Why should I exercise?
Studies have found that older adults who take part in regular exercise are not only healthier than those who don’t exercise, but they are also less likely to develop serious long-term conditions.
Regular exercise can help in reducing risk of:
Heart disease and stroke.
High blood pressure.
Type 2 diabetes.
Some types of cancer e.g. breast cancer and bowel cancer.
Osteoporosis, osteoarthritis and back pain.
Regular exercise can also help in improving muscle tone and strength meaning it is less likely you may have a fall or accident.
Exercise and activity can also help with independence, memory, your sense of wellbeing and self-esteem.
What kind of exercises can I do?
Aerobic – Aerobic exercise helps to keep your heart and lungs healthy, but our aerobic fitness naturally decreases as we get older. However, you can still keep fit with activities that raise your heart rate such as cycling, walking, swimming, dancing, walking football or an exercise class.
Strengthening – Strengthening exercise can help to retain muscle strength which in turn makes day to day tasks easier and reduces your risk of falls. Strengthening activities include yoga, tai chi or Pilates as well as activities such as carrying the shopping home, gardening, going to the gym or working out at home.
How often should I exercise and how long?
Your aim should be to do around 30 minutes of moderate exercise every day along with some muscle strengthening. If you are new to exercise take it easy to begin with and gradually increase activity to help build your fitness. Staying as active as you can is the important part.