Physical Activity for Older Adults
Regular exercise is important and one of the best things that you can do for your body, mind, and even your spirit. Physical activity is key to healthy aging and increases health benefits. Occasional physical activity is better than none at all.There are many fun ways to stay active as an older adult. Physical activity does not have to be boring. If you are 65 years or older, you may be eligible to join the Healthways Silver Sneakers Fitness program at no cost to you. You can have access to all the basic club amenities including group exercise classes that are geared specifically to older adults. “Ditch the Workout—Join the Party!” with Zumba Fitness. Zumba Fitness is one of the most popular group exercise classes. The Latin-dance inspired workout is performed in 125 countries around the globe. The choreography comes from favorite Latin dances like Salsa, Merengue, Reggaeton, and Flamenco.
Zumba Gold is modified Zumba with lower intensity. It is perfect for older adults who wish to improve their balance and flexibility.
Many say Zumba Fitness…
- Strengthens your heart and lungs
- Boosts your mental health
- Leaves you smiling up to 4 hours after class
- Reduces stress and clears your mind
- Helps you maintain a healthy weight
- Builds endurance and coordination
- Tones muscles
In addition to aerobic exercise, it is important to include muscle strengthening to your daily routine. You can do this at home or at a gym. Choose muscle-strengthening activities that work all the major muscle groups of your body (shoulders, arms, abdomen, hips, back, chest, and legs).
Tips to Build Muscle Strength
- Lift weights – even kitchen cans work
- Take the stairs or use a chair to do gentle leg lifts
- Use resistance bands at home or the community center
- Garden with purpose – move more and bend at your pace
No matter how you choose to stay physically active remember to discuss the plan with your doctor. Gradually increase the amount of time for each activity as well as the effort and repetitions. Be safe, wear the proper shoes and gear – and just have fun. Visit Silver Sneakers to learn more ways to take control of your health by becoming more physically fit and to find out how to become a member of the Silver Sneaker program.