Staying active is one key element to having a healthy and happy lifestyle. For seniors, staying active is especially important because of its many benefits for aging adults. It can help prevent serious medical conditions such as diabetes, heart attack, stroke, heart disease, and more. In addition, being active is great for mental health as it prevents depression, anxiety, stress, and cognitive decline.
However, if your loved one doesn’t have a gym or fitness center nearby, staying active can be difficult, especially in the colder months when walking or biking outdoors is not an option. Fortunately, there are many ways you can help your loved one to stay active right in their very own home. Here are just a few ideas:
A quick online search for chair exercises can leave you with a list of several safe and effective exercises that your loved one can do right at home. Chair exercises are wonderful because they help your loved one to target and strengthen certain areas of the body. Strengthening exercises can help your loved one to fight muscle weakness and prevent falls.
Sitting for long periods of time is not great for anyone of any age. Being sedentary can lead to health problems and even pain. If your loved one sits for the majority of the day using the computer, reading, or watching TV, encourage them to take “walking breaks” every 20 minutes or half-hour. Set alarms on your phone so that you don’t forget. During the walking break, help your loved one to take a quick walk around the house or yard.
Daily Cleaning and Chores
Did you know that doing chores and cleaning the house can actually burn calories and be great for the heart? It’s true! With this form of exercise, your loved one will also be completing an additional task. Have your loved one help with one or two safe chores once a day to ensure that they are up and moving every day. Some great ideas include sweeping, cleaning mirrors or windows, folding clothing, and putting dishes in a dishwasher. Always keep safety in mind and avoid having them do any activity that could increase their risk of falling, such as mopping with a wet mop or cleaning something that is out of their reach.
Add Stretches to the Morning Routine
Make stretching a part of every day to help your loved one stay flexible and prevent falls. A great time to do these stretches are in the morning right after breakfast.