As you age, keeping fit becomes increasingly important, and more difficult to maintain. While you don’t need to do a 5mk marathon (but we won’t stop you) you should do daily exercise and low impact stretching to stay limber and active.
Everyone will be at a different level and you should never do any exercises outside of your ability or comfort zone. If you need some support do not feel ashamed to ask a friend, family, or a companion from Care At Home Services for help with your exercises.
Static stretches consist of stretching with the goal of loosening a muscle through holding a position for 30 – 60 seconds with minimal effort. There is an emphasis on relaxing the body part and letting it push itself further and stretch on it’s own.
Dynamic stretches consist of stretching with the goal of strengthening the muscle with repetitive movement and going further each time. These stretches are generally done before other exercise to prepare the muscle and joint.
Here are 8 ways that you can stay limber and active as you age from Yurielkaim.com:
- Neck side stretch
- Start by sitting tall in a chair. Gently lean your head to one side, then the next, to warm up your neck.
- Now lift your right arm up and over your head, resting your palm gently on the left side.
- Gently pull your head to the right (very gently – in fact just placing your hand there may be enough weight to cause you to feel the stretch).
- Hold for 20 to 30 seconds, then repeat on the other side.
- Shoulder and Upper Back Stretch
- Begin standing tall, arms by your sides. Now, reaching behind you with both hands, pull your shoulders back and clasp your fingers together.
- If you feel a stretch already, hold it here. If you can go further, push your clasped hands away from your lower back and gently arc backward.
- Return to standing tall, and repeat.
- Tricep stretch
- Sitting tall in a chair (or standing), lift your right arm up over head, bending at your elbow.
- Now, reach your opposite arm up to clasp your elbow, and pull gently in the opposite direction. You should feel a light stretch through the back of your arm.
- Hold for 20 to 30 seconds, then switch arms.
- Back Stretch
- Start by standing tall, with your hands on your hips.
- Gently arc backward, looking up toward the ceiling. Hold for about three seconds, then return to standing.
- Repeat 10 times.
- Standing Quadricep Stretch
- Begin standing tall, holding onto the back of a chair or countertop with your free hand for balance.
- Slowly bend your right knee and grasp your foot. At this point, you might already feel a stretch through the front of your thigh.
- Hold this stretch for 30 seconds, then repeat on the other leg.
- If you’re having trouble reaching your foot with your hand, try using a yoga strap or band, as mentioned above.
- Ankle circles
- Get comfortable in a sturdy chair, sitting up tall.
- Extend your right leg out in front of you, keeping the other on the floor.
- Begin to rotate your right ankle; 10 to 20 rotations clockwise and 10 to 20 counter-clockwise.
- Lower your leg and repeat on your opposite leg.
- Seated Hip Stretch
- Begin sitting tall in a sturdy chair.
- Cross your right leg over your left, letting the right ankle sit atop your left knee.
- Relax your right hip, letting gravity pull it toward the floor. You may already feel a stretch deep in your hip.
- To go further, gently press down on your right leg and the knee for a deeper stretch.
- Hold for 20 to 30 seconds, then switch legs.
- Hamstring & Low Back Stretch
- Come into this stretch by lying face-up on your bed or floor. Bend your right leg and slowly move it toward your chest.
- Keep your shoulders flat on the floor as you reach your arms around your right knee (if you can’t reach that far, try holding your pant leg) and pull it toward you.
- You should feel a slight stretch through your low back, glutes, and hamstring as you hold for 30 seconds.
- Repeat on you opposite leg.
If you have any concerns or would like some help living more comfortably at home or booking an in home visit, please don’t hesitate to give us a call at 1-866-982-2737 and speak with some about setting up an at home care assessment today.