People are beginning to realize that in order to stay healthy they need to introduce an exercise routine into their fast, technology-governed lives. Physical activity has numerous benefits including keeping you slim, eliminating stress, reducing the risk of diabetes and cardiovascular disease, and keeping your muscles and bones strong. But did you know that exercise can help improve your cognitive functions as well?
If you are struggling with the early stages of a cognitive illness, developing a workout routine can help prevent these diseases from progressing further. If you are a professional caregiver or a family member, inspiring seniors to exercise could make all the difference in their struggle against these terrible diseases.
Recent studies have shown that exercise may be instrumental in battling cognitive diseases such as Alzheimer’s and dementia. Physical activity increases the number of blood vessels that supply the brain with blood and strengthens the connection between nerve cells. Because of this, senior citizens should aim to introduce a workout routine into their everyday lives.
But let’s face the fact that not many seniors have the strength or stamina to start weightlifting or do complex cardio exercises right away. However, strength and stamina improve as your workout regime progresses and you build more muscle strength. In order to get started, here are some of the easiest yet most beneficial exercises for seniors or any age.
Stretching in itself might not be as beneficial as other exercises on this list, but is an integral part of any injury-free workout. Stretching helps improve flexibility and is instrumental in preventing injury during some of the more complex workouts. This is why you should always stretch before moving onto any other exercise.
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You won’t believe how beneficial a simple walk around the neighborhood can be for staying mentally and physically fit. Walking vastly benefits your joints, as it keeps them strong and flexible.
The best thing is that you don’t need any special preparation aside from some stretching. You can just go out and take a walk whenever you feel like it.
All the equipment you need is a pair of comfortable and supportive walking shoes. Also, pay attention to your posture and try to keep your shoulders back and relaxed.
Swimming provides all the muscles in your body with a good workout. It is a good alternative to intense exercises but is just as effective. Swimming helps relieve stress on your joints and bones and improves limb flexibility. Thanks to indoor pools, you can exercise even during cold or rainy days. What makes swimming especially appealing to seniors is that the risk of injury is minimal.
There are numerous reasons why Yoga is good for both the mind and the body, which is why it became extremely popular with seniors in the recent years. The best thing about it is that you don’t need any experience and you can easily adjust the pace to suit you.
Cycling has the added benefit of feeling the breeze of fresh air on your face. However, if you don’t feel comfortable facing the heavy traffic, a stationary bike has the same benefits. Cycling is not just good for your cognitive functions, it also helps ease the pain caused by arthritis and improves blood pressure.
While the details on how much exercise improves your cognitive functions are scarce, there’s no doubt that it does help keep these diseases from advancing. Regular exercise benefits the brain and the whole body, which is why it is as important for seniors as for any other age. Staying mentally and physically fit will ensure you live a longer, better life.