As we grow older, our bodies continuously change. This is especially evident in old age where our bodies require more support and we take more time to recover and rest. One of the most obvious signs of change is that we will start to lose our balance, and experience a reduction in our strength and mobility. This can lead to many of us becoming fearful or sedentary in order to prevent worrying or extensive injuries.
However, having a consistent exercise program is actually helpful to combat the symptoms of aging and is also essential for maintaining a good quality of life. One of the best ways to exercise for older adults is pilates as it is low impact but also able to engage the entire body. In fact, anyone at any age will benefit from constant pilates practice.
What Is Pilates?
Before we continue, it is important to first understand what is pilates. It is generally known as a core-focused workout but has the ability to engage the entire body. This is done through over 600 different types of exercises that are either performed on a yoga mat or through specialized equipment. In most cases, you will not have to specially purchase equipment to do pilates.
The exercise itself involves breathwork, helping to target your different deeper and smaller stabilizing muscles. Through long-term practice, it will help to support your joints through movement patterns, increased flexibility, mobility, and strength.
Benefits of Pilates
Studies have proven that there are extensive benefits from a regular pilates practice no matter how old you are. There are many different benefits but we will be focusing on three main ones. Firstly, it is able to help to improve bone density, especially among women. When you have low bone density, your bones break more easily, even during regular daily activities. Improving bone density means reducing the chances of fractures as well as the onset of conditions like osteoporosis and osteopenia.
Next, pilates helps with a person’s posture. The different exercises help to align and balance a person’s body, joints, and organs, helping to create better and easier mobility. This prevents any problematic slouching or pain from misaligned muscles.
Finally, pilates is able to improve a person’s mood, memory, and cognitive abilities. Exercise helps to increase blood flow to the brain which allows for greater neuron development. This means that they will be better able to make connections, think, and learn in their daily lives. Similarly, in being a mindful process, it helps a person to be more aware of their body and thoughts, allowing for a reduction in stress as well as better mood due to the calming effects.
As with all other exercises, it is important that older adults consult their general health practitioners before they start on a new exercise program. This not only helps to prevent exacerbating any physical conditions but also helps with getting recommendations on which exercises can best help with your body condition.
If you are new to pilates, it is also good practice to work with a qualified pilates instructor which can help to prevent excessive movement or overexertion. Where possible, begin with individual sessions with an instructor who has received specialized training to assist older adults.
Enjoy Fitness And Wellness Programs at SummerHouse Grayson Valley
At SummerHouse Grayson Valley, we strongly prioritize fitness and wellbeing in our community. This is why we have established Dimensions Health & Fitness where all of our residents will have easy access to different senior-specific exercise classes, gatherings, and amenities. More importantly, we believe that health is multi-faceted and involves more than just physical strength and capabilities. The approach that our team members take helps to account for our residents’ social, spiritual, emotional, medical, and intellectual wellbeing on top of physical aspects.
For more information on our senior living options or our fitness programs, contact us today.