This Research Followed 1600 People Who Walked 30 Minutes a Day and Were Surprised To See The Benefits of Walking In Older Adults

Benefits of walking

Exercise now for independence later - as if you needed another reason to get out and exercise. See the benefits of walking as you age.

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Have you thought about how you would like to live out your older years? I’m certain you would like to remain as independent as possible, avoiding the need for skilled nursing care. You can start paving the way toward this goal by kicking that exercise program into high gear.

Did you know that nearly one in four adults aged 65 and older has trouble walking or climbing stairs? Also, there are more than 3 million older adults who have difficulty with things we may take for granted, such as dressing or bathing. The answer to preventing – or at least delaying – disability is to exercise regularly.

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Researchers followed more than 1600 adults between the ages of 70 and 89 who were at high risk for becoming physically disabled. Part of the group became involved in an exercise program where they walked daily for 30 minutes and participated in balance training and muscle strengthening exercises. Compared to those who received education on through workshops on healthy living (but no real formal activity program), those who exercised experienced a lower level of severe mobility problems.

Staying physically active benefits older adults in many different ways. Of course, physically, muscles and bones are stronger. Cardiovascular fitness is better, including improving blood pressure. Regular exercise is also crucial for managing stress and improving mood!

There are many good programs to assist older adults with increasing their exercise. Check out your local senior center or YMCA for specialized “silver” programs.

Journal Reference:
Todd M. Manini, Thomas M. Gill et al. Effect of Physical Activity on Self-Reported Disability in Older Adults: Results from the LIFE Study. Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, 2017; DOI: 10.1111/jgs.14742
Additional Resource: National Institutes of Health: Senior Health

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