Exercise and Aging

It's never too late to start exercising. Exercise has benefits at any age. Staying active will allow you to continue being independent and the lifestyle you enjoy. The right kind of regular exercise can also reduce your risk of heart disease, diabetes, and falls.

You don't need to spend hours in the gym every day to see benefits. Moving your body just 30 minutes a day is enough to improve your health. An effective exercise program needs to be fun to keep you motivated. It helps to have a goal, such as managing a health condition, reducing stress and improving your stamina.

You may have a hard time starting an exercise routine. Once you do start, though, you will begin to notice the benefits, including improved sleep and self-esteem. Exercise and physical activity can also:

  • Improve or maintain your strength and fitness

  • Make it easier to do the things you want to do

  • Help your balance and walking

  • Help with feelings of depression or anxiety and improve your mood

  • Maintain your thinking skills (cognitive function) as you get older

  • Prevent or treat diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, breast and colon cancer, and osteoporosis

 

Always talk to your primary care care provider before starting an exercise program. Your doctor or nurse can suggest exercises and activities that are right for you. 

 

The following organizations and resources provide access to information about exercising and physical activities you can trust:

Exercise for Seniors: Exercise and physical activity are good for just about everyone, including older adults. If you have not been active, you can start slowly and work up to your goal. How much exercise you need depends on your age and health. Information from the U.S. National Library of Medicine.

Exercise & Physical Activity: Physical activity is an important part of healthy aging. Check out these articles from the National Institute on Aging to learn the latest on how exercise and physical activity can help you stay healthy as you age. Find tips on how to fit exercise into your daily life safely and get motivated to get moving!

Exercise Helps Ease Arthritis Pain and Stiffness: Exercise is crucial for people with arthritis. It increases strength and flexibility, reduces joint pain, and helps combat fatigue. When arthritis threatens to immobilize you, exercise keeps you moving. Not convinced? Read this information from the Mayo Clinic!