Frail People Cant Exercise
Fact Most people can find enjoyable ways to safely stay active, even if they have health problems or are frail. Physical activity can actually help you become stronger and less frail. If you are struggling to find an activity that is right for you, ask your doctor, exercise physiologist or physiotherapist for ideas.
Regular Exercise Improves Brain Function:
One of the most remarkable developments in health science is the revelation that the mind and the body are much more closely linked. A healthy body likely means a healthy mind, and seniors that exercise on a regular basis have improved cognitive health, according to research from NCBI. More recently, a study from the Alzheimers Research & Prevention Foundation, regular exercise has been shown to reduce your risk of developing Alzheimers disease or dementia by nearly 50%.
How Do I Stay Motivated To Keep Active
Even when you know that physical activity is beneficial, it can be hard to get started and stay motivated. You could:
- choose activities you enjoy
- switch to another activity if you find yourself getting bored
- invite a family member or friend to join you
- use reminders, such as post-it notes on the fridge
- plan ahead schedule activities in your diary or calendar and allocate regular times for exercise
- use a diary or activity tracker to record your activities to help keep you motivated
Don’t Miss: T-mobile Flip Phones For Seniors
Start With These 6 Gentle Exercises For Seniors
You dont have to join a class, buy special equipment, or even leave the house to benefit from exercise. There are plenty of things you can do in the comfort of your own home to improve your health. Talk to your doctor about developing the best exercise program for your current fitness level and health needs, and then consider these exercises to get you started:
The Best Heart Healthy Workouts For Your 60s 70s And 80s
Moderate aerobic exercise gets your body moving and your heart beating faster.
Learn safe cardiovascular exercise routines to help you maintain lifelong good health.
Whether you’re spry at 80 or slowing down at 65, there is a safe, healthy exercise routine with your name on it. Even if you’ve had a long history of not exercising, there are compelling reasons to get active no matter what your age. “The fitter and more active you are, the longer you’ll live and less heart disease you’ll have,” says Dr. Aaron Baggish, a cardiologist and fitness expert at Harvard-affiliated Massachusetts General Hospital.
Don’t Miss: How Much Are Walk In Tubs For Seniors
Why Exercise Is Vital For Senior Health
As people age, they tend to reduce the amount of physical activity they engage in, causing loss of muscle strength and cardiovascular stamina. They may also develop chronic conditions that prevent them from exercising the way they used to. But even if you have to change your routine, exercising is an important part of building and maintaining strength, flexibility, balance, and endurance. Exercise supports better health in your golden years by:
- Preventing heart disease and other illnesses
- Increasing balance and flexibility
- Reducing your fall risk by improving balance and muscle strength
A Few More Balance Tips
Maintain a healthy weightyour diet can also contribute to poor balance.
Apart from exercises, there are a couple of tips that can improve balancing for seniors. These include:
- Maintain an active lifestyleyou can join a senior group or go for walks around your neighborhood.
- Maintain a healthy weightyour diet can also contribute to poor balance. Consult a dietician to come up with an appropriate elderly meal plan that will boost your gait.
- Participate in strength trainingstrength training is not just for those who want to gain more muscle. There are plenty of great strength training workouts that can help you regain balance.
- Use your walking aidif your balance is impaired, your physician may have recommended a walking aid. You should utilize this walking aid as you exercise to try and regain your balance.
Recommended Reading: Free Government Food For Seniors
The Best Kind Of Exercises
1. Brisk walking
Exercise type: Aerobic
Brisk walking is a less intense type of aerobic exercise as compared to jogging, but its still a very beneficial exercise that gets your heart rate up and your muscles working. Brisk walking also has advantages over jogging in that it exerts less impact on your joints, so if you have weak knees or ankles, brisk walking will be a much better choice of exercise than jogging.
While brisk walking might not sound like a proper exercise, youd be surprised that there are actually techniques to master this sport. Unlike normal walking, brisk walking is about improving your gait that is, how fast you switch legs as well as increasing your stride by swinging your hips slightly every step you take. Brisk walking is also about maintaining good posture: your back should be held straight, and shoulders should be set back for maximum benefits.
2. Stationary cycling
Exercise type: Aerobic
Stationary bicycles can be found easily at most gyms, including the ones at community centres. If you prefer exercising in fresh air, the fitness corners at some HDB estates also have stationary bicycles to train on. Stationary cycling is a great form of aerobic exercise and the best part is that it doesnt exert any impact on your joints, so theres a very minimal chance of injury.
Exercise type: Aerobic
Exercise type: Balance
5. Tai Chi
Exercise type: Balance, flexibility
6. Arm weights
Exercise type: Strength-training
Yoga For Physical And Mental Fitness
Yoga is becoming an accepted main stream practice, rapidly losing its mystical hippy image amongst older generations in the UK.
It can help with mobility, relaxation, reduce aches and pains, maintain muscle strength, and improves general strength and fitness.
