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:

3 Causes of Emotional Eating and How to Overcome Them

3 Causes of Emotional Eating and How to Overcome Them

Emotional eating is a very real problem in the world today. If not addressed in the early stages, it can lead to much more serious eating disorders such as binge-eating disorder or night-eating syndrome. In most cases one will need professional help to overcome these disorders.

Emotional eating, however, is still manageable because we can nip this problem in the bud before it grows roots and takes over your life. This article will show you the common triggers which cause this problem to rear its ugly head and what you can do to eliminate them.

It’s imperative that you not be sluggish in your approach or assume that the problem will go away on its own. Most people do not even realize that they are emotional eaters because the problem doesn’t have visible consequences until much later… and that’s what makes it so insidious.

A lack of control over your diet not only affects you mentally but physically too. Millions of Americans and people all over the world suffer from emotional overeating.

Obesity has reached epidemic proportions. Type 2 diabetes statistics have skyrocketed. More people than ever are suffering from health issues such as high cholesterol, blood pressure problems, inflammation and many other issues that are caused by our poor diet choices these days.

There is no denying the fact that the Standard American Diet appropriately abbreviated as SAD is high in calories, preservatives and additives but low in nutrition. The high fructose corn syrup that’s present in so many foods nowadays has made people addicted to food. It all tastes so good… and people can’t get enough of these foods.

Now more than ever, one needs to be aware of what he or she is eating. Food MUST be treated as fuel and not therapy. People have forgotten that one should eat to fill their stomach and not their heart. This is the leading cause of emotional eating. People eat when they’re not hungry. Herein lies the problem… and let’s see why this happens.

1. Boredom

Boredom is one of the causes of emotional eating. Sitting in front of the TV for hours watching mindless reality shows while chomping down on chips, cookies and cakes has become the norm for so many folks these days.

There is a void in their life. A certain sense of emptiness that they try to fill up with food. They eat because of the temporary ‘high’ that the food gives them… but these elevated feelings drop fast and they eat again and again and again just to feel happy and reach some level satiation.

It’s very sad if you stopped to think about it but it’s the hard truth. The best way to overcome this cause will be to change your life around. You’ll need to find new and exciting things to do. It’s the monotony that’s killing you.

It could be a new hobby like gardening or rock climbing or something that makes you feel happy. It will take tremendous effort to push past the inertia and actually do something different in your life, but once you start and get the ball rolling, momentum will take over and you’ll feel much happier and fulfilled.

You’ll slowly become less dependent on food to make you happy because your life has some sense of purpose. Eradicate the monotony and boredom in your life and your emotional eating will be mitigated.

2. Stress

Stress is the leading cause of most health problems in the world today. No matter how you look at it, a stressful lifestyle either directly or indirectly affects your health. We live in a pressure cooker society these days.

Everybody wants everything fast. Microwaves, instant text messaging, miracle diet pills… and so many other contraptions just to get fast results. People also expect financial success, relationships made in heaven without any work and a body of a Greek God in 2 weeks. All these expectations of speed and efficiency creates a very hectic lifestyle that moves along at breakneck speed.

Most people think that they can handle it, but what they don’t realize is that even if you win the rat race, you’re still a rat. A stressed out rat that eats whatever it can find.

All levity aside, the truth is that when you lead a stressful life, you’ll feel emotionally drained or empty. You’ll just be a cog in the machine that keeps spinning or pumping away but your life seems to have lost meaning.

It gets worse when dreams take a long time to become a reality. It takes time to get a body that turns heads. It takes time to build a business that makes you financially independent… and it takes a lifetime of work to keep a relationship or marriage healthy.

Millions of people suffer from depression, sadness and many other negative emotions because of this. They want fast results and they want them now. How do they cope when life doesn’t move at their pace? They fret, curse and stress themselves out.

Men may turn to alcohol, sex or food. Women usually turn to food. Eating has become a mechanism for them to manage the stress.

