Aging is no reason to stop exercising. If anything, it is more a reason to stay on top of your physical fitness. It keeps the body and mind functioning to the best of its ability for aging parents and their caregivers alike. However, some elements of strength and mobility decrease as we grow older, so it’s important to choose the appropriate exercise equipment to avoid any serious injuries.
Read on for our list of adaptive tools, equipment, and clothing for senior fitness.
Footwear is one of the most important tools for exercise. Don’t overlook this when it comes to seniors — the proper shoes can prevent falls. Especially with people suffering from edema or swollen feet, their caregivers often purchase a shoe size or two bigger. This is incredibly dangerous! Adaptive sneakers with adjustable straps accommodate fluctuating foot widths while adding traction to avoid falls.
Resistance bands come in many different “levels” of resistance and they’re quite the dynamic and affordable exercise accessory. Aging persons can use them in many different ways to add light resistance safely to any stretch. They are also very portable. Great for seniors that go to any sort pf physical therapy, it is something they can use with their therapist but also bring home and use at home.
Treadmills and Exercise Bikes
Walking outside in older age can be hard due to changing weather or the inability to cope with faster paced traffic. A treadmill or exercise bike at the gym or in your home are a great solution for staying on top of cardio without the difficult environmental factors. Walking for at least 20 minutes a day vastly improves and maintains overall health. Plus, treadmills have handrails for extra support.
Hand grippers or hand exercisers are a compact and easy tool to use to improve the strength of the hand and arm. Available in many varieties – including bands, balls and other resistance mechanisms – you can pick and choose the right one for you. These can also be paired with a daily walk, being able to do both at once will vastly cut down on the amount of time a senior will have to work out for.
A question most people forget to ask themselves is what are they or their loved one going to be wearing when they are exercising. The first solution is generally, the bigger the better. However this can be dangerous when using workout equipment. Even though over sized clothing with be comfortable and easy to put on and take off, the extra fabric can be dangerous around limbs when using equipment as well as mobility purposes. Sweatsuits or lounge wear with adaptive elements like open back closures or zip-up legs means you don’t have to go up in size when buying for your parents. It can also be easier for them to get dressed, if dressing is half the challenge of having to change one more time for every day, adaptive clothing will allow them to get in and out of clothing with ease.
Remember to stay safe!
Exercise (or exercise with) caution! Before starting a new workout it’s extremely critical to consult your physician or a proper trainer first.