Why Should Older Adults Live An Active Lifestyle?

Sep 18, 2023

While it is known that exercise and physical activity is vital to maintain physical and mental health, it is even more so for aging adults. 

The ability to move or walk freely and easily is critical for functioning well and living independently. As people age, they may experience changes in their mobility. These changes have many causes and can affect gait, physical strength, and balance, increasing the number and severity of falls.

Such incidents make it difficult for older adults to get out, visit with friends and family, and continue their activities independently. Older adults who lose mobility are less likely to remain at home; have higher rates of disease, disability, hospitalization, and death; and have poorer quality of life.

What Are The Benefits Of Living An Active Lifestyle For Older Adults?

Here are just a few of the benefits living an active lifestyle can provide older adults:

  • Overall, leading an active lifestyle means a higher quality of life. Seniors who participate in physical activities have a lower risk of diseases and chronic illnesses and will experience significant improvements in their digestive and immune systems.
  • If an older adult stays active, they have a much lower risk of heart disease and will enjoy robust cardiovascular health. Incorporating strength training and cardio exercises can also help boost energy.
  • Exercising regularly can help seniors build healthy bones and maintain bone strength. Bones will adapt, building more cells and becoming more dense to support the body when a person exercises regularly. 
  • There is a high correlation between a healthy mind and physical exercise. Many studies and research show that exercise can help to combat depression as mood boosters, such as dopamine, are released during such activity. Some studies have demonstrated that maintaining physical activity levels can help to slow the development of cognitive issues like Alzheimer’s disease.

What Are Some Ways An Older Adult Can Maintain A Healthy, Active Lifestyle?

Seniors don’t have to spend every day in the gym to maintain their health. Exercise for older adults should be moderate and not excessively strenuous, especially if they are starting their active lifestyle journey. 

According to the National Institute On Aging, research has shown that it’s essential to get all four types of exercise: 

  • Endurance – dancing, swimming, biking, climbing stairs
  • Strength – weight training, resistance bands
  • Balance – Tai Chi, standing on one foot, etc.
  • Flexibility – stretching

Doing one type will enhance your ability to do the others, while variety helps reduce boredom and the risk of injury. No matter a person’s age, there are many fun activities to enhance health and well-being. 

Abe’s Garden Community is a senior lifestyle community and home care provider with a single-minded focus on promoting and maximizing evidence-based approaches to mind and body health. This person-directed care is provided wherever the resident or program participant resides and wherever they and their family are on their journeys.

Contact us today at (615) 552-7636!

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