4 Best Stretches for Seniors
Stretching daily is a great way to help loosen up tight muscles and knots, reduce tension, and keep the body flexible. As your loved one ages, her ligaments and tendons become more rigid, making mobility, balance, and flexibility more difficult. If she can get into a regular habit of stretching, it can reduce the risk of her developing certain diseases, lift her mood, and aid in the prevention of falling.
When your loved one decides to stretch is up to her. If she’s already regularly active (taking daily walks with her home care assistance provider or swimming at the local pool several times a week), the best time to perform stretching exercises might be after she’s exercised, while the muscles are warm and limber. She’ll be able to stretch the limits a bit more.
If your loved one is not very active, she can still add stretches for seniors as an important part of her day. She can do it anytime, but it often helps to keep it at the same time each day so she doesn’t forget. If she has a home care assistance provider that visits, they can make it a part of that visit with the home care assistance provider helping by providing support and encouragement. Otherwise, she could make it part of her morning wake-up routine or her bedtime routine, maybe right after a shower or bath.
Best Stretches for Seniors
It’s important as your loved one stretches to listen to her body and stop the stretch when it becomes uncomfortable. It can also be helpful to have someone nearby to make sure she’s doing it correctly or can help if she stretches to a point where she can’t return to normal standing or sitting without the risk of falling.
An important part of stretching is breathing through it so having someone nearby to remind her to breathe could be helpful, especially at the beginning, as she’s just learning her stretches.
Here is a list of some great stretches for seniors. Check with your loved one’s doctor before she begins, and then have her start slowly. She can do all of them or pick 2 or 3 that she likes.
Seated Knee Stretch
While seated, slowly pull one knee up to her chest by interlocking her hands behind the knee. Once she feels the area stretching, hold it for 10-30 seconds then repeat.
Stand and face a wall. Place one foot in front then place both hands on the wall. Leaning in, your loved one should lean and bend her knees until she feels the back of her leg stretch. Then hold it for 30 seconds and repeat with the other leg.
Overhead Side Stretch
Your loved one can do this one standing or sitting and will stretch her back and shoulders. Sitting up straight, or standing, she should lift both arms over her head and interlock hands. Then slowly stretch to one side and hold. Come back to the center and repeat to the other side.
While sitting or standing, cross one arm in front of the body and use the other hand to pull it close to the body, keeping the elbow below the shoulder line. Hold for 10-30 seconds and repeat for the other side.
Stretching daily can be a great way to keep the body flexible and healthy.
If you or an aging loved one are considering hiring Home Care Assistance in Yuba City, CA, talk to the caring staff at Partners in Care today. Serving El Dorado, Nevada, Yuba, Sutter, Sacramento, Placer, Butte, Glenn, Yolo, & Colusa Counties!
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