Physical activity is an important aspect to living a long, healthy and happy life.
For seniors, physical activity can be difficult due to the high-impact on their joints and cardiovascular health. Seniors who participate in physical activity that is too hard on their bodies are more likely to experience injuries due to their activities. Swimming is a form of low-impact and safe exercise for seniors that allows them to get physical and stay healthy!
During water-based exercises, the body may feel lighter in weight and joints may feel temporary relief. While submerged in water, seniors are more likely to be able to exercise without pain and discomfort in their joints and bones. This is due to the buoyancy that water provides, giving seniors the chance to move more with less limitations. This makes swimming a much safer form of physical activity when compared to more intense forms of land-based exercises such as yoga, walking or weight training.
Since seniors can feel less pain and discomfort while they are in the water, they are able to work out a little bit harder and a little bit longer. Although ultimately the level of intensity and the duration of workouts will be decided by their medical professionals, the senior may feel up to the challenge of pushing themselves a little bit more. When done in a safe manner and with proper form, upping the intensity of workouts can result in an increase in muscle strength, flexibility and bone health.
Swimming is a safe way to build up their muscle strength and improve flexibility after an injury, especially when related to a fall.
Besides increasing muscle strength and improving flexibility, water-based exercises can also bring several health benefits to a senior’s life. Health benefits of water-based exercises includes but is not limited to:
It is imperative that seniors are always supervised while they are participating in water-based activities. Before participating in water-based activities, elderly adults should consult with their doctor. Water-based exercises will vary in several ways based on the elderly individual’s needs, capabilities and care plan. Different types of water-based exercises include:
Before seniors participate in any sort of water-based activities, we encourage extensive research into which activity is right for their body. When done properly and with the right form, water-based activities have plenty of health and mental benefits for seniors.
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