A lot of people become sedentary as they become older and many adults over the age of 65 spend on average more than 10 hours sitting or lying down. This inactivity can lead to lower energy levels and increased risk of falls and health conditions. Keeping active as you get older can help you to remain healthy, energetic and independent, a great New Year’s resolution could be to get out and about and get fit for 2019.
It might seem intimidating at first but there are lots of ways to ease into exercise and find enjoyment in keeping active.
What levels of activity are recommended for older people?
The NHS recommend around 150 minutes of moderate activity every week to those over the age of 65 who are generally fit and without mobility limiting conditions. As well as this they recommend strength exercises 2 or more times a week, strengthening all the major muscles.
If you find you are fit enough to complete rigorous exercises you may be able to spend less time exercising. The rule of thumb generally is that two minutes of moderate exercise equate one minute of rigorous exercise.
Some ways to start getting active for the new year are;
One of the easiest ways to get active is to think of small ways to could fit walking into your routine. Whether it’s walking rather than driving, or getting off a stop early for a short walk home, small walks can be great to ease you into activity.
Swimming is a great activity for talking things at your own pace. You could work your way up to lengths by walking in the shallow end, or holding onto the side and kicking your legs. Plenty of swimming pools in the UK have water aerobics classes and even one on one swimming lessons could be ideal to get you back into the swing of swimming.
Your local gym is likely to have classes with aerobic exercise classes to suit your ability level, but a cheaper and easier option is to do these exercises at home. The internet means that you have access to countless of great exercise classes that you can take at your own pace. From yoga, to general core exercise programmes, you can find what suits you.
Some more vigorous exercises could be..
If you’re comfortable with long walks, you could push yourself by getting started with hiking. Hiking can be a great way to see the beautiful sights of the UK as well as partaking in some rigorous exercise that keeps you fit and active. It could be a great opportunity to socialise as well by inviting friends or joining a local club.
Running for Charity
Signing up to a charity run can be a great motivator, there are lots of different lengths and options so you can find a length that’s achievable for you. Taking part doesn’t mean you need to spirt the whole way, many participants walk or lightly jog, make sure that you push yourself without causing any harm. Looking forward to a run and training can push you to stay interested and keep going, as well as raising money for a worthy cause.
Dancing is a really enjoyable way to get active and there’s lots of ways to get started depending on your level of ability and tastes. Whether it’s line dancing or salsa there are lots of classes and tutors out there that can help you to get started.
Whilst it’s always a good idea to stay active and keep fit, it’s important to take it at your own pace and not push yourself too hard and cause injury. If you have health conditions that might be worsened by rigorous exercise you should consult your GP and check what exercise is right for you.