Everyone can agree that staying active is an essential part of a healthy life. However, some seniors may find it harder to keep moving as they get older. This is why exercises that can be done while seated are so useful. These exercises help to increase strength and improve circulation.
The first exercise, the hip march, is useful as a warm-up before other more strenuous exercises, but it can also be a cardiovascular routine if given more repetitions. To begin, sit up with good posture in a straight-backed chair with armrests. Grab the armrests, and then slowly lift one leg as high as it will go. Slowly lower it, and then perform the exercise with the other leg. Repeat until both legs have been raised and lowered 20 times, and then take a break of roughly five minutes. This process can be done two more times for a warm up, or four more times for a more intense cardiovascular workout.
The second routine is a workout for the buttock muscles. The process is to squeeze the muscles together for two seconds, then release. Repeat eight times, then take a short break and repeat the process either once or twice, depending on capability. Strengthening these muscles provides numerous benefits, especially to mobility.
The next exercise is the ankle stretch. Raise one leg, keeping it straight out in front with toes pointing skyward. Point the toes forwards, hold for two seconds, and then return to pointing them up. Repeat five times on the same leg, and then do the same to the other leg. Repeat with both legs once more to complete the exercise. This improves ankle strength and mobility as well as circulation to the legs.
The next exercise is the seated row. Sitting with proper upright posture, extend the arms to the front, keeping the elbows slightly bent and thumbs pointed up. Slowly draw back the arms, squeezing shoulder blades together. Repeat eight times and rest, then repeat the entire process twice. If desired, light weights can be utilized to maximize the strength gained from this workout.
The final exercise is a seated push-up. Sitting with a straight back, place hands on the chair directly next to the thighs. Press into the chair with the arms as though lifting the body from the chair, though it should be noted that no actual upwards movement is required. Hold in this pressed position for three seconds, and then slowly release pressure until fully seated. This should be done five times with a two minute rest period before another repetition of five. This improves arm and pectoral strength while releasing pressure on the thighs, allowing for more circulation.
These exercises will help any senior with access to a chair lead an active and healthy lifestyle, maintaining strength and improving circulation for years to come.