5 Easy At-Home Exercises for Seniors
Things are just starting to get back to normal after a worldwide pandemic. But even though restaurants are starting to open to full capacity and mask mandates are changing, you might still be a little weary to jump right back into the sort of life you had pre-pandemic. If you aren’t quite ready to walk into a grocery store mask-free or hop on a treadmill next to others, then these five easy at-home workouts will keep you moving and energized for when you’re ready to use that gym membership again.
1. Shoulder raise to bicep curl. Let’s get those arms moving! Sit up straight in a chair or start standing. Grab a pair of medium-weight dumbbells and slowly raise your arms out to the side. Lower your arms and from the starting position immediately go into a bicep curl. That’s one repetition. Repeat for 10 repetitions, three sets. Don’t have a pair of dumbbells? Get creative! Try using two cans of beans or two cartons of milk. Anything you can easily hold that has a bit of weight to it will do the trick.
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2. Chair squats. If you think about it, there are many instances throughout your day when you need to squat down to complete a task—grabbing something off the floor, sitting down on the couch, tying your shoes. Chair squats are a great way to work out your quadricep and glute muscles, as well as your hips. In an upright position, stand up straight and tall. Slowly squat down till you are seated in the chair. Immediately stand up and repeat for 12 repetitions for three sets.
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3. Stretch it out. Stretching has been shown to reduce stress and anxiety. Scatter a couple of these 5-minute stretch breaks throughout your day to take a break from sitting. If you have an outdoor space, practice your stretch session in the sun! Turning on some calming music while you stretch is great way to really feel the relaxing benefits of this exercise. Inhale deep as you slowly raise your arms over your head in a circular motion, exhaling as you slowly lower your arms to the start position. Repeat five times. Next, spread your legs slightly wider than shoulder-width apart. Inhale deep. As you exhale, slowly lead your right hand down the side of your leg till you reach your ankle. Inhale as you come up to the start position. Repeat on your left side for a total of four repetitions.
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4. Standing cardio. No exercise regimen is complete without getting your heartrate up! This high knees cardio exercise is a great place to start. Stand up straight and tall. As if you are about to run lift your right leg so your knee comes above your belly button. Repeat on your left side. Go as fast as you can for 30 seconds. Rest for one minute and repeat for a total of three sets.
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5. Russian twists. Time to strengthen that core…the obliques to be exact! Start by sitting on the floor with your knees bent. Lean back slightly. Take a medium-size dumbbell (or your creative weight!) and twist to your right as if you are trying to grab something behind you. Repeat again on the left side. Repeat for 20 repetitions for three sets.
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Be sure to consult your doctor before beginning any exercise program. Start off slow and without weights to ensure you have the correct form.
A MetroCare of Springfield Caregiver provides encouragement and support when it comes to seniors staying active and exercising. Learn more about our Caregivers in our Group Adult Foster Care and Adult Foster Care programs.