Exercise and the Elderly

Many people believe that exercise is not beneficial for our elderly population.   The truth of the matter is no matter how old we are, exercise can be beneficial.    Let’s consider some confirmed facts:

  1. People are living longer.
  2. Modern medicine has prolonged the years that we are living, but not necessarily the quality of life.
  3. 66 percent of the American population is overweight, and that is a conservative percentage.
  4. As we age, without proper nutrition and consistent exercise, we will automatically gain weight and our quality of life will diminish.


DAL (daily activities of living) for the elderly such as putting grocery away, walking short distances, etc., cannot be sustained without expending energy that results in some type of exercise.   One of the biggest fears that elderly people have is that of “falling”.   Recent studies have indicated that many elderly people would not have experienced a “fall” and the subsequent problems that result from that type of injury if they had preformed some light exercise as they had aged and stabilized their core.

In summary, exercise performed as we age is extremely beneficial.   Always consult a physician before beginning any exercise program.    Working with a certified, qualified fitness trainer will help you achieve your goals and improve your ability to perform exercise in the proper manner.

Gary Catania
American College of Sports Medicine HFS

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