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Simple Household Chores Double as Exercise for Seniors

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Senior adults often list a lack of time as an excuse for not getting in the recommended amount of exercise each day. Yet, simple household chores are often overlooked as a way to burn calories and increase one’s strength and flexibility. Whether you are carrying in groceries or catching up on your cleaning, Home Care Assistance of New Hampshire presents how to maximize your efforts while squeezing in some safe and effective exercises.

  • Cook Off Calories – Dinner preparation usually takes approximately 30 to 40 minutes, which just happens to fall into the recommended daily guidelines for physical activity. As you wait for your food to cook, walk in place and keep moving throughout the kitchen as you set the table and put utensils away. During moments where you must stand, do sets of 10 shoulder squeezes or calf raises with a short rest in between each one.
  • Hand Wash for a Shoulder Work Out – Whether you are washing your windows or scrubbing the floor, you can condition your shoulders and arms by using a circular motion. Be sure to switch arms periodically so that both shoulders get an equal workout. You can also increase the calories you burn by turning on some music with a fast tempo and wipe to the beat.
  • Carry and Lift Grocery Weights – After shopping, putting away groceries can be a heavy-duty chore. Yet, it is easy to strength-train and burn calories while completing this necessary task. Simply carrying in the groceries can work out your arms and shoulders. If you make multiple trips out to the car, then you can also enjoy some cardiovascular exercise. Alternatively, you could also do a few bicep curls with cans of vegetables before putting them away.

When performing other household chores, keep in mind that any activity done while standing burns more calories. Folding laundry, responding to mail and making phone calls can all be done while standing. Then, make an effort to stretch while reaching for high objects and stay moving throughout the day. This way, every chore can be an opportunity to increase your health and hit your daily exercise goals.

If you or an aging parent or loved one need additional help with chores, activities of daily living or personal care, reach out to the senior care experts at Home Care Assistance. Although we specialize in live-in home care, we offer flexible hourly home care in New Hampshire for seniors who need minimal help on an as-needed basis. To request more information or a complimentary in-home consultation, call 603-471-3004 to speak with a friendly Care Manager.