Staying active is one of the best ways to ensure a good quality of life. It helps children develop correctly, keeps adults healthy and reduces the impact of old age in seniors,” advises Christopher W. Grayson, M.D. from Florida Orthopaedic Institute.
His advice for the best low-impact workouts? “Walking is the easiest one to get into but provides a full-body workout. The same goes for swimming, which is considered to be one of the safest solutions for exercising when joint health is in question. Stretching and yoga are great for building flexibility and balance or maintaining them in old age. Alternatively, you might want to take up cycling, dancing or tai chi.” According to Dr. Grayson, the benefits of low impact workouts are substantial.
Better Mental Health “Whichever form of exercise you choose, it’s sure to produce endorphins. Activities in nature will further increase the impact of the “feel good” hormone, ensuring you’ll feel satisfied and happy afterward. Nature walks or hikes, cycling, and yoga can serve you well in reducing bad moods and improve your overall mental health. Exercise has an exceptionally positive impact on insomnia and other sleeping problems.”
Better Physical Health “Regular activity prevents or lowers the risk of many illnesses, and keeps your body strong and healthy. Working out improves our immune system, but low-impact workouts don’t only keep diseases at bay, they also reduce the risk of injury and falling by improving strength, flexibility, balance, and coordination. Even the most basic low-impact exercise like walking can help, as long as it’s done regularly.”
More Social Engagement “One of the best things about exercise is that it doesn’t have to be a solitary activity. Having company usually improves accountability as well, so you’ll be more motivated to keep up with your workout habits. Another right way to stay active while enjoying company, is signing up for dancing or a fitness class. By maintaining social ties, you’ll keep loneliness at bay as well.”
Improved Brain Function “According to multiple studies, physical activity also has a positive influence on our cognitive function. Exercise improves and fine-tunes our motor skills, which in turn keeps our mind sharp. Active seniors are in less of a risk from dementia, regardless of whether they’ve always been active or not. What matters is that you stay physically active.”
This original healthy living article first appeared in the Spring 2019 issue of City Style and Living Magazine.