nce are the key factors in every movement of your daily life. Unluckily, many seniors develop issues with balance and coordination as they age. According to the Health Magazine, 28% to 45% of elders fall each year due to elderly balance decline. Adding Agility exercises for seniors into their daily routine is a good way to work on balance, range of motion, coordination, and strength.
WHY AGILITY TRAINING IS A MUST?
When you get older, the reaction time and coordination tend to slow down, but you can still enjoy your beautiful life with good 10 minutes of practice each day. Agility exercises help you maintain equilibrium when stationary or moving through the coordinated actions of our sensory functions, including eyes, ears and the proprioceptive organs in our joints. Furthermore, agility exercise can reduce older adults’ risk of falling, which can lead to serious injury. Practicing agility frequently will put positive stress on the muscles and bones, which keeps them healthy and strong. When you feel more balance, you walk with more self-assurance and confidence.
WHAT AGILITY EXERCISE FOR SENIORS?
1. AGILITY LADDER EXERCISES
Agility Ladderexercises are the best workout to challenge your sense of balance, coordination, and range of motion. These Agility Ladder drills show how the ladder is the most effect tool for training footwork and quickness. To ensure the safety, you always start with slow speed and simple patterns until you are familiar with them, then increase your speed as much as you can without losing control. You can choose between 8 (11 feet), 12 (15 feet) and 20 (25 feet) rungs to fit your workout. The longer length provides larger space and more intense workout to improve your agility.
Step 1: Start at the end of the ladder, on the left side, and facing forward.
Step 2: Step into the first box with your right foot.
Step 3: Step into the first box as well with your left foot.
Step 4: As your left foot lands in the first box, step outside the first box with your right foot.
Step 5: Step your left foot in the second box, followed by your right foot, and then step outside the second box with your left foot.
Step 6: Continue this 2 in 1 out foot pattern all the way down the ladder.
Step 1: Stand tall at the end of the ladder, arms by your sides, and face forward.
Step 2: Hop into the first box with your both feet.
Step 3: Hop and land into the second box with both feet, continue to do all the way down the ladder.
Tip: Do not try to jump too high, do this exercise with slow and controlled movements.
Yoga is like a magical medicine for seniors due to its proved effectiveness. Practicing Yoga 30 minute a day, 5 days a week, constantly 2 months you will see the difference. Yoga helps you control your breath, thus increasing the range of motion, balance, coordination and flexibility. Many studies show that Yoga can reduce the risk of falling in seniors and improve the life quality.
Step 1: Stand tall with should width apart. Place a Yoga block about four to five inches in front of your feet.
Step 2: Slowly lean forward, place your left hand on the block, and raise your left leg up 90 degrees and parallel to the floor. Move your right arm up to the ceiling with control, your both arms should be on a straight line. Hold for 1 second, then release.
Tip: Place both hands on the block at first to seek your balance until you feel confident enough to raise one arm up.
Step 1: Stand tall at the top of your Yoga Mat with your arms by your side.
Step 2: Step your left foot back about 3 to 4 feet. Place your left foot parallel to the short edge of your mat and line up the heel of your right foot with the heel of your left foot. Extend your arms out alongside your body, raising them parallel to the floor with your palms facing down. Bend your right knee and ensure the knee isn’t bowing out to the left or the right. Remain in the pose for 2 breaths and extend your front leg and exhale to lower your arms. Step to the front of your mat and repeat on the other side whenever you feel ready.
Dancing is a great effective physical therapy to improve agility for seniors. Dance therapy encourages seniors to move in different directions to improve overall balance, stamina and walking speed, which are major risk factors in falling. Furthermore, dancing with different partners increases your agility because you must adapt to each person’s style. Choosing your favorite dance style, including belly dancing, ballroom dancing, and square dancing and enjoy your beautiful life right now!
Aging is not a problem if you can find a way to deal with it! Besides improving general health, adding agility and coordination exercise into your daily life is a great thumb up to reduce older adults’ risk of falling. Research suggests that a minimum of 10 minutes of low-intensity training three days per week for 4 weeks is sufficient to improve static and dynamic balance. Don’t hesitate, take action right now!