The positive effects of engaging in exercise don’t abate as we become older, and it’s exceedingly important for seniors to sustain as active a way of living as possible. Even individuals who are bedridden or wheelchair-bound have a broad range of possibilities available to strengthen, raise flexibility and resistance.
The initial step is always to consult a physician to get a recommendation on the most beneficial exercises for older adults that match a loved one’s activity level and medical history. At first, exercising even for as little as a couple of minutes every day, repeated several times throughout the day, can substantially enhance the senior’s health and wellbeing.
Below are a few examples of the best exercises for older adults:
- Aerobic Exercises: If whole body movements are not feasible, exercises from a seated position can still develop cardio strength. When possible, effective choices include:
- Water aerobics or swimming
- Tai Chi
- Resistance Exercises: To build and strengthen muscles, resistance exercises can be done with elastic bands, which can be found in an assortment of tensile strengths. The Journal of Gerontology: Biological Sciences reports that even just one day per week of resistance training helps seniors preserve independence and lower the threat of injuries.
- Flexibility Exercises: Stretching exercises help bolster flexibility and range of motion. Look for yoga classes at local senior or recreation centers.
- Dementia Exercises: In the earlier phases of Alzheimer’s in particular, a variety of exercise opportunities are available, and with increasing supervision and some modifications, can be continued as the disease progresses. Since repetition is frequently comforting to those with Alzheimer’s disease, activities like walking, riding a stationary bicycle, and folding laundry are advantageous to both the person’s mental and physical state.
Motivating your older loved one to begin and then stay with an exercise routine is integral to success. Try these ideas to make it something pleasurable that he or she will look forward to:
- Participate in an exercise program with your loved one. It’s always more enjoyable to exercise with a companion.
- Incorporate the senior’s favorite, upbeat music.
- Set aside dedicated time each and every day specifically for physical activity, and make it a priority.
- Put in place incentives or rewards for obtaining goals.
For more resources on helping seniors increase activity levels, contact Stay Home Care. Our compassionate team offers the highest quality non-medical home care in Nashville and the surrounding area, and we love nothing more than having the assurance that the older individuals in our care are healthy and enjoying life to the fullest! Contact us online or call us at 615-964-7726 to learn more!