In the 21st Century, we are seeing that people are living far longer, and many older people are now living well into their 80s and 90s. As I have reached my early 50’s, I decided I would take a YMCA qualification in “Exercise for Older Adults”. I wanted to learn the effects of ageing on the human body and how exercise can help maintain a healthy body, physically, internally and mentally.
Unfortunately, as the body ages both the physical and internal body become weaker, and often the speed of the mind can become slower. It is so important to continue with some form of regular gentle exercise which will help both strengthen the physical and internal body and even help sharpen the mind.
A human body peaks around the age of 30 for both men and woman and then slowly year by year gradually declines, muscles become weaker, and bone density reduces. In much later years this natural decline may course health issues such as lung and heart issues, brittle bones and weaker muscles to name but a few.
Having weaker muscles and low bone density in old age can be the cause of far more falls, which can lead to breaking bones, operations, hospital stays and eventually lack of confidence in leaving the house. People aged 65 and older have the highest risk of falling, with 30% of people older than 65 and 50% of people older than 80 falling at least once a year. The cost of older peoples falls is estimated to cost the NHS more than £2.3 billion per year. Just by adding some gentle exercise for 30 minutes, 2-3 times per week, your health will improve. Whether it’s non-assisted or with a chair, from gentle aerobic exercises, pilates or yoga, it will help invigorate the body. Start to release happy natural endorphins and aid in maintaining muscle strength and bone density while stimulating the mind, and it may even help with confidence.