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4 Tips to Improve Daily Physical Activity for Older Adults

Jun 27, 2024


It’s crucial to dispel the myth that older adults shouldn’t exercise. In fact, regular physical activity offers numerous benefits that can significantly enhance quality of life as we age.

  1. Reduced Joint Pain: proper exercise helps maintain flexibility and strength in joints, reducing stiffness and discomfort.
  2. Boosted Energy Levels: exercise increases circulation and oxygen flow, which can combat feelings of fatigue and enhance overall vitality
  3. Maintained Cardiovascular Health: activities like walking, swimming or even gardening can improve heart health and lower the risk of cardiovascular diseases.
  4. Reduced Risk of Falls: strength and balance exercises are particularly important for preventing falls, which can be debilitating for older adults.

Starting and maintaining an exercise routine can indeed be challenging, especially due to factors like busy schedules, fatigue or lack of motivation. However, finding activities that are enjoyable and fit into your daily life can make a significant difference.

Education and awareness among older adults, as well as support from family and peers, are key to promoting safe and appropriate exercise options. Encouragement and sharing success stories can motivate individuals to prioritize physical activity and experience its benefits firsthand.

Ultimately, regular exercise isn’t just beneficial; it’s essential for maintaining physical health, independence and overall well-being as we age.

Here are four tips that aim to appeal to people of all physical capabilities:

Find Exercises You Enjoy

A common myth, is that working out has to involve weights and the repetition of the same exercises over and over again.

While that is one way to exercise, there are many other types of activities you can do, including dancing, playing sports and swimming.

Many senior centers and senior communities offer fitness classes for older adults to enjoy in a group setting. Attending a variety of these classes will not only help you learn what type of exercise is most enjoyable for you, but it will also allow you to meet other people who could potentially be exercise partners for you.

Enjoy Alongside Friends

Studies have shown that those who exercise with others are more likely to stick to a regular exercise schedule.

People who do activities together can hold each other accountable and may enjoy the exercises more since they can socialize at the same time.

If you do not have anyone to exercise alongside you, consider taking your workout routine to social media. For example, you may share photos and videos of your exercises or post about the goals you want to accomplish or already have accomplished.

Create and Track Goals

Setting goals is a great way to stay motivated with any activity, and your goals do not need to be large to be beneficial.

If you are new to daily exercise, you may create the goal of exercising just 10 minutes every day for one week. Most importantly, once you accomplish your goals, you should give yourself a chance to reflect on your progress and reward yourself with something else you enjoy. For example, if you enjoy reading, you could vow to buy yourself a new book after you have stuck with your exercise routine for 30 days.

Tracking your progress when it comes to physical activity is also important for your motivation, allowing you to see how far you’ve come and what you have accomplished. To track your exercise, you can log each session of exercise in a journal or notebook. Alternatively, you could use a pedometer or fitness smartwatch to track your daily steps.

Multitask While You Exercise

If you struggle to find an exercise routine that you truly enjoy, consider implementing extra exercises into the things you already do.

For example, you could watch television while you work out or listen to an audiobook while you go for a walk. Some people also find that simply listening to music or the radio can make any type of exercise more enjoyable.

Exercise is essential at any age for a long and healthy life. For older adults needing extra motivation to start regular exercise, a senior living community like Applewood can be the perfect solution. At Applewood, seniors have access to a fitness center, Daily Engaged Living programs, nearby day trips and so much more. The engaging lifestyle at the community offers something for everyone, with easy sign-ups and no need for planning or driving.

Call us at 848-233-4283 to learn more or submit a contact form and a member of our team will get in touch with you soon.