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Exercises for Senior Citizens

Exercises for Senior Citizens

Exercises can help senior citizens in keeping their body and mind healthy. Let's take a look at some exercises that they can perform.
Ajanta Bhattacharyya
Last Updated: Apr 9, 2018
Senior citizens face an increased risk of various health ailments that can range from simple indigestion to stroke, their age also makes them susceptible to a fall or physical injury. In the elderly, aging muscles and bones combined with reduced strength leads to inactivity that further results into a weak immune system, diminishing flexibility and mental equilibrium, which are recognized as some of the important factors of a healthy body and mind. A good way to fight against such old age concerns, it is important to take up some physical exercises or activities for the wellness of body and mind.

Simple or tailor-made exercises for senior citizens will promote good health in the golden phase of their life, which will help them maintain physical, mental as well as emotional balance. However, it should be noted that when age is a crucial factor for a body to respond, one should not go out of the way to match the stamina of others around.

Simple Exercises
  • Walking: To begin with, walking is one of the best primary exercises that senior citizens can opt for. Walking on a regular basis in the morning and evening can keep one fit and healthy. This activity can help burn fat, increase flexibility and uplift one's spirit.
  • Yoga: Yoga is a form of traditional Indian exercise. It has a healing effect on one's soul. It includes breathing exercises and meditation that play a vital role in maintaining a balance between body, mind and spirit. This can help senior citizens to reduce stress levels and decrease high blood pressure. It promotes flexibility and provides relaxation.
  • Swimming: The primary benefit of swimming is that it is easy on the joints. This will rejuvenate you and keep the stress factor at bay, besides retaining your fitness levels.
  • Weight training: Senior citizens may also opt for weight training with the help of light-weight dumbbells. This will help improve metabolism and increase muscle strength, enhancing stability.
  • Aerobics: Aerobics is rhythmic by nature and warms up the body. This activity engages every part of the body and is beneficial to stretch and tone up the muscles. Aerobics also strengthens the respiratory system, provides sufficient oxygen, improves blood circulation, reduces blood pressure and rapid palpitation, also improving mental health.
Stretching or Flexibility Exercises
As people grow old, their muscles stiffen and their range of motion decreases. To preserve the range of motion and to maintain flexibility and a relaxed mind, stretching exercises are very effective. These involve stretching slowly, while maintaining normal breathing during each movement. This will help senior citizens to relax their body as well as mind. For example,
  • Stretch your arms straight upwards, take a deep breath and exhale slowly as you bend down to touch your fingers to the toes.
  • Stretch your arms sideways, keep your back straight and twist your upper body toward the right side. Hold this position for 10 seconds and come back to the original position. Repeat this for other side and do it couple of times as per your convenience.
  • Stretch your arms parallel to the ground, close your fists and turn them clockwise and anti-clockwise.
Activities to Boost Your Stamina
If you are catching up in age but feel young at heart and like taking challenges, you can boost your stamina by performing some activities that can be little demanding for your age. Try riding a bicycle if possible, take the stairs if you can, or indulge in a sport or activity, make sure that it does not leave you breathless. This will give you a benchmark as to where you need to stop. If you succeed in this challenge, you will definitely be eligible to accelerate your happiness and be proud of what you could manage to do at your age. And we needn't add that staying happy is also good to stay fit. Once you have developed the confidence of performing such activities, you could challenge your grandchild to outdo you. Whoever wins, you are ultimately boosting your stamina!

Some Points to Remember
  • Start slowly and increase activity gradually according to your capacity
  • Wear comfortable clothes and shoes while exercising
  • Test blood glucose level
  • Consult a physician before starting any exercise regimen
Exercise has no age limit, only difference being, the method and level of doing it. Having achieved most from life in terms of kind and money, dedicating their time for health and wellness tops the priority for senior citizens.

Disclaimer: The exercises mentioned on this site are provided as an information resource only. Please consult your health care provider before making any health-related decision.