We all want to age gracefully and be able to maintain our mobility as we get older. Unfortunately, this isn’t always the case. As you age, you may find that your mobility is not what it used to be. You might have a harder time getting up from a chair, walking upstairs, or chasing after your grandkids.
According to statistics, 1 in 4 adults aged 60 and over fall each year. This number increases to 1 in 3 for adults aged 65 and over. But falling and becoming injured doesn’t have to be a part of the ageing process. There are things you can do to help maintain or improve your mobility and reduce your risk of falling. Here are some tips to keep your body moving and stave off age-related stiffness!
1. Stay Active
Regular physical activity is crucial for maintaining your health as you age. It’s recommended that you do moderate-intensity aerobic activity for at least 30 minutes most days of the week. This could include something like brisk walking, mowing the lawn, or swimming. And don’t forget to add strength training to your routine, too. Regular exercise can help increase muscle strength and flexibility, reduce stiffness, and improve your balance.
2. Practice Balance Exercises
Balance exercises are important for everyone, but they’re especially important as we age. That’s because as we age, we’re at an increased risk for falls. Falls can lead to serious injuries, such as fractures, and they can also limit our mobility.
So to help prevent falls, it’s important to do balance exercises regularly. Tai chi and yoga are two examples of exercises that can help improve your balance by strengthening your core muscles and improving your flexibility.
In addition to tai chi and yoga, there are other balance exercises you can do. These include simple exercises like standing on one leg or walking heel to toe. There are also balance boards and discs that you can use to challenge your balance.
3. Stay Flexible
Staying flexible is important for maintaining mobility as you age. Flexibility exercises help to keep your muscles and joints healthy, and can also improve your range of motion to prevent injuries.
To stay flexible, try to do some stretching and flexibility exercises every day. You can do these exercises anywhere, and they don’t require any special equipment. There are a number of stretches you can do that target different muscle groups. For a full-body stretch, try doing a forward bend, a back bend, and a side bend.
You can also try some specific exercises for the neck, shoulders, and hips. For the neck, try doing neck rotations and side-to-side head nods. For the shoulders, try doing arm circles and shoulder shrugs. And for the hips, try doing hip circles and leg swings.
4. Take Steps to Prevent Falls
According to Healthdirect Australia, falls are the leading cause of unintentional injuries for seniors in Australia, making them a major health concern. But falls are preventable. In addition to balance exercises, there are several things you can do to help prevent falls, such as making your home safer by removing tripping hazards, using assistive devices such as canes or walkers.
Getting regular medical checkups can help identify and treat health conditions that could lead to mobility issues. For example, your doctor can check your blood pressure and test your vision to help prevent falls. Taking these steps can help you stay safe and maintain your mobility.
5. Protect Your Joints and Muscles
If you want to keep those joints in working order, it’s important to use proper form and technique when performing activities that put stress on your joints. For example, when lifting, keep your back straight and use your legs to lift.
This is important because incorrect form when lifting, for example, can lead to injuries. If you keep your back straight and use your legs to lift, you protect your spine and joints from strain. It’s also important to take breaks during extended periods of activity to rest your muscles and joints.
6. Consider Occupational Therapy
My Care Solution offers in-home occupational therapy services across Adelaide and Victor Harbor. There are many benefits of occupational therapy. Working closely with you and your family or support network, we can suggest changes to your home or daily living arrangements as well as mobility aids that will make it easier for you to move around and carry out your tasks in a safe and secure manner.
Following these tips can help you maintain or improve your mobility, no matter your age. However, if you’re struggling with mobility and daily activities, it may be time to consider in-home care. My Care Solution can provide you with the assistance you need to maintain your independence and live an active, healthy life. To find out more about our services, or to book a consultation, contact us today.