Get Moving

Your everyday guide to shaping up

 The National Institute on Aging, National Institutes of Health

Regular exercise and physical activity are important to the physical and mental health of almost everyone, including older adults. Being physically active can help you continue to do the things you enjoy and stay independent as you age.

Regular physical activity over long periods of time can produce long-term health benefits. That's why health experts say that older adults should be active every day to maintain their health.

In addition, regular exercise and physical activity can reduce the risk of developing some diseases and disabilities as you grow older. In some cases, exercise is an effective treatment for many chronic conditions. For example, studies show that people with arthritis, heart disease or diabetes benefit from regular exercise. Exercise also helps people with high blood pressure, balance problems or difficulty walking.

There are so many ways to get moving. You can be active in short spurts throughout the day, or you can set aside specific times of the day on specific days of the week to exercise. Many physical activities - such as brisk walking, raking leaves or taking the stairs whenever you can - are free or low cost and do not require special equipment. You could also check out an exercise video from the library or use the fitness center at your local seniors’ center.

The Exercise & Physical Activity: Your Everyday Guide shows you many types of exercise and physical activity. It also has lots of tips to help you be active in ways that suit your lifestyle, interests, health and budget, whether you're just starting out, getting back to exercising after a break, or fit enough to run a three-mile race. It's for everyone - people who are healthy and those who live with an ongoing health problem or disability.

To access the guide go to https://www.nia.nih.gov/health/publication/exercise-physical-activity/introduction