Exercise At Any Age: Fitness Plan for Seniors

If you are pursuing a career in personal fitness, you have come to the right place. At PT Academy, we have been preparing, training, and certifying personal trainers for over a decade, and have built a team of experienced health and fitness experts that we rely on to make our programs great. Combined, our team members have worked with countless clients, delivering high-quality training to individuals from a huge variety of backgrounds and levels of fitness.

One of the many misconceptions we encounter when encountering people unfamiliar with personal training is that only one kind of person would hire a personal trainer. Typically, people imagine personal trainers work only with young, rich, already in-shape clients, leaving “less committed” or “less serious” clients to go to public gyms and fitness centers. In actuality, our work as personal trainers allows us to work with individuals from diverse backgrounds, requiring personal trainers to have an in-depth knowledge of how different bodies move.

Seniors are among the diverse range of clients that seek out personal trainers, often looking for help to rehabilitate after an injury, maintain muscle density and strength, or simply an excuse to enjoy a little exercise. Exercise is about more than just “looking hot”, and for many clients, the goal is simply to maintain health and happiness. If you are a personal trainer looking to pick up senior clients or wanting to improve offerings for existing senior clients, follow this guide to creating a holistic fitness plan for seniors.

Benefits of Working Out Past 65

You might not expect to see a 70-year-old hitting the weights at the gym, but in truth, people of all ages can benefit immensely from regular exercise. As we age, we gradually begin to lose muscle mass, bone strength, balance, and flexibility, often resulting in increased rates of injury, slow healing, stiffness, pain, and immobility. Though the changing of our bodies as we age is perfectly natural, that doesn’t mean that there is nothing to be done to slow the effects of aging and preserve physical fitness.

Though weight loss and fitness goals are common among senior workout enthusiasts, most senior fitness plans are designed to promote strength, balance, and stability. Working out can help seniors avoid falls and broken bones, maintain muscle mass and strength, and help to maintain joint flexibility and stability. Working out can also impact mental health and wellbeing, reducing stress, improving mood, and increasing energy.

Best Types of Exercises for Seniors

When creating a fitness plan for your senior clients, you are going to want to choose exercises and techniques to accommodate their abilities. While some exercises can be performed the same way a younger person would, others will require modifications to account for balance, strength, and stamina. As a personal trainer, it will be your job to gauge the ability of your client and create a fitness plan designed to keep them safe and comfortable throughout their workout. Here are some of the best types of exercise for your senior clients:

Yoga

Yoga can be a relatively low impact form of exercise, one that does not require fast movements, heavy lifting, or lots of stamina. Yoga combines a series of poses and breathing exercises designed to help the individual become more centered and in tune with their bodies while improving balance and flexibility. Yoga is an extremely diverse form of exercise and can be modified to fit students of any ability, making yoga an excellent choice for senior clients at every level.

Walking

A highly underrated form of exercise, walking can help build strength, maintain joint flexibility, burn calories, and relieve stress. Regular walking can help senior clients avoid falls by exercising their balance and stamina. Walking can also help those that are unaccustomed to exercise get used to moving and is a great first step for seniors just starting their fitness journey.

Water Aerobics

Water aerobics combines the cardiovascular benefits of aerobic workouts with the stress relief of water. By working out in the water, seniors are able to perform movements they might not be able to otherwise. Water relieves tension and stress on the joints, allowing those with arthritis or painful joints to enjoy working out without any pain. Water aerobics can also be a great way to improve balance without the risk of falling onto a hard surface.

Chair or Wall Assisted Workouts

Want to design your own workout routine for your senior clients? Consider creating a fitness plan centered around chair assisted workouts. Chair squats, sitting toe lifts, sitting stretches, sitting arm exercises, wall pushups, and so on are all excellent options for senior clients. Modifying your favorite exercises to provide extra balance and support can be more than enough to create an effective and enjoyable fitness plan for seniors.

Help clients at every stage of their fitness journey by becoming a personal trainer! Visit PT Academy to learn about our personal trainer certification courses, and to discover more tips, tricks, and advice for a successful career in the world of fitness.