Tips for Senior Mobility

The key to successful aging is to pay as little attention to it as possible. ~Judith Regan

The key to successful aging is to pay as little attention to it as possible. ~Judith Regan

It can be easy to forget that sometimes moving your body helps not just your physical health but your mental health as well. In seniors more than anyone really, mental health and happiness plays a huge role in their overall health and ability to cope with their various challenges day in, day out. While it can be difficult for some seniors to remain active in the event of having knee, joint, hip or bone problems, there are a number of ways they can still remain slightly active, even if they aren’t out doing digging in their gardens, climbing stairs or the like. Here are some easy activities that most seniors can do, even if they can’t stand for long or walk very far.

Gentle Walking

Gentle walking can be a great way for almost every senior to get exercise without overdoing it. Even if they are just walking to the end of the garden or the end of the street and back again, it’s a great way to get the legs moving and get them up and about. Another great way they can get gentle walking in is to go shopping, but with the added security and assistance of a mobility scooter so they can rest when necessary and use the scooter for longer distances. This can be great to get them out of the house and doing something a bit different which goes a long way to helping bolster mental and physical health as well.

Arm Exercises

If your senior or seniors can’t walk much at all, arm exercises are a great way to get them moving at least a little bit. Small amounts of weights can be added either in the form of small dumbbells or lifting light books and the like. Arm exercises can either be vertical repeats of pushing arms up and down or horizontal with pushing the arms out and back in.

Aquafit

This one is for your slightly more mobile seniors. Aquafit is a great way to get out and active with a whole community of other like minded people. Aquafit works in the sense that it uses the water and your own body’s natural resistance to work the muscles and joints, resulting in a great overall workout but with much less strain on the joints and muscles than going for a run or weightlifting in the gym.

So if you’re looking for some great ways to get your seniors active, hopefully these suggestions will go a ways toward helping in getting them out and fit with some easy, fun ways to do so.

The Holiday Season

Christmas and the holiday season is always an exciting time of year for most people what with the gifts, the meals, the family gatherings and the general feel good vibe that goes around in spades. Sadly though, not everyone enjoys the holiday season for a variety of reasons. Maybe they don’t have family or friends nearby, they’re mourning the loss of a loved one or they generally are a bit shy and don’t want anyone to think they’re a burden. While it is a busy time of year, including ageing relatives and friends in the festivities doesn’t have to be difficult. Here are a couple of easy ways to get seniors involved in the holiday season.

 Sit down and write a list of seniors you need to think about.

Knowing who you need to include is the first step to including them.

 Make a list of ways your seniors can get involved in their family functions or events.

You may wish to discuss this with the senior’s family so you can all make preparations to help them get involved. From setting the table, calling out names on gifts or even handing out plates of Christmas cake, there are a number of ways seniors can feel like a part of the action.

 Write your seniors Christmas Cards.

Seniors love to receive mail - even hand delivered mail, so writing a card to give to them sometime over the coming days is a great way to make them know you’re thinking of them.

 Consider a last minute art project as a gift.

Seniors value time over money spent. Painting them a picture, even just a small one and giving it to them in a nice frame is a great way to make them know you care.

 Give them small jobs according to their ability.

As mentioned, you can give them small jobs according to their ability such as handing out plates of Christmas cake, setting the table, lighting candles and the like.

 Give thanks.

Recognize the efforts of your senior relatives and friends, no matter how small.

Warm Wishes during the Holiday Season from At Home Eldercare.

Warm Wishes during the Holiday Season from At Home Eldercare.

Getting Seniors Involved in Halloween

With October here and the fall season setting in fast in many places, it’s time to start thinking about autumn holidays such as Halloween and Thanksgiving. While Thanksgiving is still awhile off yet, Halloween is only a couple of weeks away. In this issue we will explore how you can help get seniors involved in Halloween, a great way for them to spend time with family and friends and get into the season a bit.

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HAPPY HALLOWEEN

Seniors enjoy participating in the holidays.

 Halloween is the perfect time to start wearing some of your best in fall fashion, so you can get your seniors involved first and foremost by helping them get their winter clothes out of storage, washed and ready for the cooler months ahead. If they have a particularly fun scarf, hat or sweater they like to wear for the holidays, encourage them to wear it at every opportunity! Here are some other great ways to get seniors involved in Halloween:

 

  •   Make Halloween themed crafts. Everything from hand dipping spooky looking orange and black candles to making wreaths for the mantle in fun Halloween or autumn themes is a good way to create a fall-based ambiance. You can even make it so that the feature is fall with only a couple of removable Halloween things in the wreaths/decor so that they can enjoy the decorations into November and through to Thanksgiving.

  •   Help your senior shop for treats for trick or treaters. Make a plan together to determine the best course of action in handing out candy. If your senior is really into Halloween, they may like to set up a haunted spot outside where you can help them give out candy in a frightening way - perfect for the kids!

  • Depending on their dexterity and arthritis issues, your senior may like to help make their grandchildren’s Halloween costumes. They may even like to dress up themselves.

  • Watch scary (or funny) Halloween themed films. Be cautious in choosing something too spooky as some seniors scare easier.

  •   Read spooky stories. A lot of the stuff by Edgar Allan Poe is great for this time of year, isn’t too scary and are shorter reads.

  • Bake seasonal treats such as pumpkin cookies, pumpkin cakes and cheesecakes too.

  • Carve a pumpkin together. Get a few of your seniors friends around and maybe have a pumpkin ‘Carve Off’ with a small prize for the person with the coolest pumpkin. This can be done with their family and grandkids too!

So there you have some great ideas on how to get your seniors involved in Halloween. With so many other things to do to enjoy the season, how will you get your clients involved?

Stay tuned next month when we will do a section on ‘Getting seniors involved in Thanksgiving”.

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