20 Activities That Help You Stay Active As You Get Older

20 Activities That Help You Stay Active As You Get Older

As we grow older, we become increasingly aware that we need to put more effort into keeping our bodies and minds active and moving. While there are certain activities that might become too difficult to participate in, there are still tons of exercise (for both the body and brain) that you can engage in. Here are 20 activities that help you stay active as you get older.

1. Pickleball

Over recent years, there's been one sport that has taken America by storm: pickleball. A fun, more simple version of a mix of sports like tennis, badminton, and ping-pong, pickleball is catered to the masses. It's played on a small court, requires simple equipment, and is much less exhausting and difficult to play than other sports. It's become very popular among older adults thanks to its "easy-to-play" nature.

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2. Yoga

Yoga has always been known for being a relaxing form of physical activity, so as you get older, it's a good idea to practice it. It's a simple way to help boost your flexibility, balance, and mental strength, all while helping you maintain your physical fitness. The best part is, there are ranging difficulty levels so you can choose something that's best suited for you.

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3. Gardening

As people get older, they fall more in love with gardening it seems. It's likely because gardening is such a rewarding physical activity - after you dig, plant, weed, and water your seeds, you're left with beautiful blooming flowers and plants that brighten up your entire garden. It's also been said that gardening is great for mental health!

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4. Swimming

When you get older and other forms of physical activity seem to get harder and harder to do, you can always count on swimming to be a low-impact, stress free exercise you can participate in. By being in the water, there's no stress on your joints, meaning you can get a great workout in without worrying about your body.

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5. Word Games

It's not just about physical health, it's about staying mentally fit too! As you grow older, it's important that you keep your brain active. One simple and fun way to do this is by engaging in word games! Games likes crosswords and word searches are great for keeping your mind sharp and keeping those brain functions running.

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6. Tai Chi

A popular activity amongst many older adults, Tai Chi is a relaxing form of martial arts that's best recognized for its slow movements and deep breathing. It's not an activity meant to stress you out or test your physical capabilities, it's all about improving your balance and agility.

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7. Dancing

If you're going to stay physically active, why not do it while having fun? If the idea of sports or exercises seems too much for you, take the simple route and engage in some lively dancing! Whether it's participating in group classes or having a fun solo dance party, it's a great way to get you moving, get your heart rate up, and boost your mood.

Juan-Camilo-Navia-Maim4G7Orlo-UnsplashPhoto by Juan Camilo Navia on Unsplash

8. Walking

It goes without saying that walking might be the simplest yet most effective form of physical activity as one gets older. It's a wonderful way for people to stay active and can be done pretty much anywhere! All you need is a good pair of shoes and you can head out the door.

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9. Gentle Stretching

Sometimes, something as small as doing some light stretching throughout the day can do loads on your physical and mental health. Practice a simple routine throughout the week to help maintain your flexibility and reduce muscle stiffness. The best part is, it requires no equipment at all except for a bit of free space somewhere in your house.

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10. Cooking

Cooking is something you have to do every day anyway, so you might as well enjoy it! While it might just seem like a typical task, cooking is a great way for you to stay active. Learning new recipes, techniques, and preparing for meals are all ways to improve and maintain your motor skills and brain functioning. You also get a yummy reward at the end of it!

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11. Knitting or Crocheting

Knitting or crocheting has often been seen as a "granny" activity, but hey, there's no need to diss them! They're incredibly relaxing activities where you can just sit back and focus, letting your fingers do all the work while keeping your mind active and engaged. It's great for improving hand-eye coordination and maintaining brain functioning, but it's also a wonderful stress-reliever.

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12. Hiking

Hiking might be seen as a strenuous physical activity, but there are always plenty of different difficulty levels you can choose from. You can choose simpler routes if you're worried about putting too much stress on your body, but the result will always be the same - it's a great way to get fresh air, get your body moving, and enjoy some beautiful sights.

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13. Group Fitness Classes

If you're struggling to feel motivated to exercise on your own, group fitness classes might just be the thing for you. Whether it's aerobics, Zumba, yoga, or Pilates, joining groups doesn't just help keep you fit, it gives you an opportunity to socialize and meet other people. It's a fantastic way to make new friends and feel like you're part of something.

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14. Bird Watching

Looking for something a bit more calm and relaxing? If you love being surrounded by nature, combine that love with some walking and do some bird watching! Not only does it force you to be outdoors to enjoy all that fresh air, you'll also be able to take in some amazing sights and hopefully (fingers crossed!), see some unique birds!

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15. Puzzles

Another way to keep your brain active and your mental awareness up is by engaging in some jigsaw puzzles. They're a great way to exercise your brain, helping you sharpen your problem-solving skills in the process. It's also just a fun and relaxing activity to do while you enjoy other things like watch TV, listen to music, or socialize with family or friends. You'll fall in love with the challenge of completing the puzzle too!

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16. Bowling

Instead of staying in on a Saturday night, why not grab some of your closest friends and family for a fun night out bowling? It's light physical activity that helps you stay active, but more importantly, it's a fantastic way to spend time with others and socialize.

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17. Painting or Drawing

Arts and crafts are a great way to pass the time and keep your body and mind active instead of just sitting around doing nothing. Painting and drawing have both also been recognized as being very soothing, stress-relieving activities that can help improve your mood and clear your mind of negative thoughts. It also promotes creative thinking, something that definitely helps with your brain functioning as you get older.

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18. Book Clubs

Reading is a very stimulating activity, but why not take it up a notch and join a book club? Now you have a group of people you can socialize with, sharing your thoughts on new books every couple of weeks. While reading already keeps your brain active, being part of a social group keeps your social skills in check too.

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19. Meditation

As you work towards keeping your body and mind active and fit, it's important that you remember to take a breather too. After all, the key focus here is improving your own wellbeing! A great way to keep your mind healthy and positive is by engaging in daily meditation. Not only does it reduce anxiety, it can also enhance your concentration and boost mood. Here's to keeping your mental health in order!

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20. Golf

Many seniors and older adults love playing golf, and while it might be seen as a stereotype, there's a good reason why. It's a good way to get in some light exercise and fresh air, keeping your body refreshed and moving. It also requires a lot of focus and thinking, putting your mind to work too!

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