With the skyrocketing costs of health care, Americans are not only turning to a healthier diet, but are also recognizing senior fitness as a way to battle the debilitating illnesses that come with age. More specifically, participation in both aerobic and resistance training is now a key component for senior well-being.
Research has shown that significant muscle loss occurs during the aging process—unless you work to counter it. In a study by Nutrition Action, within two months of resistance training, subjects between the ages of 50 and 85 increased their strength by 40 percent and reversed two decades of typical muscle loss.
As a senior myself, I participate in aerobic and anaerobic exercise through resistance training and road biking. I know that the debilitations of age can be positively affected through a healthy lifestyle that includes exercise. As a consequence, three years ago I started my own senior fitness training business, Fitness Senior Style, LLC. My clients range from relatively healthy seniors to those who exhibit various health challenges, including Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease, multiple sclerosis, strokes and dementia. I visit my clients in their homes and bring specialized equipment to exercise them for strength, balance and cognitive fitness.
After considerable research, the specialized equipment that my company utilizes is the Resistance Chair by VQ ActionCare, an at-home seated fitness and rehabilitation system. The Resistance Chair is specifically designed for mature adults to increase mobility, strengthen muscles, improve balance and achieve all-around better health. Traveling to and from client homes was made less intensive by the versatility and portability of the Resistance Chair.
I meet with more than 20 clients each week, all with specific senior fitness needs to address. Although my clients range in their level of fitness, the average workout is one hour and is dedicated to Resistance Chair training, focusing on two main areas of improvement: balance and strength. The Resistance Chair works well with clients living with health challenges, as well as seniors who simply wish to get back into shape. Clients adapt easily to the Resistance Chair during training and enjoy using it, as they see and feel the effects it has on their fitness and bodies.
Today, senior fitness and health awareness is on the rise, and there are a significant number of seniors who wish to regain their health, stay independent, reduce dependence on medication and maintain an overall healthy lifestyle. I encourage seniors to join me on the quest to gain back a healthy lifestyle and spread the message that it's not too late for anyone to get fit again.
Seniors can initiate a healthy lifestyle right this very minute, in the comfort of their own home. Here are a few tips to begin in-home resistance training for all types of seniors:
Resistance Training For Seniors Exercise 1:
Facing the back of a sturdy chair with both hands lightly holding onto the chair back, rise up on your toes as if reaching for a top shelf in your kitchen. Then lower until your heel touches the floor. Perform this exercise for a set of 10 repetitions, rest, and then perform another set of 10.
Resistance Training For Seniors Exercise 2:
Standing sideways to the chair, place your closest hand lightly on the chair back. Slowly raise one foot by bending the knee until your foot is two inches off the floor. Hold to a count of 5 to 10. Lower your leg and duplicate the movement with your other foot. Repeat raising and alternating both feet five times each. Rest and then perform once again.
Resistance Training For Seniors Exercise 3:
Standing sideways to the chair, place your closest hand lightly on the chair back. Slowly raise one knee until the thigh is parallel with the floor. Hold to a count of 5 to 10. Lower your leg and duplicate the movement with your other knee. Repeat raising and alternating both knees five times each. Rest and then perform once again.
Richard Portugal is the owner of Fitness Senior Style, fitnessseniorstyle.com/. Richard may be contacted at 201-937-4722 or via email at Richard@fitnessseniorstyle.com. For more information on VQ ActionCare's Resistance Chair, visit www.vqactioncare.com