We cannot stress enough how essential physical activity is to our overall health. Fortunately, there are a variety of sports available to us. And the good news is that it's never too late to start! Are you over 60 and want to exercise? You will certainly find the ideal type of activity according to your level and your possible limitations. Above all, don't forget this golden rule: enjoy yourself! That is the key to consistency, and therefore to success, whatever your goals may be.


Everyday health, regardless your age

Physical activity doesn't have to be complicated or require bulky, expensive equipment. It can be as simple as doing 3 hours of housework, walking to the grocery store, going for a walk around the mall, or walking the dog. Do not hesitate to exercise indoors as well as outdoors. Even your apartment or house can be suitable. A few weights, a yoga mat, and that's it. Playing your favorite music and dancing with your partner, friends, or even alone is also a way to get active. And it's good for your mood!


Assess your health

Before undertaking any sporting activity, it is wise to conduct a health assessment. You can, of course, consult your family doctor or any general practitioner. Also, consider physiotherapists and kinesiologists. They are movement specialists, and their advice is invaluable!

The doctor will ask you about your lifestyle and medical history. He will check for shortness of breath and will order blood tests and an electrocardiogram at rest

Set your goals

Setting goals will make it easier for you to choose your activity. Ask yourself what benefits are most important to you. That will also help you to persevere in your efforts. What do you want to improve? :

  • Flexibility?
  • Endurance?
  • Force?

Remember, getting in shape doesn't have to mean torture! If you don't like working out, you can, for example, practice getting up from your chair several times a day by tensing your abdominal muscles. Do one set to start, and then increase the number of times you do it over the next few days. You'll be pleasantly surprised by your progress. Yes, it is a physical exercise you can do while watching your favorite TV show. Have you ever participated in the Sélection Retraite Défis Bougeotte? These easy and fun exercises are sure to win you over!


Choose your activity

You've had your health check-up and goals set, now all you must do is choose your activity. The assessment carried out by your health professional will help you choose what suits you best.

First, think about the pleasure you will feel while practicing it. If you are happy to practice your favorite sport, you will have no difficulty being consistent. Once your goal is set, this consistency will keep you going for the long term.

Then, don't rush into a new sport (or even a sport you may have practiced several years before). Take it slow. Why not get help from a professional trainer? Even for just a session or two, he will give you the advice you need to avoid injury and eventually give up.


The benefits of exercising

Maintaining an active lifestyle, especially as we age, is crucial. Indeed, after the age of 50, individuals tend to experience a decrease in bone mass that ranges from 0.5% to 1% per year. Women are more affected after menopause, with their bone mass decreasing by 3% per year for 5 years. 

To keep a strong body even as we get older, we need to strengthen our muscles.

Strong muscles prevent falls and fractures which can have serious consequences. Whether you choose an activity that focuses more on cardio, strength or stretching, you will benefit from it! And if you combine these three types of training, it's even better.

 


Ideal sports for seniors

Here are some examples of ideal sports activities for seniors: 

  • Yoga
  • Swimming
  • Biking
  • Hiking
  • Brisk walking
  • Social dancing

Endurance activities such as hiking, brisk walking, or biking can strengthen your heart and prevent cardiovascular diseases like diabetes or cholesterol.

Swimming also gently strengthens muscles. You can practice this activity at different intensities. By swimming, you improve your breath and loosen all the muscles of your body. Another advantage is that it preserves the joints.

Yoga and dance improve flexibility and balance. Of course, there are many different types of yoga and just as many dance styles. As you practice, you will find that your heart rate adapts, and your endurance increases with each session.

No matter how active you are on a daily basis, you can always get back in shape, regardless of your age. You don't like sports? Include a few simple movements and habits in your daily routine, and you'll quickly notice the changes. Choose an activity tailored to your needs and that you enjoy for long-term benefits. Don't forget the notion of pleasure. It is essential!

 

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