Recommended Exercises for Seniors

Recommended Exercises for Seniors

Seniors Exercising Nursing Home 

Exercising is a non-negotiable as you age. As you age you notice that your hair starts to turn gray, and you begin to see wrinkles and aging spots appearing on your skin. The body becomes less able to store fluid in the older age, so the spinal discs shrink and lose elasticity. The muscles also lose size and strength which contribute to fatigue, weakness, and reduced tolerance to exercise. Building muscles can help contribute to better balance and may reduce your risk of falls. This can help you to maintain independence. 

Is it too late for me to start exercising?

According to Harvard Medical School, it is not too late for you to begin exercising. Even people 100 years old or older can build muscle strength," says Dr. Edward Phillips, assistant professor of physical medicine and rehabilitation at Harvard Medical School. Dr. Jonathan Bean, a professor in the same department, describes the case of a 101-year-old man who wanted to be able to wheel his wheelchair down the hall to read the newspaper. The man embarked on a weight training plan. "He got to the point where he could use a walker to go down and read the newspaper," says Dr. Bean. This far surpassed his original goal. It's an extreme illustration, but a potent one, of Dr. Bean's point: it's never too late.

 So how do I get started? 

Start slow and build up steadily. If you haven't been active in a while, build up your exercise program little by little with the help of a fitness trainer. Try spacing workouts in ten-minute increments twice a day. Or try just one class each week.

If you're concerned about falling, start with easy chair exercises, riding a recumbent exercise bike, or water-based activities like swimming or pool aerobics to increase your fitness and confidence. You may also want to consider wearing a medical alert device for peace of mind.

The 5 Best Exercises for Seniors 

Low-Impact Cardio

Low-impact aerobic activities are gentler on the joints and may make it easier for older adults to stay active. It is a fitting form of exercise that is easy on the knees and ankles while still boosting cardiovascular health, muscle tone, balance, and coordination. 

Dumbbell Strength Training

Dumbbell strength training is essential to stay strong and vital. It helps to prevent osteoporosis and frailty by stimulating the growth of muscles and bones. Feeling physically strong also helps to promote mental and emotional health.

 Resistance Band Workouts

Resistance bands help to maintain strength and muscle mass without overdoing it. Holly Pinkham, a personal trainer, shares, “For adults around or over the age of 60, standard weights at the gym can be challenging and harsh on your body. Research indicates that training programs using elastic tubes are a practical, effective means of increasing strength in adults over the age of 65. Johns Hopkins Medicine recommends resistance bands as one of the safest methods to increase bone strength and help prevent osteoporosis.” Safety is just one of the many benefits seniors can enjoy when using resistance bands.

Chair Pilates 

Chair Pilates is perfect for you because it helps with better posture and mobility. There is a variety of exercises that can be done seated in the chair to tone your whole body. Doing chair pilates is especially helpful if you are struggling with Osteoporosis.


Walking daily at a brisk pace elevates the heart rate, which then reduces the risks of heart problems, strengthens muscles, promotes a healthy weight, helps reduce blood pressure, strengthens bones and helps prevent osteoporosis, promotes joint health, improves sleep, lowers the risk for heart disease, stroke, colon cancer, and diabetes, improves balance and coordination to prevent falls, strengthens the immune system, raise your energy levels, reduces anxiety and depression, and makes you feel good about yourself.

These benefits also enable you to live independently and safely in your home.

Exercises Seniors Should Avoid

  • Bench press
  • Leg press
  • Long distance running 
  • Squats with dumbbells or weights 
  • Abdominal crunches
  • Upright row
  • High-intensity interval training 
  • Rock climbing 
  • Power clean

If you need assistance with starting an exercise program or would like to hire a fitness trainer, please reachout to me at 263-880-7155 or email

Back to blog