Participating in sports is rewarding, fun and social. As an older adult, you’re likely more selective about which sports you play. Depending on your age and health history, certain activities and sports may be more uncomfortable and can put you at a higher risk of injury (such as running, deadlifting/heavy weightlifting, or deep squats).
There are plenty of activities and sports that offer the benefits of exercise with minimal risks. At Active Aging in Manitoba, we want to help older adults stay active as they age.
We’re going to cover the benefits of regular workouts and share our top picks for some great activities and sports for older adults:
The many benefits of staying physically active include:
Pickleball is an incredibly popular sport among older adults. Think of it as a mix between ping-pong, tennis, and badminton. The rules are simple to grasp, but honing your hand-eye coordination takes a bit more time.
Enjoy a moderate-intensity activity without putting too much stress on your body. If you’re interested in playing pickleball in Manitoba, contact our office! We can help you find an indoor or outdoor court near you.
By swimming, you can enjoy vigourous aerobic activity while the water lessens the pressure on your joints. Water aerobics is a whole body workout. This activity engages your arms, legs, and core muscles.
Look for a way to try an aqua aerobics workout? Outdoor pools in Manitoba are unavailable for most of the year. Try to find indoor poor facilities that you can use during the winter; contact your local pool facility to find out what programs they offer.
Playing golf is one of the best ways to spend a summer day. You can enjoy the beauty of nature, engage in a competitive and fun game, and enjoy a low-impact sport.
Golf is an ideal sport for older adults for a few reasons. It involves plenty of walking to keep you on the move. As you swing the golf club, you build muscle in your arms and core. Strategizing about how to play keeps your brain engaged. It’s often a social experience which is great for your mental health.On top of that, using a pull cart to carry your clubs adds to the workout!
In Manitoba, the cold winters make it difficult to exercise outside. Even though you’re longing for fresh air, some winter days are too dangerous to go for a walk due to icy conditions or a high windchill. Indoor exercising is always an option.
A good workout raises your heart rate, helps you feel invigorated, stay connected to your community, and improve your overall health. You don’t want to pass up on great exercise just because it’s cold outside. Stay active year-round by trying these indoor workouts.
A few ways to stay active indoors include:
Urban poling engages more muscles than regular walking. It’s a full-body workout!
These specially designed walking poles, which are similar to cross country ski poles, engage your whole body, including your upper body, core muscles, and lower body. Make your muscles stronger with this form of brisk walking. It’s a great outdoor activity year-round.
Get your joints moving in a lively game of bowling! You don’t need to book a bowling alley to play this classic game. Instead, you can play it in your own backyard.
Just like regular bowling, you roll the bowling ball towards the target (a smaller white ball called a “jack”). Instead of an alley, you roll the ball along a smooth stretch of grass.
While this sport is similar to lawn bowling, there are a few important differences. A bocce ball is completely round—with lawn bowling, the ball has an elliptical side so that it travels in a curve. Low impact sports like bocce ball help older adults avoid injuries. All you need is a patch of grass and a partner and you’re ready for a match. Check out our “How to Play Bocce” video on our website.
Make exercise part of your daily routine with these sports for older adults. After reading about these activities, you might feel inspired to try something new.
So, what’s the perfect activity or sport for your lifestyle? You might need to try a few before you decide on your favourite. At Active Aging in Manitoba, we host the 55+ Games. This annual multi-sport event features three days of activities, including pickleball, arts & crafts, and golf.
Our goal is to change attitudes about aging. Find out how much fun exercise can be at the 55+ Games. Sign up today!