Winter can be a tough time to stay moving as a senior, but it is so important that you do everything you can to stay as fit as possible.
Elderly obesity is prevalent in the UK with 75% of those aged 65 being overweight or obese. If you don’t move enough you will also find your heart health suffers, your muscles become weaker, your flexibility becomes worse and you may find yourself less mobile. A lack of exercise may also make you more prone to falls, which can be fatal in later life.
The good news is, there is a lot of exercise that you can do in later life that isn’t going to put you at any additional risk because of the weather. If you are fortunate enough to use home care services then your carer can help with the right precautions and planning so you can stay active in winter and keep yourself not only surviving the winter months, but thriving, ready for spring.
Here are 6 ways to keep fit in winter as a senior:
- Do The Same Thing, But Somewhere Different
If you like swimming in the summer, but the swimming baths you attend are too cold, find a location with a smaller pool and higher heating. If you love walking but your usual route gets muddy and exposed in the winter, seek out a route that is more protected and has more of a concrete path, or even better, walk indoors in a shopping centre or garden centre.
- Exercise At Home
There are plenty of free videos on Youtube you can use to exercise without even leaving the home! Just remember to move the furniture out of the way first.
- Get Used To Preparing For The Cold
When it is cold outside, it can be tempting to avoid the outdoors altogether. However, if you get used to dressing appropriately, you will find you enjoy the outdoors still without much of a difference. You will have to experiment with hand warmers, thermal clothes, hats and other warm clothing, but the reward is getting outdoors and enjoying being outside.
Community projects and shelters still run in winter. From helping in a homeless kitchen, to walking dogs that need a home, there is plenty for you to do to help your community whilst also being active.
- Be Safe
If you fall on black ice you may lose your confidence and avoid going out. Remember that there are ways to be extra safe and avoid slips and falls in winter. More rugged shoes will help, and also sticking to routes you know are gritted or where there is grass to walk on. If you are struggling with mobility, speak to your GP about getting a care assessment as there are likely to be aids that will help you get around.
- Start Something New
Winter is just as good a time as any to start a new hobby. There will be exercise clubs and groups you can attend to suit your ability and age, and you might even make some new friends there too!
Do You Need Help Staying Active?
A report from the Live-in Care Hub showed that elderly people are a third less likely to fall, and a quarter less likely to suffer hip fractures in live-in care compared to residential care. This is just one of the ways live-in care can help your loved one to remain active. A carer in your home can also help you stay mobile, suggest mobility aids, get you to medical appointments, help you to exercise classes and accompany you on walks and swimming. It is something to look into if you do want to stay active but know you need help. Live-in care has a focus on independence and a live-in carer is trained to help you stay active all year round. Take a look at The Live In Care Hub today for more information.