While we might not have the same physical prowess in our senior years as we do when we’re young adults, staying active is still an important part of maintaining good health (both physical and mental) as an older adult. What kind of activity you can do will depend on your health and mobility levels, so let’s look at some tips that can help seniors stay active and in good health.
If you’re not used to much physical activity in your daily life, then you should start off small and gradually increase the amount or intensity of exercise that you do. Even 5-10 minutes per day of light, aerobic exercise can make a difference. Walking is a great place to start. Then, once your body becomes accustomed to the new level of activity, you can start to increase to more time per day or more days per week of exercise.
Strengthen your core
One of the benefits of staying fit and active as you age is that it reduces your risk of suffering a serious trip or fall. For this, you should focus on strengthening your core. Classes like yoga and Pilates are great for your core as well as general muscle strength and flexibility. Abdominal exercises like sit-ups and planks are good for the core, but there are more gentle exercises for those who need them.
For example, try sitting in a chair with your feet flat on the floor and simply reach down toward the floor with one arm, bending at the side. Another exercise is to lie down on the floor on your front with your arms stretched out in front. Then, lift one arm and the opposite leg off the ground at the same time, lifting your head and chest at the same time for more of a stretch.
Find an active hobby you enjoy
Staying active doesn’t have to be all about workouts and exercises. There are lots of hobbies you can pick up that will keep you active without even thinking about it. If your home has a yard, then gardening is a great active pursuit that is also fulfilling and good for your mental health as well. Other popular active hobbies for seniors include golfing, dancing, walking/hiking, swimming, and local fitness or sports classes.
Feed your body for activity
Make sure your body is getting enough energy and nutrients through the food you eat to support a more active lifestyle, particularly carbohydrates for energy supply and protein for muscle growth and repair. Click here to read our blog on nutrition tips for older adults.
Assisted living at Brookstone Terrace of Woodruff focuses on supporting all aspects of the health and wellbeing of our residents, including physical activity as well as physical therapy and rehabilitation for seniors after an illness, injury, and other conditions. Get in touch to find out more about our facilities and services in Woodruff, SC.