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Exercise for Seniors

Types of Exercise

As mentioned, to get all of the benefits of physical activity, older adults should try and engage in exercises that focus on:
  • Endurance
  • Strength
  • Balance
  • Flexibility.
Endurance exercises are activities that increase your breathing and heart rate. Endurance activity builds your energy, or "staying power." Endurance exercises also may delay or prevent many diseases associated with aging, such as diabetes, colon cancer, heart disease, stroke, and others, and have been shown to reduce the overall death and hospitalization rates.
Be sure to get at least 30 minutes of activity that makes you breathe hard on most or all days of the week. You don't have to be active for 30 minutes all at once. Ten minutes at a time is fine. Just make sure you are active for a total of 30 minutes most days.
How hard do you need to push yourself? If you can talk without any trouble at all, you are not working hard enough. If you can't talk at all, it's too hard.
Strength exercises build muscles. But they do more than just make you stronger. They may improve your independence by giving you more strength to do things on your own. When you have strong muscles, you can get up from a chair by yourself, you can lift your grandchildren, and you can walk through the park. It also decreases the need for a cane.
Keeping your muscles in shape helps prevent falls that cause problems like broken hips. In addition, you are less likely to fall when your leg and hip muscles are strong. Finally, strong muscles help maintain or lose weight because muscle burns more calories than fat.
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Senior Health and Fitness

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