Six reasons why exercise is important for seniors

Aged Care June 18, 2018

As we reach seniority, it becomes easier to ignore opportunities to get active, however getting out and about on a daily basis comes with a range of health benefits that you definitely wouldn’t want to pass up!

Increased flexibility and mobility

Why? Your flexibility depends on the health of joints and muscles. Regularly exercising these means you’re ensuring joints remain supple and muscles stay strong.
How? Any activity that includes diverse muscle and joint movements such as swimming, jogging or dancing can improve your mobility. A recent study also pointed to ballet dancing as a fun, popular and sociable way to improve flexibility and strong posture.

Lower chances of osteoporosis

Why? Getting on the move means you’re increasing your bone density and bone strength. Osteoporosis occurs when bones become weak and brittle, so movement is crucial to prevent this.
How? Weight-bearing exercises such as walking and jogging and resistance training such as squats and stretches can lower chances of weak bones.

Positive mood and improved mindset

Why? Everyone tends to feel more positive after being active and going outdoors. That’s because endorphins are being released in your brain to fend off stress and sadness while your blood carries nutrients and oxygen around your body.
How? You don’t have to engage in high-intensity exercise to improve your mood. Going for a quick walk around the park or even tending to the garden for ten minutes means you’re getting active and getting outside. If you’d like a hand getting outdoors, you can always connect with a support worker in your local area.

Decreased chances of dementia

Why? Physical exercise improves muscle control, coordination and also contributes to a sense of wellbeing which all act to improve the longevity and health of the brain.
How? According to Dementia Australia, weight-bearing exercises such as walking, jogging and swimming and balance exercises like stretching and yoga can improve your brain’s health.

Less insomnia

Why? As we age, we start to avoid getting active and begin to think sleep isn’t so important. But using up more energy during the day means getting to sleep is a little easier at night.
How? Any form of exercise that takes at least 20-30 minutes should do the trick to prevent sleeplessness.

Confidence and independence

Why? Exercising regularly has a positive flow-on effect for your emotional and physical wellbeing. Getting active creates a variety of good outcomes and improves a person’s day-to-day capabilities and mood.
How? To improve your social confidence, try out a group fitness class at your local gym or try a team sport like table tennis or lawn bowls.

Keeping active and strong is important regardless of your age. If you’re feeling inspired to get active but want some support to do so, you can always connect with a support worker on Better Caring.

The information above is only suggestive and should not be considered official health advice. Always contact your trusted GP for personalised health support and advice.

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