Exercise and Older Adults: Why you should do it, and how to get started
You’ve probably heard it before: physical activity and exercise are beneficial for you, and you should try to include them into your daily routine. Numerous studies have demonstrated the essential health advantages of exercise, which grow even more vital as we age. Seniors who engage in regular physical activity and exercise enhance their mental and physical health, which will help them preserve their independence as they age. We’ve listed five advantages of fitness for elderly and aging individuals below.
1) Disease prevention
Regular physical exercise can help you to avoid a variety of illnesses, including heart disease and diabetes. Exercise boosts general immune function, which is especially essential for seniors whose immune systems are frequently weakened. Even light activity, such as walking, can be an effective strategy in the management of avoidable diseases.
2) Improved mental health
Exercising has a plethora of mental health advantages. Endorphins (the “feel good” hormone) are released during exercise and function as a stress reliever, leaving you feeling pleased and fulfilled. Exercise has also been related to better sleep, which is particularly essential for older individuals who frequently suffer from insomnia and disturbed sleep patterns.
3) Social connectedness
Exercise may be turned into a pleasant social event by joining a walking group, attending group fitness courses, or visiting a gardening club. For aging individuals to experience a sense of purpose and avoid emotions of loneliness or despair, they must maintain strong social relationships. Above all, pick a workout that you enjoy, and it will never seem like a chore again.
4) Improved cognitive functioning
Sudoku and crossword puzzles are good ways to keep your brain busy, but nothing compares to the benefits of exercise on the brain. It can assist with multitasking and creativity in the brain, as well as memory loss, cognitive decline, and dementia. Getting active can even assist to delay the progression of brain diseases like Alzheimer’s.
5) Decreased risk of falls
Falls are more common among older individuals, which may be devastating for their ability to retain independence. Exercise increases strength and flexibility, which helps with balance and coordination, lowering the chance of falling. Falls take significantly longer for seniors to recover from, so everything that might help them prevent them in the first place is essential.
It’s difficult to start or maintain a regular fitness program at any age, and it doesn’t get any simpler as you get older. Health issues, aches and pains, and fears about accidents or falls may make you feel disheartened. You may not know where to begin if you’ve never exercised before, or you may believe you’re too old or feeble to live up to the standards you established when you were younger. Or perhaps you simply find the practice to be tedious.
While these may appear to be wonderful reasons to slow down and relax as you become older, they are actually even better motivations to begin active. Increasing your physical activity may boost your mood, alleviate stress, aid in the management of sickness and pain symptoms, and enhance your general feeling of well-being. And getting the benefits of exercise doesn’t have to include long workouts or frequent visits to the gym. Adding additional movement and exercise to your life, even in modest amounts, can have a positive impact.
Remember, it’s never too late to start your body moving, improve your health and perspective, and enhance how well you age, regardless of your age or physical condition.
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