Exercise Tips for Seniors
For seniors, regular physical activity is one of the most important thing that they can do for their health. It can prevent many of the health problems that seem to come with age.
Not doing any physical activity can be bad for seniors, no matter their age or health condition. Some physical activity is better than none at all. Seniors’ health benefits will also increase with the more physical activity that they do. Even if they do it only five minutes per day, that is more beneficial than none.
Here are some Exercise Tips for Seniors:
Choose activities you find interesting and manageable. Seniors are more likely to stick to an exercise routine if it’s fun. If seniors want to keep up this positive lifestyle change, they need to find an activity that they enjoy.
Check with your doctor before you start a new exercise routine. Everybody is different, and while most of our exercise tips for seniors apply to most seniors, some won’t. So before seniors start a new exercise program, talk to doctor. She might recommend that you avoid high-impact exercises or instruct you to work on strength training. Listen to the doctor, especially if you have a preexisting condition or special health concerns. Your doctor knows best.
Start slowly and aim for small improvements. Seniors should never jump right into a vigorous exercise routine. They could easily injure themselves. Be guided by doctor about how long and how frequently to exercise. Keep track of the progress in a training diary for added motivation. Slowly increase the length and intensity of workouts so that your body has time to adjust. Plus, slowly easing yourself into a more active lifestyle will help you stick with it.
Create a schedule and focus on your goals. If you want to make exercise a part of your life, you need to schedule it. To stick with that schedule, focus on your health goals.
Walking. Walking can be done just about anywhere. Plus, seniors can walk with friends and talk, walk alone and let their mind wander, or walk with their headphones on for some entertainment.
Make exercise a social event. Invite friends along or sign up for a class so seniors can meet new people while getting fit.
Yoga. Flexibility is incredibly important as you age, and yoga is a great way to stretch and relax. You’ll increase your range of motion, improve your balance, and gain strength.
Don’t hold your breath during strength exercises: seniors should not hold their breath during strength exercises. That could cause changes in their blood pressure. It may seem strange at first, but they should breathe out as they lift something, and breathe in as they relax.
Use safety equipment: Seniors should use safety equipment. For example, wear a helmet for bike riding or the right shoes for walking or jogging.
Be sure to drink plenty: Unless your doctor has asked you to limit fluids, be sure to drink plenty when you are doing activities. Many older adults don’t feel thirsty even if their body needs fluids.
Always bend forward from the hips, not the waist: Seniors should always bend forward from the hips, not the waist. If they keep their back straight, they are probably bending the right way. If their back “humps,” that’s probably wrong, especially if they are suffering from Kyphosis.
Improve your flexibility. Seniors should do exercises such as yoga, stretching exercises, lawn bowls or dancing.
Look after your bones. Weight-bearing exercise can reduce the risk of bone loss and osteoporosis as senior age.
Reduce your risk of falls. Include some balance and coordination exercises in your weekly exercise routine. Good options include tai chi, balancing on one leg and heel to toe stands.