It is never too early or too late to begin a fitness regime. I liked Martina Navratilova’s philosophy as the Health and Fitness Ambassador for AARP and author of ” 10 Simple Steps To Get Fit” on how to begin a fitness routine. She emphasized a few of the key ingredients for senior fitness: Start slow, choose something you like and something you are fairly good at.
Makes sense – why exercise at something you don’t like? I’m not a fan of the treadmill, so for me it is best avoided due to boredom. Starting slow is always wise advice. Noone wants to be a wounded weekend or weekday warrior by starting an exercise regime too quickly or strenuously. As always, consider any pre existing conditions prior to starting a senior fitness regime and consider if a doctors’ clearance or advice is necessary prior to beginning or developing an exercise program.
Walking One Of The Best Exercises
Walking remains one the best forms of exercise that contributes to good mental and physical health. Martina reminds all prospective exercisers that walking is one of the easiest exercises to start the program and gradually increase the length and intensity of the senior fitness workout.
Walking is also easy to split into segments throughout the day so that while a 30-45 minute walk may sound intimidating, three 10 minute walks may seem much more achievable.
And as Martina reminds us – lack of time is not a valid excuse.
Yoga Pilates And Chair Yoga For Senior Fitness
Low impact exercises are a favorite for all age groups. Yoga and pilates promote overall wellness, core strength and flexibility. Depending upon your physical condition, lower impact chair yoga could be a great alternative to traditional yoga and pilates. In chair yoga exercises are performed from the sitting position but still provides exercise without utilizing the mat and floor.
Senior Centers Offer Senior Fitness Classes
An excellent resource for senior specific exercises is the local senior center. Communities which are fortunate to have a senior center offer exercise programs which address the desires and needs of the senior population. The National Council On Aging (NCOA) estimates over 11,400 senior centers exist in the United States which assist one million seniors per day.