Sitting too much can be a factor in all sorts of health issues your senior would love to avoid, but it’s not always simple to just not sit a lot. With help from you and from senior home care providers, your elderly family member might find some of these tips helpful as she tries to move a little more.
Talk to Her Doctor
How much is too much sitting for your senior? Believe it or not, there are variables that do make a difference and talking to your elderly family member’s doctor can help you both to determine if she really is sitting too much or if there are other solutions to consider. Once you talk with her doctor, you and your senior can put a plan together that works best for her specific needs.
Consider a Fitness Tracker
Lots of aging adults find that wearing a fitness tracker is really helpful. Not only can it keep track of things like sleep quality, heart rate, and steps taken throughout the day, it can do a lot of other things, too. Some of the best fitness trackers offer an alarm that your senior can turn on that reminds her to get up throughout the day and move more. It’s usually a gentle vibration that alerts her it’s time to move again and the goals are typically small enough that they’re easy to achieve. This can help to gamify the experience.
If your aging family member isn’t up for the idea of wearing a fitness tracker, she can try other options, too. One of the simplest ideas is to set some timers throughout the day. When those alarms go off, it’s your senior’s reminder that it’s time to move a little bit. You might set these as hourly reminders or less often, depending on your elderly family member’s needs. Senior home care professionals can also serve as reminders to move, helping your aging family member to stay active with gentle nudges.
Find Activities She Really Loves
If your elderly family member doesn’t have activities that she enjoys doing, she’s probably not going to be excited about moving more. This is why it’s a good idea to try tying physical activity in with something else. That could be a favorite show your senior never misses or an audiobook or podcast she loves to listen to. When she’s doing the thing that she loves, she might do something like walk on a treadmill or do some stretching exercises.
Avoid Too Much Negativity about This
Nagging doesn’t work for anyone at all, especially your senior. If you’re spending a lot of time and energy making her feel bad about sitting a lot, she’s far more likely to avoid moving around as much as she really should be. And worse, you might cause her to shut down conversations with you about the topic. That’s something you definitely don’t want.
The key here is for your elderly family member to get just enough movement in to be as healthy as possible but not to overdo things at all.