Caregivers Challenge: 5 Popular Exercises to Get Seniors Moving

Caregivers Challenge: 5 Popular Exercises to Get Seniors Moving

by Martha Scully

Exercise is important for everyone, seniors especially. As a caregiver, it is your responsibility to get the elderly person you are caring for up and moving. The exercise benefits for seniors are well established and include preventing, delaying or reducing the impact of illness and disease, helping to manage stress, improving mood, coordination and balance (reducing the risk of falls). Basically when seniors exercise it helps prolong their quality life allowing them to keep doing the things they like doing for longer. Before starting exercise with a senior, it is always recommended to speak with a family member or doctor on what limitations the senior may have. Low impact exercise is usually suggested. Here's a list of 5 popular low impact activities seniors can do to be more active.

5 Popular Low Impact Exercises for Seniors:

  1. Walking

    It seems simple, yet setting aside time to go for a walk provides an elderly person the ability to get out and move their body. Try to pick an area to walk that is not too busy and the ground is even.

  2. Chair Exercises

    This has become a popular way for seniors that are isolated, due to weather or other circumstances, so they can can move their bodies. We found a wonderful video that will provide step by step ways to do chair exercises.

  3. Strength Training

    Resistance training with weights can be done right in the home. For women, start with 1 to 2 pound weights. For men, try 5 pounds. Lifting weights in any way will help get the blood and heart moving. Try for just a few minutes when you start and then build from there.

  4. Yoga or Stretching

    Seniors will often complain that they are stiff. Tight muscles cause lots of issues for elderly people. The senior you are caring for would most likely be comfortable in their home doing any type of stretching.

  5. Swimming

    Some seniors would rather do anything but get into a bathing suit or pool, but if you can convince them the benefits are huge. The best part of pool exercise is that there is less impact on the joints due to the exercises being done in the water. Most community swimming pools have swim programs and aqua fit programs for specifically seniors.

As a caregiver doing senior home care, it is always best it you take part in the exercise with them.

Get Seniors Moving

Remember doing a little bit of something is better than doing a whole lot of nothing. So no matter what you do, just get moving, even if its only for a few minutes per day its better than nothing!

What Exercises are the Seniors in your Life Doing?

What are your favorite exercises for seniors? Which ones are the seniors you're caring for doing on a regular basis?


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About the Author
Martha Scully
Martha is the founder of CanadianNanny.ca. Martha has been featured as a Child Care Expert in hundreds of publications across Canada including The Globe and Mail, CBC, Today's Parent and The National Post, She lives in British Columbia with her husband and two daughters.