Senior Exercises & Fitness Tips: Stay Healthy and Active as You Get Older

Staying active is crucial as you age, which is why it's important to find an exercise routine that suits your needs and abilities.

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Senior Exercises & Fitness Tips: Stay Healthy and Active as You Get Older

As you get older, there are more and more reasons to slow down and become sedentary. Perhaps it's due to loss of stamina, pain problems, weight gain, health problems, fear of falling, or simply thinking it's too late and there is no point. Whatever the reason, some level of exercise can and should be incorporated into your day. That is why it’s important to embrace an exercise routine that works for you.

Regular physical activity can positively impact our physical, mental, and emotional health. Here are a few of the benefits you can gain from incorporating exercise into your routine.


Prevents Bone Loss

According to studies, the level of bone loss in a postmenopausal woman increases with age. Weight-bearing or resistance training exercises are often recommended as the primary preventive strategies to reduce the risk of osteoporosis and counteract the loss. This will reduce the risk of injuries and falls. (1)


Strengthens the Immune System and Helps Prevent Chronic Diseases

As we age, our immune systems slow, increasing the risk of illness. Adding exercise to your routine will help detox the lymphatic system and increase your body’s ability to fight off germs. According to the National Council on Aging, 91% of adults aged 65 or older have at least 1 chronic condition. Many studies have found that exercise helps prevent cardiovascular disease, high cholesterol, arthritis, coronary heart disease, colon cancer, diabetes, obesity, and hypertension. (2)


Increased Mobility

According to the Centers for Disease Control, falling is the leading cause of injury-related deaths for adults over the age of 65. (3) According to a 2016 study, mobility loss is usually a result of co-occurring impairments in the central nervous system, muscles, joints, and sensory physiological systems. (4) Mobility is not only important to help maintain independence but also to sustain a fulfilling lifestyle that includes travel, exploring new hobbies, or tackling new projects.


Relieves Pain

Chronic pain can reduce a person’s quality of life and limit their physical abilities. The most common types of pain in older adults include low back pain, joint osteoarthritis, and peripheral neuropathic pain. (5) Many people complain about feeling stiff and sore, but exercise can help take the pressure off aching joints. By strengthening the surrounding muscles, lubrication increases and joint inflammation decreases. (6)


Improves Mood and Reduces Stress

Neurotransmitters, such as dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin are responsible for how we feel. Regular exercise stimulates the production of these brain chemicals, improving mood and overall well-being. No matter your age, anxiety has become a serious global public health problem. Some studies have found that long-term adherence to low-intensity aerobic exercise can effectively reduce anxiety levels in older adults. (7)


Decreased Risk of Cognitive Problems

Some studies have shown that exercise reduces the risk of cognitive decline such as memory loss. (8) Extensive literature strongly suggests that aerobic exercise may reduce cognitive impairment and the risk of dementia by increasing hippocampal volumes and spatial memory. (9)


How to Get Started

According to the Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans, adults should do muscle-strengthening activities at least two days a week and at least 150 minutes (2 1/2 hours) a week of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise. (10) Research has shown that it’s important to get all four types of exercise: endurance, strength, balance, and flexibility. Here’s an example of what you can do to incorporate each type of exercise into your week:

Monday Wednesday Friday
Endurance, Strength, Balance:
- Sit to Stand
- Bridges
- Resistance band T rows
- Squat to balance with chair
- Bicep Curls

Endurance, Strength, Balance:
- Reverse lunge with chair
- Side-to-side step
- Tricep kickback
- Seated rows
- Bird Dog

Endurance, Strength, Balance:
- Seated overhead press
- Single leg stand
- Resistance band leg raise
- Plank
- Wall push-ups

- Hip flexor stretch
- Knee extension stretch
- Standing hip circles
- Seated side leans
- Sit and reach stretch
- Seated side twist
- Seated cat pose
- Tricep stretch
- Shoulder Stretch
- Hamstring Stretch
- Neck Stretch
- Hip Abduction

If you would like to add extra equipment to your home gym, Sunny has several options you might want to check out!

If you want to work out with one of our Sunny trainers, check out these videos:


[1] Benedetti, M. G., Furlini, G., Zati, A., & Letizia Mauro, G. (2018). The Effectiveness of Physical Exercise on Bone Density in Osteoporotic Patients. BioMed research international, 2018, 4840531. Accessed 22 April 2023.
[2] Healthy Aging Team. (2021, April 23). The Top 10 Most Common Chronic Conditions in Older Adults. National Council on Aging. Accessed 22 April 2023.
[3] Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2021, August 6). Facts About Falls. National Center for Injury Prevention and Control. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Accessed 22 April 2023.
[4] Ferrucci, L., Cooper, R., Shardell, M., Simonsick, E. M., Schrack, J. A., & Kuh, D. (2016). Age-Related Change in Mobility: Perspectives From Life Course Epidemiology and Geroscience. The journals of gerontology. Series A, Biological sciences and medical sciences, 71(9), 1184–1194. Accessed 22 April 2023.
[5] Mailis-Gagnon A, Nicholson K, Yegneswaran B, Zurowski M. Pain characteristics of adults 65 years of age and older referred to a tertiary care pain clinic. Pain Res Manag. 2008;13(5): 389-394. Accessed 24 April 2023.
[6] National Council of Aging. (2021, August 30). The Life-Changing Benefits of Exercise After 60. National Council of Aging. Accessed 24 April 2023.
[7] Petruzzello S., Landers D. M., Hatfield B. D., Kubitz K. A., Salazar W. A meta-analysis on the anxiety-reducing effects of acute and chronic exercise. Sport Medicine . 1991;11(3):143–182. doi: 10.2165/00007256-199111030-00002. Accessed 24 April 2023.
[8] LaMotte, M. (2022, January 10). Exercise may protect your brain even if you have signs of dementia, study finds. CNN Health. Accessed 26 April 2023
[9] Ahlskog, J. E., Geda, Y. E., Graff-Radford, N. R., & Petersen, R. C. (2011). Physical exercise as a preventive or disease-modifying treatment of dementia and brain aging. Mayo Clinic proceedings, 86(9), 876–884. Accessed 26 April 2023
[10] Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2022, June 2). How much physical activity do adults need? Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.,Physical%20Activity%20Guidelines%20for%20Americans. Accessed 26 April 2023


Senior Exercises & Fitness Tips Infographic

Senior Exercises & Fitness Tips Infographic


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