Aging & Exercise Benefits
Benefits of Exercise & Aging
Written by: Femi Doyle-Marshall
Aging and exercise has a powerful connection. To look at both by itself has profound impacts on our body and health. When we focus our view on enhancing long-term health understanding both aging and exercise shows a link that can fly under the radar.
We can enhance health through exercise and aging.
Is the process of becoming older. Involves a series of physical, emotional and psychological changes that impact an individual. Changes in the rate of reaction, decreases in processing ability and changes in health status are routinely linked to the process. Every living organism experiences the aging process.
Based on this information exercise can be a useful tool to improve health throughout the aging process.
How do we classify exercise?
To classify exercise we have to know the types of exercise available. With each option physical strength can be improved, along with enhanced mobility and overall heart health. Knowing what classifies as exercise is important to determine which movements are more beneficial to the body especially looking at aging and exercise.
The Differences Between Exercise & Physical Activity
Not all activity can be classified as exercise. Many may exercises fit into activity mind you. Knowing the difference between the two can help with selecting the right types for your aging goals.
How do we classify exercise?
Now exercise has been defined as any bodily activity that enhances or maintains physical fitness and overall health and wellness. Movements that are focused on improving strength, flexibility, cardiovascular health or general performance can be classified as exercise.
- Needs to be fitness based or aimed.
- Has to improve either strength, flexibility, heart health or all areas combined.
- Can change with time and overall objective.
What role does exercise play in aging?
When we talk about aging and exercise we can use a preventative approach. The body can get value from targeting workouts that improve health and strength.
Fall Prevention Training
The prevention of falls is useful with age. As strength decreases with time and limited activity a targeted exercise program building workouts around the lower body and balance can prevent falls.
Aging With Independence
Having the ability to perform daily tasks and routines all relate back to having a strong body. Physical and mental health are important to assist with the process of aging. Utilizing a targeted program that meets lifestyle behaviours can help achieve these goals.
Enhancing Cognitive Performance
Exercise has the ability to activate receptors in the brain and prevent shrinkage. With aging the decrease in neural activity can produce greater cognitive issues which compounds the value of targeted exercise routines.
Recommendations for the aging population
To assist with the aging process a number of strategies can be implemented.
Utilize a targeted upper/lower body strength routine 3 days/wk this may end up being squatting, pulling movements and pushing movement patterns to strengthen both areas of the body.
Improve spinal/lumbar rotational health and shoulder girdle ROM 2-3 days/wk this may end up being light twist stretching for the back along with massage techniques to reduce tightness.
Targeted cardiovascular training 3-5 days/wk may be walking, swimming or anything that can elevate the heart to a moderate level to produce added benefits.
And that’s it for today. Be sure to contact us if you have any questions. We are here to help make what you need happen! Feel free to reach out if you have any concerns at all.