At our active adult community called Seachange Village Arundel, you can be one of the 10% who always get enough exercise.
If you are a senior who doesn’t live in an active adult community such as Seachange Village Arundel, you may not be getting enough exercise. That is according to the Government of Victoria, who have a great online resource called “Better Health Channel.”
Better Health Channel draws on a host of research into ageing. It all indicates that for those of us over 50, exercise helps us maintain our independence longer, reduces the risk of getting sick and helps us recover from illness faster. All load-bearing exercise helps us keep bone density and muscular strength, too.
In addition, forms of exercise that are often done in groups, such as tennis, walking, dancing or cycling, provide a social component that enhances our lifestyle at any age. Here are some statistics and facts about exercise, courtesy of the State Government of Victoria.
According to Better Health Channel, only 10% of Australians over 50 get enough exercise to extend their lives or provide any cardiovascular benefit. There are some studies indicating that more than half of what used to be seen as “inevitable decline due to age” can actually be avoided by exercise.
If you are over 50, it is important to stay active. If you are over 65, it is even more important. Luckily, it is never too late to start getting exercise. No matter how old you are, how “out of shape” you may think you are, the human body always responds to exercise.
This is documented in the two irrefutable physical laws upon which physical therapy is based: Davis’ Law and Wolff’s Law. We won’t bother you with technical or medical jargon, but the bottom line is this: if you exercise, your bone and muscle will improve according to the demands you place upon them.
Muscle Mass: If you don’t exercise, you can expect to lose 3.5 kg of lean muscle mass every ten years. While that doesn’t sound like much, remember that muscle burns fat even when resting. In addition, the muscle you lose is usually “fast twitch” muscle, which governs coordination and strength.
When you exercise, especially with any form of resistance training, your muscle mass will begin to increase, even if you haven’t been exercising for long. In fact, many studies are beginning to suggest that we don’t lose muscle mass due to “age,” but due to not exercising our muscles. The bottom line: exercise builds muscle and helps stop muscle mass from declining.
Bone Density: Your bones are storehouses for minerals such as calcium. Those minerals are what give your bones density. If you aren’t putting weight on your bones, they stop storing minerals and become weak. This process starts when you are 40 but really kicks into gear by 50 if you aren’t careful.
If you exercise, especially weight bearing exercise such as walking, you are keeping your bones dense, strong and healthy, making you “immune” to conditions such as osteoporosis.
Heart and Lungs: There are many schools of thought on what constitutes “cardiovascular conditioning.” A study from last month in the US suggests that 20 minutes of walking per day is enough to provide cardiovascular benefits. Traditional knowledge suggests that you have to raise your heartbeat to 70 percent of a number derived by subtracting your age from 220 to claim cardiovascular benefits.
The more recent study suggests that walking 20 minutes per day can extend your life as well as most forms of exercise.
Weight: We know this is a “no-brainer:” exercise helps you lose weight. It also reduces the stress on your joints.
We provide numerous opportunities to exercise and participate in sports however you want. If you like to exercise alone, you can. If you want to enjoy being active with kindred spirits who are also over 50, you will find plenty of “exercise buddies” at Seachange Village Arundel.
To learn more, call us today: 1800 652 797.