Exercising Safely and Securely

Summer has finally arrived in **most** of Canada. In British Columbia, the cherry trees are in bloom, as is the witch hazel. The longer days and warming temperatures have residents dreaming about the soon-to-be-heard chirping of the spring peepers. Yes, it is time to dig out your walking shoes.

These tips will make your summer walks safer.

Don’t be Bashful

If you need a cane or walker, USE IT! If you use a cane or walker, examine the grips on its tips: replacing worn grips is an easy way to make falling less likely. Also, if you have never consulted a physiotherapist on how to make the best use of your walking aid, it is well worth doing so: She can help you adjust your device so that it fits you properly.

Safe Surfaces

Find a flat walking path that offers a smooth walking surface and is free of obstacles like gnarled tree roots. You are much more likely to trip, and perhaps fall, while walking on a challenging path. 85% of seniors above the age of 65, who are injured and then admitted to a hospital, have fallen

Good Shoes

To walk safely, you do need nonskid soles on your sensible walking shoes. Examine your current walking shoes; if the soles are worn, replace them.

safe fitness for seniors

Drink Water

As the sun shines and the temperatures rise, we tend to sweat more as we walk. Experts suggest that we drink water before and after walking, and as needed during our walk. Keeping hydrated can chase away dizziness, fatigue and headaches.

Block the Sun

Hats protect us from the sun – most of us remember our mothers cautioning us not to forget our hats as we were dashing out the front door into the sunlight – though they can also make our heads feel too hot.

Apply sunscreen about 30 minutes before you begin your walk, and bring some along with you, in case you need to reapply it, due to sweating, for example.

Get Walking Consistently

Medical experts suggest that we try to walk for 30 minutes 5 times a week, but they also say that we will experience health benefits from walking less often than this – outstanding benefits like improved heart health, a reduction in stress, improved balance, stronger leg and arm muscles and more.

Here’s to walking safely and consistently this summer!

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