Advice for taking care of your physical health

Older people

This information is designed to help people to adopt a healthier lifestyle through taking some simple steps. It includes why changes should be made and the support available to help achieve it. Here we are looking at older people.

Ageing is inevitable for us all. By leading a healthy lifestyle into adulthood and beyond, many people remain fit and active as we get older and, in many cases, this helps the body to fight off some of the illnesses, ailments and injuries more common among older people. 

Older people can take part in physical activity and, if they have led an active lifestyle, they may already be doing this. However, many may be new to physical activity or will be less mobile and may therefore prefer to take part in more gentle and seated exercise.

Try these gentle exercises:

  • Knee raises - sit in an upright position with knees and feet together. Hold chair arms for support. Raise one knee, keeping knee bent then return to start position
  • Knee extension - sit in an upright position with knees and feet together. Hold chair arms, extend one leg, keeping knee straight. Point toes upwards and bring/tilt foot back towards you
  • Shoulder rotation - sit in an upright position. Keep upper body facing forward, place hands on shoulders. Raise elbows to shoulder height. Draw circles in air with elbows and roll shoulders in a circular motion

Care should be taken to prevent falls and injury. Follow these simple tips to keep you safe:

  • Make sure your shoes and slippers keep your foot firmly in place
  • Eat healthily and regularly. Avoid going for long periods between meals
  • Drink enough water
  • Always take your medicines on time and as prescribed
  • Get some fresh air by sitting by an open window or in the garden
  • Replace or remove rugs that have curled edges
  • Remove clutter and ensure your home is well lit
  • Beware of slippery floors in kitchens and bathrooms
  • Keep your home warm

Some older people may smoke. Giving up at any age delivers immediate health benefits which increase the longer a person remains a non-smoker. If you would like to give up smoking you are more likely to be successful if you ask for help. You can call Quit Ready on 0345 646 66 66 or text ‘Ready’ to 66777.

Last updated: 05/03/2024 12:05:05