Walking for Seniors Helps In Several Different Ways

Walking for seniors is not only one of the best things you can do for your health, it can also be one of most enjoyable.

You can have all of the equipment in your home exercise room such as a treadmill, an Elliptical, or any other new fad on the market, but there is still nothing like a plain old fashioned stroll.

You can’t take your dog with you on a treadmill, and you can’t walk with your spouse or friends on an Elliptical.

But you can on a walk.

You can also “smell the roses”, see your neighbors, and enjoy the weather and get outside and just enjoy life.

What Walking for Seniors Can Do

However, with walking for seniors you can also have huge impacts on your overall health.

The last thing we should want to do at our age, and really prove the older is getting better, is slow down or just quit on exercise.

There are several real benefits in a brisk or casual stroll and they include some of the following.

  • Help to control our weight
  • Help lower or maintain our blood pressure
  • Help send blood to our hearts and our brains
  • Keep both our bones, muscles, and joints as strong at possible
  • Keep as well as improve our balance
  • Improve our mood and outlook on life

As we all get older, everything is slowing down compared to what it once was in our body.

However, this simple process can help control a lot of this and here are some interesting facts.

A Recent Study

There was a recent study completed by the University of Georgia about this very topic.

The entire purpose of this test was to take 26 people in our age bracket, 60 years or older, and have them walk for (4) four consecutive months.

They selected 26 seniors, 22 women and 4 men, and split them into two groups: one group (A) walked and the other group (B) attended nutritional studies. 24 of the 26 finished the testing. 

The group that walked started at 10 minute intervals, 3 times per week, and then increased it to 40 minutes, 3 times per week for 4 months.

The results were quite amazing and the link for documentation is referenced below and proves the benefits of taking a stroll.

  • The physical functions of group A, the walkers, increased by 25%
  • The physical functions of group B decreased by 8%
  • Aerobic activity in group A increased by 19%
  • In group B it decreased by 9%

Four Friends Jogging TogetherFour Friends Jogging Together

This Is Our Age Group

Wow! Take a minute and think about that.

This is our age group—this is us.

Do we want to set around and do nothing and have our functions keep getting weaker, or do we want to improve them and improve our lifestyle.

Walking for seniors, however, should always center on safety first.

As referenced in Safety for seniors, we are potential targets for attack simply because of our age, and you should always carry mace or a stun gun, and be ready at all times, even in a group.

However, there are also several other things you should do and this includes some of the following

  • Select the right shoes, clothes, and again the right self-protection
  • Choose where you walk carefully—for several reasons
  • Always—this cannot be over emphasized—always warm up first by stretching
  • Cool down properly.

Walking for seniors can and does have a lot of real benefits, but not if it hurts your feet or you get hurt.

Selecting the right shoes, other than stretching, is the most important thing you can do. If you are going to walk early in the morning or late at night, make sure you wear something reflective.

Stretching Is Critical

Select where you go carefully, and if possible, never do it by yourself. If you have a dog, take them and your spouse with you.

If this is not possible, try to find a neighbor or friend that will go with you. You should also always stretch and cool down properly.

Here are the benefits of stretching and cooling down properly.

  • Stretching first will loosen up your muscles and tendons
  • Stretching after you are done helps any tightening from occurring
  • Cool down at the end by slowing down the last 5-10 minutes of your stroll
  • Cooling down also includes hydrating with water—at least 2 full glasses

Stretching with walking for seniors is the most important thing you can do for several reasons.

It will prevent potential cramping during or after, and it helps to loosen up our ligaments and tendons.

If you are a dog owner, watch them as nature and this technique takes over—they do it every time.

When they first get up, they stretch their front legs, then their back legs, and then they walk.

This is nature’s way of telling us how important this is. 

Walking is one the best preventative steps at our age we can take in keeping our body as healthy as possible.

While we are moving, we are sending blood to all parts of our body, and are also helping our breathing and metabolism. At our age, they all need a little help.

A Few More Things We Can Do

But there are still a few more things you can do and they include the following.

  • Set targets and goals
  • Make it fun and enjoyable; not a chore
  • Mix it up and explore different places
  • If you miss a day or so, take it in stride

Walking for seniors can be a lot more rewarding if you set some goals.

When you first begin, start at 10-15 minutes. After the first week, extend that to 30-45 minutes until you get a real comfort level.

Make it fun and take some pictures. Share them on Face Book or if you are good, sell them on the internet. Original pictures are in high demand.

Or just “smell the roses” and explore some nature on the numerous walking trails found in most every city in the United States.

Once you set a pattern and goals, if something comes up,  “chill out”. Do not become over anxious. At our age, we have learned that stuff happens and tomorrow is a new day.

Walking for seniors can and will become one of the best ways to improve our health as we all begin to age.

References

http://www.webmd.com/healthy-aging/news/20080718/walking-helps-seniors-take-aging-in-stride#1

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