For many seniors, maintaining mobility and staying in good shape can be tough because their bodies undergo the inevitable aging process. As a result, simple daily activities, such as standing up and sitting down, or getting out of bed, can become increasingly difficult over time. Today’s article will show you six easy upper body stretches designed for your parents and older family members.
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Why is Stretching Important As We Age?
Stretching is vital as we age since stretching maintains strong, healthy, and flexible muscles and joints. Functionally, it prevents muscles from shrinking and shortening, thereby maximizing greater movements in joints for day-to-day activities.
With routinely stretched muscles, seniors reduce the risks of muscle soreness and injury because they rarely put much force on their muscles. Most importantly, stretching is a great way to relieve stress and anxiety in seniors with the implementation of deep breathing techniques and body stretches. Moreover, a flexible set of muscles helps seniors with limited mobility improve balance, decrease back pain, and prevent falls.
The Stretching Guideline For Seniors
Here is the stretching guideline for your parents and older family members:
- Stretch two or three days per week.
- Perform each stretch from 3 to 5 minutes for 20-30 second intervals.
- Warm-up before stretching, such as a 5-minute walk, to avoid post-workout cramps.
- Inhale and exhale slowly during each stretch.
- Stretch until tension, pain, and discomfort in the muscles subside.
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6 Easy Upper Body Stretches For Seniors
Side Bends & Neck Rotations
- Make sure to sit in a supportive chair with your back straight.
- Gently turn your head to the right and hold for five seconds.
- Return to facing forwards and turn to the left.
- Return to the starting position and tilt your head until your right ear touches your right shoulder.
- Repeat the same movement for the other side.
- Sit in a comfortable position and straighten your back.
- Move both your shoulders in a circular motion.
- Inhale while raising your shoulders and exhale while moving them downwards.
- Harmonize your shoulders and repeat 10-15 times before resting or moving on to the next stretch.
- You can choose to sit or stand while performing this upper-body exercise.
- Hold both hands and face the palms of your hands downwards in front of you.
- Slowly open, spread your fingers apart, and close them.
- Repeat 10-15 times.
- Start by sitting in a comfortable but supportive position.
- Grab your left shoulder and slowly pull it towards the left with your right hand.
- Add support to your right elbow by using your left hand.
- Pull it until you feel resistance and hold it for 10 or 15 seconds.
- Repeat for the other side and repeat ten times for each side.
- Stand with relaxed shoulders and arms on both sides.
- Lifting both arms above your head as you inhale.
- Return both arms to the starting position.
- Repeat 10 times for both arms.
Side Shoulder Raises
- Start by standing or sitting and hold light dumbbells in each hand.
- Slowly lift both arms simultaneously until your arms are completely straight.
- Stop when your arms reach the level of your shoulder.
Get Your Body Up & Moving at 12 Oaks Communities
At 12 Oaks Communities, we are dedicated to providing a feel-like-home atmosphere and arranging fun, healthy self-improvement activities for all residents. In addition to having a robust community, 12 Oaks and our dedicated staff provide outstanding, around-the-clock care to ensure a safe, worry-free environment.
If you have questions about upper body stretches or any conditions discussed here, connect with us and learn more.
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