DIY Balancing Exercise For Seniors – Lunge With A Chair

Lunges are a great exercise for improving your balance when your knees are bent and you’re close to the ground. Performing them regularly can help protect you from falls by improving your balance in awkward positions.

Equipment Required:

  • 1 chair

Instructions:

  1. Place the chair to the left of your body and slightly in front of you. Stand up straight with your feet a hip distance apart and your left hand on the chair. Lunge With Chair for Seniors 1
  2. Take a big step forward with your left foot while keeping your left hand on the chair. Lunge With Chair for Seniors 2
  3. Bend your knees and slowly lower your body down until your front knee is at a 90 degree angle, making sure that it does not go over your ankle. Lunge With Chair for Seniors 3
  4. Slowly raise your body back up to the starting position. Lunge With Chair  for seniors 4
  5. Repeat steps 3-4 for as many repetitions as you desire.
  6. Step backwards with your left foot and then turn around, so that the chair is now to the right of your body and slightly in front of you. Then place your right hand on the chair, take a big step forward with your right foot and repeat steps 3-4 for as many repetitions as you desire.

Why Are Lunges So Great For Seniors?

Performing lunges with a chair makes this exercise much safer than a regular lunge and gives you something to grab onto if you do lose your balance. As well as building your balance, lunges are also a low impact leg exercise and a great way to lightly tone and strengthen your legs without injuring yourself. Finally, lunges keep your knees flexible and supple which helps to offset age related joint stiffness and pain.

Lunges Variations:

When you’ve got used to lunging and you need something extra to make it more challenging, try these lunge variations:

  1. Take your hand off the chair and perform the lunges with no extra support.
  2. Grab a balance disk or a BOSU ball and place your front foot on it when lunging for an even greater balance challenge.
  3. Hold a dumbbell in each hand as you perform the lunges to strengthen your legs at the same time as improving your balance.

DIY Balancing Exercise For Seniors – Heel & Toe Walk

How to Perform Heel & Toe Walk

The heel and toe walk takes your balance training one step further by adding movement to the mix. Most practical situations where you need to call upon your balance skills involve walking and this is a great exercise for getting your body used to balancing while you’re on the move.

Equipment Required:

  • None

Instructions:

  1. Stand up straight with your feet and knees slightly apart, then raise your toes off the ground and balance on your heels.Heel & Toe Walk for Seniors 1
  2. Take 10 steps while staying balanced on your heels. Heel & Toe Walk for Seniors 2
  3. Place your toes back on the ground. Heel & Toe Walk for Seniors 3
  4. Raise your heels off the ground and balance on your toes. 
  5. Take 10 steps while staying balanced on your toes. 
  6. Place your heels back on the ground and repeat steps 1-5 for as many repetitions as you desire.

Why Is The Heel & Toe Walk Exercise So Great For Seniors?

The heel and toe walk exercise is both challenging and safe. Although it works your balance, there’s very little chance of falling over. If you lose your balance, you simply drop your heel or your toes, so that your foot is fully on the floor and regain your balance. In addition to this, it also helps build strength in your heels and toes and gets them used to holding your entire body weight. Finally, the feet movements involved in this exercise are great for your circulation and enhance the flow of blood to your feet and toes.

Heel & Toe Walk Exercise Variations:

Once you can do the heel and toe walk exercise with ease, try these variations for added difficulty:

  1. Grab some light dumbbells and try to stay balanced on your heels and toes while holding them.
  2. Get a step block, step onto it, walk across it and step off it while staying balanced on your heels and toes.

DIY Balancing Exercise For Seniors – Single Leg Swing Balance With Chairs

How to Perform Single Leg Swing Balance With Chairs

The single leg swing balance exercise is slightly more challenging than the single leg bent knee balance exercise and involves swinging one leg as you balance on the other. Performing this exercise regularly will help you maintain your balance, even when you’re not standing up straight.

Equipment Required:

  • 2 chairs.

