This is the seventh in a series of 12 articles provided by “California Mobility – a family-owned and operated company specializing in installing stairlifts for the elderly. The company was founded in 2018 in Sacramento, CA.” Each week we will provide two to four of the exercises for your use.
Unless confined to a wheelchair or undergoing another circumstance, we use our legs for all of our daily mobile movements. Standing, walking, running, climbing stairs, and bending down to pick up objects are all part of using our legs. Keeping up leg strength as we age is a physical factor that we should all think of.
But, jogging, running, and climbing stairs can take a toll on the joints, especially if an older adult has an injured knee or has recently gone through surgery. So instead, using chair exercises can keep leg strength and endurance up while protecting the joints.
Before getting started on the following exercises, make sure to have the right shoes! Believe it or not, shoes play a big role in exercising. While a loved one might not be running, hiking, or lifting heavy weights, they’re still going to want shoes that are cushioned (for comfort) and help with stability. If they’re performing anything like a squat, then shoes that are flat can aid in keeping the back straight and the knees aligned instead of them dipping (buckling) inward toward the middle of the body; this is something that should be avoided.
Pro Tip: Debbie Barry, NASM Certified Master Trainer
“After knee surgery, you need to get your range of motion back. Put your heel on top of a ball [8-12 inches] to roll it out to the end of your toes. Gradually roll the ball in towards your heels till you [perform a full] rollout. Eventually, you’ll be able to move your knee more and more over time.” – Facebook Profile
This exercise should be started off with the older adult’s own body weight. If they feel like it’s too easy and their body feels good about the movement, they can add weight by carrying a medicine ball or another of-equal-to weight object.
Note: As an extra toning secret, squeeze the glutes (buttocks) together when moving to the standing position, this will engage the glutes more and start toning the muscles.