Senior Exercise for All Activity Levels

Home healthcare nurse, physical therapy with senior adult woman.

Make exercising a team effort. It’s always more fun to exercise with a friend.

Exercise is a crucial part of life, even, and especially, as we age. While it can be difficult for seniors who are frail or who spend most of their time in a wheelchair to exercise, there are still plenty of senior exercise options available to strengthen, improve resistance and flexibility.

Before beginning any new exercise plan, make sure to first check with the senior’s doctor to get a recommendation and his or her approval. When first beginning the senior exercises, keep in mind that even as little as a few minutes per day, repeated several times throughout the day, can greatly impact the senior’s health.

Our experts in senior care in Lake Forest, IL have compiled a few different kinds of exercises to take into consideration for older adults:

  • Aerobic Exercises: If full body movements are possible, these aerobic options are good to try:
    • Swimming or water aerobics
    • Dancing
    • Walking
    • Tai Chi
    • Bowling
  • Resistance Exercises: To build and tone muscles, exercising with resistance bands can be helpful. The Journal of Gerontology: Biological Sciences outlines that even as little as one day each week of strength training helps older adults maintain independence and reduce the risk of injury.
  • Flexibility Exercises: Stretching enhances flexibility and allows for better freedom of movement. Search for yoga classes at a local senior or recreation center.
  • Dementia Exercises: There is a wide range of exercises that can be beneficial in the early stages of Alzheimer’s disease, and with extra supervision and alterations as needed, these exercises can be continued even as the disease progresses. Since repetition is often comforting to those with dementia, activities such as folding laundry, walking, and riding a stationary bike are helpful both to the person’s physical and mental state.

Encouraging older adults to maintain exercising in a senior program is the key to the program’s success. These tips can help make it something fun that he or she will look forward to:

  • Make exercising a team effort. It’s always more fun to exercise with a friend.
  • Play the senior’s favorite, upbeat music.
  • Schedule dedicated time each day for exercise, and make sure it’s a priority.
  • Include incentives and rewards to help keep you and the senior motivated.

For more guidelines on helping older adults increase activity levels, contact Partners in Senior Care, providers of senior care Lake Forest, IL families need and deserve. Our professional senior caregivers are experienced in helping older adults maintain a healthy and safe lifestyle in the place they feel most comfortable! Contact us online or call  847-548-1330 for more information on setting up an elderly exercise program to improve life for your senior loved one!