The older one gets, the more dangerous a sedentary lifestyle can be. Biologically speaking, as one age, your metabolism slows down, which in turn slows down your body as well. If one remains sedentary, it could in the short- to medium-term lead to lowered agility and mobility. In the long run, this could put you at risk of developing chronic health diseases such as cancers, diabetes, and heart disease.
Nevertheless, it is understandable why many aging adults are put off by the idea of exercise. Some of these reasons could be physical in nature. For instance, arthritis or osteoporosis could cause serious discomfort, and engaging in exercise will only exacerbate the pain. For some, it could be mental such as the fear of falling.
Considering the above, chair exercises are the safest forms of exercise an elderly can partake in as firstly, they do not require much exertion and secondly, they have the chair as a form of support. Read on to find out more about the best chair exercises for aging adults.
Chair Exercises for Arms
- Bicep Curl
Want to improve your arm strength? Try the bicep curl. Get a set of resistance bands and place your feet on them, shoulder-width apart. Grab the handles with your palm facing upwards before curling your hands up to your shoulders. Do 4 sets of 10 for optimum results. Apart from resistance bands, you can do so with dumbbells as well.
- Shoulder Rolls
Sit up straight and place your feet flat on the ground. Gently lift your shoulders up towards your ears and rotate them in a circle in the following direction – back, down, forward, top, forward, down, back, top – and do this ten times. This movement strengthens your trapezius and shoulder muscles which are essential for activities such as carrying or lifting stuff.
Chair Exercises for Legs
- Knee Lifts
Sit up straight and place your feet flat on the ground. Lift your left knee slowly towards your chest, then lower your foot back to the ground. Repeat this motion with your right leg. Perform ten repetitions for each leg. Knee lifts strengthen your quadriceps which play a crucial role in walking, running, and squatting. Add ankle weights for extra resistance.
- Toe Taps
Sit on the edge of the chair, straighten your back and place your feet flat on the ground. Bend your toes upwards and back down towards the ground. Keep your heels on the ground as you do so. Perform ten repetitions. Toe taps strengthen your calves and shin muscles which you use for a wide variety of activities such as climbing stairs.
Cardio Chair Exercises
- Seated Jumping Jacks
Sit on the edge of the chair and straighten your back. Extend your arms slowly to the sides, before lifting them up above your head just like you would with a conventional jumping jack. Bring your arms down to your sides and raise them again. Slowly increase your speed as you settle into your rhythm. Perform four sets of twenty repetitions. Ideally, you should perform this exercise on a chair without armrests to avoid hitting them during the exercise.
At Discovery Village At Twin Creeks, our Dimensions Health & Wellness program offers a variety of exercise classes for our residents, including those which involve chair exercises! Many of our residents have benefitted from the program and we are confident that your loved one will as well should they decide to join us!