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Front Page » October 2, 2008 » Senior Focus » Carbon seniors stay active
Published 2,247 days ago

Carbon seniors stay active


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By C.J. MCMANUS
Sun Advocate community editor

As the years begin to creep up on those who have been active and athletic their whole lives it can become difficult to let go of some of the activities that have defined a person's legacy. However, with the advent of some modern medication and therapy many seniors are keeping their athletic pursuits at the forefront of their lives.

As an example, the Carbon Country Club conducts their seniors golf league every Tuesday at 9 a.m. Individuals are allowed to join the league after their 55th birthday but according to head Carbon golf pro Tom King, his oldest player is 90-years-young.

"I think the league is great for our seniors," said King. "It gives them something to look forward to. It's great for them physically but I think it is even better for them mentally. There are a lot of them who look forward to their Tuesday round all week long."

King also stressed that the league is not only for exercise but that some of the clubs better players come from the senior circuit.

At familydoctor.org, the physicians report that it is more than safe for individuals over 65, even those with chronic illness such as heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes and arthritis to exercise safely.

"In fact many of these conditions are improved with exercise safely," said the site.

To get started the site recommends that individuals wear loose, comfortable clothing and well-fitting, sturdy shoes.

"Your shoes should have a good arch support and an elevated cushioned heel to absorb shock," said the site.

For those who are just beginning an exercise regiment, the site recommends starting very slowly with exercises that are comfortable.

"The saying no pain, no gain is not true for older individuals and high impact, high intensity workouts can be very dangerous," explains familydoctor.org.

The activities that are recommended by the sight start with light aerobic workouts starting at about 30 minutes in duration at most. So examples include walking, swimming and bicycling. Resistance training at a slow start is also brought up including strength training a couple of times per week.

"Warm up for five minutes," says local College of Eastern Utah aerobics instructor Diana Root. "Then progress slowly into your mode of exercise."

Root warned that just because you have warmed up, you are not ready to hit the activity full force. She recommends that individuals progress the intensity of their routine slowly to a peak making sure decline slowly after reaching the peak.

"It is very dangerous to work yourself out full force with high intensity and then stop abruptly," explained Root. "There always needs to be a cool down period., even within the particular mode of exercise, and then do a proper cool down with stretching. "

She recommends some activities like light tennis or picking up a really good exercise DVD that has been produced and approved with seniors in mind.

Some of the benefits of staying active include:

•Cardiovascular function.

•Improves physiologic parameters for those who exercise regularly.

•Improves blood pressure.

•Decrease risk of coronary artery disease.

•Improves congestive heart failure symptoms and decreases hospitalization rate.

•Improves lipid profile.

•Decreases incidence of diabetes mellitus type two.

•Improves glycemic control.

•Decreases hemoglobin A one C levels.

•Improves insulin sensitivity for diabetic patients.

•Osteoporosis.

•Decreases bone density loss in post-menopausal women.

•Decreases hip and vertebral fractures.

•Decreases the risk of falling due to increased balance.

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