Exercises to get started

This page focuses on suitable exercises that health coaches and healthcare providers can recommend to patients and clients.

Simple exercises to get started

Exercises from Sport Auckland

The following videos for simple exercises are good for people not living with pain or a condition that makes them anxious about trying things and if not done properly could cause pain or loss in confidence. 

(Sport Auckland, NZ, 2015)

(Sport Auckland, NZ, 2015)

For more videos of the same series, visit Simple exercises.

Arthritis Foundation booklet

The Arthritis – exercises to keep you moving booklet from the Arthritis Foundation, NZ, has some great easy-to-do exercises recommended for people living with arthritis. However, the exercises can also be useful for people without arthritis. Healthcare providers can use this guide to select appropriate exercises for their clients and increase the intensity if needed. 

Green Prescription and intensity

A Green Prescription is a written advice to clients to encourage them to become more physically active as part of their health management. Green Prescriptions are for anyone who needs to be more active. There are 2 programmes: 

Green Prescription for adults

This is for adults who need help to get more active again. Read more about Green Prescriptions

Green Prescription Active Families Programme

This Ministry of Health programme for school-aged children tries to establish good habits and prevent overweight children becoming unhealthy adults. Activity and nutritional advice is provided to families through weekly group sessions or home visits. Read more about the Active Families Programme


The Green Prescription process for primary health care

View this flowchart to find out how the Green Prescription process works for primary health care. 

What intensity?

The following intensity guide from the Ministry of Health, NZ provides guidance on the intensity of exercises suitable for patients and clients. 

The stages of change

The stages of change is a model flowchart to identify whether the patient or client is ready to change their behaviour.


Find a Green Prescription contact and an Active Families contact in your area.

Activity guide

These activity guides and activity plans come from different sports organisations around New Zealand. Patients and clients can ask their healthcare providers about suitable exercises for them. 


Stretching exercises

Gentle exercises at home

Walking exercises

Strength and balance exercises


Learn more

Physical activity in the treatment of long term conditions course BMJ Learning, UK


  1. Green Prescriptions Ministry of Health, NZ
  2. Physical activity Ministry of Health, NZ 
Credits: Health Navigator Editorial Team.