Healthy Living Manual: The How-to Guide for Healthy Aging

Physical Activity

No matter what your age, exercise should be a part of your daily regime. Even patients who have chronic illnesses such as heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes and arthritis, can exercise safely. Physical activity is "crosscutting." This simply means that being physically active is an essential part of healthy aging because it affects almost every aspect of our health and it modifies how the aging process effects our physical function.

The benefits of physical activities are almost limitless. Exercise does not only help keep your body at a healthy weight it can also allow many older adults to live a fuller life. By building strength, endurance, and balance, older adults can maintain their mobility and independence. It also aides in your overall health, is essential for proper healing after medical procedures, and can even help you add years to your life.

The key to exercise in an aging population is to take part in safe activities that provide benefits without damaging the body.
Staying active can:

  • Reduce your risk for diabetes, heart disease, stroke, and cancer
  • Increase your core strength to help you avoid falls and other injuries
  • Improve your chances of living on your own longer
  • Prevent depression
  • Plus, staying active can help keep your body and mind sharp
    • Physical Activity Report from the Surgeon General
    • Global Strategy on Diet, Physical Activity and Health

Resources

Physical Activity

Both male and female older adults can benefit from low impact exercises and/or physical activities. Always ask your physician (medical provider) before you start any physical activity.

Programs For Seniors