Seniors are routinely urged to stay active. Most everyone has been educated on the benefits of exercise for the heart, lungs, and even bones. However, in Apple Valley, it can be difficult for the elderly to know how they can exercise during the hot summer months. With mid-summer temperatures routinely in the 90s, the sun can feel strong and can quickly cause dehydration. These simple tips can help seniors stay active despite the summer heat.
Factors to Consider
- First, seniors should exercise during the cooler portions of the day, which is typically between 4:00 and 7:00 am. If this time is not an option, seniors can consider exercising outdoors in the evening after the sun has set. While the evening can still be warm, the lack of direct sunlight will lead to less chance of heat exhaustion.
- Second, seniors should always be sure to wear lightweight clothing when exercising during the summer months. Lighter layers help to lower the body’s core heat and do not trap sweat. For those exercising in the morning hours when it is cooler, consider wearing light layers.
- Third, hydration is vital. Seniors should bring water bottles with them when outside and should avoid sugary drinks when exercising. During active exercises, seniors should consume eight fluid ounces for every 20 minutes of activity.
- Fourth, to avoid the heat altogether, the elderly can find a nearby gym or senior center for exercising. These facilities are typically air-conditioned and provide a wonderful place for seniors to exercise together without having the sun beat down on them. Another free option is to walk at an air-conditioned mall.
- Finally, swimming and other water sports provide great ways to stay cool during the summer. Many swimming pools are located indoors, but seniors should be sure to apply plenty of sunscreen at least 15 minutes before heading to an outdoor swimming pool. In addition, drinking plenty of water is necessary when swimming.
It turns out that there are plenty of ways for seniors to continue to stay active even when the summer temperatures climb. Whether seniors look for an indoor gym, head to their local community center or take a walk before the sun comes up, they can find ways to exercise as much as they want. Even those in Hospice care can enjoy the sunlight outside as long as they stay hydrated.