Find out why it is a really good idea to get active in later life, and how you can start to move more today.
According to a report from Age UK, the amount of elderly people aged over 85 increased by a third over the last ten years, and will double again over the next twenty years. So overall, more people than ever before are living longer.
Unfortunately, that doesn’t necessarily mean those people are living longer and maintaining a good level of health. Within that same age group over a third of those in that age group struggle to complete many daily living tasks without help, and up to 50% of those in that age group are considered frail.
Unfortunately it can be very easy to move into old age and become less active and frail and before you know it, you’re needing help and you’re struggling with more and more day to day tasks. The good news is that it is just as easy to counteract those issues by getting fit, and you can do that at any age. It does, of course, help if you have a live in carer to help out but you can equally manage it yourself – here’s how:
As you get older, you will likely move less than you did at a younger age, even if you do get out and about, and so your calorie needs will change. You will likely need a lower amount of calories so, you have to adjust your diet accordingly. If you don’t, you may find yourself gaining weight and becoming obese. This brings with it lots of extra issues like putting strain on joints and putting you at risk of diseases like heart disease and diabetes. If you are in a position to drop some pounds, do speak to your GP, your home help, to your social worker. It is never too late to shed those pounds and benefit from the results.
Getting active in older age is a really great thing, and it is never too late to start moving more. People who work in live in care jobs are always encouraged to help their clinets get more active. Moving has many benefits including (but not limited to):
- Boosting mood
- Keeping your heart healthy
- Maintaining muscle tone
- Strengthening bones
- Increasing the likelihood of social interaction
- Maintaining balance and coordination
It really is the key to a happier later life because it helps prevents lots of health issues that can make life miserable. For example: by improving balance it helps to prevent falls, but it also strengthens your bones which helps protect against breaks if you do fall. According to the Age UK report, falls are the most serious type of incident that happens to those aged 65 and over, and they are the type of incident that occurs most often. What is worse, is that falls are the top cause of disability and death for people aged over 75. Being active can help you to help you avoid lots of diseases, and injuries like falls that can cause disastrous injuries.
If you need help getting active there are lots of things you can do, and there are lots of people who can help you. If you have a home help or carer they will already have training on helping you move as much as possible and will be happy to help you try new ways of being active, like dance classes or swimming. If you are in a residential home and want to be more active, speak to your caregivers and make suggestions. You could also speak to your family when they visit you at the residential home and ask for help in getting more active.
If you are still independent, look for local groups in your area for walking clubs, age relevant exercise classes and other events that get you out and about. You could even join a gym if you feel able. It is never too late to get fit and there are so many benefits, it is always a good idea. Get moving to improve your later life prospects.