Monday September 23, 2019
Exercise and physical activity are good for just about everyone, but especially for older adults.
Did you know? Workouts can be designed to achieve these beneficial results:
- Endurance exercises increase breathing and heart rate
- Strength exercises increase muscle strength
- Balance exercises help prevent falls and increase stability
- Flexibility exercises stretch muscles and help the body stay mobile
If you have not been active in some time, start slowly and work up. Always: Check with your doctor before beginning any new exercise or workout plan.
Exercises you can do at home
Upper body strength is essential as one ages. Being able to catch oneself from a fall (or before a fall) can prevent broken bones and sprains.
How to perform the exercise
Stand approximately 2 feet away from the wall. Place hands against the wall at shoulder height and shoulder-width apart. Bend your elbows diagonally to your sides and slowly lower your chest to the wall allowing your heels to come off of the floor (breath out). Pause (or pulse 3 times), then slowly press through your hands to straighten your elbows returning to starting position (breathe in).
Lying Hip Bridges
The glutes (buttock muscles) are the body's largest muscle group and also affect hip function. The hips can get tight when sitting for hours sitting throughout the day.
How to perform the exercise
Lie flat on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor. Use a mat and grab on the sides of the mat if needed. Flatten the lower back against the floor. Squeeze your glutes and push your hips up into the air (breathe in). Pause (pulse 3 times), then slowly lower to start (breathe out).
Squats can strengthen the entire lower body (and your core) helping you climb stairs, and pick up things up off the floor, and get up from sitting with less effort.
How to perform the exercise
Stand with your feet hip-width apart directly in front of a chair. Keeping your chest upright, push your hips back and bend your knees to lower your body toward the chair. At the bottom of the squat, your upper body should be leaning forward only slightly as your glutes touch the seat of the chair (breathe out). Pause (or pulse 3 times), then push through your heels and squeeze your bum returning to the starting position (breathe in).
Important: If an exercise doesn’t feel right, adjust the body position. Still experiencing issues? Cease the exercise immediately and speak with your doctor.
Whether it’s the breaststroke, or participating in an aerobics class, getting in the pool is a great way to increase cardiovascular health while putting minimal stress on muscles and joints.
Did you know? A 2012 study published in the Journal of Aging Research suggests that swimming can help older adults improve cognitive abilities.
Similar to yoga, pilates is famous for being a low-impact activity focusing on core strength and stability making beneficial for older adults. One 2014 analysis published in the European Review of Aging and Physical Activity concluded that pilates can improve balance and stability in older adults.
Did you know? Most gyms offer free pilates classes designed for first-timers with a paid membership. Check it out!
Even if one can’t find or doesn’t have the time to workout at the local gym, you likely have time to go for a quick walk. Walking is a great, free workout that can have a big impact on your health. Doctors recommend an average of 10,000 steps a day.
Did you know? Research published in PLOS One found that people who increased their activity levels to 10,000 steps per day were 46 % less likely to die in the following 10 years compared to those who were sedentary.
How to increase your steps: Easy ways to increase step count is including parking farther from the supermarket front door, playing with grandkids, or an extended dog walk.
A low-impact form of exercise, cycling is ideal for individuals who desire increased leg strength, but can’t engage in high-impact sports.
Did you know? A 2017 analysis published in the European Review of Aging and Physical Activity reported that cycling can improve cardiovascular health and cognitive performance in adults over the age of 70.
I don’t have trails near my home: Indoor cycling classes are a great option for those without access to the outdoors or poor weather conditions. Advantages with a stationary bike is one doesn’t have to worry about falls or wearing a helmet.
Melody Troth helped us develop our IcyHeat Noni Lotion. It’s the same formula as our Noni Lavender Lotion, but with menthol crystals and camphor oil added to bring more rapid pain relief. This formula has been a big hit with many folks who suffer from any kind of pain or inflammation.
A few years ago, at the request of Eric Okasaki the current head athletic trainer at the University of Hawaii we added just a little bit more menthol crystals and camphor oil for quickness of response. Our IcyHeat Sports Formula Lotion in the cobalt blue bottle was born with a twist top. Eric found that the additional menthol crystal and camphor oil sped up pain relief and the treatment of muscle tissue by letting the Noni penetrate faster and deeper into the skin and muscle.
IcyHeat Sports Formula helps with:
- Muscle Fatigue
- Pain and Swelling
Steve’s Tip: I personally have the IcyHeat Sports Formula Lotion next to my bed. If I wake up with a cramp at night, I reach out, grab the bottle and apply – in 60 seconds the cramp is gone and I sleep through the rest of the night.
Honolulu Marathon runners carry our Sports Formula Lotion in their fanny packs during the 26.2 mile race. If they hit the brick wall at 20 miles with cramps, they apply our lotion with immediate relief and finish the race with no cramps. Give it a try! I’m sure you’ll be among the thousands who love the Noni Sports Lotion too. (Maybe put an icy heat coupon code here? Only people who see the blog will use it. We can take it off or put it up whenever we want)