The Life-Changing Benefits of Active Senior Living

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Five Star- FL

For more information about the author, click to view their website: Five Star Senior Living

Posted on

Aug 26, 2023

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Florida - Southwest

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Many of us, regardless of age, have the same New Year’s resolution every year: to be more “active.” Though often referring to physical activity, being “active” isn’t just about exercise. An “active” lifestyle may also include activities like volunteering, painting or even meeting up regularly with friends for happy hour.

Everyone can benefit from an active lifestyle. For older adults, though, active senior living can do wonders for each of the five dimensions of wellness—physical, intellectual, social, emotional and spiritual—key to a healthy and well-rounded life. For example, studies show that seniors over age 74 experience the largest relative gains in survival and healthy life from physical activity. But those activities that focus on the other dimensions of wellness can be just as beneficial.

Here are four of the most life-changing benefits of active senior living.

Increased life expectancy

The guidelines issued by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services recommend that older adults engage in at least “150 min of moderate-intensity, or 75 min of vigorous, aerobic physical activity per week.” Because studies show an overall lower risk of mortality and a significant decrease in functional abilities of adults who are physically active (versus those who are sedentary), every effort should be made for seniors to get moving.

Active senior living activities that might be suitable include, taking walks as tolerated, chair exercises, slow stretching and flexibility exercises. Or, consider outdoor hobbies such as gardening, fishing or birdwatching.

Mental acuity

Even if you are limited in your mobility, staying active with puzzles, card games, crafting, knitting, writing, reading and music can make your golden years some of the best.

Alzheimer’s experts have found a connection between lifelong readers and dementia. Those who show a lifelong practice of reading and writing experienced 14% less decline in their mental capacity at the end of their lives versus those who did not engage in such activities. Even if you don’t start sharpening your brain until late, however, doing “brain exercises” can help build brain cells and preserve the precious connections between them. Incorporating mental exercises into an active senior living routine is not only a maintenance task; it can improve function at the cellular level.

Loving community

That brings us to one of the best parts of growing older: friendships. With 70 to 80 years of connections, it can be hard to see how anyone in their old age could be lonely. The truth is that it can take a bit of work to nurture those relationships, especially if we move or change activities in those later years. Finding an active senior living community that puts people first is a crucial first step in ensuring you never have to be alone.

Whether you join a club, show up for an activity that attracts curious and congenial participants, or seek out new faces at a place of worship, the act of extending a handshake won’t go unrewarded. Social activities are among the most valued in the senior years, as these can sustain through even the most challenging obstacles of aging.

Peace of mind

Finally, being at peace is something we all want to say we achieved in life. There’s no better time to find spiritual fulfillment than as an older adult. Whether you choose to worship, pray, meditate, or simply reflect on the deep philosophical connections we have with the world around us, the benefits include a deeper sense of purpose at a time that can be difficult for some seniors.

Lifestyle360: Five Star’s Innovative Approach to Active Senior Living

We all could use a little help with our New Year’s resolutions, especially when it’s to be more active. At Five Star, it’s our passion to help our residents enjoy a healthy, fulfilled life guided by the five dimensions of wellness. That’s the vision behind our award-winning Lifestyle360 active senior living program that offers enriching activities every day like tai chi, book clubs, jewelry making, cultural excursions, religious services and so much more. Contact one of our senior care experts to find a Five Star community near you and to learn more about our holistic approach to active senior living and make your resolutions a reality.

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Myth-Busting: Active Senior Living Communities