If you eat when you’re not hungry, it’s emotional eating. If you’re already full but you’re still reaching for a bag of cookies, it’s emotional eating. If you’re constantly going to the fridge or you aimlessly walk around the supermarket dumping junk food in your basket to eat at home later, you are an emotional eater.

While it’s perfectly fine to indulge in the occasional dessert or a glass of wine, emotional eaters do this daily and they do it all the time. Their lives revolve around food and they eat mindlessly. There is a total lack of awareness. This is a sign of emotional overeating.

If you’re just following the motions and you don’t even realize just how much food is going into your mouth, you’re overeating. You’re either stressed out or compensating for some other feelings.

The first step to overcoming this cause is awareness. You must always stop yourself before you eat and ask, “Am I hungry?”

If the answer is no, dump the food. You do not need it. Now you need to examine your life. You’ll have to be brutally honest in your self-reflection. Are you unhappy with your job? Or are you in a marriage that has lost its luster? Maybe you’re unemployed and feel worthless?

Whatever the case may be, there will be underlying causes. You need to address these ASAP. If your job is stressing you out, you’ll need to take steps to relieve the stress with techniques such as meditation or sports or something that works for you. Food is NOT the answer.

If you’re exhausted after a day’s work, go to bed early and wake up refreshed. Don’t vegetate in front of the TV and gobble up whatever you find. The sleep will work wonders but the food will make you wonder why nothing works in your life.

Depression caused by stress can often be relieved by talking to someone or you could see a doctor and maybe medication might help you feel better. There’s no shame here and in fact, medication to treat depression is much less harmful than gorging on food constantly to feel better.

3. Old habits

Old habits die hard. That definitely applies here. If you grew up in a household where your family was eating all the time without giving much thought to what was being eaten, chances are that you’d do the same.

Or you might be an extrovert who hangs out with friends all the time and if you’re not drinking like a fish, you’re eating junk food such as pizzas and greasy burgers. Over time, you get addicted to these foods and constantly get cravings for them. You indulge at every given chance and eat them even if you’re not hungry.

The food makes you feel happy and good. This is emotional eating no matter how you look at it.

You can only overcome this by being mindful and slowly taking steps to break this habit. You may need to stop hanging out with friends for a while because the situations you are in just make it too tempting to resist the food and drinks.

Try out new healthier activities to take up the slack. You don’t want boredom to set it… and if you’ve been following this article, you should know why.

Start with a food journal and see just how much you’re eating. Then, slowly try and cut down your food consumption in stages. Try not to go cold turkey all at once.

This will just make it more stressful and you might find yourself binge eating at night. This also applies to people who keep trying out aggressive diets to lose weight. In most cases they don’t work.

You’ll find it a struggle to maintain the diet and you’re bound to slip up now and then… and when you do, you’ll binge eat whatever you’ve been depriving yourself of. You’ll then feel guilty and end up throwing the diet aside and getting back to your old eating habits.

The key to succeeding with weight loss is to approach it in a slow and controlled manner that is progressive in nature. By just cutting calories slowly, you’ll see weight loss and not have to deal with binging and other eating issues. That’s the best way to go about it.

Discerning between Real Hunger and Emotional Hunger

Most causes of emotional eating will fall under one of the 3 categories above. There may be some that don’t, but no matter what, the best way to treat emotional eating is to be mindful of your eating. Like the saying goes, “Eat to live and not live to eat.”

You must be able to tell when you’re actually hungry. Real hunger usually makes your stomach growl. If you find yourself reaching for food when you’re not hungry, you’ll need to ask yourself why you’re doing it. Are you bored? Is this a habit or mechanism to self-soothe? Will eating the food make you feel better?

If the answer is yes to any of these questions, you need to stop and go do something else instead of eating. You must actively break the habit. You need to learn how to comfort yourself without comfort foods.

When you go grocery shopping, do NOT purchase foods that you know you should not be eating. Cookies, ice cream, cakes, chips and all the other pleasure foods should be avoided. You do not want these foods lying around the house constantly calling out your name and tempting you.

