OpenPlacement Community > OpenPlacement Blog > Keeping Seniors Active (INFOGRAPHIC)

Keeping Seniors Active (INFOGRAPHIC) Lara Baez

June 18th, 2014

Keeping seniors active is often difficult. However, we can’t deny the fact that exercise is the key to healthy aging. Aside from preventing the side effects of being overweight, exercise can improve balance (preventing falls), and increase flexibility (keeping the body limber). We hope this infographic might encourage any seniors you might know (no matter their age!) to stay active.

Please like and share this Infographic if you find it helpful, and feel free to comment and share your thoughts or any experiences you’ve had below—we’d love to hear them! Also, check out our other helpful Infographics here.

Keeping Seniors Active

Keeping Seniors Active

The Situation

  • Only 22% of seniors report regular physical activity.
  • The average senior spends 17 minutes per day engaging in physical activity.
  • The average senior spends 15 times this (over 4 hours) watching tv.
  • The Surgeon General recommends 30 minutes of exercise per day.

Seniors’ Favorite Activities

  • Reading
  • Religious Activities
  • Gardening
  • Bicydling
  • Talking on the telephone
  • Senior Centers
  • Television
  • Walking
  • Tai Chi
  • Yoga
  • Swimming

Reasons To Stay Active

  • Maintain or lose weight
  • Enhance mobility and flexibility
  • Better sleep
  • Improve health by reducing impact of chronic disease
  • Boost mood and confidence

What To Do?

  • Walking: Boosts confidence
  • Tai Chi: Balance, self-control, composure
  • Yoga: Relaxation, increases circulation, muscle strength
  • Swimming: Low impact, muscle strength

Make Exercise A Lifelong Habit

  • Make it a priority: Think of active time as a special activity. Schedule it on your calendar, and you will see you have time for it.
  • Make it safe: Injury is a serious risk for seniors, so try to avoid things that are too strenuous. Contact a doctor or physical therapist to see what they recommend.
  • Make it interesting and fun: Switch up your path, or alternate walking faster/slower. Try swimming, biking, jogging, and hiking.
  • Make it easy: Find a local gym that you can walk to, or an affordable YMCA. If it’s too difficult or complicated, you won’t do it.
  • Make it social: Work out with a friend or family member. Join a class for seniors at your local gym, or find a fitness class at your local senior center.
  • Make it an active decision: Try to incorporate exercise in your daily activities- make it a lifestyle choice. Take the stairs, walk briskly, visit your neighbor instead of calling.

Exercise is the key to healthy aging… And it’s never too late to start!

For more information, and exercise ideas, visit this link from the National Institute on Aging.

About Lara Baez

Lara is the Social Media Strategist summer intern at OpenPlacement. She is a rising senior at Johns Hopkins University (Baltimore, MD), and hopes to go to medical school and become a physician.


  1. Ira Yellen June 19, 2014

    Lara: Great infographic. I would like to post on our website that reaches family caregivers and the agencies that serve them. Thanks, Ira

  2. Arun K. Potdar June 23, 2014

    I was wondering if you had given any thoughts to providing information on keeping the institutionalized seniors fit outside the standard Physical Therapy routines. As you know, not all PT activities are reimbursable or recommended as a routine and yet activities suggested in your article for maintenance of good health, are necessary to keep the residents healthy and happy. Most SNF Administrators and DONs, think in a box created by the reimbursement mechanism and ever present Malpractice litigation risks.
    I believe there is a strong link between the cost of care and healthy living for the residents; the benefits are no doubt available to all parties but there seems to be no systemic approach to provide such services as they are not recognized by the third party payers as Medically Necessity (Therapeutically) . It would be beneficial if diets and nutritional information is also added to this subject. I seem to have missed that. I liked the layout and presentation.

    1. Lara Baez June 23, 2014

      Thanks for the feedback! I will definitely look into creating an info graphic on diet and nutrition.

  3. Lori Morell July 1, 2014

    It is vital for any elder to participate in some form of exercise on a daily basis. If you make the activity fun, musically correct to the populus and engage seniors socially, it will be successful. Providing functional fitness during any exercise program will help keep the residents more ADL correct.
    My line is “you’ve got to move to improve” and”make it fun and they will come”.


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