Moving into the New Year, many of us set resolutions and goals of what we would like to accomplish for ourselves over the next 365 days. Many people begin with health related goals, such as weight loss and fitness. The trouble with that is, if you are new to exercise, we often do not know where to start. As it turns out, we are frequently not challenging ourselves enough - particularly as we get older. So, what should we be doing? Fortunately, some wonderful guidelines were just published in the Journal of Health And Aging entitled “International Exercise Recommendations in Older Adults: Expert Consensus Guidelines.” This blog will summarize the key points of this article to help you create your health and fitness goals for the new year.
Unfortunately, many adults assume that going about their normal daily activities is enough exercise. While it is wonderful to not be sedentary, things such as cleaning, grocery shopping, and a casual stroll around the block are typically not sufficient enough to challenge our bodies. Following proper exercise guidelines has many benefits for the aging adult including reducing risk of falls, improving balance, reducing depression, improving cardiovascular health, improving bone and muscle density, and increasing cognitive function. As the world’s population of adults over the age of 65 is expected to double in the next 30 years, finding proactive ways to reduce the negative effects of aging is so important. Exercising at the right intensity is the answer! Here are some tips:
It is a great idea to discuss your fitness plans with a physical therapist or personal trainer before you begin. Most people to do not think of coming to a physical therapist for prevention of injuries or disabilities, but they are skilled at assessing your current ability level and can help you design a safe, effective and comprehensive fitness program for yourself. This can help you prevent injuries and are working on exercises specific to your needs and goals.
We look forward to working with you at the Balance + Concussion Center!
Izquierdo, M., Merchant, R.A., Morley, J.E. et al. International Exercise Recommendations in Older Adults (ICFSR): Expert Consensus Guidelines. J Nutr Health Aging 25, 824–853 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12603-021-1665-8