Start low and slow
There is no need to rush into exercising. In fact, doing too much too quickly can do more harm than good. This is especially true for beginners or first-timers. Exercising may make you sweat or feel hot, but lightheadedness and coughing are signs to take a break. It is always better to start off using your body weight or light dumbbells before using heavier weights. Speed or the number of repetitions is less important than proper form and activating the right muscle groups.
Have a partner
Another one of the exercise safety tips for seniors is to exercise with another person. The first benefit is that you will have someone to watch your form and encourage you along the way. Secondly, having a watcher or buddy is helpful in case you fall or get injured. Unfortunately, injuries related to falls are some of the most common reasons for emergency room visits in elderly populations.
Wear proper attire
Wearing the right clothes is essential for staying cool and comfortable during exercise. Opt for breathable fabric made of cotton or synthetic fibers that wick away sweat. Stretchable fabric is ideal to maintain your range of motion.
In addition, the right footwear is important to consider. The type of exercise you do will influence what shoes to wear. In general, choose a rubber shoe that is made for cross-training. Ensure that the heel is sturdy and the sole supports your arches well. Pair your shoes with supportive socks and properly-fitted laces.
Don’t forget to stretch
Last but not least is stretching. Stretching and a light warm-up should be done before any exercise. After a workout, cool-down and stretch again. Stretching improves flexibility, recovery, and prevents injury before and after exercise.
If you do activities such as yoga or tai chi, stretching is already integrated as part of the workout. Focus on lengthening your body and limbs while stretching and breathing deeply. Avoid bouncing or overstretching and aim to hold each pose for a total of 60 seconds for best results.
In summary, your age shouldn’t limit your physical activity. Follow these exercise safety tips for seniors to improve your health and avoid injury. Finally, talk to your doctor before making any significant changes to your diet or exercise routine.