Staying physically active can boost a senior’s overall health and increase longevity. Many adults are inactive during the senior years, and they become susceptible to obesity, memory issues, poor bone strength, cardiovascular disease, and other serious health conditions. However, you can take the following steps to encourage your senior loved one to exercise more often.
1. Find An Exercise Group
Exercising in a group may encourage your loved one to continue working out, even when he or she feels like quitting. The group mates can share tips and strategies to use with each technique, simplifying the exercises and enhancing their personal relationships. When seniors exercise with other individuals, they often maintain positive thoughts instead of dreading the workout.
2. Provide Rewards
When your loved one completes a fitness goal, reward him or her with a favorite treat, tickets to a local sports game, or gift cards to use at a local store. The thought of receiving gifts and rewards after achieving a goal could motivate your parent to exercise more often. Offering rewards is powerful because the brain latches on to a thought and responds with positive behavior. As a result, the thought of receiving rewards may increase your loved one’s odds of maintaining a consistent exercise routine.
3. Start Out Small
Give your loved one an easy routine to complete instead of going into full workout mode. Simplifying the routine may make goals seem more achievable. An example of starting out small is to exercise for 30 minutes twice a week, eventually doing 30-45 minute routines at least four times per week. You can also motivate your parent to exercise by simplifying the activities based on his or her current abilities.
4. List The Benefits
Helping your loved one visualize the advantages of exercising can be a motivational strategy. Your parent may think about how a morning walk through the neighborhood allows him or her to see friends while breathing in the fresh air and boosting bone strength. Discussing the positive benefits of exercising may motivate your loved one to exercise more, even if he or she only works out 15-30 minutes every other day.
5. Make Exercise A Fun Activity
Exercising promotes good physical health, alleviates boredom, and boosts emotional health. Find fun exercise routines your loved one can do, and make sure to change up the routine as often as possible. Include dancing, swimming, bowling, hiking, and other activities. When seniors have fun during their exercise routines, they may look forward to the workout sessions.