Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Exercises for the Older Adult

Older adults aged 65 and over may need to “take it easy” when working out, depending on their exercise level. Adults of this age that have trained on an intermediate level of at least 30 minutes a day five days a week my not need to be overly careful. As usual, they need to start working out on a beginner level and feel their body to see what it tells them about pain and endurance.

Concerns of the aging include osteoporosis, especially for women; loss of height; loss of lean body mass; decreased cardiovascular strength; decreased respiratory capacity; lower stroke volume and maximal heart rage; high blood pressure; and increased weight. Not everyone has these symptoms of age, or at least has them at the same time Exercise generally prolongs them. Working out make the heart and all muscles stronger, and keeps bones dense. At the same time, genetics and habits such as eating styles affect these “symptoms”. A physician must be consulted if someone has high blood pressure, osteoporosis, or difficulty breathing.

Older adults especially need to see a physician before starting and new exercise program especially if they are beginners. For beginners, people with cardiovascular and respiratory difficulties or physical such as joint injury, can do the following:

Exercise at a lighter intensity
Do the stationary bicycle at a low intensity level
Use a longer warm-up
Use a longer cool-down
Do repetitions slowly
Avoid extreme interval training
Avoid plyometrics

At least five sessions with a personal trainer are useful for older adults with the above concerns. Many gyms offer aerobics classes taught by aerobics instructors with special certifications for older adults.

Disclaimer: None of the information in this blog is meant to take the place of medical advice. Talk to a physician before starting an exercise program or implementing anything in this blog.

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