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5 Wellness Activities for Senior Citizens

group of senior citizens sitting around a table playing games and engaging in one of 5 wellness activities for senior citizens

Aging is natural. It’s simply a part of life, and although scientists have made advancements in understanding the aging process, there is no way to stop or reverse it. That is not to say that there aren’t methods for slowing this process and the symptoms accompanying it. As the body ages, it becomes more vulnerable to illness, accidents, and injury. While some of these are unavoidable, a great deal can be done to remedy the ravages of time. There are obvious ones, such as nutrition and exercise, but these are blanket terms that cover many topics, methodologies, and practices. 

This begs the question, what wellness activities for seniors provide the most benefits? Luckily, there is no shortage of wellness activities available today, each providing different levels of engagement, cognition, and physical activity. From nutrition education counseling to aqua aerobics, there is something out there for everyone. But how is one supposed to know which activities would best suit themselves or a loved one of an advanced age?

What Is Senior Wellness?

Senior wellness is a term used to describe the overall well-being of individuals of an advanced age. Critical to the notion of senior wellness is senior care. Seniors often require additional support, as individuals of advanced age are more prone to injury and developing a mental illness. This can result in memory, mobility, cognition, and hand-eye coordination issues. Frequently these conditions develop naturally and are unavoidable, but that doesn’t mean they cannot be addressed.

Wellness activities for senior citizens are an excellent tool for improving mental health, physical health, and overall well-being in those who suffer from physical or psychological illness. The brain is a muscle just like any other muscle in the body. It can atrophy and deteriorate when not actively challenged, stimulated, and exercised. Senior wellness activities provide mental challenges, social stimulation, and physical exercise, and often do so in a specialized environment where risks of accident and injury are mitigated. 

Social stimulation is one of the most significant benefits of wellness activities for seniors. Social engagement has been proven to limit the symptoms of mental health conditions such as depression and anxiety. When choosing these activities, it’s important to identify physical and psychological limitations and understand potential participants’ emotional needs and wants. 

5 Wellness Games and Activities for Elders

As previously stated, there is plenty of activities available for seniors. These activities are designed to promote and improve mental health, physical health, and cognition and can be enjoyed at various levels, from novice to trained master.

1. Yoga

When modified for senior participation, yoga is an excellent activity for anyone looking to improve the connection between their mind and body. While yoga may seem purely physical, it requires much concentration and encourages the participant to listen to their body and embrace the feelings and emotions that might surface when engaging in a specific pose. 

2. Tai Chi

Tai chi is a Chinese martial art that sees participants slowly work through various movements and poses. Many report the practice of Tai Chi to be relaxing, as it is a low-impact exercise. Tai Chi can improve balance, flexibility, and muscle strength and can even enhance sleep quality. 

3. Aquatic Aerobics

Playing in the water is always fun, regardless of a person’s age. Aquatic aerobics is another low-impact exercise perfect for individuals who have arthritis, soreness, or bone issues. Aquatic aerobics is a full-body exercise that promotes coordination and balance and is excellent for anyone with mobility issues. 

4. Crafts

Arts and crafts are a great way to promote social engagement while helping seniors improve cognition and hand-eye coordination. Arts, such as drawing, painting, and sculpting, have been shown to help older adults with memory and speech issues, allowing individuals to communicate thoughts and feelings through their crafts that they would otherwise be unable to convey. 

5. Cooking

First, everyone loves food. Second, everyone has fond memories of food. Cooking or participating in a particular culinary experience can benefit seniors’ health in various ways. It helps teach nutrition and the importance of meal planning and provides a fun opportunity to socialize and have fun. Cooking can also help individuals with memory issues by cooking old favorite recipes. The five senses are deeply connected with memory, and cooking can be a great way to help keep old memories vivid and fresh in the mind. 

Learn More About Senior Wellness at Buckner Westminster Place

At Buckner Westminster Place, we hold our residents’ care, happiness, and safety in the highest regard. This means far more than ensuring residents are comfortable and safe from harm. It means creating an environment where life can be lived to its fullest. We offer a range of services and activities to all residents in our community and an ever-changing list of social events and field trips. For more information on wellness activities for senior citizens, reach out to the Buckner Westminster team today at 903.329.6520 or contact us online.