For many years the association between aging well and exercise has been known, but was never 100% proven. A study published recently in the Journal of the American Medical Association that proved exercising helps to prevent age related decline.
Dr. Marco Pahor is the director of the Institute on Aging at the University of Florida and the lead author on the study. He said “For the first time, we have directly shown that exercise can effectively lessen or prevent the development of physical disability in a population of extremely vulnerable elderly people.”
There have been many studies linking physical activity in the elderly and a longer, healthier, less painful and more active life. These studies, though, only prove that healthy older people exercise, and not that exercise improves older people’s health. Other studies that look at exercise and the elderly are equally limited. Some of them proving that the elderly can improve strength, balance and endurance through weight training or aerobic exercise.
This recent study took an unusual look at the elderly. Most studies used subjects that were already in shape and exercising. This study took 1635 sedentary men and women between the ages of 70-89 who were not exercising or watching what they ate. The criteria was that each test subject had to be able to walk at least 400 meters (a quarter of a mile).
These people were then split into 2 groups. The first group was assigned specific exercises. The second group was assigned education classes. These classes met once a month and covered topics such as nutrition, health care, exercise, and other topics related to aging gracefully.
The exercise group was prescribed an exercise routine that consisted of walking and light weight lifting. This group met twice a week at a track for supervised walks that progressively got longer. They were also advised to exercise at home as well.
For over 2 years the researchers checked in on the test subjects to make sure that they were sticking to the prescribed exercises and weren’t injuring themselves. The study lasted far longer than most exercise studies do.
The results showed that the exercising group was 18% less likely to have an episode of being disabled due to injury or pain. They were also 28% less likely to become permanently disabled during the study.
During the study, the education group had a 35% chance of becoming temporarily disabled. While the exercise group had a 30% of becoming permanently disabled.
This may not seem like a significant difference, and it is not a huge difference. But, this difference would have been larger but some of the people in the education group started exercising because they learned the benefits of exercising. If the education group had not started exercising, then the difference would be greater.
Dr. Pahor cautions that this study is not meant to get the elderly to start an exercise routine unsupervised. “Medical supervision is important,” he said. He recommends talking to your doctor before starting any exercise routine to make sure that your body can handle the demands of exercise.
The cost of getting each study subject into shape was $1,800 per patient per year. This cost covered travel expenses to and from the center along with other expenses. $1,800 per year is a lot of money to spend. But it is considerably less money than it would cost if you become permanently disabled. Then you’d have to pay for around the clock nursing and care.
Luckily there is Pain Free Lifestyle. I designed Pain Free Lifestyle to be inexpensive and easy to follow from home. You don’t need fancy exercise equipment or to join a gym, health club or spa. All that you need to do Pain Free Lifestyle is a few small, light hand weights and a computer.
If you know what you are doing then you can get a complete, inexpensive, overall body workout from the comfort of your own home. I set this program up to be easy to follow and easy to incorporate into your lifestyle. The exercises are easy on your body and very rarely cause injury.
I specialize in trigger point therapy and muscle injuries in my chiropractic clinic. This has allowed me to learn muscle patterns that are common for injuries. I have learned which muscles get injured the easiest and which muscle injuries lead to other injuries. I’ve learned which muscles will contribute to specific injuries.
I’ve also learned which muscles are important to keep healthy and strong to prevent injury. If you can strengthen up, and loosen up, the commonly overused and injured muscles, then you can prevent injuries, and help old injuries to heal. If you can strengthen up the right muscles, you can stabilize your body and stabilize irritated and arthritic joints.
Exercise, if done in the right way (low impact, low intensity), will help you to heal and feel better. If done wrong (high impact, high intensity), then it will create injuries and pain.
I have taken the guess work out of exercise for you. I set up the Pain Free Lifestyle program to be useful for most people. If you haven’t exercised in years, then Pain Free Lifestyle is right for you. If you are overweight, in pain, arthritic, diabetic, a senior citizen, a young person who works in front of a computer for 16 hours a day, someone whose doctor told them to start exercising and you have no idea where to start, if you just do aerobic exercise and no strength training, then Pain Free Lifestyle is right for you.
Pain Free Lifestyle costs $9.99 per month. That is less expensive than any gym or personal trainer. It is like having your own personal trainer and your own, personal workout routine. Pain Free Lifestyle takes you slowly, step by step, to getting into shape.
Pain Free Lifestyle consists of exercises, stretches, aerobic exercises, and a nutritional program. All of it is designed to get you moving and eating healthy. It is not meant to be a hardcore, high intensity, extreme exercise system like cross fit or P90x. It is an alternative for those of you who can’t do an extreme exercise routine (which is most people).
Exercising and eating healthy is the best way to maintain your health as you age. It is the best way to ensure that you will feel as good as possible as you age. It is the best way to slow down the aging process. Don’t be one of those people who say “If I had known I was going to live this long then I would have taken better care of myself.” Start now. Don’t wait.
Don’t exercise harder, exercise smarter. Exercising and eating right in a way that is easy to follow, easy to incorporate into your lifestyle, and easy on your wallet, is the Pain Free Way.
Here are 2 other articles that I wrote on the subject of exercising and aging: