Being more physically active can help your elderly family member to improve her immune function, sleep better, have better moods, and just feel better overall. But that doesn’t mean that she’s ready to go out and run a 5K. There might be more to it than that and these tips can help her to be more involved in making the decision to exercise.
Choose Something Easy that She Enjoys
If your senior doesn’t like whatever she’s doing to be more active, she won’t keep doing it. Likewise, whatever she chooses needs to be easy for her to do. Starting out with physical activity that is difficult means that she’s going to experience a lot of disappointment that she really doesn’t have to experience. Making physical activity fun and enjoyable is crucial.
Make Being Active a Priority
Waiting to engage in any physical activities until “someday” or until certain other activities are done is a recipe for disaster. What ends up happening in those situations is that being more active falls way down the list and your senior might just abandon that goal. If she’s able to make being more active a priority, she’ll make it a point to make time to get that activity in.
Ensure Your Senior Is Safe While Exercising
Safety is incredibly important to helping your senior to be more active on a daily basis. First, there’s her overall health. Talk with her doctor about her plans to become more active and determine if that’s something that she’s able to do right now. Second, consider all of the ways that your elderly family member might need support to exercise more. It might be a good idea for her to have senior care providers there with her, for example, so that she’s able to have help immediately if she needs it.
Encourage Her to Choose to Be Active
This may sound like the same thing as making exercise a priority, but it really isn’t. Your senior still needs to make the choice every day to engage in physical activity. Look at what might help to keep her motivated. Some people like to remind themselves of the benefits of being more active. Other people find that tracking their progress helps. Talk to your senior about what she prefers.
Once your elderly family member starts to feel the benefits of exercise for her she may be surprised that it took her so long to get on board with the idea.