No matter your age, it is well known that appropriate exercise has the capacity to increase the quality of your life. However, in order for you to stick with it, it has to be a form of exercise you enjoy! Below we have listed some of the best exercises for older adults—not only in terms of enjoyment but also in terms of health. If you have specific health concerns, be sure to consult with your doctor before giving these a try. Here we go!
There’s a reason why swimming is sometimes referred to as the world’s best exercise. Whether you’re performing the breaststroke, butterfly, taking a water aerobics class, or taking it freestyle, swimming combines the perfect amount of cardiovascular fitness while strengthening your muscles. It also puts minimal stress on your joints and bones making it ideal for the older adults who want to maintain good health without risking high levels of injury.
If you want a more holistic approach to fitness that builds muscle strength and core mobility, yoga may be the right choice for you! Yoga is unique in that you support your own body’s weight with every position while still weight-bearing and muscle building. However, it is also gentle on your joints and bones because it involves slow movements and stretches. Many older adults enjoy taking a yoga class or doing guided yoga at home because it gives them an opportunity to refocus their mind and regain a sense of calmness through breathing exercises and meditation.
If you’re looking for a more casual but still effective form of exercising, try scheduling regular periods of time into your day to go walking. Many people underestimate the incredible value of simply putting one foot in front of the other for an extended period of time. Whether you take a friend or animal with you or you go alone, walking has been proven to increase health and quality of life tremendously. It’s also nice to just get out and enjoy the fresh air!
Another great form of exercise for those wanting to be gentle with their joints is cycling. Cycling is a great way to strengthen leg muscles while improving cardiovascular and metabolic health. Doctor Victoria Shin, in a 2017 analysis, also found that cycling improves cognitive performance in adults over 70. If you have trails or neighborhoods near your home, it’s always nice to get out and breathe in the fresh air as you ride a bicycle. But for those who may not live in areas suitable for riding outside (due to weather conditions or not having access to riding trails), indoor cycling is also becoming a popular alternative. A plus to indoor cycling is that you don’t have to wear a helmet or worry about falls. You can read a book or watch a movie while doing it as well!
- Personal Training or Group Classes
If you’re looking for a more specific kind of exercise, many gyms offer personal trainers or senior classes. These types of training vary widely, so it’s important to consult with your doctor if you have any concerns about whether a certain kind of exercise is appropriate for your health. Feel free to call or drop by a local gym in your area to inquire more about what kinds of classes or trainings are available.
Here at Aspire Home Health and Hospice, we believe that you will be the happiest when you are the healthiest. Because our physical health is such a tremendous part of our overall health, we hope that you will take time to incorporate some form of exercise into your daily or weekly routines.