Alex O'Brien


Why you should encourage older loved ones to exercise

Why you should encourage older loved ones to exercise

We don’t need to tell you that exercise is good for your health, we all know it by now! Unfortunately, many people are still not getting enough – if any – exercise, and countless studies have shown that as we age, the benefits of regular exercise increase. With life expectancy continuing to grow towards the 100 mark, it’s safe to say your 60s and 70s are the new 40s and 50s! However, that doesn’t mean exercise can’t play an important role as we enter our 80s and beyond. So, if you have a loved one who thinks that being an octogenarian or nonagenarian is an excuse to sit on the sidelines, we’re about to prove them wrong!

Let’s take a look at some of the surprising ways regular exercise can maintain and improve our health as we get older.

  • Improved balance – if you’ve cared for an elderly parent before, you’ll know just how crippling a fall can be. Fortunately, there are some simple ways to prevent falls, thanks to some smart and easy yoga moves. Last month, Tracy Adshead, a specialist in senior yoga, gave us her tips for improving balance. Click here to check it out.
  • Fighting cancer – yep! New research has shown that exercise can help people suffering from cancer and the side effects of treatment. In a recent TED Talk, Exercise Physiologist Prue Cormie shared some of her exciting findings into the role of exercise in cancer management.
  • Improved posture – many people believe poor posture is just a part of getting older, but it’s actually a result of poor exercise and weight distribution. Having good posture is essential to prevent back pain, something which affects a staggering 4 in 5 of us. Click here to learn some simple pilates moves to help improve posture.
  • Prevention and treatment of diabetes – that’s right, you can actually prevent and treat diabetes with some easy yoga poses. Studies have shown that yoga is an effective way to control blood glucose levels and improve nerve function. Tracy Adshead offers some great tips for diabetics and prediabetics.
  • Lower risk of anxiety and depression – Given that a record number of us are suffering anxiety and depression, it’s never been more important to ensure we get a head start and begin preventing and treating mental illness at the onset. These three research-backed exercises are perfect for preventing and treating anxiety and depression.
Does your elderly loved one get enough exercise? Let us know how they motivate themselves in the comments below.

Related links:

How to improve your balance with yoga

Exercise is a new contender in the fight against cancer

Workouts for people who don’t like getting sweaty

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