Seniors with arthritis tend to experience stiffness and discomfort. However, inactivity often makes the symptoms worse. Different types of low-impact exercises can increase joint function while enhancing overall balance and strength. Exercises can also be modified to accommodate an individual’s physical ability. Here are five exercises for older adults with arthritis.
1. Aerobic Exercises
Aerobic exercises strengthen the cardiovascular system. As blood circulation increases, cells, tissues, and organs receive more oxygen and nutrients, which enables the body to accomplish various repairs as needed. Brisk walking, cycling, swimming, and dancing are all forms of aerobic exercise. Seniors should strive to get 30 minutes of aerobic activity five times each week. If needed, the exercise can be broken down into two 15-minute sessions and a different type of exercise each session. Seniors should start slow and gradually increase the time and intensity.
Arthritis is just one of the many health issues older adults are susceptible to. There are a variety of age-related health conditions that can make it more challenging for seniors to live independently. However, many of the challenges they face can be easier to manage if their families opt for professional home care. Folsom families can rely on expertly trained caregivers to keep their loved ones safe and comfortable while aging in place.
2. Muscle Strengthening
Strength training activities increase the endurance of all the major muscle groups. Seniors should include these types of exercises in their regimen at least twice each week. When large muscles become stronger, they provide more joint support and reduce joint stress and discomfort. Stronger muscles also prevent potential bone loss from inactivity. Strength training can begin by lifting a limb against the resistance of gravity, then gradually implementing hand and ankle weights or elastic bands. In time, seniors might also be able to use conventional weight machines and free weights.
3. Flexibility Exercises
Performing exercises that increase flexibility enables seniors with arthritis to have greater range of motion. Thus, they are better able to accomplish daily tasks or enjoyable activities with less discomfort. The exercises are designed to gently bend and straighten joints as tolerated. Over time, flexibility increases until seniors have near-normal or normal joint movement. The stretching exercises can also be used as a warm-up before engaging in other types of more strenuous activity.
Seniors with arthritis often need help exercising. Whether your elderly loved one needs part-time assistance with basic household chores or you need a break from your caregiving duties, the Folsom respite care experts at Home Care Assistance are here to help. All of our respite care services are backed with a 100% satisfaction guarantee, there are no hidden fees in our contracts, and we never ask our clients to sign long-term contracts.
4. Balance Exercises
Falls remain a major concern in the elderly population, and weakened bones and loss of balance can contribute to falls and fractures. Performing exercises that increase balance can prevent falls from occurring. Older adults can enhance their balance by walking backward and practicing standing on one foot and then the other. Engaging in tai chi is a wonderful way for seniors to gain strength and balance simultaneously. Once a form of martial arts training, tai chi is now often offered to seniors in community parks and fitness centers. To reduce the symptoms of arthritis, seniors should perform balance exercises up to three times each week.
The different types of yoga practiced today offer a comprehensive workout for seniors. Hatha and Bikram naturally enhance balance. Bikram is traditionally practiced in a warm room, which encourages muscle relaxation for the purpose of stretching. The Iyengar form focuses on muscle strengthening to better support joints. Fast-paced Vinyasa increases balance and flexibility while providing a cardiovascular workout.
Arthritis can impair a senior’s health, wellbeing, and independence. If your elderly loved one is living with a serious medical condition and needs help managing the tasks of daily living, reach out to Home Care Assistance, a Folsom elderly care agency you can trust. Our caregivers are available 24/7, there are no hidden fees in our contracts, and we offer a 100% satisfaction guarantee on all of our in-home care services. To hire a professionally trained caregiver for your aging loved one, give us a call at 916.226.3737 today.