As a senior myself, I hate to think my blog was overlooking this vast segment of the population that also happens to need diet, fitness and healthy aging information more than any other demographic group.
For older adults and seniors who want to stay healthy and independent, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) recommend four types of exercises:
• Strength exercises build older adult muscles and increase your metabolism, which helps to keep your weight and blood sugar in check.
• Balance exercises build leg muscles, and this helps to prevent falls. According to the NIH, U.S. hospitals have 300,000 admissions for broken hips each year, many of them seniors, and falling is often the cause of those fractures. If you are an older adult, balance exercises will help you avoid problems as you get older. And if you are a senior, balance exercises can help you stay independent by helping you avoid the disabilities that could result from falling.
• Stretching exercises can give you more freedom of movement, which will allow you to be more active during your senior years. Stretching exercises alone will not improve your endurance or strength.
• Endurance exercises are any activity—walking, jogging, swimming, biking, even raking leaves—that increases your heart rate and breathing for an extended period of time. Build up your endurance gradually, starting with as little as 5 minutes of endurance activities at a time.