I often teach exercise classes at our local Senior Care places, such as Sarah Care. I have found that while many of the Seniors who come to these places are not necessarily in prime physical condition, introducing them to QiGong and Tai Chi makes a difference for them. While not all of them can perform the movements while standing, that’s no reason not to try them at all. It’s perfectly acceptable and still beneficial to these folks to perform most of the movements while seated. Over time some of them even get strong enough to begin standing while we perform certain parts of the exercises.
Too often people only come to me when they are already in pain, and I just feel so bad. If people came to my classes or had massages or called me for training when they weren’t in pain, then chances are good they would experience far less pain over time.
Today I want to chat about the benefits of exercise. Now, when I say the word exercise, most of you are going to have a picture of someone running or walking, sweating and a little red in the face. I am not talking about that today. What I would like to talk about is the fact that exercise, even low intensity exercise, can still be quite beneficial. In fact there is a study that shows while strenuous exercise can be good for us at certain stages of our lives, for people over 80, a more quiet, less strenuous form of exercise can be just as beneficial.
Exercises that don’t feel so much like exercise, like dancing, Tai Chi, stretching and some forms of Yoga, are probably more suited to most men and women over 80. In Medical News today they addressed a recent study about exercise:
“Ying Kuen Cheung, a professor in biostatistics at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health in New York, NY, and colleagues report their findings in the Journal of General Internal Medicine. The team hopes the study will help healthcare providers give better, more specific advice to their older patients on how to stay active and healthy.
According to the American Heart Association, regular exercise has many health benefits for older people.
For example, it can help prevent bone loss and thus reduce the chances of fracture, and it lessens the risk of many aging-related diseases…”
The results of the study showed that high intensity exercise amongst seniors were likely to cause higher instances of heart related deaths. “performing frequent and diverse exercise without high intensity in an elderly population such as ours” was found to be the most effective way of keeping healthy and preventing injury.
I, personally have found that when I take my clients our for regular walks in the park or along the beach, plus some Qigong and Tai Chi, their physical stamina improves pretty quickly, and they just feel better overall. So don’t be afraid to begin an exercise program. But do begin, it will save you when and if you do have an injury or illness.