The Importance of Healthy Exercise for seniors

Exercise and physical activity can be essential for helping to you to stay more energetic, independent and healthy as you grow older. Most adults over the age of sixty-five spend around ten hours or more either lying or sitting down every day. This establishes them as the most sedentary group. However, they can pay a price for that inactivity, suffering from higher rates of heart disease, obesity and early death. As you grow older, it becomes more important for you to stay active if you want to maintain your independence and stay as health as possible.

Understanding Physical activityseniors walking

Physical activity can count as anything that gets your body moving, from recreational sport to simply going for a short walk. The first thing that you should be focusing on as you get older is keeping yourself moving. On a basic level, this means making sure that you don’t spend every hour of the day sitting down. In addition to reducing the amount of time you spend being still, it is important to engage in around one hundred and fifty minutes of aerobic activity at a moderate level each week. Usually, it’s a good idea to be active every single day, generally in bouts of activity ten minutes long or more. The more you do in terms of exercise, the greater your health gains will be.

One method for achieving your physical activity target on a weekly basis is to do thirty minutes of activity five days out of the week. In two of those five days, the activities should be something that helps to strengthen your bones and muscles, such as heavy gardening or carrying heavy loads. Activity that count as moderate intensity aerobics include:

  • Water aerobics
  • Walking fast
  • Playing tennis
  • Riding a bike on relatively level ground
  • Pushing your lawnmower

Daily chores such as cooking, shopping and completing housework should really count towards your weekly 150 minutes, as the effort will not raise your heartrate.

The Four Types of Exercise

For seniors who want to stay as independent and healthy as possible, the national institute of health recommends four primary types of exercises, including:

  1. Balance exercises, which build leg muscles and reduce your chances of suffering from falls. According to data, in the United States alone, hospitals experience 300,000 admissions caused by broken hips on a yearly basis.
  2. Strength exercises, which increase your metabolism and build your adult muscles, as well as keeping your blood sugar and weight in check.
  3. Endurance exercises are activities such as jogging, walking, biking or swimming that can be used to increase both your breathing and heart rate for a somewhat extended period of time. Make sure that you build your endurance slowly, starting with small periods of five minutes endurance activities at a time.
  4. Stretching exercises, these motions are intended to give you better freedom of movement, which can allow you to be active more often during your senior years. Stretching exercises by themselves however will not be enough to improve your strength or endurance.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Robin Johnson