As we age, there’s no question our bodies change, and what we need from a workout will change as well. Physical fitness means something completely different to seniors than it does to young people. For older adults, a focus on strength building, remaining mobile and improving balance typically becomes the goal rather than high endurance, high impact workouts. Your bones and knees may no longer be able to handle exercises that involve running, jumping and lunging. Knowing and listening to your body is key, as is having a good relationship with your doctor.
At Parkview Senior Living, we developed our communities knowing that living an independent and active lifestyle go hand-in-hand. That’s why each community includes a state-of-the-art fitness center that supports multiple levels of physical fitness to assist with our resident’s needs. Each community also includes a lovely walking trail to encourage residents to keep moving and enjoy our glorious East Tennessee surroundings and seasonal delights.
Below are several great low impact exercises that seniors can try. As always, check with your doctor prior to starting any exercise regimen.
Experts recommend most people take at least 10,000 steps per day. That may sound hugely overwhelming and you don’t have to start out at 10,000 right out the gate, but what you can do is simply put one foot in front of the other and start moving.
Resistance Band Training
Most gyms, including Parkview’s fitness centers, will have an array of resistance bands available for use, or you can buy some for home use as well that come with easy-to-follow instructions and videos. Bands work your muscles using little resistance and allow you to work your way up to harder resistance without having to buy expensive equipment.
You don’t have to start bench pressing lots of weight to get healthy muscles and gain overall tone. Start with the smallest amount of weight dumbbell and increase weight when you feel comfortable.
This ancient Chinese martial art is a discipline that involves the mind, breath and motion. It is wonderful for seniors because it helps with muscle strengthening and increasing flexibility, both of which help with balance.
Yoga has become popular with seniors, primarily because it is flexible to adapt the practice to fit most anyone’s needs. Yoga combines physical poses with mindfulness, breathing techniques and meditation so it helps people both physically and emotionally.
Pilates is much like Yoga in that it’s known for being a low-impact, strength building practice. But its key focus is on building core strength and stability while also developing better balance which helps seniors with much needed control and confidence.
At Parkview Senior Living, caring for and encouraging our residents to live their lives to the fullest is what we believe in and care about, and we invite you to learn more about our facilities by scheduling a tour today.