Are you ready to put the "boom" back in baby boomer? There is no gray area when it comes to the importance of a regular fitness routine. While aches and pains may cause older adults to refrain from exercising, removing physical activity entirely causes more harm than good. Keep your heart, joints and muscles young with the following three forms of exercise.
If you have new or chronic pain or injuries, consult your physician before beginning an exercise routine.
Strengthening your balance and stability is one of the most important factors in preventing falls. Fall-related injuries such as hip fractures have a huge impact on your health and independence. Practice the following exercises to improve your core strength, balance, and overall control of your body.
Stand on one foot for 45 to 60 seconds. Repeat 3 to 5 times, then switch sides.
Position your right foot in front of your left. Close your eyes and cross your arms over your chest. Hold for 45 to 60 seconds 3 to 5 times. Repeat on the opposite side.
Start in a seated position so the knees are bent at a 90-degree angle. Lift the right foot slightly off the ground. Keeping your shoulders back, abs tight and neck relaxed, push through your left heel, lifting the body into a standing position. Repeat 10 times, then alternate to the other side. Try to avoid swinging your arms for momentum.
Bending, moving with ease, good posture — these are all characteristics of someone with healthy joints and good flexibility. Osteoarthritis, the gradual degeneration of cartilage between the joints, is a common form of arthritis experienced by older adults. Stretching can help ease the aches and pains of stiff joints.
Perform each stretch 3 to 5 times, remembering to move slowly when moving into each position.
As we age, our bodies begin to lose muscle definition. Strength training is a valuable toning tool, as it aids in increasing bone density, maintaining muscle mass, preventing falls, and helping combat such chronic diseases as Parkinson's, cardiovascular disease, and Alzheimer's.