Today is National Senior Health & Fitness Day. Exercise benefits seniors, and everyone really, in lots of ways. Physical movement can help prevent falls, maintain strength and balance, controls blood pressure and can reduce the chances of certain cancers and diabetes.
Below are 5 senior-friendly activities older adults can do to get in movement not just today, but every day, if able:
If you are able to, this is one of the easiest ways to get your body moving. If you struggle with getting the motivation to walk, here are a few ideas you can do to spice up your walking routine:
- instead of letting your dog out back, go on walks around the neighborhood or down the street a couple times of day.
- call a friend and meet up for an afternoon walk to your favorite coffee shop.
- when parking your car, park further away and take the extra steps into the store.
- go to a local park alone, with a friend or with a family member.
If you or a senior loved one suffers from arthritis, this is a beneficial exercise to do. The buoyancy of the water does not put stress on the joints and muscles as other forms of physical exercise do. Another great benefit? Water aerobics improves flexibility, balance and strength!
This is a low-impact type of exercise that focuses on breathing and core strength. It’s a good way improve balance and increases flexibility, which is beneficial in older adults. Better balance means less chances of unexpected falls.
Similar to pilates, yoga improves core strength and flexibility. If this is a form of exercise that you like to do, please speak to your doctor about which yoga moves are appropriate for you.
Cycling (outdoor or stationary)
This is a good exercise that is soft on the joints, like water aerobics. You can either cycle inside a gym or home, or outside and get some fresh air and vitamin D.