You could buy a small box of cookies or a small tub of ice cream just to make it easier on yourself… but just one item. So, even if you give in to temptation and raid the fridge, you only have one item that you’ll feel like eating. The damage won’t be that bad.

If it’s not in the refrigerator, you’ll not eat it and probably go do something else like read or sleep. It may seem extreme to do this but this is a problem that requires extreme measures.

After just two weeks of mindful eating, you’ll notice that your weight is dropping and you’re more aware of what you eat. You’ll be more in tune with how you feel and realize that you’ve been medicating with food.

From here on, things will get better. You’ll stop rewarding yourself with food like you’re a pet. Instead, food will be for fuel and sustenance and you’ll make better eating choices.

You’ll start looking and feeling better. Always remember that whatever your problem may be, the answer is not in the fridge. As long you keep that in mind and act accordingly, you will overcome emotional eating.

DIY Dog’s Ear Cleaning

How To Easily Clean Your Dog’s Ear

Maintaining a dog is quite tough.  It is a challenge to us fur parents, to maintain the cleanliness and health of our lovable dogs.  We should give them time, patience, understanding and utmost care.  Having a pet dog is such a big responsibility.  It is like having your own baby.  Hygiene plays a vital role in making our dogs healthy.  That includes trimming their hairs or grooming, cutting their nails and even cleaning their ears.

The unclean ear would lead to several complications, and can serve as reservoir for bacteria and other harmful elements that can compromise the health of your dog.  It is advisable to have our dog’s ear cleaned every week or every two weeks.  We can ask a groomer or a professional to do this, but we can also do it.  It requires a lot of patience initially, but once your dog gets the hang of it, this will definitely be a breeze.  Just follow the instructions carefully to achieve the perfect dog and fur parent bonding activity!  Let us begin!

Step 1:   Prepare all the materials needed for this tutorial:

  • 10% strength Hydrogen Peroxide (H2O2)
  • soft tissue paper
  • tweezers

 How To Easily Clean Your Dog’s Ear - tool needed

Step 2:   Make sure that your dog already took a bath before performing this cleaning method.  Use a good bath towel so that your dog is perfectly dry.

Step 3:    Take a piece of tissue paper and roll it to form a compact tissue.

Step 4:    Drop 3 to 5 drops of hydrogen peroxide on the rolled tissue paper.

Step 5:   Wipe the external part of the ear including the big flap of it.

Step 6:  Roll another piece of tissue paper and put the same amount of hydrogen peroxide on it but this time carefully insert it in the hole of the dog’s ear.  Make sure to be careful in doing this to avoid trauma on the part of the dog.  Carefully swirl the tissue roll on the ear hole for about two to three times before pulling the tissue out of the ear hole.  It is normal to see a yellow discharge from the dog’s ear.  This is your dog’s earwax building up inside.  Your dog’s ear hole at approximately 1 to 2 centimeters deep, and you should not go into further since we are just cleaning the external part of the ear.  Take note that this figure is applicable for small or toy dogs only.  Bigger dogs have bigger and longer ear holes.

Step 7:   Take the tweezers and hold it like this.  The tweezers will be used to remove excess hairs on the ear hole (external part only).  Excessive ear hair would cause ear infection to most dogs, so make sure to remove it from time to time.  It takes a lot of patience and practice in the part of the dog owner and the dog as well especially if it’s the first experience of the dog.

Step 8:   Carefully remove the ear hairs from the dog’s ear.  Be careful and make sure that your hand is light enough to perform this to make a positive experience on the part of the dog.

Step 9:   Clean the other ear as well doing the same method used in the first ear.

Step 10:  Carefully perform the ear hair removal on the other ear.  Make sure to give treats at the end of the ear cleaning session so that your dog will not resist the next time and they will know that it is good to have their ears cleaned every now and then.

 How To Easily Clean Your Dog’s Ear - After Ear cleaning

You can also use baby cotton buds in cleaning your dog’s ear, but this is not advisable if you have problems in controlling your hand pressure.  Using the tissue is the best alternative if you are just a beginner.  Make sure that the dog is comfortable with his or her position and most of all, always reward your dog if they cooperated in this cleaning session.

