Exercise Programs for Seniors

As people age, their bones, muscles and underlying tissue weaken, resulting in decreased strength, energy, and impaired mobility. Inactivity may increase these effects of aging. Exercise and physical activity can be beneficial to older adults and can help to increase strength, improve balance and possibly delay or prevent diseases such as diabetes, arthritis, osteoporosis and heart disease.

Benefits of Exercise

In addition to preventing or delaying certain diseases, exercise may help seniors to improve their strength and mobility which can help them to remain independent. Additional benefits may include:

  • Reduced depression
  • Increased energy
  • Improved balance which can lessen the risk of falls

Remaining active on a daily basis can provide the most benefits to older adults. Physical activity should be part of a daily routine for older adults.

Exercise Options

While the types of exercise that seniors engage in may vary, the goal of any exercise program is to improve:

  • Strength
  • Endurance
  • Balance
  • Flexibility

Activities that keep individuals moving may include walking, swimming, bike riding, yoga or exercise classes targeted at seniors. Strength training programs for older adults can target certain muscles of the body or improve overall strength, and usually aim to gradually restore lost strength without too much exertion. Stretching exercises may improve flexibility. A physical therapist or trainer may create a customized exercise plan that focuses on improving balance and increasing endurance.

Muscles should always be stretched and warmed-up before any activity. It is important to start slowly and gradually increase any activity. Before beginning an exercise regimen, individuals should always consult with their physician.

More Information

You're Not Too Old to Get Fit!

Getting older comes with a unique set of challenges. Taking extra steps to care for your well-being is crucial to a high quality of life. Many seniors think their physical changes mean they have to stop being active. But, it’s more important than ever to stay in shape as you age.

With adjustments, there are ways for you to take care of your body and feel great.

Benefits of Staying in Shape

Exercise is an essential part of life. But, aging can make exercising a challenge. Staying active helps get the blood flowing through your body and carry oxygen to your organs.

Also, increased blood flow helps endorphins flood your brain. More endorphins help ease tension and stress.  Lowering your stress levels helps your self-esteem as negative emotions have been released.  

Staying active as you age can help you build and maintain your muscle structure. Our muscle tissue decreases as we age, but working out helps slow this down. Another benefit

of working out is it can help lower your blood pressure. Your blood pressure is crucial to your heart function. Staying fit ensures your heart performs at its best.

While you may think that you’re days of working out are over, you have plenty of reasons to keep going.

Exercises You Can Do

While you may not be able to lift 200 pounds over your head anymore, there are plenty of ways to keep your body strong.

As your body changes, you have to adapt how you work out. For example, jogging can be tough on the knees, back, and ankles. Instead, you can opt for low-impact activities like walking, which are easier to do. Low-impact movements put less strain on the joints but still do the job of keeping you moving.

Also, swimming is another way to ease the tension on your joints. The buoyancy of the water counters the effects of gravity on your body. Negating the pull of gravity allows for more range of motion and helps you complete more challenging movements.

Getting Help

Staying active is crucial to your health as you age.

But, it can be overwhelming to find a routine that works for you. But, you don’t have to do it alone. 

Dr. Desio is ready to help you find what works for you. Schedule an appointment in the Worcester office today by calling 508-363-6363.