Types of Exercise that Aren’t Safe for Seniors

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What Exercises Can Be Dangerous for the Elderly in Lincoln, CA

To maintain a healthy lifestyle in the golden years, seniors should make sure to set aside time for regular exercise. However, even a healthy senior can run the risk of strain and injury if he or she participates in physical activities that are inappropriate for an aging body. Encourage your senior loved one to exercise safely while avoiding some of these exercises.

Strenuous Exercises

Exercises that cause the heart to beat very rapidly, such as running or playing sports, can increase the risk of developing blood clots. A study published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society found intense exercise poses a risk of seniors developing venous thrombosis, a condition that causes dangerous blood clots to form. If your loved one has heart problems, walking, swimming, or light aerobics can provide a good workout without overworking the heart.

If you usually help your loved one exercise but need a break now and then, consider having a professional caregiver take over for you. If your senior loved one needs hourly or live-in care, Lincoln Home Care Assistance can help. Our caregivers can assist with exercise and mobility, prepare nutritious meals, provide timely medication reminders, and help with a wide array of other important daily tasks.

Isometric Exercises

Isometric exercises include weightlifting, push-ups, sit-ups, and other resistance exercises. Doing these activities causes muscles to tense but not contract and can make blood pressure rise to dangerous levels. Seniors with high blood pressure should avoid isometric exercises if their blood pressure is uncontrolled. Additionally, many people tend to hold their breath when lifting heavy weights, causing their blood pressure to spike. With their doctors’ approval, lifting light weights while breathing steadily can help seniors regain strength while keeping blood pressure levels steady. 

Many seniors are able to safely enjoy numerous types of exercise, especially when they have the help of trained professional caregivers. At-home care professionals can be a wonderful boon to seniors. Whether they require around-the-clock supervision or just need assistance with exercise and household tasks a few days a week, seniors can enjoy a higher quality of life with the help of trusted in-home caregivers.

Exercises Done while Lying Down

Leg lifts, crunches, and bicycle crunches done while lying flat on the ground can put too much pressure on the spine. Seniors with arthritis or osteoporosis risk pain and injury from doing these types of exercises and may be especially at risk when sitting up and bending forward. This move, also known as flexion, can strain the muscles in the lower back. Standing crunches, side bends, and standing leg lifts provide the same benefits without harming the back. 

Some Yoga Exercises

While light yoga can increase flexibility and strengthen muscles, some yoga classes can be too strenuous. The activities in these classes can result in slipped spinal discs or joint problems. Bikram yoga poses additional risks due to the high levels of heat, which can cause seniors to overheat or get dehydrated. If your loved one wants to try yoga, encourage him or her to join a beginner class specifically for older adults to reduce the risk of physical harm. 

Seniors who need help exercising safely can benefit from the help of trained professional caregivers. Lincoln in-home care experts are available to provide high-quality care to seniors on an as-needed basis. From assistance with mobility and exercise to providing transportation to the doctor’s office and social events, there are a variety of ways professional caregivers can help your aging loved one continue to live independently. Home Care Assistance will work with you to customize a care plan that’s just right for your loved one’s needs. Call one of our friendly Care Managers today at (916) 226-3737 to learn more about our customized care plans.


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