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Common Senior Exercise Mistakes

By Jeff Hill, 8:00 am on May 16, 2014

The benefits of regular exercise are well documented. Completing a simple exercise regimen a few days a week can aid in cardiovascular function, increase bone density, strengthen muscles, manage weight and improve circulation. Individuals of all ages can reap the benefits of exercise; however seniors and older adults are more prone to making exercise mistakes that often threaten their safety and overall health. If you or an aging loved one are starting or getting back into an exercise routine, here are some of the most common senior exercise mistakes to be aware of:

  • No Warm-Up

    Athletes are always encouraged to warm up before they engage in their sport, and this action is even more important for seniors. Phoenix senior care professionals state that a few moments spent in light stretching and bending can help to prevent overworking muscles before they are properly prepared for exercise.

  • Not Building Up Exercise Tolerance Slowly

    One major mistake seniors make is engaging in a vigorous exercise routine without giving themselves proper time to build up to it. This mistake can leave them with sore muscles and even injuries that will take time to heal. Seniors should always start an exercise slowly and build up their tolerance for activity. This way, they ensure that muscles are strengthened slowly and over time, reducing the risk of exhaustion and injury.

  • Not Adapting Exercise for Physical Limitations

    Many seniors have health problems that may require accommodation in order to maintain an exercise program. Respiratory problems may limit walking, bicycling, or other activities. Joint problems may limit yoga, Pilates or use of exercise equipment. Seniors with specific health issues should always be ready to “tailor” their exercise to accommodate any limitations to avoid injury and to make their exercise time more enjoyable.

Many seniors make the mistake of putting off exercise when they are experiencing the common aches and pains that occur with aging. However, exercising can actually help to strengthen muscles that support the joints that may be subject to these aches and pains. Exercise can also help reduce fatigue and improve circulation to improve a senior’s overall health and wellness.

If you or an aging loved one need help creating and following through with an exercise routine, contact Home Care Assistance today. We have hourly and live-in caregivers in Phoenix who are highly trained and can help seniors with fitness routines, nutritious meal preparation, transportation for grocery shopping and other errands, as well as help with housekeeping chores. To schedule a free consultation, call 602-388-1085 and speak with a Care Manager.