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Why Seniors Should Start the Day with a Morning Stretch

group of happy seniors doing senior morning stretches outdoors on a fall day

Remaining active and fit is essential to helping older adults keep illnesses at bay, maintain higher levels of independence, and improve overall well-being. Stretching exercises are integral to a comprehensive wellness program and can be done quickly at home without equipment. 

Unfortunately, as we age, our joints and muscles weaken, and our range of motion deteriorates, making everyday tasks more difficult. Incorporating senior morning stretches into your daily routine is proven to have significant benefits.

At Buckner Villas, stretching routines are a fundamental part of our senior health and wellness program. We strive to ensure that all our residents have the highest quality of life. Call 512.580.9882 to schedule a visit and learn more about premier senior living in Austin, TX.

Understanding the Benefits of Stretches for Seniors

No matter your level of mobility, stretching has benefits, one of the most prominent being that it can be done just about anywhere, including in bed or a chair. Some of the most significant benefits of stretches for seniors include the following:

  • Helping maintain and improve flexibility
  • Maintaining joint health by increasing lubrication and reducing stiffness
  • Increasing blood flow and better circulation to improve overall cardiovascular health
  • Alleviating pain by relaxing tense muscles
  • Serving as a form of relaxation and stress relief
  • Correcting and helping maintain good posture
  • Improving balance and stability
  • Reducing the risk of injuries
  • Increasing alertness and energy

Overall, stretches for seniors enhance mobility. Engaging in group stretching exercises promotes social interactions that can help combat loneliness and depression that can be common among seniors. 

Tips for Effective Senior Stretching

Seniors should consult their healthcare professional or a fitness expert before beginning any new exercise regimen, including stretching, especially if they have underlying health conditions or mobility issues. 

As with any exercise, there are tips for reducing the risk of injury and ensuring the best outcomes. Consider the following information for effective senior stretching:

  • Begin by warming up with a few minutes of walking. Walking in place is fine.
  • Make sure you are using the proper technique and form.
  • Take your time and ease yourself into the stretch.
  • Remember to breathe; slow, deep breathing is best.
  • Keep your joints soft, not locked into position.
  • Hold the stretch for 15-30 seconds to allow the muscle to elongate and relax.
  • Do not bounce or use jerking movements.
  • Stay hydrated.

It is always best to begin with more accessible stretches and gradually work up to more advanced ones as flexibility increases. It is essential to listen to your body and stop if you feel discomfort, pain, or dizziness. Using props, like a chair, wall, or other stable surface, may be necessary for some seniors. 

Suggested Morning Stretches for Seniors

Starting each day with stretching exercises helps create a routine and prepares your body and mind for the day. The following are some gentle, effective morning stretches for seniors to begin their day:

  • Neck stretch
  • Shoulder stretch
  • Arm and upper back stretch
  • Chest opener
  • Trunk rotation
  • Seated leg extension
  • Standing quadriceps stretch
  • Calf stretch
  • Ankle circles
  • Overhead side stretch
  • Full body stretch

Each of these stretches can be modified to accommodate different issues with balance or mobility, and many can be done in a chair.

Stretching is vital for helping seniors maintain flexibility, balance, good circulation, mobility, and overall well-being. While stretching at any time of day is beneficial, incorporating a morning stretching program helps loosen muscles and get the circulation going to ease daily tasks. Further, beginning the day stretching helps it become part of your daily routine. 

Contact Buckner Villas to Learn More About the Benefits of Senior Morning Stretches

At Buckner Villas, our nonprofit senior living community is committed to providing you or your loved one the highest quality of living and care at the highest level of independence possible. 

Our senior health and wellness programs are individualized to ensure the well-being of our residents. Contact Bucker Villas today to learn about our programs and discover what makes us more than just a senior living facility. Call 512.580.9882 or complete our online form