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May 17, 2019
May is National Physical Fitness Month, and with spring in high gear, it’s the perfect time to celebrate the occasion and work some exercise into your daily routine. There are numerous benefits of physical activity for seniors, including weight management, lowered stress and anxiety, and a reduced risk of health-related problems like stroke and diabetes as well as falls.
Physical fitness does not necessarily mean strenuous, high-impact exercises and workouts. For seniors with flexibility or mobility restraints, some sports and other activities may be difficult or challenging to perform. The good news is that even low-impact exercises like the ones we’ll explore in this article can go a long way in promoting physical health and a healthier lifestyle. Try these exercises to get in the spirit of National Physical Fitness Month!
Ask any fitness trainer, and they’ll tell you how important it is to stretch before a workout to prevent possible injury. But, did you know that stretching itself can also be an effective low-impact workout? Stretching out your muscles helps with joint flexibility and can help prevent or ease stiffness, especially from arthritis. Stretching can also help with balance and stability. Try stretching or some form of flexibility exercise for at least 10 minutes twice a week for a lasting impact.
Practicing yoga is a good low-impact exercise for seniors for many reasons. Yoga can improve bone density, help you develop a strong sense of balance and improve your muscle endurance. Yoga also helps build core strength and range of motion. All of these benefits can help seniors reduce the risk of injury from falling or tripping while moving about. In addition, yoga helps reduce anxiety and stress, making it an impactful exercise for your mental health as well.
Swimming poses little risk of injury and offers numerous health benefits for seniors, including heart health, joint flexibility, muscle strength and stress reduction. Some senior living communities offer aquatic aerobic exercises for personal guidance to help you get the most out of this fun, low-impact exercise.
As with any new activity or lifestyle change, be sure to consult with your healthcare provider or a professional fitness trainer to determine which exercise program is best for you.
Since 2012, Episcopal SeniorLife Communities has offered Neighborhood Programs to help our residents and seniors in the community stay active and healthy. From exercise programs and nutritional information to fun and friendship with others, you or your loved one can find everything you need to live a happy and vibrant lifestyle.
For more information about how to become a Neighborhood Program Member or to learn more about our senior living communities, please contact us today.