Staying active!

Bupa NZ Blog | Top 5 tips to staying active as you get older

Being inactive makes your muscles and bones lose strength. This increases your risk of osteoporosis, falls and fractures.

People over 65 should try to get 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise, in bouts of 10 minutes or more, every week. Doing something is always better than doing nothing.

Moderate activity will raise your heart rate and make you breathe faster and feel warmer.

One way to tell if you’re exercising at a moderate level is if you can still talk but can’t sing the words to a song.

Examples of moderate intensity activities include:

walking

water aerobics

ballroom and line dancing

riding a bike on level ground or with few hills

playing doubles tennis

pushing a lawn mower

You should also try to do activities to improve muscle strength at least twice a week.

This could include:

dancing

carrying groceries

going up and down stairs

exercising to music

heavy gardening, such as digging or shovelling

yoga

lifting weights

It’s also a good idea to do activities to improve balance and co-ordination twice a week as this can reduce your risk of falling.

Activities such as yoga or tai chi are best for this. These types of activity can also ease stiffness and unsteadiness associated with painful joints.

You should also try to avoid sitting around for long periods. If you find you have been sitting for more than about 20 to 30 minutes, get up and go for a stroll. See more on the risks of sitting for long periods.