Young Exercise

After gaining clearance, one may not be sure where to start. Thankfully, the ACSM has provided some general guidelines for exercise programs designed specifically for older adults.

The core recommendation is that at least 30 minutes of "moderate physical activity" should be performed on most days of the week. And while it may seem like an odd priority, strength training should be a main focus, as it prevents bone and muscle loss. Additionally, flexibility and functional movements (those that mimic everyday activities) are important.

In this example plan, there will be four days of cardiovascular activity and two days of strength training. If any discomfort or pain is felt during the activity, stop immediately and consult a trainer or medical professional for guidance. In addition, be sure to have water nearby at all times.

CARDIOVASCULAR ACTIVITY

Before beginning the session, it is imperative that one performs stretching as a warm-up. This reduces the risk of muscle strain and improves flexibility, a core concern of exercise programs for older adults. Remember not to "bounce" or stretch too far, as this will only aggravate the muscles. Some good stretches are: triceps stretchseated floor twisttoe touchstanding biceps stretch, and the spinal stretch.

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