Instructions:

  1. Place the two chairs at either side of your body.Single Leg Swing Balance With Chairs - for Seniors 1
  2. Stand up straight with your feet and knees slightly apart and one hand on each chair. Single Leg Swing Balance With Chairs - for Seniors 2
  3. Raise your right foot off the ground and transfer your weight onto your left leg. Single Leg Swing Balance With Chairs - for Seniors 3
  4. Slowly swing your right foot forward while keeping your leg straight, until the angle between your leg and the floor is about 45 degrees. Single Leg Swing Balance With Chairs - for Seniors 4
  5. Slowly return your right foot to the starting position. Single Leg Swing Balance With Chairs - for Seniors 5
  6. Slowly swing your right foot out to the side while keeping your leg straight, until the angle between your leg and the floor is about 45 degrees. Single Leg Swing Balance With Chairs - for Seniors 6
  7. Slowly return your right foot to the starting position. Single Leg Swing Balance With Chairs - for Seniors 7
  8. Slowly swing your right foot backwards while keeping your leg straight, until the angle between your leg and the floor is about 45 degrees. Single Leg Swing Balance With Chairs - for Seniors 8
  9. Slowly return your right foot to the starting position. Single Leg Swing Balance With Chairs - for Seniors 9
  10. Place your right foot back on the ground, raise your left foot off the ground, transfer your weight onto your right leg and repeat steps 4-9 with your left leg.
  11. Repeat steps 4-10 for as many repetitions as you desire.

Why Is The Single Leg Swing Balance Exercise So Great For Seniors?

Like the single leg bent knee balance exercise, the single leg swing balance exercise gives you the safety net of two chairs to grab onto, should you need them. Additionally, the slow pace of the exercise means that while it does challenge your balance, you are still always in control, so the chances of falling and injuring yourself are minimal.

Single Leg Swing Balance Exercise Variations:

If you’ve mastered the single leg swing balance exercise and need a bit more of a challenge, give these variations a try:

  1. Take your hands off the chairs and perform the single leg swing balance exercise with no extra support.
  2. Wear ankle straps when performing the single leg swing balance exercise to double up its benefits and improve your strength and balance at the same time.

DIY Balancing Exercise For Seniors – Single Leg Bent Knee Balance With Chairs

How to Perform Single Leg Bent Knee Balance With Chairs – For Seniors

The single leg bent knee balance exercise is a great way to get used to balancing on one leg. It’s a nice, slow controlled movement which doesn’t throw you off balance completely but is challenging enough to help your balance improve.

Equipment Required:

  • 2 chairs

Instructions:

  1. Place the two chairs at either side of your body.Single Leg Bent Knee Balance With Chairs - for Seniors 1
  2. Stand up straight with your feet and knees touching together and one hand on each chair. Single Leg Bent Knee Balance With Chairs - for Seniors 2
  3. Slowly raise your right foot off the ground and keep raising your right knee until it is parallel with your hips, then hold this position for 15-20 seconds.Single Leg Bent Knee Balance With Chairs - for Seniors 3
  4. Lower your right foot back down to the ground and repeat step three with your left leg.
  5. Repeat steps 3-4 for as many repetitions as you desire.

Why Is The Single Leg Bent Knee Balance Exercise So Great For Seniors?

The single leg bent knee balance exercise is both challenging (because you have to balance on one leg) and safe (because you have chairs at either side to support you or grab onto if necessary). The slow movement also means that while you are on one leg, you still have a large amount of control which makes you much less likely to fall.

Single Leg Bent Knee Balance Exercise Variations:

After you’ve practiced the single leg bent knee balance exercise a few times and learnt the proper form, try these variations to make it more fun and challenging:

  1. Take your hands off the chairs and perform the single leg bent knee balance exercise with no extra support.
  2. Workout with a friend and compete against each other to see who can hold the single leg bent knee balance for longest.
  3. Perform the single leg bent knee balance exercise on a BOSU ball or a balance disc for an even greater challenge.

A similar exercise worth doing is the single leg swing balance exercise.

5 DIY Balance Exercises For Seniors

Balance is a key skill that unfortunately deteriorates with age. A dangerous side effect of this is that as your balance declines, your risk of falling and injuring yourself increases.

The good news is that by performing balance exercises regularly, you can minimize this age related decline in balance and protect yourself from falls and injuries.

Here are  five of the best balance exercises for seniors. Perform them regularly to keep your balance strong and protect yourself from falls.

