Most people who are 65 years of age and older understand the importance of exercise and fitness, yet many of them still choose not to do it. Part of the reason for this is that many assume that exercise is too difficult, or that they’re too old for it, which couldn’t be further from the truth. Below is a list of basic exercises for loved ones that are fun and effective.
This simple exercise is one of the best and in fact, many experts believe it is better than bench presses. It strengthens the shoulders, chest, and arms and all you need is your body and the floor; no expensive gym equipment or weights are needed. It has been used by the military for years and although it has traditionally been associated with men, women can benefit as well.
This is another outstanding exercise that doesn’t require a gym membership or equipment of any kind. It is designed to strengthen your legs and hips. It requires balance and coordination which many older adults lack, so you’ll need to keep a sturdy chair in front of you while doing it. It is to ensure you remain balanced and can catch yourself if you start to fall. It is best to take it easy at first and do no more than ten reps.
This is arguably one of the best exercises for elders, so long as they take it slow in the beginning. Engaging in aerobic activity will burn away the calories while reducing cholesterol and blood pressure. It will also promote the movement of joints while strengthening the heart and enhancing your overall activity levels. For those who are 65 years of age or older, it is best to begin with five-minute sessions until your heart rate increases, after which you’ll want to transition into thirty-minute sessions. The best forms of aerobic exercises include running, hiking near area attractions, swimming, tennis, bicycling, and walking briskly.
This is an extremely simple exercise that can bring significant benefits. It involves lifting heavy objects such as water jugs or suitcases, which are easy for many young people but can be challenging for elders. Doing it regularly will strengthen your arms and the exercise can be done while standing or sitting. You’ll want to start with a weight that is comfortable yet challenging for you and perform ten repetitions where you lift and hold the object for a second, then lower it and repeat.
Why Low-Impact Exercises Are Best
Regardless of which exercises you choose, it is best to go with those that are low impact. A low-impact exercise does not put too much strain on the body. Certain activities such as baseball, football, wrestling, basketball, and soccer involve “high impacts” or collisions which could easily and seriously injure those who are 65 or older. For those in this age group, it is best to stick with things like Tai Chi, Yoga, Pilates, aerobics, and the lifting of lighter weights.