Ideas for How Seniors can stay active at Nursing homes

More than the body, it’s the mind that enables us to do the things that we do. If we build a positive perspective around who we are and what is it that we can achieve, we can always manage to overcome the odds. Aging is one of those odds. It should, however, never be a factor that stops you or your loved one from staying active. Think of it as opportunity to grow and experience the good life in spite of the limitations that old age brings with it. 

Seniors often feel weak and sensitive. Therefore, they forsake physical activity. They might wrongly perceive that exercise can injure them. However, with a little precaution and moderate exertion, the benefits of exercising far outweigh the risks. 

If a 50-year-old does not engage in physical activity, thinking of the same risks of causing themselves some injury, they will inadvertently invite other risks: These include reduced muscle mass, strength, and physical endurance.

Elderly people living at nursing homes are at an advantage. They not only have several people of their age and experience around them but the caretakers who help them are also a source of inspiration to get them out of their cocoon. 

With the help of positive reinforcement, it becomes easier for the seniors to start engaging in physical activities. Nursing homes usually have small parks inside their premises, giving seniors a lot of space to have fun and stay active.

Moreover, nursing homes are responsible for helping seniors stay active during the day. However, not all nursing homes do pay as much attention to the seniors’ physical health. Failing to uphold care for seniors at nursing homes classifies as abuse. If you are wondering, can you sue a nursing home for neglect? Then the answer is “yes, you can.” 

Nevertheless, there are nursing homes that are adept at providing seniors the care they need. So, what could the seniors do to keep themselves active? 

In old age, people become disinterested in the things happening around them, and physical activity is one of them. 

But here some ways that might appeal the seniors to keep shape.

  1. Yoga:

    Yoga is extremely beneficial for health. Seniors who actively participate in yoga tend to have:

  • better sleep 
  • balance
  • flexibility
  • joint health
  • enhanced immunity and digestion
  • better respiration, and
  • reduced high blood pressure

At least, thrice a week yoga routine is recommended for the seniors. The yoga practices that can do wonders for seniors include: Hatha Yoga, Restorative Yoga, Iyengar, Yin, Ashtanga, etc. 

You can motivate the elderly to practice yoga by making them start small and provide small rewards throughout the process. 

  1. Walking:

    No matter how insignificant it might sound, walking is an amazing exercise to keep you fit. It could be done at any time of the day. The elderly should engage in brisk-walks for at-least 30-minutes daily.  Following are the benefits that could be experienced from this activity:

  • Improves heart health
  • Lowers blood sugar
  • Strengthens bones
  • Prevents osteoporosis, and
  • Reduces the chance of hip fractures

Walking not only has a positive impact on your health, but it can also make you feel happy and active. It encourages you to stay outdoors and meet new people. The activity is easily accessible and requires no equipment whatsoever, except a pair of good shoes. 

  1. Dancing:

    No matter what might think of dancing overall, it is not an activity that is often recommended to seniors, and wrongly so. People might think that dancing can negatively affect an elderly’s health. 

Dance has the following benefits:

  • maintain their strength and strong bones 
  • improve their posture and muscle strength
  • increase their balance and coordination, and 
  • help relieve any stresses

Dancing is a full-body strengthener. In addition, it is fun as well. Senior people can involve themselves in different dance forms, such as Jazz or Salsa dancing, Waltz, Foxtrot, line dancing, jazzercise, and whatnot.

  • Art and Crafts:

    “Art enables us to find ourselves and lose ourselves at the same time.”

Senior people at nursing homes can surely try different forms of art. Whether painting, coloring, drawing, sketching, etc. 

Art helps with alleviating stress, calming our minds, and is a key medium to explore creativity. Not only that, when practiced daily, it gives a lot of pleasure and satisfaction. These little accomplishments become a huge source of happiness. 

  1. Music Therapy:

    Music is a wonderful therapy. It allows people to lose themselves in the world of melody. Some genres of music are motivating and make us feel good. There are several benefits of listening to music including:

  • It distracts you from pain and fatigue
  • elevates mood 
  • increases endurance
  • reduces perceived effort, and 
  • may even promote metabolic efficiency
  1. Mental Exercises:

    The mind and the body are connected. In keeping the body active, you should also make an effort to keep your mind as active as well. Mind exercises can improve your mood, memory, and personal wellbeing. There are numerous interesting mental exercises that seniors can take part in.

These exercises include: puzzles, crosswords, brainteasers, and riddles. Seniors should also try reading, as reading books and articles is a great way to keep the mind engaged. 

This means that the nursing homes should ensure the availability of such items for the seniors’ use.

Furthermore, meditation is one of the mind-relaxing activities. It helps with mental calmness, finding peace from incessant thinking, and gaining perspective. A downside of aging is that you lose focus. However, meditation combined with the mental exercises can help the seniors maintain quickness of mind intact well into their dotage. 

Conclusion:
It is often a challenging task to get seniors to remain active at a nursing home. The reason primarily is the seniors’ own limiting belief that staying active is beyond their physical capabilities. However, there are a wide range of activities that the seniors can engage in. These activities include: walking, dancing, yoga, music therapy, reading, art, and mental games and exercises. These activities ensure that the seniors maintain their wits about them and are physically active enough that they don’t become susceptible to other ailments. 

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