The many advantages of engaging in exercise do not decrease as we get older, and it’s tremendously important for aging adults to uphold as active a lifestyle as possible. Even seniors who are bedridden or wheelchair-bound have a full range of options for senior workouts that can strengthen and boost resistance and flexibility.
The initial step is always to contact the physician to get a recommendation on the best senior workouts that match your loved one’s activity level and medical history. At the start, exercising even for as little as a couple of minutes every day, repeated several times during the course of the day, can considerably enhance the senior’s health and wellbeing.
Below are just a few examples of the best exercises for older persons:
- Cardio Exercises: If whole body movements are not possible, exercises from a seated position can be substituted to build cardio strength. When possible, effective options include:
- Water aerobics or swimming
- Tai Chi
- Resistance Exercises: To strengthen and build muscles, resistance exercises can be performed with elastic bands, which can be found in a number of tensile strengths. The Journal of Gerontology: Biological Sciences reports that even just one day each week of resistance training helps older individuals maintain independence and lower the threat of injuries.
- Flexibility Exercises: Stretching exercises help boost flexibility and freedom of movement. Check for yoga classes at local senior or recreation centers.
- Dementia Exercises: In the initial stages of dementia in particular, a full range of exercise methods are possible, and with increased supervision and some modifications, can be continued as the disease progresses. Given that repetition is oftentimes comforting to those with dementia, activities like walking, riding a stationary bike, and folding laundry are beneficial to both the senior’s physical and mental state.
Motivating your senior loved one to begin and then stay with an exercise program is crucial to success. Try these suggestions to make it something enjoyable that he or she will look forward to:
- Participate in senior workouts with your loved one. It’s always more enjoyable to exercise with a buddy.
- Incorporate favorite, upbeat music.
- Set aside dedicated time each day specifically for physical activity, and make it a priority.
- Create incentives or rewards for obtaining goals.
For more recommendations on helping seniors increase activity levels, contact Complete Care at Home, the Summerland senior care specialists. Our highly skilled California in-home caregivers are knowledgeable in helping seniors thrive and enhance their overall wellbeing, and we love nothing more than having the assurance that the seniors in our care are healthy and enjoying life to the fullest! Call us at 805-727-3445 to learn more, and to see if our services are available in your area!