As people get older there is a tendency to stop exercising. Slowly but surely the level of physical activity drops off and the amount of time spent sitting in from of the television or doing crossword puzzles or Sodoku increases. It’s almost like we get to a certain point and we simply give up on being physically active and throw all our efforts into staying on top of our mental game. But that is a big mistake as physical activity for the aged has so many benefits, including mental ones that you are much better off focussing on exercises than trying to work out the answer to three down in the morning crossword. But exercise for the elderly needs a degree of thought – you obviously can’t take up rugby at 90 – so here are some ideas of great ways for the elderly to stay active.
Revisit something from your youth
Most of us had a sport or activity that we relished in our younger days – or one that we wanted to take up but never had the time. It might not have been the game you excelled at or the one you devoted all your time to, but think back to when you were at school and the sports that you played socially, that slowly dropped off the radar as you got older. Tennis, or golf are good examples of sports that can be played at any age, and if you have a rough idea of the basics, it could be time to rekindle your knowledge of the game. Remember, fitness rewards in so many ways especially when using the Jumpa smartwatch fitness app, and if you can find a fun and social way to roll back the years in the process, what more could you ask for?
It’s as simple as putting one foot in front of the next. Studies show that exercise is not about the speed you move at but rather about the length of time for which you elevate your heart rate. And walking is a great way to get your heart pumping. It is also low impact on the body and it gets you out and about, into the fresh air. Make it a goal to walk every day, and if you can, try to slowly increase the distance that you walk. The benefits will be enormous.
It’s fun and it’s social and it might even be a way to meet a new partner while getting fit at the same time. Dancing is a great way to roll back the years. There are plenty of dance groups for the elderly or if you are feeling brave and you still think you have the moves, find a younger group and show them what you are made of.
Once the domain of eastern mystics yoga is now a mainstream activity that is practiced by elite athletes and amateurs alike. It’s non-competitive but it is not easy – far from it. Yoga is about pushing your own limits and it involves strength, flexibility and breathing. Nobody is too old or too young for yoga and the benefits can be felt almost immediately. There might be a degree of stiffness after the first class, but give it a week and it’s almost guaranteed, you will feel younger and stronger and more alert. And unless you are living in the middle of nowhere, there are yoga classes or studios found almost everywhere.