As we age we need to keep our minds and bodies sharp. This can be difficult with the way our bodies change, causing a decline in some typically easy physical movements or thought processes.
We often find aging folks in need of senior rehabilitation when recovering from an injury or serious medical event.
There are plenty of engaging activities seniors can do to help keep them feeling great that don’t involve sitting around a bingo hall (though that’s fun, too!).
Group exercise classes
Group classes are motivating, encouraging, and can be a lot of fun for seniors.
It can help get an idle body moving to see like-able people around them. Yoga, light aerobics, and tai chi are good ways to keep the body sharp.
This doesn’t have to be anything crazy and can even be as simple as a group of folks who like to take a leisurely stroll outside each day.
Getting up and moving is important, no matter how it’s achieved.
Often seniors have a lot to say, many stories from their lives to tell. What better way to encourage they do this through writing?
The act of putting pen to paper will not only make them feel good in reliving nice memories, but it will keep their cognitive functions sharp.
It will help their creativity if they decide to pen fictional stories or poems. Encourage all types of writing.
Cooking and baking
We all carry some sort of recipe with us from the past, whether it’s as easy as a peanut butter and jelly sandwich or as complicated as a three-course meal.
Give seniors who love food an opportunity to meal plan and prep, to execute the actual dish and serve it.
There are many ways in which giving back to the community helps the volunteer as much as it helps the community itself.
Seniors can organize a food drive, toy drive, or get together in a group to help at a shelter.
Many have natural abilities that lend themselves to volunteer work. Find out what that is and lean into it.
This is technically exercise, but more fun! Even those who have advanced dementia or cognitive impairments can benefit from activities that revolve around music.
Particular beats might trigger good memories.
Bring on the pets
Cuddly puppies and kittens can make even the most curmudgeonly person smile. Bring seniors to shelters to play with the furry ones and help out where they can.
Even a small amount of time with cuddles and kisses can help elevate one’s mood exponentially.
Some folks have green thumbs while others have to learn – either way, getting outside to garden is beneficial.
This social and physical activity allows for fresh air, as well as a sense of responsibility for the plants being cultivated.
Gardening is great for relaxation and working towards a specific goal when whatever you’re planting is ready to be harvested, be it flowers, herbs, or vegetables.