Top 12 Exercise Programs To Start After 60
Staying fit and healthy is important at any age. The key to staying fit and healthy lies in finding an exercise regimen that is comfortable for you and provides the most health benefits.
However, as we age, finding suitable exercise programs is not as easy as it was when we were younger. Some of us have health issues or limited mobility that present certain challenges when it comes to exercising.
The good news is there are lots of exercises that work well for older people. Many of them are non-strenuous so that they work well for people with all kinds of medical conditions or limitations. We’re going to outline the top 12 exercise programs that you can start after age 60.
Walking is one of the most beneficial exercises that you can do at any age. It is a great low-impact cardio workout and works nearly every major muscle group in the body. It’s non-strenuous so you can set your own pace. Walking is also good for strengthening weak knees and joins as well as losing or maintaining your weight.
Swimming is an excellent choice for people who have joint pain, bone issues or other conditions that may limit their mobility. It’s non-strenuous and very low-impact, but like walking, it also works nearly every major muscle group in the body. Swimming also helps alleviate joint and muscle pain as well.
Yoga may not seem like a total body workout, but it is. It works not only the body, but also helps alleviate stress, depression and other related conditions, too. Some of the advanced poses may not be suitable for all levels or abilities, but there are a number of beneficial Yoga poses that can be tailored to meet the specific needs of someone with limited range of motion.
Water aerobics is just like traditional aerobics, but done in a swimming pool. The support from the water results in minimal impact on joints, which makes doing the exercises more comfortable and less likely to cause injury. Water aerobics provides a full body work out as well as some great cardio benefits, too.
Senior Fitness Classes
Many gyms will have adult fitness classes that are tailored for the older population. These classes may include modified versions of aerobics, Zumba, dance or other types of group activities. Because they target the older population, exercises in these types of classes will tend to be low-impact and easy for anyone to do.
Dancing is a wonderful exercise for people of all ages. It’s also fun, which makes it not even seem like exercise at all. You may choose ballroom dancing, square dancing, line dancing just about any other type of dancing. So long as you are moving – it counts! Have fun with this one and participate in the variety that you enjoy the most.
If you don’t want to participate in Yoga or can’t find a class locally, you can still get the benefits of a Yoga program by just doing stretching routines on your own. You can work any muscle group in the body – from the feet to the head – and some stretches can even been done from your chair. Stretching is a great way to keep the body limber, which helps reduce the likelihood of falls, fractures and sprains.
Strengthening exercises are exercises that strengthen the body and muscle groups. They are done by using some kind of weights. You don’t have to go out and lift barbells or other types of weights you find in a gym. You can use anything you have around the house – even cans of food. So long as it’s got some weight to it and it fits comfortably in your hands, you can use it to do repetitive motion routines for strengthening.
Balance exercises help to strengthen the muscles in the legs and hips, which can reduce the likelihood of falls. The likelihood of sustaining an injury from a fall increases as we age and those injuries take exponentially longer to heal in older people as well. Often times, once the injury is completely healed, some loss in range of motion or mobility occurs and usually gets worse in time.
Stationary bikes give all the benefits of traditional bike riding, but are safer because they can be used within the home where falls or accidents are not likely to happen. They provide an excellent workout for the legs and also provide cardio benefits as well. Stationary bikes are also a good choice for people who suffer from joint pain or knee issues because continued use can help alleviate the discomfort associated with these conditions.
Treadmills provide all the benefits of walking, but are much safer because they give users something to hold on to while they walk, which reduces the chance of falls or other accidents. You can use treadmills at your own pace and even set it for an inclined slope for an added workout if you would like. Just like walking, treadmills provide a total body workout and great cardio benefits, too.
Before beginning any exercise program or routine, be sure that you check with your doctor.
Some medical conditions may require additional accommodations during an exercise program and you want to be sure that whichever program you begin works for you, not against you.
If your doctor says you are healthy enough for an exercise routine, mix and match a variety of activities to keep your routine interesting.