National Senior Health & Fitness Day: 5 senior-friendly physical activities
Senior citizens must not give up on physical activities blaming their ever-growing age, but in fact, engage in low-impact physical activities and exercises to stay healthy and continue the movement. National Senior Health & Fitness Day is celebrated on the last Wednesday of May every year to push for the health of senior citizens. Here's a list of five physical activities for older adults.
The best form of cardio for all age groups is walking. This is the least stressful and most accessible form of exercise one can do. Distance and step goals can be different for every individual depending on their age and other factors. Notably, 10,000 steps a day is advised for a healthy lifestyle, however, those who have difficulty walking can opt for fewer steps.
Remember watching Iris train Arthur to walk in the swimming pool in The Holiday? Water aerobics is exactly like that. This form of exercise is highly beneficial for those suffering from arthritis and other joint pains as the buoyancy of water does not put much stress on the muscles and they can move without pain. Water aerobics improves your flexibility, balance, and strength.
Pilates are low-impact exercises that emphasize breathing, alignment, and core strength. To perform pilates, all you need are mats, pilates balls, and some other accessories to help strengthen yourself without having to go through the stress of higher-impact exercises. Pilates improves balance, develops core strength, and increases flexibility in older adults. They can be introduced along with rehabilitation programs after surgical procedures.
Yoga helps you improve your flexibility and balance and also acts as a strength-training exercise. Yoga will also help you get better sleep. Although not all yoga asanas can be performed by seniors, neither would they be beneficial for them, here are a few that older adults can highly benefit from: Katichakrasana, Trikonasana, Badhakonasana, Shishuasana, and Bhujangasana. Remember to be comfortable during the asanas.
Stationary bicycles are easily available at most gyms and you can also buy and keep one at home. If you can cycle on the road, then nothing like it since you would also get some fresh air. Stationary cycling is like aerobics, which means the best part is that it doesn't exert any impact on your joints, which reduces the chances of injury.