Fitness workouts help keep diseases at bay and significantly impact the quality of life. The type of exercise to be carried out varies from person to person and age to age. The prevailing illnesses (if any) have to be considered, too, as the type of exercise planned out may not be suitable for the type of ailment present. Some fitness connections must be maintained to manage normal physiological parameters, whether resistance training or aerobic exercises. Blood pressure, brain activity, blood sugar levels, heart rate, etc., are some body parameters maintained at optimum levels with the help of consistent exercises. Seniors must adopt a regular fitness plan or a fitness trainer schedule to erase any stiffness in the body and enhance mobility. They may even work out in a fitness gym with other buddies and enjoy group exercises. One way to make use of such group exercises is on the Emoha app, where you can join 10,000+ seniors as they learn new fitness activities, healthy recipes and more, through the live interactive shows.
Benefits of Fitness Workouts for Older People
Some advantages of exercises for seniors are listed below:
- Heart diseases, cancers, strokes, etc., are warded off.
- The risks of falling over are lowered.
- Osteoporosis and Rheumatoid Arthritis are minimised to a great extent.
- Immobility and complications due to staying put are avoided.
- Cognitive abilities are enhanced, and stress and other mental illnesses are reduced considerably.
Ideal Fitness Workouts for the Elderly
Here is a comprehensive list of workouts that will ensure seniors are fit, active & healthy:
1. Walking Briskly
This exercise falls in the category of aerobic activity and is low in intensity. One’s heart rate increases and the muscles feel appropriately stretched. The joints are set in motion, too, which keeps the posture straight. Although this exercise is considered light, it can be taken up a notch by increasing the speed, time limit or incline. Performing this exercise daily is beneficial for people of all ages.
2. Swimming or Water Aerobics
Swimming is also an aerobic form of fitness connection that does not put extensive pressure on the joints. The buoyancy of the water helps keep the joints afloat, making any underwater movement effortless and painless. Hence this is an ideal exercise for seniors who have arthritis or osteoporosis. Older people can either swim or perform other types of water aerobics to stay fit.
These are an excellent form of workout to improve balance and mobility, and that does not need any additional equipment. The body has to be lowered into a semi-sitting position from a standing position and repeated. It is essential to keep the back straight whilst doing this. The other alternative for seniors is to sit on a chair and rise slowly with the arms stretched out front and repeat.
4. Stationary Cycling
Static cycling in one spot is another ideal fitness workout that helps to move the muscles. The heart rate is also elevated as it is aerobic exercise. The joints are not impacted greatly and have significantly less possibility of any injury.
5. Weight Training Exercise
The muscles in the back and shoulders are greatly exercised by lifting weights. Seniors do not have to lift too heavy but choose weights according to their build and age. Posture is maintained, and better balance is achieved. A simple strength training exercise is carried out by holding the weights at shoulder level and lowering the arms with the weights down and back to shoulder level again.
This strength training exercise involves step-up workouts, lying hip bridges, light lunges, etc. Chair-based squats are another easy strength workout for seniors, and such activities help to overcome muscle atrophy in older people. Wall pushups can be performed by placing the hands on the wall with the feet about 3 feet farther. The hands are then pushed and pulled back repeatedly. Pelvic tilts are another form of callisthenics in which the body is lowered to the knees. The lower back muscles are exercised by tightening the buttocks and repeatedly tilting the hips forward and backwards.
This is an exercise for better balance and flexibility. It is a great way to relax and helps improve focus and maintain optimum mental health levels. This is a gentle flowing exercise with many moves occurring in a series of steps. It is also called moving meditation, as the steps all happen in a song-like flow.
It is an excellent form of stretching and helps in flexibility, strength training as well as balancing abilities. Various poses are maintained with stretching for some seconds before moving on to the next step. The joints are not impacted much, so those with arthritis or other joint pains can quickly try to perform such exercises.
An important reminder for older people who want to keep fit is that some form of exercise is better than none. Being healthy does not have to cost anything and shouldn’t hurt to stretch a bit every day. Some tips include finding a buddy to perform the fitness workouts with and performing the exercise sitting down if standing is too tiring. Having fun whilst exercising is essential too as it is the best motivation.
Word of Caution – As seniors, consult your physician before starting with any physical activity that you are not used to.
Why are health and fitness essential issues for the elderly?
It is essential to be healthy and keep those ageing-related illnesses at bay. Chronic or acute forms of various diseases can be coped with better when the body is fit.
Why fitness is a lifestyle?
Fitness must be an essential part of seniors’ lifestyle as it can help with anxiety or stress, improve self-esteem, keep illness at bay and lose weight.
What are the five types of exercises for seniors?
Walking briskly, swimming, spot cycling, yoga, tai chi, climbing stairs, etc., are some beneficial exercises for seniors.