Whatever our age, exercise is a vital part of our lives. The benefits of regular exercise are countless, especially for the elderly. It can control our loved one’s weight, reduce the impact of illness, enhance balance, mobility and circulation, improve sleep and mood and, perhaps most importantly, boost mental health and fight diseases like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. 

However, as we all know, it’s one thing knowing exercise is a good idea, but another putting good intentions into practise. For the elderly, who can be physically and mentally inhibited, it’s often harder to start exercising, but even more important. 

Firstly, obtain consent from your loved one’s doctor for them to exercise. Once you have sign off, the trick to encouraging regular exercise is to start small. Encouraging your loved one to live an active life can begin with something as simple as a walk in the garden or to the shops once a day. From there, you can encourage more regular exercise, incorporating it into their routine. 

Whether it’s gentle walking in the first instance, progressing to fast walking, dancing, swimming or cycling, once exercise is part of an everyday routine, it will become a habit that is hard to break. The best way to stick to a habit is to make it enjoyable, so be sure to try and inject elements of fun into this routine, too. 

Even though your loved one might be suffering from a debilitating illness, such as dementia, they can still exercise. In fact, they should still exercise, as a healthy body can help slow the onset of mental diseases. Simple exercises that your loved one can do in the home are best. These can include walking up and down stairs or in the garden, or, even easier, a range of seated exercises that involve repeated uses of the arms and legs. Outside the home, regular walking is the simplest exercise to encourage but swimming and dancing can also be tried. 

We are here to help your loved one live the fullest life, so do get in touch with the Birdie Care Team via chat, phone or email for further guidance about exercise. 

Making exercise part of your loved one’s day can be rewarding. Start small and, hopefully, within a short space of time, the benefits they feel will be all the encouragement they need. 

With love and care,

Tracey

Did this answer your question?