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Exercises for Seniors

Exercise is an important component of living a healthy life, and there is no age limit as to when it should start, or even stop. In fact, as you grow older, leading an active lifestyle becomes more important. Exercising regularly will boost your energy levels, manage symptoms of any pain or illness that you may be suffering and help you maintain your independence. Exercise has numerous benefits for seniors including heightened energy levels, better mood, active mind and memory and of course better overall health and well-being. Regardless of whether you are living independently or with a caregiver, the following exercises can easily be incorporated into your lifestyle:

Note: Make sure you speak to your physician if you are suffering from a condition that doesn’t allow specific postures or exercises. Ask your caregiver to assist you if required.

Flexibility Exercises

1.Sit up straight with shoulders down and look straight ahead. Now rotate your head towards your right shoulder as far as you are comfortable with. Hold the position for five seconds and then bring it back to the starting position. Repeat on the right side, followed by looking upwards and downwards. Do three repetitions for each position.

2.Stand facing a wall and place your hands against it for support and stability. Bend your right leg in front of you while keeping the left side at a foot’s distance. Make sure both the feet are flat on the floor. The right calf muscle will feel stretched, hold the position for a few seconds and then repeat with the left leg. Do 3 repetitions for each leg.

3.Rest your hands on the back of a chair for stability and stand with your feet a foot’s distance from each other. Slowly bend both your knees as far as comfortable. Make sure your back is straight. Hold for a few seconds and come back to starting position. Repeat five times.

Sitting Exercises

If you do not have senior care at home and have difficulty maintaining balance then there are a number of exercises that you can do while sitting.

1.Sit up straight on a chair and pull your shoulders back and down. Make sure your back isn’t in contact with the back of the chair. Extend the arms outwards on each side and gently push your chest forward until you feel a stretch. Hold the position for 7-9 seconds and then slowly come back to starting position. Do five repetitions.

2.Sit upright on a chair with your arms by your sides. Raise both the arms with your palms forward. Raise as high as is comfortably possible. Slowly return to the starting position. Be sure to exhale as you raise your arms and inhale as you bring them back. Do five repetitions.

3.Sit upright on a chair with your back away from the back of the chair. Hold the sides of the chair and lift your right leg with your knee bent. Put the foot down with control as if marching. Repeat with the other leg. Do five repetitions for each leg.

If you are a caregiver providing in-home care to an elderly, be sure you schedule daily exercise routine to keep the elderly active and healthy. In many cases, caregivers and elderly themselves get nervous, especially post surgery to get on their feet; however, it is all the more important to exercise to regain lost energy levels and to maintain a healthy blood flow.

By Dewayne Jenkins

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