The benefits of physical fitness for seniors do not decrease as we become older, and it’s extremely critical for older adults to retain as active a lifestyle as possible. Even individuals who are confined to a bed or who are wheelchair-bound have a variety of possibilities available to strengthen and improve resistance and flexibility.
The initial step is always to seek the advice of a physician to get a suggestion on the ideal exercises for older individuals that match your loved one’s activity level and medical history. In the beginning, exercising even for as little as a few minutes a day, repeated several times throughout the day, can greatly improve the older adult’s health and wellbeing.
Below are several examples of the best exercises for seniors:
- Aerobic Exercises: If whole body movements are not possible, exercises from a sitting position can be substituted to build cardio strength. When possible, effective possibilities include:
- Water aerobics or swimming
- Tai Chi
- Resistance Exercises: To strengthen and build muscles, resistance exercises can be done with elastic bands, which are available in a range of tensile strengths. The Journal of Gerontology: Biological Sciences reports that even just one day each week of resistance training helps aging adults retain independence and cut back on the possibility of injury.
- Flexibility Exercises: Stretching exercises help enhance flexibility and range of motion. Search for yoga classes at local senior or recreation centers.
- Alzheimer’s Exercises: In the early stages of Alzheimer’s especially, a wide variety of exercise options are possible, and with increasing supervision and some alterations, can be continued as the disease progresses. Considering that repetition is often comforting to those with Alzheimer’s disease, activities such as walking, riding a stationary bicycle, and folding laundry are beneficial to both the senior’s physical and psychological state.
Encouraging your loved one to start and then stay with an exercise routine is fundamental to success. Try these ideas to make it something interesting that he or she will look forward to:
- Join in an exercise program with the senior. It’s always more enjoyable to exercise with a partner.
- Include the senior’s favorite, upbeat music.
- Schedule dedicated time every day for exercise, and make it a priority.
- Designate incentives or rewards for attaining goals.
For more suggestions on the best exercises for seniors to help increase activity levels, contact CareFor. Our expert in-home caregivers are knowledgeable in helping older adults thrive and improve their overall wellbeing, and we love nothing more than knowing the seniors in our care are healthy and living life to the fullest! Contact us online or call usat (512) 338-4533 to learn more about our top-rated long term care in Austin and the surrounding communities!