Staying active is important for older adults to maintain their overall health and happiness as they age. However, many older adults may experience limited mobility, which can prevent them from benefiting from exercises that require flexibility and strength. Fret not, many older adults can enjoy the benefits of being active with exercises for older adults with limited mobility. Here are some tips to get your loved ones started on their journey to better health.
There are many different kinds of limited mobility exercises your loved one can do. However, some may not benefit them at all. It is important to know your strengths and weaknesses to start exercising so as to not injure yourself. You should aim to include a wide range of exercises into your routine in order to strengthen every part of your body. Cardio exercises can increase your endurance and lower blood pressure, flexibility exercises can help improve your range of motion, and strength training exercises can improve balance and prevent falls.
Set a Routine
You don’t have to go all out the minute you start on your exercise journey. Ensure that your loved one starts slow and gradually increases their activity level. To prevent disappointment, set realistic goals that fit with their level of fitness to help them gain confidence and keep motivated. It is better to incorporate exercise into your daily life, such as walking instead of driving, rather than telling yourself to go to the gym every day. This way, you can ensure that you are making long-term changes to your life rather than burning out along the way.
Consult your Doctor
If you are unsure of where to begin, consider consulting your doctor or physical therapist. They will be able to guide you on your recommended amount of exercise per week, the type of exercises you should do, the exercises you should avoid, and ways to prevent injuries during exercise. Some doctors might even be able to draft up an exercise plan for you as well, tailored to your specific needs.
It is extremely important to stay safe as you exercise to prevent any unwanted injuries. If you experience limited mobility due to an injured body part, make sure that you avoid all exercises that include that body part. Once it has healed, ease into exercising slowly, such as using lighter weights. Always warm up and cool down after every exercise to prevent any tears or strains during exercise. You can even consider incorporating yoga into your exercise routine. Ensure that you wear appropriate clothing such as lightweight and supportive footwear so that your mobility is not limited even more. Lastly, always stop exercising if you experience any pain or discomfort and check with your doctor before continuing.
It’s All in Your Head
Sometimes, overcoming the mental resistance to exercise is the hardest part. To help you get the most of your exercise, consider bringing a friend along for the ride. That way, you can look out and motivate each other, making the whole process more comfortable and safer.