Seniors face unique challenges when it comes to staying fit, but remaining active is critical if you want to avoid painful, age-related illnesses like osteoarthritis. Exercise is one of the most effective ways to feel energetic, to control pain, and to improve your memory no matter what your age. These are five exercises seniors can do to stay loose.
Yoga is a practical choice for people of all ages, but especially seniors. It works the core muscles while helping to improve balance and overall range of motion. Go online to watch a video or read how to do the poses then put together your own routine based on what you need.
Start by standing or sitting with your arms at your side. Lift them both up to shoulder height and hold there for a count of five. Turn the palms up slowly to face the ceiling and then lift your arms over your head. It should feel like you are trying to touch the sky. Hold for another five count and then return them to the starting position. Do up to three sets of 8 to 12 raises. As you get stronger, add some weights to make the exercise more challenging.
For the leg raises, you are going to want to stand with one hand planted firmly on the back of a chair to maintain your balance. Lift the opposite leg out to the side 10 times. Lift that same leg backward for another 10. Now switch hands and repeat the back lift with the other leg and then do the side raises.
You probably think of walking as something you must go outside to do, but why not tour your home instead of the local park. Walk around the room, or the entire house, doing laps to get your exercise. Challenge yourself by increasing the number of laps you do over time and by adding some weights to your routine. If your home has stairs, take advantage of that incline for a little extra burn.
Building muscle tone is essential if you want to stay loose and flexible. Start with something light, like two pounds, and do arm lifts. Invest in some ankle weights too for lower body strength training. Once you find you can do the full range of motion easily with one weight, go to something heavier like four or five pounds.
It is normal to stiffen up as you get older but don’t use that as an excuse to stop exercising. Lack of exercise just increases your pain, so start slow but get moving again. At Alliance Spine and Pain Centers, we are proud to take a comprehensive and highly progressive approach to wellness and pain management that allows us to treat each patient’s pain effectively. Give us a call at 770-929-9033 or click here to schedule a consultation if you have any more questions about five exercises seniors can do to stay loose.