Having strong arms is not just necessary for younger people who play sports or work in physically challenging environments. Maintaining arm strength in the golden years can help seniors easily accomplish daily tasks and prevent injuries. Seniors can use these six tips to strengthen their arm muscles and boost their overall health.
1. Try Light Weights First
Seniors don’t need to spend a lot of money on a gym membership just to increase arm strength. They can easily work out at home because two 2 or 3-pound weights are enough to get started. If your loved one does not want to purchase handheld weights, he or she can lift cans of food or water.
Even in cases where older adults have limited mobility or other age-related medical conditions, exercising can help. Seniors can face a variety of age-related challenges. Though some families choose to take on the caregiving duties, there may come a time when they need a trusted Columbus in-home care provider. Families sometimes need respite from their duties so they can focus on their other responsibilities, and some seniors need around-the-clock assistance that their families are not able to provide. Home Care Assistance is here to help.
2. Exercise Regularly
The key to maintaining arm strength in old age is regular exercise. Physical fitness experts normally advise that seniors should work out about one to two times a week. It is important to make sure your loved one has rest days in between workout days because this gives muscles time to repair and grow stronger.
3. Pay Attention to Diet
Your loved one cannot build strong arms if he or she is undernourished or not getting the right nutrients. Protein is used to build muscle, and carbohydrates provide the energy to exercise. Encourage your loved one to get protein from healthy, lean sources like eggs, milk, fish, beans, and poultry.
4. Start with Arm Curls
Arm curls are the most basic strength exercise for the upper body. Your loved one can start by holding a weight in each hand while standing with arms straight at the sides and palms facing forward. Next, he or she should breathe out while slowly bending the elbows and bringing the weights up, hold the pose for one second, then slowly lower the arms, and repeat this exercise 10 to 20 times.
Exercising while managing the later stages of Alzheimer’s helps maintain balance, flexibility, and muscle strength. If your elderly loved one is living with Alzheimer’s and needs help managing the symptoms, turn to Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of Alzheimer’s care. Columbus seniors can rely on our revolutionary Cognitive Therapeutics Method (CTM), an activities-based program that helps slow cognitive decline and delay the onset of Alzheimer’s disease. CTM also encourages seniors to engage with others in an enjoyable way and helps them build new routines to look forward to.
5. Try Side Arm Raises
This exercise can be done while sitting down, starting by holding the weights down at the sides with palms facing the sides. Your loved one should slowly raise his or her arms to shoulder height while breathing out and keeping the elbows straight. He or she should hold for a few seconds and then slowly lower the arms down while breathing in. This should be repeated 10 to 15 times.
6. Don’t Forget Triceps and Deltoid Muscles
Most exercises focus on building the muscles along the front of the arm and forearm. However, the triceps and deltoid muscles along the back of the arm are also important for maintaining arm strength and stability. Seniors can exercise these areas with elbow extensions. These are done by holding one weight in an upraised arm while supporting the elbow with the other hand. Ask your loved one to slowly bend the elbow and bring the weight back and toward the shoulder, then hold this position, straighten the arm, and repeat this exercise 15 times with each arm.
While all these activities may sound easy, you may not have enough time to participate in them with your elderly loved one. Family caregivers sometimes need a break from their caregiving responsibilities. When they need respite care, Columbus families can rely on professional caregivers to help their senior loved ones remain safe at home. If your loved one needs assistance with daily tasks or extensive care at home, get in touch with Home Care Assistance at (614) 481-8888 today.