When somebody tells you to exercise more, your mind probably jumps to running, walking and just generally moving around. That’s easy enough. But for seniors who are wheelchair-bound, this is unfortunately not possible. Wheelchair-bound seniors are restricted to specific movements and exercises and yet it is still important for them to live happy, active and independent lives! Let’s take a look below at several exercises that will improve the daily lives of wheelchair-bound seniors.
Sitting straight up with the ab muscles contracted, hold your arms at should level with the hands facing down. Curve the fingers like you’re gripping handles and push both arms out straight in front of you. Extend as far as you can but be careful not to lock the joints. Bend your elbows and pull your arms back until your elbows are a little behind your torso. Then squeeze your shoulder blades together and repeat!
While sitting straight with your abs engaged, you can hold a medicine ball (or even a balloon!) at chest level and squeeze it between your hands to make the chest muscles contract. Then slowly push the ball forward until your elbows are straight but not locked. Continue to squeeze the ball through the whole movement. Pull the ball back to your chest and repeat.
Sit up straight, engage your abs and put your feet flat on the ground. Tilt your toes upwards and then point the back down towards the floor. Repeat this motion several times. Easy!
Sitting straight up with your abs engaged and feet flat to the ground, slowly raise one leg, bend your knee and lift your leg as high as you can while staying comfortable. Then lower your foot back to the floor and repeat this motion with your other leg. Continue these motions while alternating legs.
Getting in the water and doing some aqua training exercises and swimming are good ways to get physical out of the wheelchair. Exercising in water is particularly beneficial because the water better supports the body. You’re less likely to experience joint discomfort.
For more information on physical activity for your wheelchair-bound senior, or for details about our senior home care programs, please call Home Care Assistance to schedule your consultation!