Recommended Exercise Equipment for Seniors
Whether you are young or old, doing some form of physical activity or targeted exercise is recommended for your overall health and wellbeing. You may think any physical activity will improve your health, but what about exercising? Let’s discuss the difference between physical activity and exercise.
According to the World Health Organization (https://www.who.int/dietphysicalactivity/pa/en/), physical activity is defined as any movement which uses your body’s muscles and burns calories. Many of your daily tasks would meet this description, such as vacuuming, gardening, or doing the laundry. However, does that qualify as an exercise?
In contrast to physical activity, exercise is defined as a planned, structured, and repetitive motion that conditions the body (http://www.healthofchildren.com/E-F/Exercise.html).
This means that exercise is like a subcategory of physical activity, taking your ordinary physical activity to the next level. Also, take note that exercise has the distinction of having a focus on becoming fitter and healthier.
Exercise for the Elderly
For years doctors have encouraged and even prescribed exercise to their elderly patients. Why is that the case? There are several health benefits elderly people can gain from doing daily exercises. This includes improvements in their blood pressure, reduced risk of diabetes, and better mental acuity. These are just some examples of the many health benefits elderly people can gain through regular exercise. It might be helpful to talk to your doctor about how exercise fits within your current health goals.
Exercise Links to Life Expectancy
According to the American Family Physician (https://www.aafp.org/afp/2002/0201/p419.html), regular physical activity is also associated with increased life expectancy and a decrease in age-related illnesses in elderly people
Exercise Equipment for Seniors
While there are many types of exercise equipment available today, there are certain types that are more suited for elderly people’s needs. They are also easily delivered to your home and can be used anytime. Let’s see how this equipment can help you to achieve or maintain your healthy and fit body in your old age.
I) Arm and Leg Exercise Peddler Machine
Made of stainless steel, this exercise bike can help you increase the strength of your arms and legs while you watch TV. The design allows you to work out your thighs, hamstrings, calf muscles, and glute muscles. It can also help you gently move those stiff joints you’ve been complaining about for so long!
As each person has their own particular needs and preferences, this machine has a nice feature that allows you to adjust the tension. Also, take note that the handrails and pedals have non-slip surfaces, great for added stability.
Worried about storing this equipment in your home? You will be relieved to learn that this machine folds away for easy and convenient storage.
Another feature included is a handy counter that shows the total count of repetitions done per session. This can help you keep track of your personal improvements as you build up your strength.
Just under each pedal, you will notice foot massage rollers, one on each side. It’s great for tired feet that need a massage. Where else can you see an exerciser with added foot massage function?
Now, you can enjoy watching TV while exercising at the same time. No more excuses for not doing a daily workout!
II) MagneTrainer ER
Just like the previous exercise machine, this one is also for arms and legs, it’s portable and is easy to assemble. Although, in this design, the machine uses magnetic resistance on its pedal exercisers.
The steel base makes it stable on a carpet, but there is also a non-slip pad that you can use over your smooth floor. There is also a monitor that shows the duration of exercise, speed, calories burned, and calculated virtual distance.
There are adjustable Velcro straps on the pedals to always keep your feet in place. The pedals work on both hands and feet. This flexibility allows you to use the equipment on top of a table for arm exercises.
A friend of mine with arthritis in his knees found this machine to be quiet, and the settings easy to adjust. In his case, he used the lowest setting for his specific needs.
Also, after a few weeks of use, he said it helped to reduce his knee pain. It has kept him active every single day. We can safely say he is a very satisfied MagneTrainer customer!
If the MagneTrainer is slightly above your budget, there is also a cheaper alternative that has almost the same features, minus the automatic counter. Take a look at 66fit Variable Resistance Pedal Exerciser (https://www.amazon.co.uk/66fit-Folding-Pedal-Exerciser-Physiotherapy/dp/B0087D7OTC/).
The 66fit Variable Resistance Pedal Exerciser also provides the same strengthening workouts to your arms and legs. In terms of weight, it is much lighter than the MagneTrainer. Also, it is foldable, which makes it more convenient for storage.
III) StepIt Lower Extremity Exerciser
This easy-to-use single-function equipment strengthens ankle and leg muscles. It is small, lightweight, and convenient to carry from one place to another.
Using the StepIt Lower Extremity Exerciser will strengthen your calf muscles, and that means more power when stepping forward on level surfaces or when walking uphill.
It only comes with a single foot pedal. So if you want to exercise both feet at the same time, you must purchase an extra one.
Even if you only do just a few reps, you should consider any movement an achievement.
Although this exercise machine is more straightforward compared to others, don’t underestimate how helpful it can be to boosting your mental and physical health.
Tips for Exercising Seniors
It’s great to make positive changes towards your health goals when you are elderly. I hope you’ve found my recommendations helpful. Keep in mind not to push yourself too hard and build up slowly during each session. If you need to rest in between each repetition.
It’s better to begin slowly and make yourself comfortable using the equipment first. This could take a day or a week, depending on your capacity to perform the exercises.
Try to gradually advance if you decide to change the resistance of your equipment. This is to avoid causing strain to your muscles or to further injury to any previously-operated areas (e.g., knee).
If you are having difficulty, consider getting a personal trainer or consulting a physical therapist. They could help you make a reasonable and achievable plan for your daily workout.