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Walking: The Ultimate Exercise for Seniors

 

Staying fit and active is crucial to maintaining health and wellness for seniors. Regularly walking can provide a multitude of health benefits that are important for the aging body and mind. Falls are a dangerous issue for seniors, and regular walking can be a big help in minimizing the risk of falling. In case of a fall that occurs while out and about on a walk, or in the home, a senior medical alert can make all the difference by ensuring that help is on the way.

Benefits of Walking for Seniors

Walking is the perfect form of exercise for seniors. Ideally, 2 hours and 30 minutes of brisk walking each week are the minimum recommended for maintaining senior health and fitness. Some of the main benefits of walking for seniors include:

  • Improving Muscle Mass and Strength. As we age, particularly if we don’t stay active, our muscles are prone to deterioration. Reduced muscle mass is associated with a higher risk of falling and other injuries. Walking just 10-15 minutes per day can help strengthen leg and abdominal muscles, reducing the risk of falling.
  • Slowing Bone Mass Deterioration. Another unfortunate health issue associated with aging is the loss of bone mass. Many seniors have osteoporosis, placing them at a higher risk for broken hips and other broken bones. A healthy diet and regular walking can help slow the process of losing bone mass.
  • Improved Sleep. Many seniors struggle to fall or stay asleep, but the physical exertion of regular walking can help sleep more easily when it’s time to turn in. Exercising immediately before bed is not recommended, as this can make it harder to fall asleep, but walking during the day can mean a longer, more restful sleep.
  • Mental Sharpness. Memory impairment and other issues of cognitive functioning are common in seniors. Regular exercise, including walking, is effective in warding off cognitive decline.

Another great way to incorporate walking into your schedule is to share your walk with a friend. That way, your brains will also be getting all the positive benefits of socialization along with the physical benefits. You’re also much more likely to follow through with a commitment to walk if you know your friend is expecting you! Walking with a friend is also beneficial from a safety standpoint, just in case there’s an emergency.

Staying Safe with a Senior Medical Alert

Unfortunately, falls and health issues are a common part of the aging experience for many seniors. A fall may not create fear in a younger person, but for a senior, a fall can be debilitating. Investing in a senior medical alert device that is wearable as a bracelet or pendant can give you peace of mind and help you to feel safe as you walk around the neighborhood. In case of an emergency, you simply press the button on the senior medical alert to connect with an operator or emergency services, ensuring that help is never far away. Read our reviews of different alert systems to choose the one that is right for you.

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