If you regularly look after an older relative, and want to help them preserve their health and wellbeing for a long time, you can lead by example, and help them create a daily routine that will keep them mobile, active, and alert for many years to come. You can encourage them to move more, socialise, and enjoy life to the full at an older age. Below you will find five safe exercise methods that they can take part in, to make new friends, and keep their brain and body active.
1. Nordic Walking
You can encourage your relative to take on Nordic walking, which will improve their posture and balance at the same time. Many regions in the UK have several senior groups newbies can join in. There are several benefits of this exercise, apart from the fresh air your elderly parent or relative will get during the exercise. They can experience a change of scenery regularly, improve their mood, and socialise with like minded people.
Some yoga teachers have senior classes that are suitable for all ages and abilities. If your relative has limited mobility, you can look for a yoga class that is chair-based, so they can stay safe while exercising. Stretching out and moving about can improve the flexibility of the joints and increase bone and muscle strength that naturally starts declining as we age. Yoga also has several mental health benefits.
3. Tai Chi
Tai Chi is fun and a good way of boosting the body’s energy level. Similar to yoga, it is based on anatomy and research, and can have several mental and physical health benefits for the elderly. They can improve their balance, and strengthen their important muscles that are needed to get around every day. Tai Chi groups for seniors are suited for the special needs of older people, and can tackle long term chronic illnesses, such as high blood pressure or asthma.
Swimming is another exercise recommended by health professionals for older people. It is actually the only sport that moves all muscle areas. It is often used for rehabilitation purposes after an operation or being hospitalized. Swimming passes are available for seniors at a discounted price in most health centres.
You can get your elderly relative out of the house if you get them to join a local bowling club. Highly rated elderly care providers, such as Porthaven care homes also offer this activity, as it has proven benefits for older people. It strengthens back and leg muscles, improves posture and stability, and is fun at the same time. Seniors with a lower back issue or a joint problem, however, need to consult with a doctor before they take on this form of exercise.
If you care about your elderly relative, you need to encourage them to live a healthy lifestyle, and exercise regularly. Try to get them in one of the clubs offering the above activities, and watch them become healthier, happier, stronger, and more independent over time.