Exercises for the Stay-at-Home Independent Senior

Definition

There are a great many exercises one can perform within and around the house, but safety should be the first consideration. That said, if a stay-at-home senior wants to begin an exercise regimen, then he or she is strongly encouraged to check with their doctor to make sure that there is no potential for making a known medical condition worse.

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Introduction

Many older adults know that a good defense against aging is a good offense. In other words, seniors that are nearing retirement age or are already retired know that they need to become extra vigilant when it comes to their health, happiness and overall well-being. An older adult in this category also inherently recognizes that safety is critical the higher one’s age, especially if he or she wants to maintain independent living and age in place as long as possible. That is why being proactive and exercising can help a senior stay at home longer, whilst enjoying all that independent living has to offer.

Exercise Regimens And Considerations For The Stay-At-Home Independent Senior

Primary care providers and medical professionals define independence in a multitude of ways. In general, a senior that is able to walk, eat, shower, bath, dress, get in and out of bed, stand from a seated position and use the bathroom is deemed independent. While all of that may seem easy now, taking the necessary precautions to maintain that standard of living is imperative if one wants to continue living solo. 

A physician can tailor an older adult’s exercise program to his or her needs so as to keep them aging in place safely. A final consideration might be the adoption of a mobile medical alert device or similar wearable technology that could aid in a rescue should the senior be out on a walk and feel short of breath, or experience an unfamiliar pain where there was none previously.

Solutions: 

  • Mental health benefits: An older adult does not have to go to a fancy gym to get fit, as there are a multitude of household items that can double as weights (soup cans), aerobics classes (staircases), squat machines (chairs) and yoga (stretching for items). Walking at difference paces is also an option as long as it is done safely with the use of high-visibility clothing and a cell phone or similar device that can act as medical alert in the event of an emergency.
  • Socializing:  Another knock-on effect of exercising is outside-the-box thinking that can potentially help ward off Alzheimer’s and other similar diseases. There are inexpensive classes one can take to get out and socialize, such as badminton, tennis, golf, swimming, water aerobics and dancing.
  • Health:  Pairing exercise with a balanced diet and a safety device means that seniors can more quickly improve their mobility, flexibility and balance. These factors can help a senior remain independent, help him or her lose weight, and potentially reduce the negative impacts of a chronic illness like type II diabetes.
Conclusion

There are many exercise options available for seniors. These might include single leg stands for balance, walking, reaching, lunges, wall pushups, leg raises biking, swimming or dancing. Truly, the possibilities are limitless but should be paired with precautionary advice from a doctor as well as a medical alert device. The best way to maintain independence in aging is to maintain one’s health by eating right and exercising moderately. Seniors are also strongly encouraged to seek out any free courses or classes in their area, as they could offer the opportunity to exercise in a safe space and meet other folks looking to maximize their health.

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