There are huge advantages to exercising when you are a senior. It can help:
- keep your bones and muscles strong
- preserve your mobility for longer
- prevent obesity
- keep your heart healthy
- do wonders for your mood and mental health
Of course, you do have to be sure that any exercise you are doing is appropriate for your level of fitness and any health issues you have, and also that you take precautions to avoid injury or overexertion.
Here are some tips for safe fitness for older people:
Talk to Professionals
It is always recommended to talk to a doctor before beginning any new fitness regime, and this is certainly still the case for older people. However, you may also find it beneficial to talk to an exercise professional such as a personal trainer, who will be able to help you match a workout plan to your own needs and abilities.
Usually, a new fitness program will have goals and aims; for example, you may be looking to lose weight and improve strength or to improve flexibility and stamina.
Having someone to help you set and work towards these goals will make the process more interesting and also ensure you are exercising safely and efficiently.
Try Classes Aimed at Seniors
If you exercise in a class environment, there will be other people there if you run into any problems, and also a trainer who can check that you are using the right form when exercising to reduce the risk of injury.
There are plenty of fitness classes suitable for older people who are new to fitness, but there are also some specifically aimed at the over 50s or over 60s where you may feel more comfortable.
These can include things like aerobic fitness classes and dance, or slower classes focused on strength and mobility, like Pilates, yoga, and tai chi.
Use a Medical Alert System
When you are exercising, it can be a good idea to make sure that someone will be alerted if you do run into any difficulties or are injured. A wearable medical alert system can be a good way to ensure that you are safe if you decide to exercise on your own, for instance at home, or by going out walking, jogging, or running.
Make sure that you compare medical alert systems before buying to make sure you’re getting something that has the right features for your needs and which other consumers have had good experiences with.
Add More Activity into Your Normal Life
If you don’t want to embark on a full fitness program at a gym or start attending classes, but you do want to increase your fitness safely, a good thing to do can be upping the amount of walking you do in your normal life.
You have lots of ways you can do this, but many people find that buying a pedometer, or another fitness wearable device like a Fitbit, helps them to see how much they are walking every day and work towards being more active.
If you are stuck for ideas about how to find reasons to go out walking, you could borrow a friend’s dog and take them for walks, or look online for local walking groups where you can make new friends as well as getting more active.
Adding more walking into your normal routine can be a free way to improve your health and fitness, and it is safe for most people, as long as you don’t have any injuries that make walking for long periods painful or ill-advised.
As you can see, there are plenty of things you can do if you are worried about starting to exercise more but want to make sure that you are safe when you do so.