As part of Sport Relief 2018, Welsh rugby legend Gareth ‘Alfie’ Thomas will be skydiving 12,000 feet above the Welsh countryside along with a team of people aged over 60!
Now, if skydiving isn’t your thing but you’d like to up your game on the exercise front, here are a few tips on what you can do, where and how.
As recommended by the NHS, people aged 65 and over are advised to do two types of physical activities per week: aerobic and strength exercises. Adults who are generally fit and have no health conditions should do at least 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity, or 75 minutes vigorous aerobic exercise along with strength exercises on 2 or more days per week that work all the major muscles. So what counts as moderate and vigorous exercise?
- Moderate: Walking, water aerobics, dancing, gardening
- Vigorous: Jogging or running, aerobics, hiking uphill, football
Don’t forget that exercise isn’t just good for physical health, but it can also help improve mental health and aid depression and anxiety. Getting some fresh air and the blood flowing through exercise can boost dopamine levels and release endorphins, which make us feel happier.
So, where can you do some of these activities? The good news is that the majority can be done in the comfort of your own home. But if you want to use specialist equipment or take part in a group session, the list below might give you some ideas.
Men in Sheds is a service run by some local Age UKs to help support older men who want to get together, share and learn new skills. This isn’t exactly a sport; however, some tasks involved such as building and gardening are more vigorous than staying in at home.
Leisure centres across the UK offer low-cost activities and facilities with on-site instructors. Your local council will have full information about services on offer.
The NHS and National Trust have produced a free 31 day outdoor exercise programme. This doesn’t need to be followed rigorously but can give you an idea of what you can get up to in the great outdoors!
Walking for Health can link you up with local walking groups in your area. Whether it’s a long jaunt down a canal path, a short walk in the park, or an adventurous ramble, there are lots of ideas for people of all ages and abilities.
If you’re into dancing, or would like to give it a go, your local Age UK centre can put you touch with local classes. Don’t forget you can always stick on the radio and have a boogie at home!
And for those who you who aren’t up to any of the exercises mentioned, or a little unsteady on their feet, there are other options available, from thai chi, through to armchair excercises, yoga, pilates or even bowls.
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