Swimming is a perfect exercise for seniors. It’s fun and social, it’s low-impact, and it offers a ton of health benefits. In fact, a study found that older participants who did regular water exercise showed more strength, agility, flexibility, and lower cholesterol. It’s one of the reasons we feature swimming pools at many of our Inspired Living communities! Here’s more on how swimming provides seniors a range of benefits for their health and wellness.
Swimming Offers Buoyancy & Low-Impact Resistance
Seniors often experience day-to-day mobility and pain issues, so they often struggle with many types of exercise. Swimming provides buoyancy that makes moving easier, less painful, and less impactful to stiff, aching joints. That means water exercise is one of the easiest ways for seniors to stay active, get the blood flowing, and enhance muscle strength. It’s even proven to help senior women lessen their 1% to 2% of bone-loss per year.
Swimming Is Great for Joint Health, Flexibility, & Balance
Because swimming is a low-impact way to exercise, it’s a perfect way for seniors to increase their joint mobility and flexibility while reducing pain from the back, knees, hips, ankles, and other joints. Regular water exercise is proven to improve joint health, flexibility, and balance in a fun and natural way. In fact, one study found that seniors who swim regularly, rather than using other forms of exercise, are 33% less likely to fall and injure themselves.
This combination of pain reduction and fun makes swimming one of the most sustainable forms of exercise for seniors, and many are happy to get in the pool multiple times per week.
Swimming Improves Cardiovascular Health, Cholesterol, & Metabolism
Because swimming makes it easier for seniors to exercise regularly, it’s fantastic for improving cardiovascular health, lowering cholesterol levels, and increasing metabolism. As a great aerobic workout, swimming increases oxygen extraction in the blood and cardiovascular performance. Just 30 minutes of exercise a day, three or four days per week, will give seniors lower blood pressure, lower risk of heart disease and stroke, better cholesterol levels, and improved metabolism.
Cognition, Brain Health, & Feelings of Wellness
Regular exercise improves brain health among seniors, but it doesn’t stop there. With swimming, our residents get the added benefits that come with socializing with friends. Regular socialization is proven to fight mental decline, as seniors who socialize often are 26% less likely to develop dementia, and those with daily contact with friends drop their dementia risks by half. It also leaves seniors feeling less isolated, happier, and more fulfilled overall.