4 Easy Exercises for Seniors
Exercising is an important part of staying healthy. As a senior, that importantance remains true.
There are, however, unique challenges of exercising, as well as different goals of exercising, when you are an older adult.
The Top 4 exercises that benefit seniors
- Walking increases your heart rate! Your target heart rate depends on your age, gender, and resting heart rate. Your heart is a muscle, so by increasing your heart rate through exercise you are making it stronger. Increasing your heart rate is not only good for your heart, but other parts of your body as well. A study done by NPR showed that brisk walkers, who moved at a clip of about 3 mph, were 90% more likely to be free of diabetes and kidney disease. Since walking is low impact it is ideal for Seniors, but exercises like swimming and aerobics are also great for heart rate.
- The CDC recommends participating in strength-training workouts at least twice a week. Keeping your muscles healthy can prevent chronic health problems and injuries from falls. For arm exercises, you can simply lift light hand held weights (5-20 lbs, depending on ability). You can do do bicep or tricep curls. You can purchase light weights like these at stores like Target and Walmart. As an alternative to using weights, you can do resistance work out, but doing a modified wall push-up. Stand a few feet from a wall, just enough to where your palms sit comfortably on the wall. Proceed to do push-ups at this angle.
- The CDC reports nearly 2.5 million older Americans are treated for injuries caused by falling every year. A fun way to work on your balance is yoga. If yoga isn’t for you, a simple exercise of bracing yourself on a peice of furniture in your home that will not move easily, and balancing on one foot at a time, lifting one leg at the knee. Balance for 10 seconds at a time. Reduce your risk of falling by practicing balance exercises!
- Stretching daily helps you maintain your range of motion as you age. Stretching every day can help you with your everyday tasks, and only takes a few minutes a day. Stretch your legs by trying to touch your toes, but keep in mind that stretching should never hurt. Do not push yourself past where you are comfortable. Remember to always breathe while you are stretching, out as you stretch and in as you relax. You can stretch your arms by bending one of your arms and resting the other in it across your chest. Hold each stretch for about 30 seconds.
By the time you are in your 70s, your muscle strength has declined roughly 25% from what it was in your 30s.
Stay strong, and healthy, by incorporating these simple exercises into your everyday routine.
If you have any questions, please leave them in the comments below!