Physical therapy can be a vital part in assisting seniors to maintain mobility and independence. Besides strengthening important muscles, it can also reduce pain and the risks of falling. As the body ages, the equilibrium deteriorates and the risks for falling increase. Physical therapy can help to enhance strength, balance, and stability. Physical therapy can also help with Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, and other diseases. Not only does physical therapy help with mobility, but it can make the smallest daily tasks easier to perform. Strength, balance, stretching, and endurance exercises are all important for seniors to be performing; and here’s why:
Strength: Doing strength exercises such as chair dips, arm curls, and calf raises, help boost metabolism and keep the blood sugar in check. These will also help prevent weight gain.
Balancing: Standing on one foot and alternating between legs can help improve balance and stability. These will also help strengthen legs and prevent falls.
Stretching: Stretching exercises help maintain mobility and freedom, allowing for more independence in the senior years. Do arm stretching, neck stretching, and leg stretching to keep the body flexible.
Endurance: Categorized as any exercise that raises the heart rate. This will help improve heart health and longevity. Start small, only 5 minutes, and then increase as ability allows.
Doing all four recommended exercise types will help seniors maintain their independence and health. Be sure to consult with a physical therapist for specific recommendations that will best benefit your needs.