Numerous studies suggest active older adults are less likely to develop issues with serious conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, and some forms of dementia. Thankfully, there are many activities seniors can benefit from in a way that’s comfortable, convenient, and enjoyable. Here’s a rundown of some of the best activities for seniors if you’re in need of some suggestions for your older loved one.
Group Exercise/Activity Classes
Group activities allow seniors to get physical stimulation in a way that’s social and beneficial health-wise. For instance, senior-friendly yoga, tai chi, or Pilates classes can increase mobility and balance in a way that could reduce fall risks and minimize symptoms related to arthritis. Other group-based activities of this nature for seniors include:
• Low-impact workout/senior fitness classes
• Water aerobics programs for older adults
• Chair exercise classes for seniors with existing mobility issues
• Senior spinning (indoor cycling) classes
If your loved one needs help with physical activity, consider hiring an in-home caregiver. Harrisburg home care experts are available to provide high-quality care to seniors on an as-needed basis. From assistance with mobility and exercise to providing transportation to the doctor’s office and social events, there are a variety of ways professional caregivers can help your aging loved one continue to live independently.
Walking is an activity seniors can enjoy in many different ways, including daily strolls around the neighborhood, a walk through a local park with a family pet, or regular trips to a local mall for indoor walking. Walking is a type of aerobic exercise that’s low-impact yet still stimulating enough to help with mobility and joint and muscle strength.
With gardening, seniors can literally see the fruits of their labors while also getting the opportunity to work with their hands and engage in light exercise. And if veggies or spices are planted, your loved one can use what he or she grows to prepare healthy meals.
If your loved one is an avid reader, encourage him or her to stick with this activity since regular reading is a great way to boost brain stimulation. Reading can also be a group activity if seniors opt to join a book club or read out loud with grandchildren.
Life Story Exercises
Some of the best activities for seniors are ones that allow them to stay sharp mentally by sharing their own life stories. There are many ways your loved one can be encouraged to share his or her unique experiences, some of which include:
• Making scrapbooks or collages
• Creating photo or memory books
• Telling stories based on his or her life experiences
Sculpting, traditional painting, finger-painting, and drawing or sketching are just some of the many art-related activities that can be good for seniors. Physically, such activities help with fine motor skills and dexterity. Mentally, art projects stimulate multiple parts of the brain in a way that’s good for cognitive functioning.
Engaging in mentally stimulating activities can stave off dementia and alleviate some of the symptoms for seniors who are living with the disease. If your senior loved one needs professional dementia care, Harrisburg caregivers are available around the clock to provide the high-quality care he or she needs. Using the revolutionary Cognitive Therapeutics Method, dementia caregivers can help your loved one stay mentally engaged and delay the progression of the disease.
There’s research suggesting music-based activities can contribute to reduced stress, increased productivity, and even enhancements in recall and other memory-related functions. Options with music-related activities for seniors include:
• Learning to play an instrument
• Participating in singalongs
• Going to regular music therapy sessions
If caring for a pet is too demanding for your loved one, consider pet therapy, which is a fun, stress-relieving activity that can be done in group and in outdoor or indoor settings with pets such as dogs, cats, or cuddly bunnies. Interacting with pets may also help seniors lower their risk of depression and enhance their social skills.
Some older adults may need help engaging in fun activities as well as basic daily tasks. There are many reasons seniors might need assistance at home. Some may require regular mental stimulation due to an Alzheimer’s diagnosis, while others might only need part-time assistance with exercise and basic household tasks. Home Care Assistance is a leading senior care provider. Families rely on our expertly trained caregivers to help their senior loved ones maintain a high quality of life. To learn more about our premier in-home care, call us today at (717) 540-4663.