With determination, patience, and hard work, however, there are plenty of things that we can be great at and sport is no different. Just look at Ellis Genge.


I personally have tried my hand at a few things, with varying degrees of success. Football was my first love. I played as a goalkeeper in a few five or six side teams and considering my dyspraxic tendencies, I consider it a success. (Although I have friends that will testify otherwise, but that is for another day.)

Exercising can be difficult for an adult with dyspraxia

Football and dyspraxia don’t always mix


Boxing came next mainly due to my friends spending all their spare time in the gym. It helped my hand-eye co-ordination and I suspect my muscle strength and was good for letting off some of the excess adrenaline that is common in people with dyspraxia. However, it is not smart for anyone, let alone someone with a spatial awareness disorder to get punched in the head repeatedly, so we will leave it at that.

Exercising can be difficult for an adult with dyspraxia

If football and dyspraxia don’t always mix, well, enough said.


Cycling :

I am not a lycra biking nut (no offence) but I do like to ride my bike. I am sure my adults with dyspraxia and children with dyspraxia have heard the words ‘you will NEVER be able to ride a bike’.

Well, I can again to varying degrees of success. I have the scars and broken rib to prove it. My advice is to take your time and be careful. As I have said exercising can be difficult for an adult with dyspraxia and riding a bike is no exception.

Martial arts

Do martial arts help adults and children with dyspraxia?

Although martial arts should be a struggle for someone with dyspraxia symptoms, it is something that with practice, you can become quite good at. It is good to relax and alleviate anxiety as is most forms of exercise.

Do what you want:

For adults with dyspraxia, it is not always easy to exercise. I consider myself lucky, at the moment I am active and healthy, I don’t find exercising easy and motivating myself to do it is a whole other thing. Find what is right for you. There are plenty of options out there and there not all combative sports. Don’t be hard on yourself if you struggle to exercise, be grateful and proud of what you can do.

For advice on exercising consult a medical professional and for more information about dyspraxia visit the dyspraxia foundation.