Regular physical activity is essential for everyone to stay healthy. As people age, it can become more difficult to remain physically active, and you may lose motivation. However, it is even more critical for older adults to be active to maintain strength in their muscles, mobility, and independence.
Regular physical activity can help seniors recover more quickly from injuries and illnesses, which will help improve overall health and well-being. Just be careful. If you feel any hip or knee pain, talk with your doctor before starting a new exercise program.
Challenges for Seniors
One of the main challenges for older adults who want to stay active is limited mobility. Low impact exercises for seniors and regular strength exercises can help improve mobility. They have to make sure they engage in activities and exercise routines that are safe for their capabilities. This is especially important if they are exercising on their own. Easing into regular exercise or yoga will help reduce the chances that they will overdo it and help improve their strength and mobility.
Another challenge may be going to a gym. Since many older adults are homebound, they need workouts and balance exercises at home, whether they want to maintain health or are looking for workouts to lose weight. Home care for the elderly in their own homes should include plenty of exercise. That way, seniors can stay active even if they are unable to leave home regularly.
Older adults need to stay active, and one way to do that is through regular exercise. However, because seniors have health concerns, it is also essential to ensure they are healthy enough to do specific exercise activities. Use heart rate testing and a doctor’s examination before starting any workout routine, even at home. That way, seniors know their limitations. They can then develop an exercise routine that works for their health needs and capabilities.
1. Cycling for Seniors
Cycling is one of the best exercises for aging bodies as it helps work the cardiovascular system to promote heart health. It also minimizes joint strain because cycling is a low-impact activity. Multiple studies have cited cycling as a way to slow aging and promote brain health. There are tons of general cardio benefits that come with cycling, as well.
Even with limited mobility, cycling is typically gentle enough to be accessible for most seniors. Biking can be enjoyed outdoors for those looking for fresh air and have the confidence to venture out on a standard or electric motor-assisted bike. Cycling can even be done indoors with a bike trainer or a stationary bike.
2. Low Impact Exercises For Seniors To Do At Home
There are lots of exercises seniors can do at home to help keep them active and healthy. These exercises work with different parts of the body and can be adapted based on the person’s mobility and capabilities.
These exercises can create a safe and straightforward exercise routine at home to help improve balance and body strength for the elderly.
Walking is an easy low impact exercise for older adults. They can walk around the neighborhood or their homes. They can walk at their own pace, so the seniors do not feel like they are doing too much, but it ensures they are active and physical.
Be sure that older adults have someone with them if they are unsteady when walking and have a high risk of falling. This will help prevent falls and injuries. Brisk walking is a great aerobic exercise with great benefits of improving your cardiovascular health, lowering stress, and lowering your blood pressure. Whenever possible, nursing interventions should include walking as part of seniors’ daily exercise.
4. Leg Raises
Leg raises are another simple activity and are an effective way to incorporate workouts for seniors at home. They not only improve leg strength, but they can help with balance as well. If the senior is unsteady, leg raises can be added to chair exercises as part of a more extensive exercise routine. If the older adults do the leg raises while standing, it is good for them to hold on to a chair for balance. Balance exercises for seniors can be challenging, but they can help them gain more muscle mass in their legs and feet.
Aerobics is another alternative that can be a good exercise regimen for older adults. Leg raises can be done at the knees level, as well as at the hip. This works the entire leg as well as stretches the joints. This is a senior-friendly alternative to leg press exercises that can also help strengthen their muscles. Water aerobics are excellent for seniors who have knee and hip problems.
5. Arm Raises
Like leg raises, arm raises are an easy, effective exercise for older adults that can be done at home. They can be done in a chair or standing. For strength training, seniors can also use small hand weights during arm raises.
Doing arm raises regularly can help keep older adults active using short, easy exercises that are not too taxing. Arm raises can be done at the elbows and shoulders to work the entire arm and improve its range of motion. If you want to increase the difficulty, you can add a resistance band.
6. Tai Chi
Tai Chi is a meditative practice that is excellent for seniors. It is low impact and uses slow, deliberate movements and positions. This is a unique way for seniors to stay active. Fortunately, they do not have to find a local class.
Instead, they can find Tai Chi exercises for seniors on YouTube and use the videos to do their Tai Chi routines. Because Tai Chi is slow and low impact, older adults can stay physically active every day.
7. Shoulder Rolls
Shoulder rolls are essential for seniors because they are often overlooked in many exercise routines for senior fitness. Shoulder workouts help seniors to be able to lift things, which can help retain independence. The person should roll the shoulders forward and backward for the best results and maintain the best range of motion possible. However, if the older adult has shoulder problems, he or she should be careful about doing shoulder rolls to not aggravate an injury or cause further issues.
8. Toe Lifts
Toe lifts are an excellent way for older adults to practice balance and strengthen their feet, which can help improve mobility. The senior can hold the back of a chair, lift on their toes, and then lower back down. This can be a fantastic strength activity for older adults. If the older adult wants to focus on building balance, he or she can do toe lifts by holding on to the chair with only one hand or not holding on to a chair at all. However, this should only be done if the senior can do the toe lifts safely without support.
9. Hand and Finger Exercises
Hand and finger strength is an area that many adults struggle with as they grow older. As people get older, they may find it harder to grip and carry things with their hands. Hand and finger exercises can help them keep strength and flexibility in their hands and prevent arthritis. Stretching and using the fingers and hands is a great way to exercise them at home. It can be done anywhere and easily incorporates into a daily routine.
10. Stretching Exercises
Seniors can help relieve some types of chronic pain by adding stretching to their exercise program. Stretching exercises can also increase flexibility. Isolate your muscle groups and gently pull. Be sure to be careful around your hips and knees.
11. Weight Training
Light weight training is excellent for preventing osteoporosis and increasing muscle strength. Even something as simple as wall push-ups can increase your strength and endurance. And you don’t need to do much. 2 sets between 12 and 15 repetitions will improve your muscle mass. Using light weights can also help improve strength.