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The Importance of Exercise for the Over 65’s

We all know that exercise is important. Just like maintaining a healthy diet, exercise can boost your mood, reduce the risk of chronic disease and help prevent health conditions such as heart disease, diabetes and some cancers.

But, the older we get, the harder it is to get up and go and so continues the vicious cycle where exercise gives us motivation and motivation leads to exercise, but sometimes you just don’t get one without the other.

You might find this unsurprising, but did you know it’s actually more important to stay active the older you get? Many adults aged 65+ spend an average of ten hours or more each day sitting or lying down, making them the most sedentary age group.

Not only does inactivity increase your risk of falls, obesity, heart disease and early death, compared with the general population, but it also means that all the things you’ve always enjoyed or taken for granted may start to become that little bit harder.

If you’re looking to improve your fitness and overall health, the amount of physical activity you need to do isn’t as unachievable as you might think because it’s defined as anything that gets your body moving, from walking to recreational sport.

In addition to reducing your sedentary time, you are advised to do at least two-and-a-half hours of moderate-intensity aerobic activity every week.

Try to do something every day, preferably in bouts of ten minutes of activity or more. The more you do, the greater the health gains.

Examples of moderate-intensity aerobic activities include:

• walking fast
• swimming or water aerobics
• riding a bike on level ground
• playing doubles tennis or badminton
• pushing a lawn mower or Hoover

What you can realistically manage is down to you, but it’s a good idea to do activities that you enjoy. At the Elms retirement village there are some great activities you can get involved with locally, here are few we have found. If you have any others you would like to share please don’t hesitate to get in touch:

Torksey Action Group – run many local activity groups including Torksey Ramblers, Croquet Club, Tea Dancing and Torksey Gardeners. 
Lincoln Golf Club located in Torksey Village.
– John Viney an Elms Resident runs local Tai Chi classes.
– Local village halls run other fitness classes such as bowls, pilates and line dancing.
– We are lucky to have two great local leisure centres including West Lindsey Leisure Centre in Gainsborough, and David Lloyd at Burton Waters. For those that suffer with long term health conditions and find it more difficult to increase activity levels there is an exercise referral scheme running at West Lindsey Leisure centre.
Walking for Health also run local walks in the area.

The good news is that people who move from a sedentary to moderately active lifestyle will feel the most benefit in their lives. So why not grab a like minded friend and get moving?

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