Exercise is for everyone, regardless of age or fitness level. Exercise is especially important for seniors. In fact, studies show that regular, moderate exercise can extend functional fitness as well as the quality of life. Don’t worry if you have been mostly sedentary. There are benefits to getting started, no matter how many birthdays you’ve celebrated. Here are some safe workouts to try.
You probably guessed this one. Walking is easy to do, even for beginners. No special equipment is needed, and you can do it practically anywhere, anytime. Too cold or rainy outside? Walk the mall or an indoor track.
Head to the fitness center or senior center for a workout that boosts heart health and spares your joints. Swimming is a total body workout that helps you slim down with the little risk of injury. There are other benefits, too. Exercise supports cognitive function, helps you sleep better and manage stress. Head to the pool at least three times weekly.
It isn’t true that you have to be able to bend into a pretzel or stand on your head to benefit from yoga. Yoga is for everybody. Even if you can’t get on a mat you can enjoy chair yoga poses. Build flexibility and strength while boosting heart health and overall wellbeing.
Roll your way to fun and fitness. Join a biking club or head out on your own. Like walking, biking is adaptable to almost any fitness level and is a good cardio workout. It’s low-impact, too.
Tai Chi offers gentle, flowing movements with a meditative aspect. Try it to move your body and still your mind as you flow with the breath. Tai Chi is a great way to manage stress and improve functional fitness. Again, movements are gentle, and the risk of injury is low.
It pays to play in the dirt. Gardening gets you outside and into nature for a dose of vitamin D and the restorative effects of fresh air. It can also help you lower blood pressure and relieve stress. You’ll burn calories and feel good about knowing where your food comes from and how it was grown.
The above exercises are appropriate for seniors and in fact anyone, without a fitness base. Seniors and others who have been exercising regularly may want to go for other kinds of workouts. These can include hiking, paddle boarding, tennis, basketball or anything else you enjoy. The goal is to get moving for overall good health.