At the age of 102, Fauja Singh became the oldest person to complete a marathon. At 99 years old, Connie Dennison was the world’s oldest practising yoga instructor. Gordie Howe played an official, league-recognised National Hockey League game at 69! The outdated notion that you need to hang up your fitness aspirations after a certain age has been disproven time and time again.
In fact, maintaining an active lifestyle becomes even more important the older you get. Here at Trojan, we believe it’s never too late to start investing in your full physical potential, and the best time to start a fitness journey is always right now. Read on to find out why you or a senior citizen in your life should start an exercise routine, some tips to make it enjoyable and effective, and which Trojan products you might need along the way!
The benefits of exercise for seniors
– Improved physical health: Regular exercise can help improve heart health, strengthen bones and muscles, and maintain joint flexibility. It can also help reduce the risk of chronic diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, and some forms of cancer.
– Increased mobility and independence: Exercise can help seniors maintain their mobility and independence by improving balance, coordination, and flexibility. This also reduces the risk of falling!
– Better mental health: Exercise has been shown to improve mood, reduce stress and anxiety, and boost cognitive function in everyone, but especially in more mature people.
– Social interaction: Participating in group exercise classes or activities can provide older people with opportunities for social interaction and companionship. And maybe even a little competition…
– Enhanced quality of life: Regular exercise can improve overall physical and mental health, leading to a higher quality of life and greater enjoyment of daily activities. This is across the board for all ages, but still worth noting!
Tips and tricks for older people working out:
1. Get clearance from your doctor
Before starting any exercise routine, it is important to get clearance from your doctor to ensure that it is safe for you to do so. A medical professional will be able to tell you where your limits are and what you should be avoiding based on your medical history. You can monitor your body during your workout using a Trojan Evolve Fitness Tracker.
2. Start slowly
Begin with low-impact exercises like walking or stretching and gradually increase the intensity and duration of your workouts as your fitness level improves. As great as endorphins feel, pushing yourself too hard and too fast increases your probability of injury, taking you out of action completely. This is about developing consistently, not rushing towards intensity. Try walking slowly on a Trojan treadmill.
3. Set realistic goals
Similarly to the last point, you should try to set achievable goals and work towards them gradually, rather than trying to do too much too soon. Fitness develops on a baseline that builds over time due to consistent routine, not through sporadic overactivity. Patience is key here! For example, you could start with the smallest weights in this set, and move up monthly.
4. Use proper form
Proper form is essential to prevent injury and get the most out of your workout. Consider hiring a personal trainer or taking a class to learn proper form, even if it’s just for a few times before you start working out from home. Especially as more mature bodies are less elastic, there’s a lot more possibility for an injury occurring from bad exercise form. You can help improve your form with items like this slimmer belt, which improve posture.
5. Mix it up
Because it’s not advisable to push more mature bodies too hard or too quickly, variety is key to keeping your workouts interesting and challenging. Try different types of exercises, such as swimming, yoga, or strength training. Every day of the week can be a different type of movement, and this will work to improve overall functional fitness, body awareness and versatility. Multi-functional machines like this Trojan Smith Machine offer a wide variety of movements with one purchase.
6. Stay hydrated
This is appropriate to everyone, but even more applicable to seniors as researchers say that as people age, they need to drink more water to compensate for changes in their body temperature regulation. Drink plenty of water before, during, and after your workouts to stay hydrated. The post-workout hydration is the most critical, but take it easy to avoid stomach discomfort in the process. Don’t forget to use our Rehab Massage Bar when you’re taking your post-workout sips.
7.Warm up and cool down
Before and after your workouts, take the time to warm up and cool down to prevent injury and help your body recover. Throwing your body straight into movement without gently allowing your muscles to warm up makes you much more susceptible to tears, pinches and sprains. Cooling down is important because it allows for a gradual recovery of pre-exercise heart rate and blood pressure, which is imperative for normal functioning. We like cooling down with a few low-impact stretches on an exercise ball.
How to start exercising as a senior
When seniors decide to get fit, the first steps they should take include consulting with their doctor to ensure that they are healthy enough to exercise, starting slow with low-impact exercises like walking or gentle stretching, and gradually increasing the intensity and duration of their workouts over time.
Seniors should also consider joining a fitness class or group that caters specifically to their age group, to motivate and support their fitness journey. Additionally, more mature people should prioritise staying hydrated, getting enough rest, and incorporating healthy eating habits into their lifestyle to support their fitness goals. With a gradual approach and a commitment to consistency, seniors can improve their overall health and well-being through exercise. Oh, and of course affordable, durable Trojan fitness equipment! Available at a Game or Makro outlet near you, our equipment is perfect for seniors at life but beginners at fitness. See you on your journey, mature Trojan fans!