Chair Squat – Balance Exercise: An excellent introductory exercise if you haven’t performed balancing exercises in a long while. Read More…

Chair Squat - Balance Exercise 2

Single Leg Bent Knee Balance With Chairs – Balance Exercise: An exercise challenging enough to help you improve your balance. Read More…

Single Leg Bent Knee Balance With Chairs - for Seniors 3

Single Leg Swing Balance With Chairs  – Balance Exercise: This is more challenging than the single leg bent knee balance exercise and involves swinging one leg as you balance on the other. Read More…

Single Leg Swing Balance With Chairs - for Seniors 4

Heel & Toe Walk – Balance Exercise: This exercise takes your balance training one step further by adding movement to the mix. Read More…

Lunge With A Chair – Balance Exercise: Performing this exercise regularly can help protect you from falls by improving your balance in awkward positions. Read More…

DIY Balancing Exercise For Seniors- Chair Squat

How to Perform Chair Squats – For Seniors

The chair squat is a brilliant introductory exercise and gets you used to balancing without taking your feet off the ground or forcing you to balance while moving. If you haven’t performed balance exercises for a long time, this is a great one to start with.

Equipment Required:

  • 1 chair

Instructions:

  1. Stand about 6 inches in front of the edge of the chair, with your feet and knees a hip width apart. Chair Squat - Balance Exercise 1
  2. Bend your legs, raise your arms out in front of you and slowly sit back on the chair.Chair Squat - Balance Exercise 2
  3. Slowly straighten your legs, lower your arms back down to your sides and stand up while keeping your upper body straight and your core muscles tight. Chair Squat - Balance Exercise 3
  4. Repeat steps 1-3 for as many repetitions as you desire.

Why Is The Chair Squat Exercise So Great For Seniors?

With the chair squat exercise, you are fully in control of the movements, so you can ensure that there’s no unnecessary pressure on your legs and this helps you avoid injury. The chair also provides extra support, so if you do lose your balance, there’s something ready to catch you which provides even more protection from injury. 

Chair Squat Exercise Variations:

Once you can balance fully while performing the chair squat exercise, try the variations below to keep it fresh and challenging:

  1. Hold a dumbbell in each hand as you perform the chair squat exercise to improve the strength of your legs as well as your balance.
  2. Place a resistance band under your feet and perform bicep curls while standing up to target your arms and legs at the same time.
  3. Perform the chair squat exercise using just one leg for a much more challenging balance exercise.

20+ DIY Low Impact Exercises For Seniors

Introduction

One of the unfortunate facts of life is that the older you get, the less effective your body becomes. Activities that seemed simple when you were in your 20’s, such as hitting the gym for an intense workout or going for a high powered run, become a lot more difficult when you hit your 60’s. As a result, it becomes tempting to give up on exercise altogether once you reach this age.

However, exercising as you age is very important. Regular exercise has a long list of health benefits, many of which are even more beneficial to seniors. The list below outlines just some of the many senior specific health benefits of regular exercise:

  • Regular exercise boosts your brain and helps to protect against a range of age related mental disorders including Alzheimer’s disease, dementia, depression and Parkinson’s disease.
  • Regular exercise boosts your eyes and helps to protect against a range of age related vision disorders such as cataracts and glaucoma.
  • Regular exercise boosts your heart and cardiovascular system which helps protect against heart disease, high blood pressure and stroke.
  • Regular exercise improves bone strength which helps protect against broken bones, fractures and osteoporosis.
  • Regular exercise improves your balance which helps protect you from falls and the related injuries.
  • Regular exercise improves your muscular strength and mobility which enhances your quality of life and allows you to perform daily tasks without assistance.
  • Regular exercise protects against a range of chronic disease including cancer and diabetes.

Instead of giving up on exercise as you age, you just need to adapt your exercise routine. While lung busting 10 mile runs or lifting huge weights at the gym may no longer be a possibility, there are still plenty of low impact exercises you can try.

In this post I am going to help you adapt your routine by providing you with 25 low impact exercises for seniors. Each one of these exercises is gentle enough for you to perform without injury, but when performed regularly, will do wonders for your health.

As with all exercise programs, make sure you start slowly when doing these low impact exercises for the first time and then work up to a comfortable but challenging pace. Although they have been specifically chosen because they are low impact, injury is still a possibility if you don’t perform them correctly. Starting off slow, learning the form and then increasing the pace is a much better option than starting too fast, injuring yourself and then having to go a few weeks without exercise.

These low impact exercises are grouped as: