Awesome exercise benefits for seniors

Benefits for seniors

The exercise benefits for seniors vary depending on the specific activity, but there is absolutely no denying that remaining as active as possible during your autumn years can help to prevent or delay conditions like arthritis, heart disease, diabetes, blood pressure, balance problems, difficulty walking, and others, as well as manage stress and improve mood. In other words, exercise is good for both your physical and your mental health. Certain studies have pointed to the fact exercise can improve cognitive function and reduce depression. Before delving deeper into the benefits of exercise for seniors, let’s establish the difference between exercise and physical activity.


Physical activity



Daily life activity performed at home or at work.

A planned and structured from of physical activity with the goal of improving physical fitness.


Sweeping, cleaning, and other household chores.

Lifting boxes or waking for more than 10 minutes.

Resistance training.

Body stretching.

Aerobic exercise.


There are four types of exercises that target each a particular area. These areas are:

  • Endurance.
  • Muscle strength.
  • Balance.
  • Flexibility.

When all four areas are given equal attention, the benefits become more apparent in your everyday life, and you’ll find yourself stronger, fitter, more independent, and able to do more things without help.


Examples of exercise



Moderate: Brisk walking, swimming, dancing, bicycling, tennis.

Vigorous: basketball, jogging, bicycling uphill.

Pushing your grandchildren on the swings.


Working in the garden.

Raking leaves.

Playing a sport.

Muscle strength

Wrist curls, arm curls, side arm raises, elbow extensions, chair dips, back leg raises, knee curls, toe stands.

Climbing stairs.

Carrying groceries.

Opening jars.

Carrying a laundry basket from basement to 2nd floor.

Carrying smaller grandchildren.

Lifting bags of mulch in the garden.


Standing on one foot, walking heel to toe, balance walk, back leg raises, side leg raises.

Preventing falls.

Standing on tiptoe to reach something on the top shelf.

Walking up and down the stairs.

Walking on an uneven sidewalk without falling.



Neck stretch, shoulder stretch, shoulder and upper arm raise, upper body stretch, chest stretch, back stretch, ankle stretch, back of leg stretch, thigh stretch, hip stretch, lower back stretch, calf stretch.

Looking over the shoulder to see what’s behind while backing out a car.

Making the bed.

Bending over to tie your shoes.

Reaching for an item on a kitchen shelf.

Pulling on a sweater over your head.

Swinging a golf club.


In spite of those and other exercise benefits for seniors, physical activity is actually an end in itself and not just a means to an end. The single greatest benefit of being active is precisely not being inactive. A sedentary lifestyle doubles the risk of heart disease and increase the number of doctor visits, hospitalizations, and prescribed medications. Needless to say, that means that inactivity may also take a financial toll on a person. Many elderly individuals feel that it is the other way around; that is, exercising involves pricy gym memberships and equipment, and that it might lead to injury as opposed to function. However, the loss of ability to do things on one’s own is more often than not a consequence of inactivity and not of aging.

The good news is that it’s never too late to start, regardless of how old or out of shape you are; if you can move you can exercise. Money is no object either; balance exercises can be done pretty much anywhere at any time, and can thus be incorporated into your daily physical activities. Furthermore, strength exercises require affordable equipment such as resistance bands and weights. Arguably the hardest part is to make decision to get started, and granted, it’s not necessarily an easy decision. The best person to help you make that decision is your doctor, especially if you’re at risk of chronic conditions like heart diabetes or diabetes, are obese, smoke, or have chest pain, abnormal heartbeat, or severe shortness of breath.

Also consult your doctor if you have:

  • Continual, considerable, unexplained weight loss.
  • Infections like pneumonia.
  • An acute blood clot.
  • A painful hernia.
  • Foot or ankle sores that don’t heal.
  • Pain or difficulty walking following a fall.
  • Eye conditions like retina bleeding or detached retina.
  • An abdominal aortic aneurysm.
  • Critical aortic stenosis.
  • Joint swelling.
  • Had a hip replacement.

You should stop exercising altogether and see a doctor if you experience:

  • Pain or pressure in the chest, neck, shoulder, or arm.
  • Dizziness or nausea.
  • Cold sweats.
  • Muscle cramps.
  • Sever joint, foot, ankle, or leg pain.

The key to start being active and staying that way is to start out slowly and set realistic short- and long-term goals. Writing down a plan that also includes an identifiable starting point, and establishes your current fitness level can be helpful as well. The progress that you might able to make over the course of time may be projected by contrasting short-term goals with long-term ones.




Today I will be more active.

This time next year I will swim 3 miles per week.

Tomorrow I will learn about exercise classes near me.

I will play ball with my grandkids next summer.

I will talk with a friend about exercising together by the end of this week.

My blood pressure will be under control in 6 months.

I will ensure I have appropriate shoes and clothes for walking in the next two weeks.



Staying active should not be contingent to realizing your personal goals, however. Interruptions that slow or halt your progress are likely to happen; that’s ok as long as you remember your goals and resume as soon as you can, even if that means scaling back to a comfortable level. Another key to success is to focus not just on results but on behavioral changes. To make sure that exercising becomes a lasting lifestyle choice instead of a passing fad, you should make it:

  • A priority.
  • Easy.
  • Safe.
  • Social.
  • Fun.
  • An active decision.

Little by little, one step at a time, you’ll begin to enjoy the exercise benefits for seniors, such as having more energy, a new and improved perspective of life, finding it easier to do usual everyday activities like climbing flights of stairs and getting in and out of the car, sleeping better, less pain when moving around, and feeling generally healthier. These benefits can be increased by doing physical activities longer, farther, harder and more often, as well as by adding new activities that you can also do longer, farther, harder and more often in due time. We guarantee that you’ll feel driven to test, challenge and improve yourself every single day.