So you’ve retired? That doesn’t mean you can now sit around on the couch all day in front of the TV. Although you might not have the energy you used to, one way to keep young, is to stay active. Sports help to stimulate the mind and body, keeping you healthy and fit, meaning you’ll likely lead a longer life. In fact, regular activity has been linked to mental wellbeing, and a reduction in chronic illness.
However, you might find that staying active can be a challenge. Perhaps your hips, knees and legs don’t quite work the same way they used to, and you find yourself out of breath more frequently. Getting older does unfortunately mean that there are physical limitations on the type of sport you can enjoy. Low impact sports can help ease muscle and joint discomfort while reducing blood pressure levels, lowering cholesterol and improving cardiac health. Here are some of the best low impact sports for retirees:
Walking is a simple, and inexpensive sport that is suitable for all ages. Walking is also a great way to socialise with others. Join a local walking or hiking group and you’ll soon be out and about with the other retirees in your area.
Choose a distance and route that suits your level of fitness, even adding in a hike every now and again if you can – just watch the knees on steep downhills. Try also avoid walking in the middle of the day when you are at risk of heatstroke. Also, you’ll want to invest in a good quality pair of walking shoes, perhaps in an orthopaedic pair that has been specially tailored towards your feet.
Swimming is another great form of low impact exercise. Swimming gives you a cardio work out, wile also improving muscle tone, without putting any pressure on your joints. For a more intensive workout, you can consider joining a water aerobics class at your local gym. You’ll get to meet others, while enjoying an instructor led class in a temperature-controlled pool.
If you have retired with your partner, then taking up ballroom dancing can be a great way to stay fit but also connect with your loved one after years leading hectic lives at the office. You can dance as fast or as slow as you want, just get the body moving and you won’t even know you are exercising. If you don’t have a partner, many dance schools also offer classes for singles, which offers an opportunity to meet new people as you dance with someone different every time you go.
For more active seniors, cycling is another fantastic low impact sport, provided you stay away from the mountain bike trails – rather enjoy Canadian online gambling than take that risk at an older age. You can use your daily cycling workout to go to the local grocery store or meet up with friends for a coffee. If you are competitive, you might even want to join your local cycling club or enter some fun races.