What are the benefits of exercise for older adults?

Exercise can benefit older adults in many ways. The primary and most obvious way is that it will help them maintain cardiovascular fitness. Good muscle tone is important for feeling healthy and being able to take care of daily activities of living. Being used to moving the body around will help balance and reduce the risk of falling. Exercise has been shown to be beneficial for mental status too. Exercise does not have to be very strenuous. Even walking for a half hour every day after dinner will result in excellent health benefits.

Participation in regular physical activity such as cardiorespiratory training or resistance training 3- 5 days per week is most beneficial in slowing the aging process. Participation in regular physical activity will help older adults maintain muscular strength and prevent common chronic diseases, such as diabetes, hypertension, atherosclerosis, COPD, and stroke. The load bearing effects of resistance training has been shown to reduce risk of osteoporosis. In addition, regular physical activity can nourish joint cartilage reducing the symptoms associated with arthritis.

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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.