Significant health benefits are seen in adults aged 65 years and older who participate in regular physical activity. The Physical Activity Guidelines recommend older adults to incorporate aerobic activitymuscle-strengthening activityand balance training for older adults at risk for falls. Try to avoid inactivity because some health benefits can occur with any amount of physical activity gain.
Older adults need to evaluate their level of fitness before determining their level of effort for physical activity. Chronic conditions need to be taken into consideration since they may affect their ability to do regular physical activity safely.
Remember to start slowly! Aim for light or moderate intensity for short periods of time. Make sure to spread out the physical activity sessions throughout the week.
Increase physical activity gradually over a period of weeks to months. Talk to your doctor if you have a chronic health condition such as heart disease, arthritis, or diabetes or symptoms such as chest pain or pressure, dizziness, or joint pain before starting a physical activity program.
It is important to incorporate slower speed or lower intensity activities at the beginning and end of your routine to properly warm up and cool down your body.
This helps to prevent injuries and reduce muscle soreness. Examples of warming-up would be to walk briskly before jogging or lift a lighter weight before completing the actual weight used during weight training.
After completing the physical activity, gradually slow down or lower intensity to help the body cool down. Good news, adults can count the time spent during warm-up and cool-down towards meeting aerobic activity guidelines.
Aerobic activity is also known as endurance activity and examples include: When chronic conditions make it hard to achieve the minutes each week, older adults should be physically active as their abilities and conditions allow.
Perform aerobic activity for at least 3 days a week to help avoid excessive fatigue and reduce risk of injury. The intensity of the activity depends upon the older adult's level of fitness.