Health experts are always saying that seniors need to stay mobile – but what are the real benefits? How do you stay motivated to regain or maintain your mobility when it gets more difficult each year?
Why senior mobility matters
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), among other sources, the physical fitness that comes with maintaining your mobility isn’t just about making it easier to keep up with the demands of daily living – it also:
- Improves cardiovascular health (reduces blood pressure, increases muscle strength).
- Improves muscle tone and fitness.
- Improves bone health.
- Reduces the risk of non-communicable diseases (for example, diabetes, heart disease, cancer, and pulmonary disease, including asthma).
- Reduces the risk of depression.
- Reduces the risk of cognitive (brain function) decline.
- Increases longevity.
- Reduces the risk of falls.
How to stay physically active as a senior
The key to maintaining your mobility is physical activity – but it’s important to follow a program designed to your specific health and physical boundaries. Visiting a specialist, like a certified trainer or exercise psychologist, is a great way to get a program that allows your body to get as fit as possible without suffering from over-exertion or jeopardizing your health. Some general guidelines from the WHO include:
- 150 minutes of moderate aerobic physical activity a week. This includes activities like brisk walking, water aerobics, yoga, doubles tennis, ballroom dancing, and general gardening.
- These activities should be in 10-minute sessions at first. They can slowly be increased as your fitness grows.
- Muscle-strengthening activities are also important and should be done two or more times a week. An experienced trainer will recommend the right weights for you, and this training should include exercises for arms as well as legs.
Choose our community-based independent living residences for seniors
At United Methodist Homes of New Jersey, we offer a wide range of tailored support services for seniors in an environment that delivers the highest quality of life. Designed to enhance independence, our senior living communities are designed to assist you or your loved one only when required, and to scale these services at any point in response to changing needs. In addition to catering for independent seniors, we are also able to provide care for Alzheimer’s and dementia patients.
This content was originally posted at http://www.umh-nj.org/blog/mobility-boosting-tips-and-benefits-for-seniors/