As you grow old, the aging process propagates structural and functional changes in your body. So you start getting slower, weaker, and more fragile with age.
Lately more and more people are concerned about retaining their youthful bounce and vigor while they age. Very often I am asked for advice on how to keep functionally fit in old age. Is there any thing that you can do to remain fit, full of vigor, carry on your everyday activities and make the most of your middle and later years of life? Yes, the answer is easy. Read on to know the trick …
Benefits Of Exercise For Seniors
Regular exercise is the most important thing you can do to slow down the Mother Nature’s clock. It can prevent many of the health problems that seem to come with age. It also helps your muscles grow stronger so you can keep doing your day-to-day activities without becoming dependent on others. Moreover, many signs of aging are reversible. General physical activity, not just structured exercise, can help you achieve major health benefits such as:
(i) Cardiovascular fitness increases by 20 – 25 percent
(ii) Flexibility and Muscle strength improves remarkably
(iii) Depression and Anxiety decline
(iv) Weight loss
(v) Lower blood pressure
(vi) Immune system strengthens
(vii) Risk of heart disease decreases
(viii) Bone loss prevented
Another benefit is that physical activity seems to increase an older person’s intelligence. Whether this is a result of increased circulation or adrenaline rushing throughout the body is still not known, but one fact is clear: we think and learn better when we walk or do another form of exercise. So if you are having a mental block, go for a brisk walk, jog or do some other physical activity. The exercise will help pull you out of your funk.
If you want to live a life without physically depending on others, exercising is the best way to keep you fit in old age. Don’t let the old age feeling deter you from exercising and drop out from the exercise scene just when you need its benefits the most. Not exercising in old age causes more illness and the degenerative conditions compound the troubles and make the road to recovery appear monumental to the seniors. Remember it really is never too late to start exercising and reaping the benefits.
Exercise Tips For Elderly
If you have a medical condition or any unexplained symptoms or you haven’t done a physical exercise routine in a long time, then talk to your doctor before you start exercising. Otherwise, go ahead. “You don’t need to check with a doctor before you exercise just because you are older. Just go slowly and don’t overdo it. Start with workouts that are well paced, stimulating, relaxing, and easy to follow.
Here are some tips for the seniors to get started:
(i) Motivation: Think of some reasons to exercise. Visualize that by working out regularly you will maintain good health, functional fitness, and independence.
(ii) Pledge: Make a commitment to exercise on a regular basis. Allocate a certain amount of time every day and stick to it! Be faithful to your commitment.
(iii) Warm-up: Remember to begin with warm-up exercises and end with cool-down light exercises. Listen to your body and do what is comfortable; stop if you feel pain. A little pain is ok.
(iv) All Days Are Not Same: Keep in mind, your comfort range changes from day to day, so don’t get disheartened if you can’t do the same amount of exercise on a day as you did the day before.
(v) Listen To Your Body: If, after exercising, you find that fatigue and/or discomfort last longer than few hours, then pare down your exercise session the next day but don’t stop completely. Try reducing the number of repetitions for that muscle group, then move on to a different set of muscles.
(vi) Slow And Controlled Motions: Make sure not to overwork muscles; don’t aim for the burn! Exercise using slow, controlled movements.
(vii) Watch Your Joints: Never try to exercise hot or inflamed joints. If joints are stiff, use warm, moist heat before exercising.
(viii) Range Of Motion: Focus on exercises that maintain and improve your range of motion, lubricate the joints and maintain muscles flexible. You will find your day-to-day activities easier to carry out and you’ll feel less pain, too. Your flexibility, endurance, balance, confidence and independence will increase.
(ix) Reconcile With Your Limitations: Instead of thinking about what you can’t do, focus on what you can. Remember positive thoughts always produce positive results. The key to keeping you fit is to never give up!
Be positive! Invest time and energy in yourself by exercising. The rewards are immediate and long lasting. You won’t regret it!
Please share with us your personal experience about exercising tips for seniors and elderly.