The Sports Archives – Aging Gracefully: 4 Physical Activities for Senior Citizens

Senior,Man,Meditating,At,Home.

Are your physical checkups making you worried about your health taking a negative turn? It can be scary to hear from a medical professional that you are not doing well, especially in your senior years. It may be time for you to seek a natural alternative to improve your overall wellness. One such way besides improving your diet is getting into an exercise routine.

If you’re a senior living alone at home or in an assisted living community, there are plenty of ways to stay active and get healthy. Over the years, exercise has been known to counter most lifestyle diseases, improve mental health, and build enough stamina to enhance self-reliance into old age. Just make sure that you have help with some of the more strenuous activities.

1.  Endurance Exercises

As the name suggests, the activities in this category are meant to help improve endurance for people engaging in strenuous work over a long time. They have an automatic effect on the heart and lungs, thus helping in improving your cardiovascular and respiratory health.

It is recommended that seniors do these at least three times a week. There is a wide range of options to showcase your ability:

  • Walks- hiking, race walking, walking your pet
  • Sports- pickleball, golf, tennis
  • Outdoors- swimming, basketball, running/jogging, bike riding, skating, horse riding
  • Indoors- dancing, climbing stairs, treadmill, water aerobics
  • Gardening and sweeping

2.  Strength Exercises

The activities in this category mainly focus on the shoulders, hips, arms, legs, chest, and abdomen muscles. Most people assume these exercises are specifically for the younger generation. Still, seniors equally need them to reduce the chances of developing chronic conditions and reduce the possibility of injury, especially after intense activity.

It is recommended that seniors do these at least two times a week. They range from:

  • Gardening- digging and lifting
  • Resistance band workouts- leg press, band pull apart, triceps press
  • weight lifting
  • Body-weight exercises- press-ups, sit-ups, and push-ups
  • Chair yoga exercises

3.  Flexibility Exercises

If you’re used to doing stretching exercises, flexibility exercises won’t be too hard for you to do. These exercises come in handy for people looking to improve their spine health, posture, cardiovascular system, and build muscle which helps reduce chances of soreness and injury after intense activity.

It is recommended that seniors do these at least twice a week. These activities range from:

  • Ankle stretches
  • Back stretches
  • Neck rotations and stretches
  • Sideways bend
  • Calf stretches

4.  Balance Exercises

As seniors keep getting older, they slowly begin developing difficulties in walking, more triggered by poor eyesight, resulting in constant falls. Some of these may cause grievous injuries that are hard to treat. As the name suggests, the exercises in this category mainly help improve and maintain body balance to reduce the risks of falls.

It is recommended that seniors do these at least three times a week. These activities range from:

  • Eye-tracking exercises
  • Yoga
  • Standing on one foot
  • Toe and heel walking
  • Side walking

Warm-Up and Cool Down

Never forget to properly prepare your body for any physical activity with a warm-up stretch to prevent injuries and muscle soreness. These mostly require only 5-8 minutes of your time. Again, after completing the physical activity, do a cool-down stretch to restore your body to normalcy.

It’s said that exercise enthusiasts who do this equally perform well in the activities they’re doing. You can access many such workouts on various online platforms for free. With time, you will not need to refer from any site since they’re easy to master over time.

Start slow with light activity and build upon your activities as soon as your body retains the momentum it needs to push it further. Most importantly, don’t forget to take your rest days seriously and hydrate as needed.

About the Author

Jenn Walker is a freelance writer, blogger, dog-enthusiast, and avid beachgoer operating out of Southern New Jersey.

 

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