The Importance of Physical Fitness for Adults 65+

May is an important month for senior citizens’ health. There are many awareness designations celebrated this month that apply to seniors, including:

  • Older Americans Month
  • Senior Citizens Month
  • Physical Fitness and Sports Month
  • Mental Health Month
  • Osteoporosis Prevention Month
  • Stroke Awareness Month

In honor of all of these special designations, we’re sharing why it’s important that adults 65+ stay active.

Physical Fitness for Senior Citizens

Rebuild Muscle Mass

When we age, our muscle mass naturally decreases: starting in our 40s, we lose 3-5% of muscle mass per decade, then 1-2% per year in our 50s. Since muscle is important for strength, balance, calorie burning, and healthy weight maintenance, losing too much muscle mass can limit your mobility.

Fortunately, we can undo the natural loss of muscle mass through physical activity. Research has shown that older adults who participate in weight lifting 3 times a week for 10 weeks increased their thigh mass by 2.7%, walking speed by 12%, and leg strength by 113%! Cardio can also help build muscle mass.

Combat Osteoporosis

Test Smartly Labs | The Importance of Physical Fitness for Adults 65+Physical activity can also help combat the effects of osteoporosis, a bone disease that decreases bone mass and density and increases fracture risk. When you exercise, you’ll build muscle and increase your endurance, plus maintain your bone mass and density.

Doctors recommend three types of physical activity for osteoporosis:

  • Weight-bearing: physical activity like walking, dancing, and hiking
  • Resistance: exercise that involves working against another object’s weight, such as weight lifting or water aerobics
  • Flexibility: physical activity like stretching, t’ai chi, or yoga

Improve Your Mental Health

Regular physical activity provides countless mental health benefits. Not only can it improve your sleep, which also has great physical effects, it also improves your mood and confidence thanks to the release of endorphins.¬†Physical activity can also boost brain function. When you exercise regularly, your brain stays more active, preventing memory loss and even slowing the progress of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.Seniors, Monitor Your Health With Test Smartly Labs

Physical activity is key for senior citizens — but it’s also important that you monitor your health so that you know whether your exercise is proving effective. The wellness-certified Test Smartly Labs located nationwide provide clinical lab tests that make it easy for you to gauge your current health and measure changes along the way.

To learn more about our services and the lab testing most beneficial to senior citizens, find your nearest Test Smartly Labs today!


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