Today I Learned...
e all want to stay young and healthy. But sometimes, it's hard to know how to do that in our older years!
If you're over 60, here are some of the best exercises for you:
Strength training is an excellent way to improve your overall health, especially as you age. Your muscles need the right kind of exercise to stay healthy and strong—and if you’re not doing anything to keep them in shape, they can deteriorate over time.
That’s why strength training is so important for older people, who have both muscle loss and bone loss over time (called sarcopenia). In fact, it’s one of the best things you can do for your body as it ages!
Here are some of our favorite strength training exercises for the over-60 crowd:
- Push-ups: If you're in shape and haven't done push-ups in awhile, try doing one set of 10 push-ups every other day until you're able to do two sets of 20. The regular push-up is great because it works your chest, arms, and core all at once. You can also try dumbbell bench presses or incline pushes if you'd like something different!
- Lunges: Lunges are another great way to work multiple muscle groups at once. They're also incredibly simple—just take a big step forward with one foot and bend both knees until they're at 90 degrees, then return to standing. You'll feel this in your glutes (your butt), quads (the front of your thighs), hamstrings (back of your thighs), and calves (lower legs).
- Squats: Squats are one of the best moves around and they're easy to do!
For more strength training exercises, check out our class: Morning Fitness - Strength Training (seated).
Balance is an important aspect of fitness for anyone, but it's especially critical for the over-60 crowd. This is because as we age, our balance naturally declines, which means a fall can be more serious than it would be if you were younger.
To combat this decline in balance and avoid injuries that could result from falling down or tripping up while exercising, it's important to incorporate balance training into your routine.
Luckily there are plenty of exercises that can help:
- Staggering (also known as "tandem walking") - This involves alternating steps with one foot on one side and then the other foot on the opposite side. This exercise strengthens the lower body while also improving coordination and rhythm.
- One-legged standing against a wall - Stand up straight with both legs together in front of you and face a wall about two feet away from where you're standing at an angle so that only one foot touches the wall at any given time; make sure your footing is secure as you move closer toward or further away from said wall until each leg has had its turn touching said structure multiple times!
Flexibility, or stretching, exercises
Flexibility, or stretching, exercises are a must. They're one of the best ways to prevent injury and keep you feeling young and limber.
Stretching also helps keep muscles in good shape by increasing their strength, range of motion, flexibility, and endurance. In addition to preventing injury and muscle cramps, stretching can help prevent arthritis in your hands (if you're a golfer), back pain caused by poor posture or heavy lifting at work (if you're an office worker), heart disease (if you have a sedentary job) and diabetes (if obesity has forced you to find more time on your feet).
Aerobic exercise is one of the best types of physical activity for older adults. It improves cardiovascular fitness and helps you maintain a healthy weight.
Aerobic exercise can be done at any intensity, any time of day, and in any location.
- Walking - is one of the easiest ways to get some exercise every day.
- Swimming - is a great way to build strength and endurance while also improving your cardiovascular health and flexibility.
- Dancing- dance is fun! And if we've learned anything from this listicle, it's that dancing is good for your health!
Or try one of our aerobic classes: Let's Get Moving: Aerobic Exercises!
Exercise isn't just beneficial to your health, but keeping your body moving is also essential to maintaining a high quality of life.
There's no need to stop exercising just because you're over 60. It's never too late to start getting active!