Inexpensive Ways For Seniors To Exercise

Exercise is a key ingredient in any senior's ambition to accomplish healthy aging. Participating in regular exercising will greatly benefit your physical and mental conditions.  Unfortunately there are several myths out there suggesting that the elderly should save their strength instead of exercising or the common myth we all hear, "I am too old to get any value from exercising."

Many benefits of exercising

Rather, there are many positives to seniors exercising including benefits to their physical and mental well being. Some of these benefits of exercising include helping seniors maintain or lose weight, reducing the impact of illnesses, as well as enhancing a senior’s mobility, flexibility and balance. It is also important to note the other positives of exercising such as improving your sleep and giving a well deserved boost to your self-confidence.

Below are some simple ways to exercise without stressing you bank account and some ideas to make exercising something to look forward to!

Simple ways to exercise in an inexpensive manner:

  1. Do neck rolls and light stretching while watching TV

  2. Use soup cans as your weights

  3. Make it a habit to climb your house stairs as often as possible or use stairs instead of elevators in public buildings

  4. Rent exercise videos or books from your local library

  5. Enjoy walking to new areas or establishments you are unfamiliar with, such as new parks or subdivisions

  6. Summertime swims and water aerobics in your nearby lake or swimming pool are some of the best fitness exercises both for your cardiovascular and muscular systems. Water exercises are also excellent as water reduces the stress and strain on your body’s joints.

  7. Park at the far end of the parking lot when arriving at appointments or meetings

  8. Do wall push ups when preparing meals in kitchen

  9. Spend time out doing your own lawn maintenance such as mowing the grass and gardening

  10. Try toe-raises, leg stretches, knee bends when sitting on the phone talking to family and friends

Not enjoying exercising?  Try one of these tips:

  1. Listen to your favourite music while lifting weight or going for a leisurely walk

  2. Make exercise a challenge between you and a family member or friend

  3. Take photographs or have picnics while on a nature hike

  4. Get your competitive spirit back by joining a bowling, pickleball or hockey league

  5. Use exercise as a way to meet new people through programs such as yoga classes

  6. Chat with a friend while walking, hiking or exercising

  7. Incorporate exercise into your evening entertainment plans by going dancing

  8. Use the commercial breaks of your favourite TV shows to exercise

  9. Invite friends over to play a card game to help exercise you mentally

  10. Reward  yourself with your favourite meal, treat or activity, upon completion of your exercise program

Please remember that you are never too old or too out of shape to start excising. Start slowly, have fun with it and make it a part of your daily routine that you enjoy!

In the Joy of Sport,

Matt Trinnear, Program Coordinator –OSGA 55+ (Ontario Senior Games Association)

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