a familier situation that we seem to encourage.

Why talk about sedentary seniors?

As mentioned in the earlier webpage ACTIVE SENIORS you must have heard the notion that as you approach retirement you should be thinking of relaxing and taking it easy. This seems to be the generally accepted way that society prepares it's elderly members for retirement. It is done with the best of intentions and the hopes for a long and happy retirement. BUT, since the little comments about 'getting on a bit ' and " you must be looking forward to the rest" start some years before you retire, they can result in you being mentally conditioned to choose the wrong strategies when you do retire, which can quite quickly leave you in poor health and lead you into dependency and a loss of your independence and self respect.

A major study in the 1990's showed that 40% of people over 50 years old took no exercise but nearly 50% of them thought they were doing enough to stay healthy.

As we get older we need to follow the right strategies to stay active and fit. This doesn't mean working out none-stop! But you must avoid becoming a sedentary senior.

The same study revealed that an incredible 25% of men and 80% of women aged 70-75 were unable to walk a quarter of a mile unaided.

The fact that we confuse a lack of fitness for signs of 'getting on a bit ' is a major problem which leads us to follow the wrong strategies. For example, if climbing stairs becomes uncomfortable we take the lift or move to a bungalow, which deprives us of the benefits of that exercise. We are all ageing, it isn't necessary to accelerate the process and as Prof. Kirkwood intimated, there are some simple things we can do to slow it down.

Limiting the exercise we take is the start of the slippery slope to dependency and ill-health.

Without regular exercise/activity to help us maintain an active lifestyle as we age we begin to lose our :-

• Strength

• Bone density

• Stamina

• Power

• Balance

• Flexibility

We don't have to be able to run a marathon, be a power lifter or a gymnast. But the above are the elements that will incapacitate us if we let them deteriorate.

Some advice and guidance from 'Research into Ageing' can be accessed by the following links :-

What happens if you don't maintain the following :- your strength , your bone density , your stamina , your power , your balance , your flexibility ?

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sedentary seniors, return to ageing