Benefits of Exercise for seniors | On the cardiorespiratory, nervous, muscle mass, respiratory, immune defenses and mental health system

Benefits of exercise for seniors elderly

Benefits of Exercise for seniors

Starting a physical activity or sport from the age of 55 offers real health benefits. Benefits of exercise for seniors are many; on the cardiorespiratory system, nervous system, muscle mass, respiratory system, immune defenses here are some examples:

Benefits of exercise for seniors on the cardiorespiratory system

The cardiorespiratory system is consists of the heart and blood vessels. These work in tandem with the respiratory system, which consist of the lungs as well as airways. These two body systems transport oxygen to the muscles and organs of the body. They are good for:

  • improvement of pulmonary ventilation;
  • improvement of irrigation and cardiac efficiency;
  • prevention of coronary heart disease;
  • fight against high blood pressure;
  • fight against overweight.
Ageing and the Locomotor System

Benefits of exercise for seniors on the locomotive systems of seniors:

  • preservation of tone and muscle mass;
  • preservation of tendon and joint flexibility;
  • preservation of motor coordination and reflexes;
  • maintaining balance and feeling the body in space (preventing falls);
  • preservation of bone mass and density.
The Benefits of exercise for seniors on the nervous system

It keep the memory skills. As blood flow increases, your brain is exposed to more oxygen and nutrients. Exercise also induces the release of beneficial proteins in the brain. These nourishing proteins keep brain cells (also known as neurons) healthy, and promote the growth of new neurons. Neurons are the working building blocks of the brain.

Benefits of exercise on senior sexuality

Prevention of erectile dysfunction (impotence).

Benefits of exercise on the phychic well-being of seniors
  • sleep regulation;
  • fight against depression and anxiety, better confidence in one’s abilities;
  • strengthen social ties
  • fight against isolation, loneliness and boredom.

What are the benefits of regular physical activity in people over 65?

The health benefits associated with the practice of a regular sporting activity are multiple, both for young people and for the elderly.

The practice of physical activity prevents the state of fragility

Although the practice of a physical activity will not help to eliminate the alterations caused by the aging of the body, it nevertheless makes it possible to limit the loss of physical capacities, and therefore to reduce the risks of dependence by improving muscular capacities, cardio-respiratory and balance of the elderly person.

Physical activity helps to maintain good motor skills, and therefore, to preserve the autonomy of the senior. It also slows the effects of aging on the muscles and strengthens heart and respiratory capacities. To age well, a few sports sessions per week is therefore the best therapy.

Benefits on the cardiovascular system

As part of the practice of physical activity, the muscles of the body need more oxygen to work properly. To meet this demand, the cardiac system is solicited to a greater or lesser extent.

Therefore, moving on a daily basis after age 50, especially during retirement, allows an elderly person to reduce the risk of high blood pressure or cardiovascular disease. Playing sports also limits the appearance of certain disorders such as blood sugar or cholesterol.

Maintenance of muscle mass

Aging is accompanied by a progressive decrease in muscle mass, better known as “sarcopenia”. In addition to the decline in functional abilities, this geriatric syndrome also increases the risk of developing a metabolic disease such as diabetes.

Physical activity is a great way to limit sarcopenia, improve muscle strength and stay in shape. Indeed, it increases the strength of the knee extensors by 180% and the muscle mass of the elderly by 11%.

Benefits on the respiratory system

By practicing regular physical activity, an elderly person considerably improves their respiratory functions by ensuring good oxygenation of the lungs and bronchi.

This results in less shortness of breath and better ventilation of the muscles.

Improved immune defenses

Regular physical activity also helps strengthen the immune system.

Faced with the appearance of new pathologies induced by our diet and our environment, playing sports is an excellent way to protect ourselves against these diseases.

Prevention of cancer and excessive weight gain
Physical activity also plays a preventive role against obesity and certain cancers such as lung cancer or prostate cancer.

Considerable mental health benefits

Physical activity does not only bring physical benefits to seniors. It also improves emotional well-being, self-esteem and quality of life.

Practicing a sport in a group or in a club allows an elderly person to fight against social isolation. This social role is not negligible. Indeed, sport creates social ties and reduces the risk of depression. This social stimulation also has real effects on memory and cognitive functions.

What physical activities are recommended for a senior?

When the body ages, it is important to choose suitable physical activities. From a certain age, it is no longer possible to practice all physical and sporting activities. It is therefore necessary to choose them carefully.

Here are some selections of exercises that can be done as you get older:

Sports for Elderly and Benefits | What Sport and Fitness Activities for Older People?

Information: Cleverly Smart is not a substitute for a doctor. Always consult a doctor to treat your health condition.

Sources: Cleverly smart, The GreenFields Continuing Care Community, The Care Workers’ Charity – London, National Council on Aging

Photo credit: Pxhere

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