Did your aging loved ones enjoy a few too many sweet treats over the holidays?
“It’s not uncommon for people of all ages to put on an extra pound or two during holidays,” said Sierra Goetz, operations manager at the HomeCare Advocacy Network (HCAN). “However, for older people it can be difficult to get rid of that extra weight – especially when winter weather limits outdoor activities.”
Ideas to Keep Moving
While definitely more challenging, it’s not impossible for your senior to remain physically active – even as temperatures drop and snow flies. Goetz suggests:
When temps are on the milder side and there are no traces of snow or ice, encourage your aging loved ones to bundle up and get some fresh air – whether it’s around the block or just to the mailbox and back. If the weather doesn’t cooperate, they can boost their step count walking through a local mall, up and down the halls of their community or just around their home.
It’s safe, tranquil and customizable – making it the perfect indoor exercise for seniors. Several YouTube videos are available for beginners and if those are too challenging, they can try doing the poses from a seated position.
Senior fitness classes are often available at community centers, libraries and other locations. In addition to the health benefits, these classes also are a great way for your loved ones to connect with old friends and forge new relationships.
From dance fitness to virtual bowling, technology can help your aging loved ones have fun while getting the exercise they need.
While most of us don’t think of household chores as exercise, activities such as vacuuming, dusting and laundry can get the blood pumping and burn calories.
“Regular exercise is key to healthy aging,” Goetz said. “In addition to helping your senior maintain a healthy weight, exercise can prevent or delay many age-related problems, improve flexibility and strengthen muscles – giving them the ability to keep doing day-to-day activities and live independently for as long as possible.”
Help with Exercises
At HCAN, we understand that it’s sometimes difficult for seniors to get motivated and exercise on their own. We also know that it’s not always possible for you or other family members to help them. That’s where we come in. Whether it’s accompanying your senior on a walk or driving them to the gym, our professionally trained caregivers are committed to helping seniors remain as active as possible.