People tend to get a little less active in the winter – after all, it’s cold out there in some places in the country – and it’s a trend that appears to be getting worse. This lack of activity (combined with a potentially unhealthy diet) can have a negative effect on one’s health. When it comes to seniors, not moving around much for long periods of time can negatively impact balance, coordination, and even lower mood and increase risk of stroke.
Seniors don’t have to prepare to run a winter marathon, but there are a lot of things they can do outside (and inside) that will keep their mind and bodies in optimal shape. Here are 12 activities for seniors that are relatively low impact, but are also fun and motivating until the warmer weather returns.
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Winter can go swimmingly if you decide to jump into a pool (an indoor one, of course.) Find a local recreation facility where you can buy a membership, and plan to go regularly. Or if you’re traveling, take advantage of any indoor pools at your hotel.
Swimming is relatively easy on the joints compared to jogging, for example. You can move around freely and use the resistance of the water for an efficient workout. It may have special benefits for the more experienced population: a study actually shows that men over 70 who swim regularly are about one third less likely to fall than their counterparts who shy away from the pool.