The temperature is rising as the warmest season has arrived and the daylight hours stretch out before us. While the living may not always be easy, summertime is a favorite of many.
Whether you are one who loves to spend time outside or prefers the air-conditioned comfort, you’ll still want to find ways to safely keep up with your exercise routine. We’re here to help you discover how to stay in shape while keeping cool.
Eskaton has found that active older adults who get regular intervals of exercise are far less likely to be at risk for a major cardiac event. We encourage our residents to try incorporating at least 30 minutes of movement into their daily routine!
The importance of fitness as you age
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the loss of strength and stamina often attributed to age is in part caused by reduced physical activity. Yet the following are key advantages for keeping physically fit as you grow older: I
- Reduce the risk of falling
- Improve cardiorespiratory endurance and stamina
- Muscle strengthening
- Lower risk of coronary heart disease
- Help in controlling joint swelling and pain associated with arthritis
- Lower risk of developing high blood pressure, diabetes and some cancers
- Improve mood and feelings of well-being
- Reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression
- Improve ability to perform routine daily tasks
Swimming is a great exercise for older adults
If you’re looking for one of the most beneficial exercises for anyone, including seniors, you may want to turn your attention to the water.
Swimming offers the advantages of exercising while minimizing the risk. Not only can pool exercises contribute to a healthier heart and feeling better both physically and emotionally, but you can also enjoy a lower risk of falling, better mental health and a decreased sense of pain.
Because it is non-weight bearing, swimming can be the perfect option for almost anyone regardless of their physical strength and ability. Exercising in water can be practically painless even for those living with arthritis, injuries or who are overweight, especially when compared to running or other higher impact activities.
7 pool exercises for seniors
Options for water exercising are many so you’ll have a variety to choose from. The following are a few you may want to try:
#1: Lap swimming
Swimming laps from one end of the pool to the other will provide aerobic benefits, as well as stretching and strengthening. Alternate between different strokes to work on different muscles.
#2: Aqua jogging
Get your heart pumping while you march in place or jog from one side of the pool to the other. For a serious workout, wear a flotation device around your middle then move your arms and legs in a running motion in the deep end.
#3: Flutter kicking
Using a kickboard, begin flutter kicking to move yourself across the pool. If you don’t have something to hold onto, use the side of the pool wall and extend your legs out and begin kicking.
#4: Leg lifts
Strengthen your core and improve your balance, all contributing to lowering your risk of falling and suffering injuries. Standing in the pool, slowly lift one leg to the side, in front of or behind you and return to position.
#5: Arm curls
Using water weights, build up your strength while staying cool and having fun. Hold the weights in front of your body with palms facing out. Begin curling your arms with the weights in a controlled up and down motion.
#6: Standing water push-ups
Claim a position along the wall of the pool and place your hands shoulder-width apart on the edge. Lean in toward the wall and then push back out, performing a typical push-up move.
Taking advantage of water aerobics classes or other exercise programs can provide the instruction and oversight to create the most advantageous routine. But you can also benefit from the social element — getting in a great work out while having fun with others.
Tips for increasing physical activity or beginning an exercise routine
Consider these general tips when creating your healthy fitness plan:
- Your routine doesn’t need to be strenuous to produce benefits.
- Moderate activities including walking can achieve benefits with longer sessions. Another option is for shorter sessions of more vigorous activities such as stair-walking.
- Additional benefits can result either through increasing the duration, intensity or frequency of an activity.
- Sedentary older adults should begin their physical activity routine with short intervals of moderate activity and gradually build up from there.
- Older adults should consult with their doctor or medical team before beginning a new physical activity program.
Life at Eskaton Communities
The word Eskaton means “dawn of a new day.” In our communities, we see each day as an opportunity to enhance the lives of our residents. We’ve been serving the Sacramento region and Northern California for over 50 years.
The Eskaton Difference starts with our life-enriching programs and collaborative partnerships. With a national reputation for innovation, we focus on creating communities that provide our residents with everything they need for purposeful living.
We invite you to visit one of our award-winning communities to discover some of the benefits we offer, such as:
- Private residences
- Delicious and nutritious meals
- Social opportunities to meet and make new friends
- Creative activities and therapies
- Fitness centers and exercise classes
- Housekeeping services
- Transportation services
- 24-hour staffing
- Free Wi-Fi
- And much, much more!
If you’re considering whether senior living could be the best choice for you or a loved one, we’re here to answer any questions that you may have. We also invite you to download our complimentary information, Just the Facts: Your Guide to Assisted Living. To schedule a personalized tour, call us at 1-866-ESKATON (1-866-375-2866) or visit eskaton.org.