Contributed by Sally Writes.
In Canada, the senior population is the fastest growing group of people, increasing each year. For the first time in history, the population has outnumbered children aged 0 and 14, and the population is set to steadily inflate in the coming years.
With this increase is also the prominent issue of social isolation and loneliness, which have become increasingly prevalent due to the fact that many Canadian seniors live alone. For example, in Winnipeg, Manitoba, the prevalence of loneliness ranges from 10 to 90 percent depending on what definition of the condition is used, as cited by Canada’s National Seniors Council. Being active doesn’t have to be difficult, and studies suggest that seniors who exercise can prolong their independence while also decreasing stress.
Communal exercise is a leading activity for seniors looking to engage in a group activity that is socially rewarding and is also beneficial to one’s health. By strengthening one’s body by doing routine exercise, seniors can avoid unneeded trips to the doctors and bolster security at home.
For seniors looking for a new activity to add to their routine, a senior exercise class has a surprising number of benefits, such as:
Forge New Friendships
Finding an activity, like dancing, yoga, or chair fitness, is a surefire way to meet other like-minded seniors that want to socialize. This is an essential way to avoid feeling socially isolated or lonely, as new friends are sure to boost one’s daily motivation and happiness.
Find Your Inner Peace
Another benefit of joining an exercise class is that certain activities are known to help seniors boost their inner harmony and spirituality. A popular senior fitness class is T’ai Chi Gong. This martial arts form focuses on circulating and balancing the body’s energy, which can help seniors improve balance and focus. By practicing T’ai Chi Gong, seniors can grow more in touch with their inner selves and their bodies.
A final, and most obvious, advantage to taking an exercise class with other senior citizens is to be more physically active. In order to slow down the effects of aging, seniors must do their part in maintaining their muscles, joint health, and range of movement. This will prevent disease and other chronic problems, like arthritis. It can also be fun to meet a workout partner, so the two people can motivate each other to exercise together.