Many people are still getting used to practicing social distancing. While this might mean you are not able to exercise at your local gym or park, you can continue to get your daily dose of physical activity in the comfort of your own home.
Regular exercise provides several benefits, including helping you maintain or lose weight, reducing the impact of illness and chronic disease, and enhancing mobility, flexibility, and balance (HelpGuide.org). As you continue to age, it is essential that you stay active so that you can continue to live a healthy life.
It is recommended that older adults complete moderate-intensity exercise 30-60 minutes five times each week, with two or more of these sessions including muscle-strengthening activities. If your health does not allow you to engage in moderate-intensity exercise, you should still try to be as active as possible (HHS.gov).
Continue reading to learn five different exercises for seniors to do at home, with and without equipment. So, are you ready to get your heart rate going?
1. Get comfortable with chair yoga
If you are hesitant to try traditional yoga poses, chair yoga might be a great option for you. This is not only a low-impact exercise, but it can also help improve balance, pain, fatigue, and even stress.
Also, keep in mind that 1 in 4 Americans age 65 and older fall every year, so it is important to continue to build your strength to reduce the likelihood of falling or suffering from physical injuries. You might want to start by practicing a few yoga poses such as the seated Mountain or the seated Warrior I pose mentioned in Healthline. Chair yoga is a great simple exercise to do any day of the week.
2. Try something unique with tai chi
Tai chi, composed of various postures, is a low-impact exercise that comes with excellent results. Tai chi includes different styles with a variety of movements that have different goals.
For example, some styles might focus on the martial arts side of tai-chi while other styles focus on healing and stress-reduction capabilities. Practicing tai-chi can help with muscle strength, balance, flexibility, and aerobic conditioning (Harvard Health). YouTube provides several guided practices to follow in your home.
3. Practice Wall Push-Ups
Wall push-ups are a great strength-training exercise to add to your routine.
The National Institute on Aging – NIH shares how easy it is to do this simple workout:
Start by facing a sturdy wall, standing a little farther than an arm’s length away, with your feet shoulder-width apart. Angle your body forward, place your palms flat against the wall at shoulder height, and shoulder-width apart. Slowly breathe in when you are bending your elbows, and lower your upper body toward the wall slowly, in a controlled motion. While doing this, keep your feet flat on the floor.
Hold that position for one second, breathe out, and slowly push yourself back until both arms are straight. Repeat this exercise at least 10 to 15 times, rest, and then repeat 10 to 15 times.
4. Walk around your home.
Bring a common outdoor exercise indoors! Walking has a variety of benefits for seniors, especially for those who are suffering from arthritis. Walking can help reduce joint pain, increase strength and flexibility, and combat fatigue.
When it’s not possible to go outside, simply walk around your home. Start at your front door and take a lap around the house until you reach the starting point again. Carry one or two five-pound weights with you to help build strength.
5. Play Wii Sports games
You might be thinking, “Isn’t playing video games counterproductive?” Not if you play Wii Sports games! This is a fun way to get a workout in at the end of a long day. If you do not already own a Nintendo Wii, you can purchase one online.
With a Nintendo Wii, you can play a variety of exciting Wii Sports games such as baseball, tennis, golf, boxing, and bowling. All of these games are interactive and can help you work up a sweat without even leaving your home.
6. Get up and dance
Groove to the beat! Dancing can help to improve strength, muscle function, cardiovascular health, and even your sense of well-being. Also, people participating in social dancing or group dancing might experience less pain (YourCareEverywhere).
Put on your favorite tunes and dance with those in your household! This could be a great weekend activity to put on your calendar.
Staying active inside is possible! It just takes a little bit of adjusting and creativity. Also, keep in mind that there are other types of exercises to choose from, including balance exercises and bodyweight exercises. Choose the ones that suit your needs.
Share in the comments below if you have tried any of the at-home exercises above. Which ones are you excited to try next?
Also, do not forget to visit our website. We would love for you to learn more about The Etta at Shavano Park. If you have specific questions about our community, be sure to give us a call.
1. “Senior Exercise and Fitness Tips.” Helpguide.org, https://www.helpguide.org/articles/healthy-living/exercise-and-fitness-as-you-age.htm. Accessed 2 April 2020.
2. “Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans.” HHS.gov, https://www.hhs.gov/fitness/be-active/physical-activity-guidelines-for-americans/index.html. Accessed 2 April 2020.
3. “Falls Prevention Facts.” National Council on Aging, https://www.ncoa.org/news/resources-for-reporters/get-the-facts/falls-prevention-facts/. Accessed 2 April 2020.
4. Stelter, Gretchen. “7 Yoga Poses You Can Do in a Chair.” Healthline, https://www.healthline.com/health/fitness-exercise/chair-yoga-for-seniors#1. Accessed 2 April 2020.
5. “The Health Benefits of Tai Chi.” Harvard Health, https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/the-health-benefits-of-tai-chi. Accessed 2 April 2020.
6. “Wall Push-Up Exercise.” The National Institute on Aging – NIH, https://go4life.nia.nih.gov/exercise/wall-push-up/?hilite=%27wall%27%2C%27push-ups%27. Accessed 2 April 2020.
7. “Exercise Helps Ease Arthritis Pain and Stiffness.” Mayo Clinic, https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/arthritis/in-depth/arthritis/art-20047971. Accessed 2 April 2020.
8. Paljug, Katharine. “Health Benefits of Dancing for Seniors.” YourCareEveryWhere, https://www.yourcareeverywhere.com/life-stages/healthy-aging/health-benefits-of-dancing-for-seniors.html. Accessed 2 April 2020.