Easy (& Effective!) At-Home Exercises for Seniors

April 15, 2022 | Senior Health
Front view of active senior African American man training arms with dumbbells in the backyard of home (1)

Finding ways to stay physically active is an integral part of maintaining physical and mental health. A regular fitness routine can help you stay healthy, strengthen joints and muscles, and lower your risk of developing certain health conditions.

At Astral at Auburn, we encourage our residents to make physical activity part of everyday life by offering various on-site amenities and programs. Whether you take a daily walk, engage in water aerobics, or participate in light strength training exercises, there is something for every fitness level and ability. 

Today, we are looking at easy at-home exercises that seniors can do to maintain a healthy lifestyle. By following these simple steps, you can incorporate more exercise into your daily routine, improving your mood, physical fitness and overall health.

It is recommended that you speak with your doctor before starting any new exercise regimen.

Cardiovascular Exercises: Good for the Heart

Cardiovascular exercises play a vital role in heart health, but that is not all. Because a healthy heart impacts the rest of your body, these simple exercises are instrumental in providing necessary oxygen and blood to your organs and muscles. They also help improve your mood and cognitive health.

Walking: One of the best heart-healthy exercises is also one of the simplest. According to Harvard Health, walking each day for 30 minutes can have a dramatic impact on your health, including the following benefits:

  • Help manage weight 
  • Curb cravings for sugar and processed food
  • Improve immune system function
  • Relieve joint pain
  • Reduce the risk of some cancers

If you are just getting back into the routine of exercising, try walking for 15-minute intervals twice a day – once in the morning and once after dinner. Simple enough, right?

Cycling: Like walking, cycling can have positive health benefits for your heart and other areas of the body. It is also a great exercise to do without putting extra stress on your joints. Whether you are riding around your neighborhood or enjoying a cycle session on your stationary bike at home, riding for 30 minutes each day burns calories, strengthens muscles, improves heart and lung function, and releases endorphins into the body – which elevate your mood.

Strength Exercises: Healthy Bones and Muscles

Strength exercises are valuable for older adults because they promote stronger muscles and tendons, healthier bones and joints, and reduce your risk for falls and serious injuries. Seniors can complete these simple at-home exercises with a few pieces of equipment that can be found around the house.

Sit and Stand: This exercise promotes balance as well as core strength. First, find a sturdy, straight-backed chair. Sit in the chair and place your feet firmly on the floor. When you are ready, stand up straight, keeping your back and shoulders aligned to promote good posture.

Do this exercise ten times, take a brief break, then repeat. As you become stronger, you can add additional sets to the exercise, completing it 2-3 times in each session. Remember to focus on form when you complete any exercise on this list.

Glute Bridge: This exercise will work out your core and back, preventing soreness and injuries. To do it, lie flat on the ground (or on a bed), bend your legs, and place your feet firmly on the floor. Then, lift your hips toward the ceiling, stopping when your back and glutes form a straight line. Next, slowly lower yourself to the ground and start again. Complete this exercise ten times.

Flexibility & Balance Exercises: Reduce Fall Risks

As we get older, one of the more challenging aspects of physical fitness is maintaining proper flexibility and balance. Fortunately, there are at-home exercises that seniors can do to help build these crucial areas.

Leg Extensions: You can complete this by sitting in a chair with proper posture and your feet planted firmly on the ground. One at a time, extend your leg straight out in front of you, forming a straight line (or as close as possible) from your hip to your foot. Hold the extension for a slow count of five, then release. Switch sides and repeat ten times on each side.

One Leg Stands: Completing one-leg stands increases your balance and reduces your risk for falls and injuries. While gently holding onto a wall or chair for balance, alternately stand on one foot for a slow count of five, then switch to the other foot. Continue this ten times.

Health and Fitness for Seniors

At Astral at Auburn, we want our residents to thrive in their retirement years – and we are here to help them do exactly that. By completing these easy fitness routines, you can improve your own physical health and fitness while ensuring that you can enjoy daily activities for many years to come.

We invite you to visit our website to learn more about our senior living community in Auburn, Indiana, and everything we have to offer!

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