When it comes to safe and effective workouts, perhaps no group can benefit more than seniors. But a wide range of factors, including fitness level, strength, mobility, balance and others can impact what’s safe and effective. An 85 year-old California woman just completed the Boston Marathon this year, but a lot of people half her age have a hard time getting off the sofa.
The point is that for seniors there isn’t a “one-size-fits-all” workout regimen. Some seniors are incredibly fit and active, and others not so much, due to health issues and injuries. Regardless of your fitness level, there are several rules of thumb when considering various exercises.
Here are five workouts to consider, so you can exercise safely and effectively, whether you’re an active senior, need assistance in your daily routine, or rehabilitating from an injury or illness.
The pool is ideal for exercising because water provides resistance without much impact. Here are a few you can do that require no equipment.
Yoga is something you can do in a class or on your own once you know a few positions and combinations of moves. Yoga will improve your strength, balance, and circulation, while increasing flexibility and mobility. You can even do yoga in a chair!
The benefits of walking focus on your heart health, lowering blood pressure and cholesterol, and reducing the risk of heart disease. Try to get your heart rate up, but don’t get out of breath. Wear comfortable shoes and clothes and stay hydrated. A 20-minute walk just three times a week will yield results.
Your body is its own natural gym! Just using your body’s weight as resistance can benefit your overall health in many ways. Here are some exercises you can do right now:
In a nutshell, isometrics is about pushing muscle groups against each other or against a fixed object. Isometrics can be done anywhere, anytime. You can do isometric exercises standing up, sitting down, even lying down. What’s great is that you get all the benefits of every exercise mentioned above. In fact, many of the exercises above are, in fact, isometric. Anytime you hold a muscle group in a fixed position, it’s isometrics. Here are a few more you can try:
There are countless isometric exercises you can do, regardless of how healthy or mobile you are. You can get even more out of an isometric workout using the Activ5 fitness device, which pairs with a smartphone app. It coaches you through over a 100 gym-based exercises, keeps track of your progress, and keeps you motived.
Regardless of what kind of fitness routine you choose, just make sure you choose something. Smart, safe, and effective exercise is key to both physical and mental wellness, especially for seniors.
Please consult your doctor before beginning any fitness routine. Now get up and get moving!