It is difficult, when you are no longer young and agile, to find a workout routine that not only works for you as a senior but also affords you comfortability. As a senior, if you prefer to stay at home, what is the best exercise equipment that can afford you a healthy lifestyle?
The best exercise equipment for seniors to stay in shape at home includes a dumbbell set, exercise balls, resistance bands, yoga mats, balance boards, agility ladders, wrist weights, treadmills, ellipticals, rowing machines, recumbent bikes, and even a home gym.
No matter what your age is, it is difficult to navigate the fitness world and the slew of different workout products that come along with it. As seniors, there is typically a goal of remaining healthy but also being able to be comfortable in your environment. For many seniors, the most comfortable area to work out is within their own home, which is completely reasonable. Therefore, what exercise equipment is the best for those seniors wanting to stay home?
Why Exercise as a Senior is so Important
It is well-known, no matter what your age, that exercise (to some degree) is essential to the overall well-being of any person. If you are someone who is 65 or older, you are considered a senior. Although this term may be unappealing to some, it is certainly not a mark of age, but an indication of wisdom and experience. Even more, being a senior enables individuals the opportunity to realize what helps to improve their everyday life and what simply does not.
For many seniors 65 and older, these are the golden years in which they are able to relish in the work they have done and the life they have built. This does not mean a stagnant existence, but incurs a life that promotes an accelerated well-being which, many times, includes exercise. Exercise is so important for seniors because it aids in immune and digestive functions, helps to regulate blood pressure, and can improve bone density.
Beyond the physical improvements that exercise can bring for seniors, it is also an activity that can improve their mental health. Through regular exercise, endorphins like dopamine and serotonin are released which help to improve your state of mind and aid in helping you achieve a state of contentment and happiness. There are so many benefits to exercise, but what are the best equipment pieces to stay fit at home with?
Best Equipment For Seniors to Stay Fit at Home With
When it comes to exercise equipment, there are so many options available that the variety can be nearly overwhelming. For many seniors and even for others seeking a healthier lifestyle, there is an increase in wanting to exercise from home. Home is comfortable, home is extremely accessible, and home offers seniors the ability to work out without having to leave their living room. If you are a senior and are wanting to either begin your fitness journey or simply want to stay fit, take a look below to find the best equipment for your home.
The dumbbell set is where we are going to begin because it is a basic that does not take up much room, but affords seniors the ability to gain muscle, tone, and increase their heart rate without having to invest in expensive equipment. Dumbbell sets are great for a variety of different exercises that span from walking, managing pain, losing weight, and building overall endurance. They are easy to store, but are also very effective when it comes to fitness.
Exercise Balls are a bit more intrusive when it comes to the amount of room they take up, but they are no less effective than dumbbells. Exercise balls are great for seniors because they do not require high-intensity workouts, but allow individuals to build their core strength, work wonders in building overall stability, and are wonderful for stretching. All of these areas require a low-intensity workout with very noticeable results if used regularly.
Resistance bands are many times seen as a form of physical therapy and are disregarded when it comes to their usefulness in overall fitness, but they can be a great resource for seniors who want to stay fit at home. Resistance bands can be used for just about anything from strength building, to balance control, to flexibility, to even aiding in cardio. They are extremely versatile and even better, they take up only a small corner or drawer when stored.
You may not consider a yoga mat to be a piece of equipment, but when it comes to yoga, this piece is essential. A yoga mat is a great addition to your at-home workout because it will help to stabilize you and keep you from slipping during any yoga routine. Yoga is wonderful to help release all of those good endorphins while simultaneously building strength and working towards a better overall stability for seniors.
If you are a senior who solely would like to focus on your balance, there is a special piece of equipment that has been designed just for that. Balance boards have been created to help aid in the agility of individuals through a device that is placed on the floor and practiced on from day to day. Be sure to avoid those balance boards that are used more for sports and look for those that are intended for actual rehabilitative balance strategies like this
An agility ladder is typically something one thinks of when considering the different training techniques of a football team. However, an agility ladder can be great for seniors because they take up very little space, but are great for helping to strengthen joints, ligaments, and tendons while also helping to aid in stepping accuracy. Even more than this, they are wonderful tools for brain health as they require focus and concentration.
Wrist weights are a great thing to have at home for seniors who have a difficult time gripping objects for an extended period of time. These weights either strap or wrap around your wrists or ankles and can be used for light weight training, can be strapped onto wrists or ankles during a walk or run to help increase stamina and add a level of difficulty to the exercise, and can even be used for swimming if you have a pool at home.
If you are someone who loves to walk or simply needs a more active type of exercise, consider adding a treadmill to the workout space in your home. These are certainly much larger than the previously mentioned items, but it is one that can benefit seniors greatly. Increase or decrease the pace at which you run or walk on the treadmill to build stamina and increase heart rate all from the comfort of your own home.
A bit different from the treadmill is the elliptical. An elliptical is designed in a way that moves one leg up and the other goes down, rather than walking in a straight line as a treadmill does. The elliptical is great for those who do not have knee problems as it is a wonderful piece of equipment for stamina building and weight loss. Resistance can also be increased as you begin to improve your own fitness which can increase muscle gain.
A rowing machine is a piece of equipment that is a tad more uncommon than others that are typically brought into a home, but they are great for those that suffer from joint pain. Rowing machines put minimal strain on joints, but are also able to work various muscles, give great cardio workouts, and can even help to stretch and loosen muscles that have been wound tight with age, and let’s face it, lots of use!
For those of you that love to bike but need a bit more support when it comes to your back, there is the recumbent bike. A recumbent bike is designed with a backrest that allows users to bike as they please, but rest in a sitting position when they need a bit of a break from their cardio session. This bike is a great tool for cardio, stamina building, and fat loss or muscle gain (especially within legs) but also allows some flexibility for seniors.
If you are looking for something that is a bit more intense but does not require you to dedicate an entire room to its function, consider purchasing a home gym system. These systems typically include different weight plates for various exercises, a bench, oftentimes dumbbells, a barbell, and different pulleys to help facilitate different exercises and weight training positions for upper body, core, and lower body.