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Summer Is a Great Time for Older Adults to Get Active

group of senior women taking a water exercise class

Longer, warmer summer days make it easier and more inviting to get outside, but the heat and humidity (especially here in the Midwest) can raise the health risks of overdoing it. That’s why a blend of outdoor and indoor activities are the best fitness options for older adults. This blog post will offer suggestions to help you safely stay physically active during the summer months, while caring for your overall wellness.

Benefits of Physical Activity

Boost vitamin D: This important nutrient works to lessen risks of osteoporosis, cancer, multiple sclerosis and rheumatoid arthritis. It can also improve feelings of depression and help your body better absorb calcium, which helps strengthen bones, teeth, nails and muscles. It only takes 15 minutes of sunlight exposure to get your daily dose of vitamin D. But if you’re going to be outside for more than 15 minutes, be sure to wear sunscreen.

Improved heart health: Being active is a great way to take care of your heart by lowering both your blood pressure and percentage of body fat. It can also help keep your blood sugar in check.

Weight loss: If you’re overweight, regular exercise with friends will help you stay motivated and maintain a healthier weight.

Improved immunity: Physical activity can help boost your immune system. Walking for seniors has even been shown to reduce the risk of developing chronic illness, including certain types of cancer.

Longer, healthier life: Exercise has been linked to a longer lifespan and overall better health for older adults.

Stronger bones, muscles and joints: Studies have shown that regular exercise can help reduce the loss of bone mass (osteoporosis), reduce the risk of hip fractures and significantly reduce (or even prevent) arthritis pain.

Decreased cognitive decline and dementia: Studies have shown that older people who regularly exercise reduced their chances of experiencing mental decline and dementia than those who don’t.

Mental health boost: The endorphins released during physical activity create a sense of well-being and boost your mood to help you feel more positive and happier.

Low-Impact Workouts

An important part of developing any fitness routine for older adults is selecting options that will improve your overall health and wellness while reducing your chance of injury. One of the benefits of moving to a senior living community in Kansas City, MO., like John Knox Village is being surrounded by other seniors to help you stay active. Having other people to do an activity with will help you stay motivated to reach your goals.

Morning walk

The lower temperatures of the morning and evening hours give you the perfect opportunity to enjoy a morning walk. Just remember to bring plenty of water with you.

Water exercise

Swimming is one of the best ways to exercise and it’s also easy on your joints. You can either swim laps or take a water fitness class like Aqua Zumba, which combines cardio-conditioning and body-toning in a safe, challenging and water-based workout.

Tai chi

Tai chi is a Chinese martial art that has been praised for its health benefits. Common elements include concentration on breathing, deliberate movements and meditation. In addition to the benefits of physical activity listed above, tai chi can strengthen leg muscles and increase flexibility and stability in the ankles. This helps improve balance and reduce your chances of falling.


Like tai chi, yoga’s measured movements, strengthening poses and focused breathing can help improve your balance, flexibility, stability and strength for better balance and reduced chances of falling.

Chair Yoga

Chair yoga modifies standard mat yoga poses so that you can do them while sitting in a chair or using a chair to keep you steady while performing standing postures. This type of yoga is best for people with limited mobility or chronic health conditions like arthritis, diabetes or dementia.

Join a Village of Active Older Adults: John Knox Village.

With our wide range of amenities, including 2 fitness centers, 3 swimming pools and a variety of fitness classes, make summer time at our retirement community in Kansas City, MO. the perfect time to get moving. Our wellness instructors can assess your lifestyle, set your goals and help you integrate our health and wellness programs into your daily life. To learn more, contact one of our senior living consultants.