Best Exercise Equipment for seniors?

Why has it become a necessity now? With more and more people understanding the health benefits of strength training, the necessity of maintaining fitness levels is felt like never before.

It is becoming clear to more and more elders, that improving the quality of life is the best possible alternative to the sick golden years

Of all the exercise options, strength training is the first to be stopped with growing age. With age, fitness goals take a back seat. Pieces of equipment are considered less important compared to insulin doses. 

But now things are changing though slowly. The older generation has also started buying equipment like exercise balls, recumbent bikes, and weight stacks increasing the various type of exercises they can do at home.

Strength

Strength training can help prevent a wide variety of chronic illnesses like osteoporosis, heart disease, asthma, and type 2 diabetes and improve sleep and relieve depression.

Unfortunately, the first set of exercises that we stop performing are strengthening exercises.

Weight lifting, resistance bands, dumbbells allow us to do a variety of exercises for increasing strength. If workout for seniors includes these exercises and cardio workout like an aerobic exercise in their workout routine, it increases their fitness levels. 

It is more advantageous to do strength training as we grow old. The muscle mass that we start losing with age should be stopped or at least slowed down. Strength training not only halts, but it can also increase our muscle mass and keep us in shape at any age if done regularly. 

Maintaining Weight

Obesity is a major risk factor for chronic diseases like cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes. Your mobility is reduced, as does self-dependence. There is more pressure on limbs, creating problems for the knees also. It also results in lung disease, arthritis, blood pressure, and skin problems. Strength and Cardio exercise, along with improvement in diet, can be very beneficial in reducing weight and the danger of all these ailments. Regular strength exercises keep all these health issues at bay. 

Metabolism

Strength training increases resting metabolic rate and norepinephrine levels in healthy 50- to 65-yr-old men.

With age, there is regular loss of metabolism. Strength exercises help keep the metabolism high and old age does not let it go down. You can maintain Blood glucose and insulin levels with regular strength exercises. 

Another interesting fact is that muscle burns three times more calories than fat. One pound of muscles burns about 6 to 7 calories in a day, about three times those burned by a pound of fat. 

Mental Health

Weightlifting can decrease instances of mental depression and anxiety. Low-intensity weight lifting is very beneficial for mild depression. It also raises your self-esteem and helps maintain memory, and stops any decline in attention and decision-making capabilities. 

Compared to medicines and doctor's fees, this is a much inexpensive way to mental health and comes with no side effects. You can, however, invest in some simple exercise equipment for that matter.

Best Exercise Equipment for Seniors

When you are over 40, your body requires a lot more care and attention than it did when you were younger. Your heart (if you have one) has to work harder to pump blood flow around your body, and your bones need to carry your body around.

All of this takes a toll on your joints and muscles. If you don't do something to counter this, you will begin to notice that you are getting out of breath more easily and that your knees, hips, ankles, and elbows are taking a pounding.

The only option for seniors to stay in tip-top shape and carry themselves independently and with dignity is to do regular exercises. There are various kinds of exercises, but the importance of strength training cannot be overstated.

Seniors can use various types of equipment for strength training exercises at home. The range of exercises increases manifold by using equipment due to various levels of resistance. It also ensures added interest in workouts. Regular use of such equipment ensures consistency in routine. 

Cable strength machines, low-impact treadmills, elliptical trainers, and exercise bikes are among the best exercise equipment with many features for seniors. The machines have an LCD with digital monitors, heart rate monitor, exercise guide, video workout programs, safety features, and various additional benefits to guide you regarding a wide range of workouts.

These are effective but expensive and space-consuming. If you are worried about the prices, we also suggest some inexpensive equipment which can be equally effective, less space-consuming and easily transportable. For example, Free Weights, Kettlebells, Resistance Training Bands, Yoga Mats, etc. 

Cable Strength Machines

Cable Strength Machine

Bowflex Xtreme 2SE Home Gym

Bowflex Xtreme 2 SE Home Gym

  • User Weight – 300 lb
  • 70 plus Exercises
  • 7 Free Trainer Built Workouts
  • Guarantee – Machine – 7yr, Power Rods – Life Time.

Now, this is one machine that very few seniors will like to keep at home. Most of us have lost enthusiasm by this time actually to develop a muscular body. But there still are some like me who start now. So this particular machine is for those few. 

These machines do the job of weight lifting only but normally in the opposite fashion of picking up free weights. For example, in Arm Curles, you pull up the bar or dumbbells against gravity. But in the case of Cable Strength Machines, you pull down the weights hanging with a cable and a pully and then release them upwards slowly. That is the basic function of these though there are other more sophisticated commercial machines too.

You can use your muscles in various directions, still against the gravitational pull, and achieve two or even three times more than what you do with free weights. It would be best if you also had a big place for placing these and using them. 

Elliptical Machine

Nautilus Elliptical E616

Nautilus E616 Elliptical

  • User Weight – 300 lb
  • 29 Built in Programs
  • Goal Tracking
  • Resistance – 25 Levels
  • Warranty – Frame – 10yr, Parts & Electronics – 3yr, Labour – 1yr

These also occupy a lot of space, though not as much as Cable strength machines. But these are super useful with adjustable resistance. You can do a full-body, low-impact exercise on this, and your joints can also be safe as there is no jumping. So the joints are strengthed with an elliptical trainer. These give you complete workouts and muscle tone, increasing your level of fitness at whatever age. You can boost your stamina and Cardio capacity while burning many calories and with little stress on joints.

