By Sheila Robison, MiCAFE at Elder Law of Michigan
We have all heard and read though ways to stay healthy. We all know the benefits of daily exercise and the reason behind it. We know exercising regularly is the right thing to do for optimal health purposes. It’s not just our doctor who tells us this. Being active is ideal and will give us maximum energy and a longer, healthy life.
Older adults are no exception to this rule. In fact, it may be even more important than ever to be active in our later years. Many older adults can identify with the need to exercise but may have issues with balance and may develop dizzy spells which could lead to falls. This, in turn, needs to be addressed and limitations made to stay active as well as safe.
Here are some ways to stay active without distress:
- Yoga – there are many forms of yoga! A low impact yoga is great for stretching and gentle to those achy muscles and joints!
- Get a pet – you will always have a partner on walks and may even walk further than you would alone!
- Swim – join a local YMCA or a senior center or community center and get in that pool! Any movement is beneficial, and the water will be kind to any participation.
- Do a good deed – join a group in your community to helps others. If you drive, you might consider helping to deliver food for organizations such as Meals on Wheels or lend a helping hand at your local food pantry or clothes closet.
- Senior center activities – even social activities and board games can be fun and rewarding. This stimulates mental health.
- Crafts – learn how to crochet or knit! If there’s not a local group available, start one! There are many opportunities for creating beautiful crafts and donating them to those who may be sick or grieving. Birdhouses make a special gift at any time of year.
- Make a friend – get out there and lend a hand to someone who may be right next door. Bake some bread for a neighbor or make a simple dish for a young couple who works full time. Home-cooked meals are hard to come by and are often very appreciated. Who would frown at a basket of cookies?
Pretend for a moment that you are writing this. You can come up with more ideas! Make a list and hang it up! Call a friend and start a group to decide where to start and what to work on. Isolation is the first form of inactivity. Your physical health and mental well-being are the perks to everyday activity. So, grab your mask and/or face shield, and go be active today!
Sheila Robison is an Economic Security Team Member for MiCAFE as well as an MMAP counselor at Elder Law of Michigan and has been a member of the Elder Law of Michigan team since June 2010. As an Economic Security Team Member, Sheila assists Michigan seniors with benefit applications and serves as an advocate for the health and safety of seniors.