What if you could live in a community that is designed to support your active lifestyle, overall health, and well-being with resources right at your fingertips? What if you could say goodbye to shoveling snow in the winter, mowing the lawn in the summer, and home maintenance chores all year long? This can all be yours when you make the choice to live in an active senior living community. And dont believe the myths it can be one of the most liberating and exciting times in life, especially now with all the current options available.Unlike in our parents time, today there are vibrant independent living options that actually enhance your lifestyle with resort-like amenities, resources, and a community of like-minded people. Its a far cry from when nursing homes were the only option for older adults who wanted a maintenance-free lifestyle with assistance if needed.A new era of community living became prevalent for older adults in the early 1960s when the demand for more options for older adults started shifting. Now communities from coast to coast offer amenities and opportunities that maintain active lifestyles and social engagements that make these communities appealing to many older adults.Debunking the Myths About Active Senior Living CommunitiesThinking of senior living communities in the same breath as nursing homes is so last century and couldnt be further from reality. Lets debunk a few of the myths about retirement communities:Myth #1: Does moving to a retirement community mean I will lose independence?Fact: Depending on the community, many have different styles of living from completely independent to more support levels if needed. Todays retirement communities are designed to create independent living options in order to meet the needs of this generations active lifestyle. Holly Creek offers options of stand-alone cottages and individual apartments where you are free to live as you wish and participate in events, dining and other social engagements when and if you choose.Myth #2: Is retirement living boring?Fact: Almost all senior living communities offer a variety of events that you can choose to participate in. In some cases, the residents create the calendar and events and in others, staff put together activities based on residents interests. When you dont have to spend time and energy on home maintenance chores, you can fully enjoy current interests and perhaps gain new hobbies while meeting new friends. In fact, moving to senior living is one of the best ways to help older adults prevent boredom and avoid social isolation. Holly Creek has so many opportunities, it might be a challenge to fit in all the activities you like, from enjoying the indoor/outdoor pool or fitness center to visiting the theater and art gallery to taking part in exercise classes.Myth #3: Is retirement living for people too old to live on their own?Fact: Older adults are increasingly embracing the idea of living in active senior living communities. According to USA Today, more than 600,000 older Americans like the idea of getting settled in a community and staying there if their care needs change. While there is no magic age to transition to a senior living community, there are some benefits to making the move while you are able to enjoy the amenities and activities offered in a retirement community. In addition, moving sooner will allow you to maintain living independently, but get adjusted to the community environment and be in the company of others.

Fun, Easy activities for Seniors in Colorado

Colorado, renowned for its breathtaking landscapes and vibrant communities, offers a plethora of activities tailored specifically for seniors. From outdoor adventures to cultural experiences and wellness programs, the state provides numerous opportunities for older adults to stay active, engaged, and healthy. This guide explores some of the best activities for seniors in Colorado, ensuring a fulfilling and enriching lifestyle.1. Outdoor AdventuresHiking and Walking TrailsColorado boasts an extensive network of hiking and walking trails suitable for seniors of all fitness levels. The Garden of the Gods in Colorado Springs, with its stunning red rock formations and easy walking paths, is a popular choice. Similarly, the Boulder Creek Path in Boulder offers a scenic, flat route perfect for a leisurely stroll.For more information, visit the Colorado Trails Explorer website. Bird WatchingWith diverse habitats ranging from grasslands to alpine regions, Colorado is a bird watchers paradise. Seniors can join local bird watching groups or visit hotspots like the Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge near Denver, which is home to over 330 species of birds.Learn more at the Colorado Birding Trail website.2. Cultural ExperiencesMuseums and Art GalleriesColorados rich cultural scene is accessible to seniors who enjoy museums and art galleries. The Denver Art Museum, with its senior-friendly programs and exhibitions, is a must-visit. Additionally, the Colorado Springs Pioneers Museum offers insights into the states history with senior discounts available.For upcoming exhibits, check out the Denver Art Museum and Colorado Springs Pioneers Museum websites. Theater and Performing ArtsThe states vibrant performing arts scene includes senior-friendly venues like the Denver Center for the Performing Arts, which hosts Broadway shows, concerts, and more. The Colorado Shakespeare Festival in Boulder is another excellent option for seniors who enjoy live theater.Find more details at the Denver Center for the Performing Arts and Colorado Shakespeare Festival websites.3. Wellness and Fitness ProgramsSenior Fitness ClassesMany community centers and gyms in Colorado offer fitness classes designed specifically for seniors. SilverSneakers, a popular fitness program for older adults, is available in numerous locations across the state. These classes focus on strength, flexibility, and balance, catering to various fitness levels.To find a class near you, visit SilverSneakers.com.Yoga and Tai ChiYoga and Tai Chi are excellent for seniors seeking gentle exercise that enhances flexibility, balance, and mental well-being. Studios like Yoga Pod in Boulder and Tai Chi Colorado Springs provide classes specifically tailored for older adults.Explore more at Yoga Pod Boulder and Tai Chi Colorado Springs websites.4. Social and Recreational ActivitiesSenior CentersSenior centers across Colorado offer a wide range of activities, including games, social events, and educational classes. The Fort Collins Senior Center, for instance, provides everything from art workshops to dance classes, ensuring a lively and engaging environment for seniors.Discover more at the Fort Collins Senior Center website.Volunteering OpportunitiesMany seniors find fulfillment in volunteering, and Colorado has numerous opportunities for those who wish to give back to the community. Organizations like Volunteers of America Colorado and the Denver Botanic Gardens welcome senior volunteers in various capacities.Find volunteering opportunities at Volunteers of America Colorado and Denver Botanic Gardens websites.5. Travel and ExplorationScenic Train RidesFor seniors who prefer a more relaxed way to enjoy Colorados scenery, scenic train rides offer a fantastic option. The Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad and the Georgetown Loop Railroad provide unforgettable journeys through the states picturesque landscapes.Book your ride at Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad and Georgetown Loop Railroad websites. Hot SpringsColorados hot springs are perfect for seniors seeking relaxation and therapeutic benefits. Locations like Glenwood Hot Springs and Mount Princeton Hot Springs offer serene environments where seniors can unwind and rejuvenate.Plan your visit to Glenwood Hot Springs and Mount Princeton Hot Springs websites.6. Educational ProgramsLifelong LearningSeniors in Colorado have access to numerous lifelong learning opportunities. Universities like Colorado State University and the University of Colorado offer programs and courses specifically designed for older adults, covering a wide range of subjects from history to technology.Explore lifelong learning at Colorado State University and University of Colorado Boulder.LibrariesLibraries in Colorado provide more than just books; they offer various programs and workshops for seniors. The Denver Public Library, for example, hosts book clubs, technology classes, and cultural events tailored to older adults.Visit the Denver Public Library for more information.ConclusionColorados diverse array of activities ensures that seniors can find something to suit their interests and abilities. Whether its exploring the great outdoors, engaging in cultural pursuits, participating in fitness programs, or continuing education, the state offers countless opportunities for seniors to lead an active, fulfilling life. By taking advantage of these resources, older adults in Colorado can enjoy a rich and vibrant lifestyle.