DIY Home Remedy For Dog Tear Stain Removal

Home Remedies to Effectively Remove Dog Tear Stain

Tear staining is common among dogs (and cats) that are light-colored.  Tear stains are due to the fact that the dog or the cat produces excessive amounts of tears.  There are certain breeds that extensively produce tears, which includes Lhasa Apso, Poodle, Maltese and Shih Tzu.  Tear stains can also mean that the dog has a serious eye health problem that needs to be taken care of.

If you have already consulted a professional and are 100% sure that your dog is just suffering from excessive tear production, then this easy pet hack tutorial is for you!  This tutorial will present four methods that you can easily follow to keep your dog’s eyes clean and avoid those annoying tear stains.

Gather all the materials needed for this tutorial:

  • apple cider vinegar
  • your dog’s plate or drinking bottle
  • dropper or 1 ml. syringe
  • a glass of purified water
  • 10% or 20% hydrogen peroxide
  • a piece of cotton ball
  • pet clipper or pet razor
  • baby powder

Home Remedies to Effectively Remove Dog Tear Stain - What you Need

METHOD 1:  Drinking Water Method

Regularly drinking water with apple cider vinegar improves the eye’s secretion, therefore avoiding the stain itself.

Step 1: Get at least ½ to 1 ml. apple cider vinegar using a dropper or a syringe.  To get accurate measurements, it is better to use a syringe.

Step 2:   Put a considerable amount of purified water on the dog’s drinking plate or drinking bottle and drop the apple cider vinegar in it.  Make sure to stir the mixture well to make it homogenized.

Step 3:    Give the water to your dog when they have tear stains.

METHOD 2:  Clipper Method

Removing the hair below the eyes of your dog can help eliminate tear stains.  This is just a temporary solution and you must do this every other week to achieve the best results.

Step 1:  Let your dog rest in your lap.  Make sure that they are comfortable enough to rest there.  Massage their head and ears every now and then to make them comfortable.

Step 2:  Hold the pet clipper properly to avoid accidents.

Step 3:  Shave the stained hairs around the lower eyes of your dog.  Take note that the direction of the clipper should be towards the nose of the dog and not the other way around.  This will avoid the dog from being harmed while doing this.  Make sure to hold the dog’s head properly so that they will not make any unnecessary movements which could lead to accidents.

METHOD 3:  Hydrogen Peroxide Method

The hydrogen peroxide will help remove the stains on the eyes of the dog.  You need to clean your dog’s eyes properly before performing this method.

Step 1:    Drop a considerable amount of 10% or 20% hydrogen peroxide on a cotton ball.  It should be well-soaked but not dripping wet.

Step 2:  Carefully wipe the stained part of your dog’s eyes.  Continue wiping until the stains are removed.

METHOD 4:  Hiding Method

This hiding method is just a temporary solution to hide the stains away.  If you are attending an event together with your dog and you want to hide the stains, this is a fast and effective solution.

Step 1:  Wet the cotton ball in a glass of purified water.  It should not be dripping wet but must be wet enough to wipe clean the eyes of your dog.

Step 2:  With a gentle hand, clean the stained part of the dogs eyes using the wet cotton.  Let it dry for a minute.

Step 3:    Get a pinch of baby powder on your index finger.

Step 4: Carefully apply the baby powder on top of the stains on the bottom part of the eyes.  Do the same for both eyes.

After Removing The Tear Stains

After using any of the above remedies, it is good to end the whole session with a reward for your dog such as beef jerkie or some other treat.  This will provide positive reinforcement and make future sessions easier.

Home Remedies to Effectively Remove Dog Tear Stain - After Stain Removal

While it is safe to say the tear stains just cause minor annoyance to us and other people, it is still better to consult a professional veterinarian to make sure that your dog is safe and sound.  It is always better to have a piece of advice from your veterinarian before you rule out the possibility that your dog is just experiencing excessive tear production.  It is better to be safe than sorry!