The Importance of Stretching as We Age (3 Simple Stretches for Seniors)


As you age, you experience a variety of changes in your body. Things like muscle weakness and decreased circulation can have negative effects on your overall health and well-being. This is why it is important to stay active and do what you can to keep your body strong. 

One way to improve your overall health and strengthen your body from the inside out is by practicing daily stretches. Learn more about the benefits of stretching and three simple stretches for seniors living in Orlando retirement communities.

The Benefits of Stretching

Regular stretching provides a number of benefits for senior citizens, including the following:

  • Increases flexibility
  • Enhances mobility
  • Improves breathing
  • Strengthens muscles
  • Reduces risk of injury
  • Improves circulation
  • Provides relaxation

To experience optimal results, you should make it a priority to practice your stretches at least once daily. At certain independent living facilities in Orlando, there may be daily exercise programs available that incorporate stretching to help seniors improve their health.

3 Simple Stretches for Seniors in Orlando Retirement Communities

The following are three simple stretches that seniors can practice to feel stronger, healthier, and more flexible.

1. The Gentle Twist

One of the most popular stretches for seniors is the gentle twist stretch. This stretch is good for lower back pain. 

To complete a gentle twist stretch, plant your feet flat on the floor while seated in a chair. Place your knees at a 90-degree angle while sitting slightly forward on the chair.

Take a deep breath and press yourself down into the seat. You will feel your spine lengthen as you lift your arms upward over your head. Exhale and turn yourself gently to the right while putting your left hand on the outside of your right knee and your right hand wherever it feels comfortable. Release and repeat on the other side.

2. The Reach Back

The reach-back stretch is great for increasing flexibility and improving the range of motion in your shoulders. It can also help stretch your chest muscles. 

To perform a reach-back stretch, sit with your spine straight and your feet placed firmly on the ground. Reach behind yourself and interlace your hands. If you cannot interlace your hands, you can grab the opposite wrist instead. 

Inhale deeply until you feel your spine stretching and your posture becoming taller. Try to roll your shoulder upward and back. Take three deep breaths and release.

3. The Hamstring Stretch

Hamstring stretches are important for maintaining strength and flexibility in the legs. 

To complete a hamstring stretch, place your right heel on a bench with your leg straight and toes pointed upwards. Without rounding your lower back, slowly bend the hinge forward from the hips until you feel a suitable stretch. Hold this for 10 to 30 seconds and then release. Switch legs and repeat. 

To make a hamstring stretch easier, you can perform it while seated in a chair, with your heel placed on the floor in front of you.

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