Simple Exercises for Seniors to Ring in the New Year

Assisted Living Daily Activities

Take a break between feasts and get moving with some simple exercises for seniors! Physical activity is one of the most important things seniors can do for their health and the holiday season is the perfect time to get started on fitness goals for the New Year.

The benefits of exercise for seniors are both immediate and long-term. Exercise of any form also helps manage chronic health conditions and reduces risk risks such as cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, metabolic syndrome, and certain types of cancers.

Through exercise, older adults can also achieve longer lifespans, increased brain health, improved weight management, bone and muscle strengthening, and more.

Here are some simple exercises for seniors to stay active and get ahead of their New Year resolutions.

Yoga

Yoga is an excellent way to strengthen bones, and joints, increase flexibility and improve balance. It also benefits mental health and reduces stress, improves sleeping habits, and keeps your mind sharp.

For those looking for extra support, chair yoga is a beneficial way for seniors to modify their yoga practice. Many of the traditional yoga poses can be done with the help of an ordinary kitchen chair and a bit of creativity.

Our favorite chair yoga poses include:

  • Cat-cow
  • Palm Tree Pose
  • Forward bend
  • Pigeon
  • Eagle
  • Spinal twist
  • Warrior poses

Resistance Band Workouts

Resistance band training is a great way to challenge your muscles and practice strength training at home. Not only are band sets inexpensive, but they are also simple to use and store away easily.

Resistance bands are also safer than using weight-training equipment. They provide easy access to strengthening workouts without the dangerous potential to strain joints and backs.

Our favorite resistance band exercises include:

  • Chest Pull and Press
  • Bicep curl
  • Pallof press
  • Banded squats
  • Shoulder retraction
  • Scissor toe tap
  • Lateral band walk

Walking

Taking regular walk is an easy and accessible way to keep seniors active and moving. While walking is one of the least stressful methods of working out it is important to know that distance and pace will vary between individuals. 

Walking is also a great way to set short and long-term personal goals. Consider making your daily walks a part of your routine to grab a coffee or run errands. Seniors may also find it rewarding to use exercise as a way to train for a walk-friendly race in their community.

Start small by walking the perimeter of a familiar building or around a track so you can easily stop at any time. Make it an enjoyable ritual by listening to your favorite podcast or audiobook.

Water Exercises

Water exercises are an excellent low-impact way for seniors with access to a pool to practice daily fitness. The buoyancy of the water makes swimming and water aerobics especially great for seniors living with arthritis and joint pain.

Water provides natural resistance and eliminates the need for weights or bands to get a great workout. Some of our favorite water exercises include:

  • Lap swimming
  • Water walking/jogging
  • Flutter kicks
  • Arm curls 
  • Standing water push-ups

Looking for a friendly community that will support you to accomplish your wellness goals and live life to the fullest? Schedule a visit and experience the Fairhaven difference