Simple and Easy Chair Exercises for Seniors

We all have heard about the importance and benefits of exercise. Regular physical activity is known to increase life expectancy and can also reduce the risk of various diseases.

However, regular exercise can seem like a huge task for seniors who may be already facing a decline in physical health. Also, due to the current global pandemic, seniors have found it difficult to exercise regularly.

This has led to the rise of unique exercise routines that can be easily done at home. One such routine involves the use of a simple object that might already be in our living room – a chair.

What Are Chair Exercises?

Chair exercises are simple and easy-to-do routines that can be done while seated on a chair. These exercises are helpful for seniors as they can easily do it from the comfort of their homes.

Moreover, chair exercises offer a whole lot of benefits which makes them the ideal workout routine for seniors. With that in mind, here is a list of the best chair exercises that seniors can easily perform.

1. Seated Knee Stretches

How to perform:

  • Comfortably seat yourself on a chair and straighten your back
  • Now, stretch your right knee outwards while squeezing your quadricep muscles
  • Hold for 3-5 seconds and put your knee down
  • Do the same with your left knee and perform this exercise 10-12 times

2. Wrist and Ankle Rolls

How to perform:

  • Sit on a chair and keep your arms to the side
  • Open your fists, flex your fingers completely and close your fists
  • Do this 8-10 times and then roll your wrists in a circular motion for a few times
  • Once you are done with your wrists, perform the same exercise with your ankles

3. Side Bend and Hold

How to perform:

  • For this exercise, you can either sit on a chair or stand next to it
  • Raise your arms as high as possible and squeeze the torso muscles
  • Keep your arms raised and bend towards the right side
  • Hold for 5-7 seconds and return to the start position
  • Now, bend to the other side and hold for another 5-7 seconds
  • Perform this exercise 3-5 times on each side

4. Chair Squats

How to perform:

  • Stand upright in front of your chair
  • Hold the top of the chair for support and move downwards into a squat position
  • You can push your hips backwards and try to keep your back straight
  • Hold for a few seconds and slowly return to the standing position
  • Repeat this exercise 8-10 times

5. Upper Body Twists

How to perform:

  • Sit on your chair and place your feet on the ground
  • Stretch your arms out and hold them at a 90-degree angle in front of you
  • Now, rotate your upper torso to the right without moving your lower body
  • Return to the start position and rotate your upper torso to the other side
  • Continue with this exercise and perform 8-10 repetitions

6. Inner Thigh Squeeze

How to perform:

  • Sit on the edge of the chair and keep your back straight
  • Now, place a ball between your knees and squeeze it by pressing your knees together
  • Squeeze for 3-5 seconds and release the hold
  • Perform this exercise 8-10 times

7. Seated Shoulder Press

How to perform:

  • Seat yourself on a sturdy chair and place your feet flat on the ground
  • Now, hold a lightweight dumbbell or any other light object such as water bottles or resistance bands in each of your hands
  • Bend your elbows with your palms facing away from you
  • Lift your arms up straight over your head and then slowly return to the earlier position
  • Repeat this exercise 10-12 times

8. Heel Raises

How to perform:

  • Stand straight and hold on to your chair for some support
  • Bend your left knee while squeezing your glute muscles and extend your left leg backwards
  • Hold for 5 seconds and place your leg down
  • Repeat this exercise 10-12 times

Benefits of These Chair Exercises for Seniors

1. Increased Flexibility

Chair exercises allow seniors to stretch their body which can help improve flexibility. These exercises help them to improve their range of motion and can also relieve joint or muscle pain.

2. Improves Concentration

One of the most important benefits of chair exercises for seniors is that it helps improve focus and concentration. This is extremely important as it can prevent dementia or Alzheimer’s among seniors.

3. Improved Balance

Seniors often have to use various mobility aids as they are unable to balance themselves. Chair exercises allow the elderly to work on their mobility issues and can also help improve their balance.

4. Reduces Stress

Performing these chair exercises regularly can give seniors a feeling of having achieved something important. This can have a positive impact on their mental health, as it elevates their mood and can reduce stress or anxiety among the elderly.

5. Quality of Life

Regular physical exercise is the key to staying fit even during old age. Chair exercises allow seniors to easily perform workout routines, despite their weakened physical strength. This can boost their self-confidence, give them a sense of pride and can help improve their quality of life as well.

Chair exercises are a fun way for seniors to stay fit during their golden years. While seniors can do it alone, they can also join virtual workshops or online sessions where trained instructors can guide them through their routine.