Exercise and Ageing – Made for each other

In an earlier thread, we have discussed how older adults can maintain good nutrition. In this blog post, we will look at how exercise can enrich the lives of senior citizens. Ageing, as believed by many, should not stop you from doing activities; on the contrary, it should allow you to do all your favourite activities and lead a healthy life. Engaging in regular exercise is the best way to achieve this.

Most people think that walking is the only exercise suitable for elders. While walking is definitely suitable for all ages and health conditions, there are many types of exercises that you can do as you age. Exercise is an important part of everyone’s health and this is very true for elders too. “If you don’t move, you won’t move” is an old saying. That is quite right because as we age our physical and mental abilities change causing both deterioration in coordinated function and an increasing dependence on others. Hence, as a physiotherapist, my advice for all of you out there is: “start to move now and prevent ill health forever”.

You are all aware that high blood pressure, diabetes, arthritis, heart disease and stroke are common in the elderly. What you might not know is that all of these conditions can be controlled and reversed with exercise. In fact, frequent falls or fear of fall due to impaired balance and coordination is the worst enemy to a happy and enjoyable seniors’ life; even this can be solved by regular exercise. Additionally, muscle strengthening exercises help to improve your level of performance in daily activities. While these are all compelling arguments to start your exercise regimen right away, remember to get proper medical advice prior to starting any new exercise.

There are various types of exercises that you can do to improve muscle strength, balance and coordination

  • Aerobic and flexibility training– 5 days/week
  • Strength training – 2 days/week
  • Balance and coordination training – every day

The benefits of regular exercise are:

  • Improves your strength and helps you stay independent
  • Improves your balance and prevents falls
  • Gives you more energy
  • Prevents and reverses diseases, such as heart disease, diabetes, arthritis and osteoporosis
  • Improves your mood and fights off depression

Stop exercising and contact your doctor if you experience any of the following symptoms:

  • Muscle or joint pain
  • Chest pain or pressure
  • Excessive shortness of breath
  • Light-headedness, dizziness

Exercise tips

  • Always start your exercise session with warm-up and end with cool-down exercises
  • Drink more fluids to stay hydrated
  • Start slowly and set reachable goals
  • Exercise in a small group to stay motivated
  • Listen to your body and respond to its needs
  • Don’t overdo any exercise
  • Avoid doing exercise when you are sick

The definite way to attain all the health benefits of exercise in your old age is to start doing exercise in your younger years. It is never too early to start exercising, and it can never be too late whatever your age! The team at Cardiac Wellness Institute provides various programs to improve the health status of all individuals including senior citizens. If you are interested and eager to know more about the seniors’ program please feel free to contact us, we will help you improve your health and your quality of life in an enjoyable manner.


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