As we grow older, many of us will start to run into age-related problems. We may start to encounter a decline in mental and physical health, such as reduced alertness and loss of strength in our bodies. In addition, afflictions such as experiencing a fall or a bad case of pneumonia will take longer to recover from, and may even require rehabilitation, where therapeutic exercises will be introduced to help get the body back in shape.
Of course, one does not have to be injured to engage in therapeutic exercises – they are a great addition to your daily routine if you want to keep the mind and body fit. Here are some therapeutic exercises you can do after 50.
Physical Therapy Exercises
Physical therapy exercises tend to work on everything from the waist down. They are a good method of maintaining the body and can make going about your daily activities easier, giving you a higher quality of life and greater independence. They also reduce pain in conditions such as arthritis, and your risk of injury, and help to strengthen your body.
Some common types of physical therapy exercises include ambulation (walking back and forth independently) and gait training which improves your ability to stand and walk. These exercises. These exercises aim to increase your mobility, and ability to climb the stairs and stand from a sitting position.
You can also include a couple of simple balance exercises at home such as weight shifts from foot to foot and tightrope walking (walking with your feet placed right in front of each other for each step). These will help with increasing balance as you walk.
Occupational Therapy Exercises
If physical therapy exercises work for the body below the waist then occupational therapy exercises work for everything else. They are usually tailored to each individual’s needs and are most effective for helping you complete daily tasks.
Common occupational therapy exercises include upper body strength exercises, light meal preparations, management of medications, and bathing and grooming oneself, among many others.
If you are working with an occupational therapist, they will help to assess your needs and guide you towards the exercises that would be most beneficial. Practicing these exercises with your occupational therapist will definitely make it easier to perform your chores by yourself once you get back home.
Speech Therapy Exercises
Whilst the above two forms of therapeutic exercises improve physical capabilities, speech therapy exercises also improve cognition. They are typically introduced to individuals who are struggling with speech or memory issues or have trouble swallowing.
Common exercises include working to strengthen the throat muscles or using electric stimulation to aid in performing the swallowing motion. A simple speech therapy exercise is swallowing small pieces of food to reduce the risk of aspiration (having the food “go down the wrong way”). To help with better speech, vocalization practices can be employed to help increase speech volume.
Many of the therapeutic exercises above can be great for your health and work together to increase your independence, something that is important for ensuring you maintain individuality and control over your life.