Here are five simple poses for older beginners to try, suggested by The Chopra Centre.
The website Yoga Classes Near You has videos to introduce various styles and levels.
The NHS website has an-all-ability level video class of Vinyasa yoga here.
And for anyone in a wheelchair, WheelPower has a series of adaptive yoga video classes.
Read Also: Ca State Parks Pass For Seniors
Physical Activity Is Essential To Healthy Aging
As an older adult, regular physical activity is one of the most important things you can do for your health. It can prevent or delay many of the health problems that seem to come with age. It also helps your muscles grow stronger so you can keep doing your day-to-day activities without becoming dependent on others.
Keep in mind, some physical activity is better than none at all. Your health benefits will also increase with the more physical activity that you do.
Adults aged 65 and older need:
- At least 150 minutes a week of moderate intensity activity such as brisk walking. Or they need 75 minutes a week of vigorous-intensity activity such as hiking, jogging, or running.
- At least 2 days a week of activities that strengthen muscles.
- Activities to improve balance such as standing on one foot about 3 days a week.
If chronic conditions affect your ability to meet these recommendations, be as physically active as your abilities and conditions allow.
Dont worry if youre thinking, How can I meet the recommended physical activity levels each week? Youll be surprised by the variety of activities you have to choose from.
How Often Should A Senior Stretch
If over the age 65, stretching should be done anywhere from 2-5 times per week, depending on tension and mobility needs.
Stretching doesnt necessarily have to do with periods of time compared to the frequency of stretching throughout the day. Set about 10-15 minutes aside per day to perform the stretches. They should have patience and take deep breaths during stretching to relax both the body and mind.
Recommended Reading: Ella Springs Senior Living Community
Exercise Plan For Seniors
If youre an older adult looking to establish an exercise routine, you should, ideally, be able to incorporate 150 minutes of moderate endurance activity into your week. This can include walking, swimming, cycling, and a little bit of time every day to improve strength, flexibility, and balance.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggest this amount of time for generally fit Americans aged 65 and older. Even though this sounds like a lot, the good news is that you can break it down into 10- or 15-minute chunks of exercise two or more times a day. Heres an example of what a week might look like, along with suggestions for some exercises you can do to get started:
|30 minute cycling, swimming, water aerobics, Zumba, etc.||Rest||30 minute walk||30 minute cycling, swimming, water aerobics, Zumba, etc.||Rest|
There are dozens of exercises you can do to build strength without having to set foot in a gym. Here are a few examples for people who are just getting started.
Kneeling Shoulder Tap Push Up
Targets: Arms, shoulders, core
Reps: 8 to 12 push-ups total
If your knees are uncomfortable, place a folded blanket under them for this move.
Also Check: Senior Citizen Property Tax Exemption
The Best Home Exercises For The Elderly
Weve been checking out all sorts of home exercises for the elderly based on different levels of mobility. For people who are finding mobility difficult, staying active and keeping moving is hard.
And while over 70s are staying at home to protect themselves from Covid-19, it can be even more of a challenge.
The World Health Organisation advises that adults over 65 should be doing at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic physical activity on a weekly basis, or around 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity.
The Green Goddess and Mr Motivator, both 80s fitness gurus are back on our TV screens to get us to get up off the sofa with a range of home exercises for the elderly.
What Types Of Exercise Should Older People Be Doing
There are 4 main types of physical activity that are important for people of all ages.
Cardiovascular fitness activities help keep your heart and lungs healthy. This includes:
- aerobics classes
Household chores such as gardening and cleaning can also be a great cardio workout. Low-impact activities such as swimming can be beneficial for people who find movement painful because of health conditions such as osteoarthritis.
You dont have to do all of your activity in one session per day you can spread it out. For example, 10 minutes of cardio 3 times a day, or 15 minutes twice a day
Strength activities help your muscles and bones stay strong. Strength training and weight-bearing exercise are especially helpful at increasing your bone density and reducing the risk of falls among people with osteoporosis.
Strength exercises include:
- mopping or vacuuming
Try to do some stretching exercises every day. You can even stretch while watching TV or waiting for the kettle to boil you can follow the diagrams here.
Balancing activities help improve your balance, which can help prevent falls. They include:
- side leg raises
Remember, physical activity can be varied and you can exercise outside of a gym or classes. There are also online fitness tools and programs you can use at home.
Even people who are less mobile or have a disability can find ways to keep active. Find an exercise program that is tailored to people at a similar age and fitness level as you.
You May Like: Verizon Prepaid Flip Phones For Seniors
Best Flexibility Exercises For Seniors
Flexibility is important for independence, mobility and the ability to strengthen the body throughout its full range of motion. According to Mims, flexibility is critical for decreasing the energy cost of standing and walking as we get older. Stretches that target the shoulders, hips and legsbody parts that commonly contribute to balance problems and gait compensationsare key.