Treadmill

Nautilus T616 Treadmill

Nautilus T616 Treadmill

  • User Weight – 300 lb
  • 26 Built in Programs
  • Goal Tracking
  • DualTrack LCD displays
  • Warranty – Frame – 10yr, Parts & Electronics – 3yr, Labour – 1yr

Treadmills are the most used at-home machines for Cardio. Running burns maximum calories, so using a Treadmill is very effective. There are many walking, jogging, and running-related workouts that you can do on a treadmill. Some companies give you complete detail of all the exercises you can do on a treadmill.

You can also watch your favorite program or movie while doing your workout. Most of the people who initiate a weight loss program do like to buy a treadmill. 

Stationary Bike

Stationary Bike

Nautilus U616 Upright Bike

Nautilus U616 Upright Bike

  • Weight Capacity – 300 lbs
  • Goal Tracking
  • Resistance – 25 Levels
  • DualTrack LCD displays
  • Warranty – Frame – 10yr, Parts & Electronics – 3yr, Labour – 1yr

Another very good piece of equipment for aerobic workouts in the safety of your home is an exercise bike. It gives you the same benefits as cycling outside, providing a very low-impact workout. Its key features are an adjustable seat, pedals, and handles. For comfort, you can have a padded seat as well. A small piece of equipment compared to a treadmill or an elliptical machine. Due to the varying resistance levels, you can work out at different intensities. 

Affordable Options

Adjustable Dumbbells

Adjustable Dumbbells

Bowflex-Xtreme 552 Dumbbells

Bowflex SelectTech 552 Dumbbells

  • Adjustable – 5 to 52.5 lbs in 2.5 lb increments
  • Designed for Home use
  • Bowflex Selecttech Training App
  • Exercises – 30 plus
  • Warranty – 2 Years

It is an essential resistance training equipment for anyone who has to do strength building. Seniors can also do various chair exercises with these. Starting with light dumbbells can be very useful for seniors, and then they can progressively increase the load and build on their strength. With adjustable dumbles, you can do a whole lot of different workouts. All or most muscle groups can be involved in using these. Dumbbells also are available in a huge variety, from cast iron to rubber to silicon-covered dumbbells.

These are easier to carry and use as compared to barbells. For this reason, I don't suggest barbells to anyone. 

Kettlebells

Kettlebells

Bowflex Kettlebell 8-40lb

Bowflex SelectTech 840 Kettlebell

  • Adjustable – 8 to 40 lb
  • Designed for Home use
  • Warranty – 2 Yr

Nowadays, you get adjustable kettlebells. You can do a vast number of exercises with kettlebells, and these are quite different from the other regular weight training exercises. But one needs to be careful using kettlebells initially. You can hurt yourself swinging these or pull a muscle too. But after the initial week or ten days, you get used to them, and then these are really fun to use. 

Stability Ball

Stability Ball

APRI Elite 45cm Stability Ball

SPRI Stability Ball

  • Slow Deflate Ball
  • Capacity 300 to 500lb

Stability balls are very useful for helping with balance and can also help strengthen muscles. They can also help improve the balance and strength of the core while sitting in front of the TV or a computer. There are a number of exercises you can do on a stability ball, both upper body and lower body. It is major benefits in terms of cost, storing, and transporting.

Yoga Mat

Yoga Mat

SPRI Yoga Mat

Gaiam Premium Citron Sundial Yoga Mat

  • Size – 68″x 24″x 6mm
  • Textured Material
  • Non-Slip Surface

A yoga mat is the most basic of all the exercise equipment and most common too. Starting with meditation and yoga, one can do a number of exercises on it. But buying a yoga mat, be careful to buy a mat that is at least 6mm thick but not more than 12mm. Any less and it won't be comfortable, and any more will reduce the effect of a lot of many exercises and will be difficult to balance on. Be careful of the material also. Some materials become slippery with sweat.  

Wrist Weights

Wrist Weights

Ankle & Wrist Weights

SPRI WRIST & ANKLE WEIGHT SET

  • Neoprene & Sand
  • One lb Each Wrist Weights
  • Five lb Each Ankle Weights

Wrist waits or ankle weights are very useful if you cannot pick dumbbells or a kettlebell, especially if you go to the park for your daily exercise. These start at 500gm and go upto 5kg. Especially good for endurance workouts, these are easy to work with as you do not have to carry them.  

Resistance Bands

SPRI Band Kit

SPRI Tube & Band Kit

  • 5 Color coded clip-in cords
  • 3 Color coded mini bands
  • 2 Cord Handles & 1 Ankle Strap
  • 1 Door Attachment & 1 Storage Bag

Resistance bands are a quick and easy way to increase muscle strength. These take up minimum space. They will assist you in combining strength and cardio training. They are good at improving your posture and stability. Resistance loop bands come in five different degrees of resistance, allowing you to tailor your workout to your specific needs. There are also various types of loop bands, and you can even purchase just one band at a time.

Running/Walking Shoes

Running/Walking Shoes

Asics Shoes

Weight 221 kg

  • Mesh Upper
  • Seamless Construction
  • Gel Coushioning
  • FlyteFoam Midsole

A good walking shoe should be light and absorb shock well. Sores and bruises can be avoided by wearing comfortable walking shoes that fit the feet. Find a shoe that is both stylish and comfortable for you. Comfortable shoes do not have to be expensive. If it is difficult to bend down and tie the laces, you can purchase Velcro shoes. Velcro shoes are now manufactured by almost every company.