By John Phillips
This is the second part of a three-part series that was featured in the April 22, 2019 edition of the Wall Street Journal. I felt it was appropriated for our Oakmont community.
As we age, variety becomes key and core exercises are recommended. The following exercises are recommended to boost balance long before falls become a risk.
1. Wall Squats – Build the muscles of the thighs, hips, core and buttocks Stand against a wall with your feet shoulder-width apart and your hands on the back of your head. Gradually lower your body into a squat, ideally until your thighs are parallel to the floor. Keep your chest upright and make sure your knees are directly above your feet. Pause. Return to standing position Repetitions: 3 sets of 5.
2.Modified Planks – Increase core strength and improve balance Get into a push-up position but with your knees down and your weight on either your hands or forearms. Keep your body in a straight line from your head to your knees. Hold for 15-30 seconds and work up to 1 minute.
3.Split Squats – Increase strength in the legs, core and back, and enhance balance and flexibility in the hips and ankles Kneel. Place your right leg in a lunge position in front of you. Make sure your right knee is bent at a 90-degree angle above your right foot. Tuck the toes of your left foot under and rise to a standing position. Your legs will be staggered. Drop down partway, until your left knee almost touches the floor, and repeat on opposite side. Repetitions: 3 sets of 3.
4. Kettlebell/dumbbell Swings – Work the muscles in the hips, thighs, core, and shoulders Hold a light weight kettlebell or dumbbell by one end in both hands with your arms hanging loose in front of you. Stand with your feet hip-width apart and back straight. Bend your knees into a squatting position and push the weight backwards between your legs. Swing weight to the height of your shoulders, keeping arms straight. Allow weight to descend back between your legs, maintaining control of weight. Repetitions: 3 sets of 3.
5.Overhead Reaches – Stretch your sides and help with core flexibility and posture Stand with feet hip-width apart. Start with a small weight in right hand at shoulder height. Bend your body to the left, as you raise the weight straight up toward the ceiling. Return to starting position. Repeat on left side. Repetitions: 5 on each side.
Look for the next article in this 3 part series – The Best Exercises for Your 80’s
If you are a member of the fitness club you are entitled to a 20-minute check up with me. There is a signup board on the wall near my office. If you have any questions or need assistance with your workout program please feel free to contact me 707 494-9086 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.