Begin with the following exercises:
Chair Exercises For Legs
It may seem impossible to strengthen your legs while sitting down, but you absolutely can! Here are a few chair exercises for legs to work your quads, glutes, and calves.
7. Toe Taps
|3 Sets, 10 Reps||4 Minutes|
Sit up straight with your feet flat. Slowly lift your right knee toward your chest, and then lower your foot back to the floor. Repeat with your left leg. Perform ten repetitions per leg, for a total of twenty reps. For an added challenge, pause for a five-count at the top of the movement. This exercise strengthens your quads, which is the largest muscle group in your body. You use your quads in nearly everything you do, and strengthening them will make you feel stronger overall. As you build strength, consider enhancing your workout by using Ankle Weights for added resistance.
|3 Sets, 8-10 Reps||4 Minutes|
Sit comfortably at the edge of your chair while keeping your chest out, your abs tight, and both hands on the edge of the chair for stability. Then, with your toes pointed forward, extend one of your legs forward while keeping the other bent naturally. Begin slowly drawing the extended foot backward, keeping its sole flat on the floor until it has returned to its original position. Switch legs and repeat the process.
You May Like: Government Assistance For Dentures For Seniors
Exercise Helps Prevent And Counteract Disease:
Heart disease, osteoporosis, depression and diabetes are common diseases among older adults, and are often deadly. Fortunately, adopting a more active lifestyle can contribute to the prevention of these diseases, or reduce the unpleasant symptoms of these diseases if you already have them. If you are at-risk for disease, exercise may be the key to warding off an unpleasant condition.
Older People Cant Go To The Gym
Fact: Gyms are not just for younger people. Many older people enjoy working out at gyms or attending exercise classes, many of which are tailored to seniors.
If it makes you more comfortable , you could go to the gym during off-peak hours. You could also request a tour or introductory training session with a qualified personal trainer. Its also important to remember that physical activity can take place anywhere.
Recommended Reading: Careers At Sunrise Senior Living
The Best Exercises For Seniors
Exercise is crucial for older adults, but it can be hard to know where to begin. If you havent worked out for a while, re-entry into the active world can be daunting. Theres also a good chance the exercises you were once accustomed to arent ideal for older adults.
Before you launch into an exercise regimen, its important to check with a physician to ensure youre healthy enough for exercise, and to see which exercises are ideal for your current fitness level.
The Wonders That Exercise Does For Your Health
We are all aware that exercise keeps us physically fit so that we can go about our daily life with more ease. But external benefits aside, the effects of exercise go way beyond the surface and extend to other areas of the body other than the muscles.
A stronger immune system
Physical fitness doesnt just make you stronger on the outside it makes you stronger on the inside too. Being in the pink of health means your body can overcome infections and viruses more easily, so you wont fall sick as often as others who are less fit. Being physically fit also means your body takes a shorter time to recover from illnesses and injury.
Stronger bones for better balance
Osteoporosis is a dreaded problem amongst the elderly the reduction in bone mass as one ages means that the bones are generally weaker and less able to absorb weight and impact. Thats why falls can be particularly harmful and take longer to recover from. With regular exercise, you can combat the loss in bone density and build up strength in your bones so that they become more resilient to stress.
Reduced risk of old-age health problems
Clearly, exercise opens up a treasure trove of benefits for older people. If the idea of working out for hours makes you go weak in the knees, dont sweat it just yet! All you need are short intervals of simple exercises on a regular basis to reap the full benefits of working out.
Also Check: What Is The Age For Senior Citizen
Why Is Exercise Important For Seniors
Though physical fitness provides benefits for any age group, the health benefits are incredibly substantial for seniors. Exercise can help seniors live a longer, healthier, and happier life.
Some of the benefits of exercising for seniors include:
- It increases independence
- It can help prevent diseases
- It can improve brain function
Review And Update Your Exercise Plan Regularly
Regularly review and update your plan and long-term goals so that you can build on your success. Adjust your plan as you progress or if your schedule changes. You may find that things like vacation or illness can . Dont get discouraged! You can start exercising again and be successful. You can use a to write down your activities.
Don’t Miss: Low Income Senior Housing Cape Coral Fl
Physical Health Benefits Of Exercise For Seniors
As an older adult, exercise can help you to:
Maintain or lose weight. As your metabolism naturally slows with age, maintaining a healthy weight can become a challenge. Regular exercise helps increase your metabolism and build muscle mass, helping your body to burn more calories.
Reduce the impact of illness and chronic disease. People who exercise tend to have improved immune and digestive functioning, better blood pressure and bone density, and a lower risk of Alzheimer’s disease, diabetes, obesity, heart disease, osteoporosis, and certain cancers.
Enhance your mobility, flexibility, and balance. Exercise improves your strength, flexibility, and posture, which in turn can help with your balance and coordination, and reduce your risk of falls. Strength training can also help alleviate the symptoms of chronic conditions such as arthritis.