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What type of exercise can I do to stay healthy as I age?

Philip Lisagor, MD
Thoracic Surgery (Cardiothoracic Vascular)
Inactive older adults become weak in four areas that are important for staying healthy and independent: endurance, strength, balance and flexibility. Research suggests that you can maintain or at least partially restore these four areas through exercise and physical activity and that doing so improves fitness. You can build endurance by doing aerobic activities, like brisk walking or swimming, that increase your breathing and heart rate. Strength exercises, like lifting weights and using resistance bands, can increase muscle strength. Lower-body strength exercises also will improve your balance. Balance exercises like tai chi can improve your ability to control and maintain your body's position. Good balance is important to help prevent falls and avoid the disability that may result from falling. Stretching can help your body stay flexible and limber, which gives you more freedom of movement for your regular physical activity as well as for your everyday activities.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.