As we age, unfortunately most of us become less active due to a weakening of our joints and a decline in the strength of our muscles. Aging can sometimes limit our daily activities. Many people think that once they get older and enter their senior years, their life will change dramatically, if it has not already happened. However, this line of thinking has changed tremendously over the years. Many senior citizens have become more and more aware that they can still enjoy plenty of activity in their retirement years.
Eating a healthier diet and also practising regular exercises as a daily routine, is very beneficial for all ages. It will certainly increase one’s quality of life. Aside from shedding some pounds in weight, daily exercises have many other health benefits that can be enjoyed. Exercising can upgrade people’s lifestyles and will ultimately make them physically stronger, agile, flexible and more co-ordinated. Doctors all over the world are continuously encouraging their patients to engage in a more active lifestyle as this has lasting benefits.
It is also a good idea to try different types of exercise like Yoga, Chi-Gong or Tai-Chi, as these are all slower paced exercises with movements linked to your breath. They will not only work on a physical level, but also help to keep your inner organs healthy and instigate, protect and release more energy for you to use. Other activities that you probably have been doing for years and need to continue are dancing, walking and swimming.
So what can daily exercises do for our senior citizens?
Firstly, physical exercising regularly can help strengthen bones and muscles. This will prevent people from injuring themselves due to falls and other accidents. Daily exercises can also help the body to slow down the aging process. Being physically active makes you physically stronger, and because exercises prevent our seniors from having accidents, their life will be prolonged and more varied.
Secondly, mental exercising can help improve their cognitive functions. Memory problems can increase with age and doing mental exercises will also strengthens problem solving abilities and concentration. Solving crossword puzzles, and playing card and board games help improve memory functions and logic based decisions. Also, physical activities are important because exercising pumps blood to the brain and oxygenates it.
Lastly, engaging in physical activities can increase the seniors’ social networks. Joining walking groups and bowls clubs not only strengthens the body, it also allows the senior citizen to gain new friends. Sometimes, especially during times of grieving for loved ones and friends, they can find themselves being depressed and feeling lonely. Thus, getting out there and socialising with other senior citizens can help alleviate this state of depression and their feelings of emptiness. When seniors socialise with other people of their own age it helps them to realise that they are not alone in this situation.
Gone are the days when we think that senior citizens should be prevented from engaging in physical activities. In the past, senior citizens are left at home or in nursing homes sitting and watching TV. Today, senior citizens are being encouraged to enjoy themselves more by engaging in various physical activities, and specifically those pursuits that keep them moving and requiring effort and participation.
Indeed the many benefits of exercising can be enjoyed at any age and ability. Regularly exercising, whether it is gentle or very intense, can really improve one’s lifestyle. However, this is especially true for our senior citizens. Allow family and friends of all ages to participate, if they want to, in the same active lifestyle that you enjoy because it will do wonders for them too. They will feel stronger and it will give them a new lease and outlook on life and keep them young in thought, body and at heart.