Five Fun Out-of-the-Box Experiences to Enjoy with Your Older Parents

Tired of the same familiar activities with your parents? It might be time to try something different. The experts at Naborforce, an on-demand service for seniors, have come up with a list of exciting activities to spend time with older parents:Glass-Blowing Session A glass-blowing session might be the last thing you would expect from a senior outing, but here at Naborforce, weve seen this as one of the most exciting experiences weve had on our platform! Make sure you research your host, as glass blowing instructions can vary. We partnered with The Glass Spot RVA, which had step-by-step guidance that resulted in a beautiful finished product, prompting our client to call it A Million Dollar Day. Dance Class for SeniorsWhat can be more fun than dancing in the middle of the day? This could be a great activity to do with Mom- whether its salsa or tap, she will have something to talk about for days. Plus, dance classes are a great way to encourage fun and active aging. Research by the National Institute on Aging shows that movement in older age strengthens the mind, which potentially delays the onset of certain debilitating diseases. Here at Naborforce, weve had our fair share of dance classes. Just the other day, one of our community members took our client to a line dancing class at Pine Camp Community Center in Richmond, VA. An Art Class Outing or At-Home Project Art expression is such a great way to calm the mind, hone in on creative skills and create new memories, essential components for independent aging. You might already know of an art class in your area or senior living community, but have you ever tried setting up something at home? Kits sold by Artful Aging are in-home watercolor packages that also come with instructional videos, perfect for senior DIY-ers!Build-A-Bear Workshop OutingIt might be a while since youve stepped foot inside a Build-A-Bear Workshop, where you can customize a stuffed animal with your personal preferences, down to including a note embedded in the toy! We love Build-A-Bear as an activity for older parents, mainly because we saw the impact during one of our Naborforce visits. Our client wanted to customize a teddy bear for his wife. He booked a Naborforce visit to accompany him to Build-A-Bear, where he recorded a heartwarming note in a voice box inside the bear. To this day, our clients wife cherishes this gift as a reminder of their love and connection.An Evening at the MuseumAfter youve tried an art class at home (see out-of-the-box idea #2), maybe its time to hone your art skills by going to a museum. Check out the events calendar at your local art museum to see if there are any special offerings or exhibitions.  As an example, the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts offers many adult classes. If walking too much is a concern for your loved one, know that many places might offer wheelchair assistance. Plus, in the summer the local museum is a great way to cool down!