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5 Great Exercises for Seniors in Assisted Living

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A group of four women in assisted living performing stretching exercises

As an older adult, your loved one is at a heightened risk of developing certain health conditions, and preventative measures are critical to keeping their body and mind in good shape. Exercise is an essential part of a senior’s wellness. Still, most older adults can’t follow a younger person’s exercise plan, so it’s necessary to find appropriate exercises for their fitness level and mobility issues.

Seniors should work on their endurance, strength, flexibility, and balance to gain the greatest benefits of exercise. From yoga, walking, tai chi, and more, simple movements can have dramatic effects on your loved one’s mental and physical well-being.

At Villa De Anza, our community calendar is full of well-rounded exercises for residents to enjoy socially and access a physical therapist to help improve injuries so your loved one can move more easily.

Benefits of Exercise for Seniors

A well-rounded physical activity routine can positively impact your loved one’s mind and body. A few of the significant benefits your older adult can enjoy from regular exercise include the following:

  • A healthy weight
  • Improved sleep
  • Regulated blood pressure
  • Prevention of some cancers
  • Boosted mental health
  • Raised energy levels
  • Improved bone health
  • Enhanced coordination and balance

How Much Exercise Do Seniors Need?

To maximize the benefits of an active lifestyle, seniors should try to get around 150 minutes a week, broken up into 30 minutes a day, 5 times a week, or into smaller chunks of time, if that’s more accessible. Exercise looks different for every individual, but seniors should try to target each dimension of movement, including:

  • Endurance
  • Strength
  • Balance
  • Flexibility

Many exercises help seniors work on these components simultaneously in a single activity, and they can help improve their ability to complete daily tasks that they may struggle with, like carrying shopping bags or gardening.

A female nurse practices low-intensity exercises with a senior living resident

5 of the Best Exercises for Seniors

Every senior’s level of mobility is different, whether they have a previous injury or joint replacement or haven’t exercised for an extended period. Various types of exercise can be modified to change the intensity and make workouts more challenging or easier for your loved one.

  1. Chair Yoga

Yoga isn’t all about intricate poses and can always be modified to suit anybody. Chair yoga is an adaptation practiced while seated and helps your loved one work on stability and flexibility with a bit of extra support from the furniture.

Your loved one can get the same benefits of traditional yoga, including reduced stress, increased energy levels, improved joint mobility, and more.

  1. Resistance Band Exercises

Resistance bands are light and adaptable elastic strips or loops available in different weights to build strength. They provide tension that the muscles must work against without needing dumbbells or weights.

Your loved one can see improvement in everyday movements with the development of stabilizing muscles worked in resistance band exercises. Resistance band exercises can be simple and effective for working on strength in various muscle groups.

  1. Walking

Walking is a powerful exercise that many overlook, but it can provide significant cardiovascular benefits for older adults. They can go as fast or slow as needed, take breaks, and enjoy the beauty of nature and fresh air.

Adults should strive to reach 10,000 steps a day because it works your muscles, improves joint flexibility, improves balance, and helps ease aches and pains from stiffness. It also has several benefits to your health, by lowering your risk of stroke, heart disease, diabetes, and osteoporosis.

  1. Water Aerobics

The buoyancy of water can be an ideal relief for older adults with arthritis, joint problems, or body pain. Water exercise is low impact and works on endurance and strength, whether taking a water aerobics class, swimming laps, or keeping up with the grandkids in the pool.

Swimming and water aerobics can also help strengthen your core, improve your posture, and alleviate chronic back pain. 

  1. Tai Chi

Tai chi comes from slow martial arts movements combined with mindfulness practice. The intentional movement of tai chi can help older adults practice muscle control, balance, and flexibility.

The gentle practice can reduce pain in the joints and back and can help reduce the risk of falls with regular practice. The fear of falling can also be reduced as seniors become more confident in their strength and balance over time.

Find Physical & Mental Wellness with Assisted Living in Riverside

Assisted living at Villa De Anza offers well-rounded physical exercise options for all seniors’ preferences. Your loved one can socialize and meet their neighbors while getting 150 minutes of exercise a week.

When your loved one needs extra support with daily life, assisted living can help them maintain independence while offering a helping hand. Visit Villa De Anza for a tour of our floor plans, meet our staff, and learn about the amenities and services that will benefit the older adult in your life.

Written by Villa De Anza

Villa De Anza offers assisted living services for your loved ones. We aim to provide a safe, nurturing, and supportive environment that feels like being at home. Our enthusiastic team provides top-notch care, and our warm and welcoming campus has amenities that offer comfort, safety, and fun.
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