Exercise can boost brain activity and reduce the risk of falling

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There has been much in the news emphasising how strength and specific muscle activity can be improved with regular exercise well into your 90's with low intensity, high frequency repetition activity. It is never too late to start; the body responds well to a gradual build-up of exercise with little and often being key to not causing injury. Doing a small amount of regular activity will help you to continue to do many of the everyday activities you enjoy.

In some cases, as much as 10 hours of an older person's day can be spent sitting, with research showing that some older people spend less than 70 minutes per day standing up.

This can lead to the under usage of muscles, balance issues and increased symptoms of osteoporosis. Blocks of 10-15 minutes standing are needed to make a difference to our body's ability to work better.

Keeping active can help keep older people healthy, but new research shows that building up muscles can boost brain power as well. A study in Australia has shown evidence that resistance weight training can also boost brain function in seniors at increased risk of dementia. Regular exercise will encourage blood flow to the brain and help maintain muscle strength, flexibility and balance.

Keeping active can also help to reduce the risk of falls. One in three pensioners has fallen at least once in the past year with a cost to the NHS of around £2.36billion a year. Falling is not an inevitable part of aging and with the right guidance can often be avoided.

Government health guidelines recommend older people to be active every day:

  • Build up to 150 minutes (2.5 hours) of exercise per week, made up of blocks greater than 10 minutes and including sessions where you become significantly warmer than usual.
  • Simply walking a little bit more can help you to improve muscle condition strength and balance.
  • Do activities that improve muscle strength, improve balance and coordination at least twice a week.

To support these health guidelines, Physiofit offer exercise classes aimed at keeping you "Fit for later life" led by a later life trained physiotherapist. The classes are in blocks of 6 weeks, with classes kept small to allow close supervision and a bespoke programme for each participant. We will identify areas that you need to target whilst working on general strength, flexibility, core stability, breathing control, balance and endurance. The class does not involve you getting on and off the floor and is done in both sitting and standing but does include advice on how to get up from the floor when needed. Keeping active with friends is a great way to socialise as well as keeping your body working better.

For further details about the classes or any of our other services please contact our reception team on 01625 590444 or email info@physiofit.co.uk

Physiofit, 4 Trafford Rd Alderley Edge SK9 7NT www.physiofit.co.uk.

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