Physical Activity in Adults, Part III

Jun 28, 2024 Physical activity has important health benefits for older adults — but people may find it hard to stay active as they age. Joining us is a physical therapist from United Hospital Center’s United Rehab to help answer your questions concerning physical activity for older adults. I am Dr. Kristen Sepp, physical therapist at United Rehab, and I am here to discuss the importance of physical activity for older adults.

1). Older adults may find it harder to stay active, what are some suggestions that you may provide to overcome any obstacles?

Do activities you enjoy which will make exercise more fun! Be creative and try something new- this will help you stay motivated. Make it social. Find an “exercise buddy” to help keep you going and provide emotional support.

2). What are some seasonal physical activities that you can suggest to older adults?

It is great to plan your physical activity according to the seasons. Doing so will help to keep things interesting by rotating with the seasons. For spring... · As the temperatures start to get warm, get your garden ready for spring and summer. The lifting and bending you do when gardening is great for strength and flexibility. · A bike ride is a great way to enjoy the warmer temperatures- hit the rail trail.
  • Spring clean your home with a dance party to upbeat music.
  • Build your endurance and strength with a bike ride during National Bike Month
For summer...
  • Swim laps or take a water aerobics class. These are both refreshing once the weather gets humid.
  • Walking in the mall is a cool way to beat the heat.
  • Now that the grandchildren are out of school for the summer, ask them to teach you their favorite sport
  • Celebrate National Bowling Week in August. Get friends and family together and challenge each other to a friendly tournament.
For fall...
  • If you’ve heard about the benefits of yoga, but haven’t tried it yet, National Yoga Awareness Month in September is a great time to find special events and trial classes for beginners.
  • As the weather begins to cool, join an indoor sports league, such as basketball, handball, or bowling.
  • Fall provides great opportunities for outdoor physical activity. You can take long walks to see the beautiful fall colors. Once the leaves have fallen, raking is good exercise.
  • If you have holiday shopping to do, walk the entire mall each time you’re there.
For winter...
  • When your grandchildren visit, head outside to build a snowman together or go ice skating.
  • Cold outdoor temperatures are an excellent reason to join a mall-walking group.
  • Start the new year by trying out a fitness center — many offer New Year’s Resolution specials.
  • Give your heart a Valentine’s Day gift with dance lessons, such as salsa, tango, or ballroom dancing.

3). When it comes to daily physical activity for older adults, what is the one suggestion to stay on track and ensure success?

The most important suggestion is to create a plan to help track your progress! Make an exercise plan and don’t forget to reward yourself when you reach your goals. If you’re unsure of plan, seek out care from a Physical therapist who can help guide you. Update your plan often. This is the key to success, especially as you witness your transformation.

This content was originally posted on the WDTV News website here.

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