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Senior Fitness
Written By : Denis Ashauer 
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Many times we hear the term "aging in place" for older adults. So, just where are you "aging in place"? Is it on the sofa, in your easy chair in front of the TV, or have you chosen the healthy alternatives such as walking, cycling or strength training?

Most people 65 years old and older have witnessed the fitness revolution but many cannot identify with it. Many older adults feel that it's too late for them to benefit from "all that fitness stuff". WRONG!! This age group can benefit the most from exercise and fitness because they have the time to devote, and the much to gain from a fitness program.

A fitness program designed for active older adults can improve how long they may live, improve their quality of life, and allow them to maintain their independence. The benefits of ones physical fitness can go unnoticed. One may maintain certain activities without a noticeable decline such as getting in and out of a car, reaching overhead in cupboards for kitchen utensils, or being able to lift themselves off the toilet without any assistance.

Plus it is a proven fact that exercise makes one feel better and enjoy life more, improves symptoms of certain underlying diseases and disabilities, improves mood, reduces depression, and can delay certain diseases such as heart disease, diabetes, and cancer if done on a regular, permanent basis.

The major obstacle to overcome is more mental than physical. We need to set aside the perception that a fitness program requires tight fitting spandex and working out to "sweating with the oldies"! It is this perception that has frightened many people away from getting involved in a fitness program. A properly designed fitness program for older adults includes these elements: strength training, aerobic conditioning, physical fitness and balance training.

A structured fitness program should last at least 30 minutes or longer and be designed to accommodate various levels of fitness. The facility should allow a certain amount of privacy to accommodate those who feel uneasy about the way they look or move and provide a knowledgeable instructor who understands that the participants are conscious of their looks and abilities and will try to make them comfortable when trying new things.

If reading this article has left you out of breath and your heart pounding, I recommend that you seriously consider starting a regular exercise program, but consult you doctor prior to undertaking any strenuous activity.

"Age is a case of mind over matter...if you don't mind, it don't matter!"......Unknown

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