Different Exercise Types for Senior Citizens
Before you get started with an exercise routine, make sure to visit a physician to check which exercises are ideal for your current fitness level.
Simple Cardio Exercises
Cardio exercises are simple and easy to perform irrespective of your age. Getting into a routine of daily simple walking is also a cardio exercise because it gets your heart pumping. You can also opt for senior citizen’s aerobics for an overall cardio experience.
As you age, your muscles tend to become stiff and lose their flexibility, and hence stretching exercises can loosen your stiffness making you feel more free, enhancing your range of motion. Some of the simple stretching exercises that can be performed are- neck stretch, upper back stretch, ankle rotation, knee lifts, heel raises, shoulder blade squeeze, etc. You can perform these anytime of the day, as per your convenience.
Balance exercises are one of the most essential exercises for senior citizens as they can help build strength, improve posture, stability, and coordination. Balancing boosting exercises can reduce your chance of falling or losing balance. It’s also important that older adults feel self-assured in the movement patterns to avoid being anxious or be fearful about falling. Watch the video to know the different balance boosting exercises that can be performed at the comfort of your home:
Chair yoga is a low-impact form of exercise yet crucial for the health aspects of seniors, as it improves muscle strength, mobility, balance and flexibility. Chair yoga is one of the most convenient exercises for senior citizens as it puts less stress on muscles, joints, and bones than more conventional forms of yoga.
Chair yoga has also been shown to improve mental health in older adults, along with better quality sleep, lower instances of depression, and a general sense of well-being.
Watch the video to know some of the basic chair yoga exercises you can perform.
Resistance Band Workouts
Resistance bands are meant to add resistance to workouts with reduced stress on your body. These workouts are easy, user-friendly, and accessible for beginners and ideal for at-home exercise. Additionally, these exercises are ideal for strengthening your core, in turn improving your posture, mobility, and balance.
Free Weight Exercises
Strength training exercises have various benefits and have shown to reduce the symptoms of diabetes, osteoporosis, back pain, and depression, etc. contributing to a higher metabolism and enhanced glucose control. Dumbbell exercises are some of the best ways for seniors to strength train, if they are performed cautiously with the proper precautions. Some of the easy dumbbell exercises that can be performed are- tricep extension, bicep curl, overhead press, front raise, etc.
Pilates is a low-impact form of exercise that includes breathing, alignment, concentration and core strength and typically involves mats, pilates balls, and other inflated accessories to help build strength (without the stress of higher-impact exercises). In older adults, Pilates have been shown to improve balance, core strength and increase flexibility. Mermaid movement, Side circles, Food slides, Step ups, Leg circle, etc. are some great pilates exercises for older adults.
Body Weight Exercises
Muscle loss can be devastating, as it can lead to hormone problems, decrease in the ability to metabolize protein, and other problems. Body weight workouts are one of the best ways to reduce the effects of muscle atrophy in older adults. Most body weight workouts just require a mat to soften impact with the floor. Squats to chair, Stepup, Bird dog, Lying hip bridges, Side lying circles are some of the body weight exercises that can be performed by older adults, depending on their fitness levels.