Exercise Tips for Seniors

Physical activity offers a variety of benefits for people of all ages.

Physical activity offers a variety of benefits for people of all ages. It can make you feel more energized, boost your mood, and support your strength, flexibility, balance, and coordination. It can also help you maintain a healthy weight as your metabolism slows down with age. Here are some exercise tips for seniors.

Types of Exercises

There are four main types of exercises:

  • Endurance: cardio or aerobic activities like walking, dancing, and swimming. Endurance activities can improve the health of your circulatory system and may delay many diseases.
  • Balance: activities like Tai Chi or standing on one foot. Balance activities can help prevent falls.
  • Flexibility: activities like yoga or stretching. Flexibility activities make it easier to move, such as bending over to pick something up or turning around to look at something.
  • Strength: activities like lifting weights, using resistance bands, or even carrying groceries or shopping bags. Strength activities help build muscles, which make everyday activities easier.

Don’t Try Too Much Too Soon

Start with easier exercises and work your way up to more challenging moves or heavier weights. Focus on getting the correct form, which will help prevent injuries. If you struggle with specific moves, ask a trainer or instructor for ways you can modify the move so it’s easier and more comfortable for you.


Make Exercise Enjoyable

Exercising doesn’t have to feel like a chore. Find an activity that you enjoy and gets you moving, such as going for a walk in nature, window shopping as you walk through the mall, or taking a dance class.


Make Physical Activity Part of Your Schedule

Incorporating exercise into your routine can help you stay consistent. Pick a few days that you will exercise each week and make an effort to stick to your schedule. You can also find ways to “sneak” exercise into your day, such as parking farther away from a shop or office so you have to walk a little farther, or taking the stairs instead of the elevator.


Reward Yourself

Motivate yourself with rewards for accomplishing your exercise or fitness goals. Rewards could include buying a new book, seeing a movie, or some other activity you find enjoyable.


Stop or Make Adjustments if You Feel Pain

When exercising, you will likely feel your muscles working and may feel a little sore afterwards, but movement shouldn’t be painful. If you feel pain, stop and try a different exercise that’s more comfortable. If exercise makes you feel dizzy, short of breath, or gives you chest pains, stop and call your doctor. Always consult your doctor before starting a fitness program, especially if you have medical conditions.

It’s not too late to start exercising and enjoying the health benefits from doing so. Find activities you enjoy, be patient with yourself, and remember that exercise helps you stay strong and healthy.

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