Before we get started, let’s acknowledge that we all know that exercise is needed for good health. Unfortunately, as a whole, most people age 65 and above are not physically active.
Lack of exercise can accelerate the aging process, cause muscles to atrophy and weaken, as well as cause many other physical challenges.
A common challenge for those who do exercise is doing exercises the wrong way can lead to injury. This is the reason exercises should be simple and easy to do.
The good news, is there is a very easy solution.
These exercises can be done indoor or outdoor. However, to get even more out of any exercise, being outside exposed to sunlight as early as you can after waking up in the morning the better. Without overdoing the exposure to the sun, there are many benefits to sunlight directly on the skin for 20 minutes or so in the morning. (The exception to this is obviously if there is a medical condition that contradicts this strategy.) According to the Biohacker’s Guide to Energy and Focus by Anthony DiClementi, sunlight has shown to improve circulation, improve the immune system, decrease physical pain, regulation of melatonin which helps sleep, normalization of body temperature, along with many others! So if possible, enjoy the outdoors!
Next, these activities should also be done in a safe setting. Having someone else present, watching as well, would be ideal. Other things to improve the settings would be to remove any clutter of exercise area, have someone scheduled to check on you at a certain time just in case, as well as remove anything that could be distracting to your concentration, like turning off the TV if necessary. Seniors who exercise with nobody else present, wear our Medical Alert buttons, for in the event of an accident.
Exercises should be low impact and easy to alter depending on the physical limitations of the senior. We want to make sure muscles, bones, and the heart are not over exerted.
Great indoor exercises include:
Walking, walking stairs, Indoor swimming (not to do alone under any circumstance), exercises that require balancing (while holding something that is stable), body weight exercises.
Since seniors are at risk of injury (especially from overuse) when
exercising, it is best for seniors to learn and practice exercises with the
help of an instructor or personal trainer. Performing exercises like these
with a group can also make staying active more fun.
Seniors who have challenges with keeping balance or falling are better off doing seated exercises when unsupervised. Best seated exercises include: Calf raises (single and double), wrist and ankle rolls, hip marches, and torso twists.
In order to keep muscles and bones healthy, we suggest seniors ad small amounts of weights to any exercise. It is common for weights
To conclude, consistency is key. Seniors who engage in simple and safe exercises consistently, dramatically improve their health and quality of life. Performing at least three simple exercises per day. allows seniors to feel better and enjoy better outlooks!