Happy Aging!

A very happy World Senior Citizen’s Day!! If you are 60 or 60 plus, Congratulations you are officially a senior citizen! I once heard an elderly say, I am not 60, I am sweet 16 with 44 years of experience.  As Shakespeare said, “Age is just a number,” but we tend to take this number very seriously.

So, today I would like to share with you some age-defying secrets. As this lock down has come upon us so unexpectedly, a lot of elderly miss their favorite morning or evening walks in the park. It was multi-purpose – Sehat bhi aur Social interaction bhi. As a result of the lack of physical activity and exercise, we all are on the road to become couch potatoes. I cannot agree less with the saying “Sitting is the new smoking”.  If you are sitting for more than 3 hours a day, if you have household help available for all your daily chores and if you travel by ola/uber or a car whenever you leave the house, consider yourself on the road to poor fitness. So it is extremely important to get yourself moving, though indoors.

There are four pillars of fitness-

1.Nutrition/Diet.

2. Sleep.

3. Exercise and

4. Physical activity.

 One is incomplete without the other. Exercise and physical activity are not always synonymous to each other. You need to exercise to keep your muscles and bones strong and also, keep your physical activity high throughout the day to maintain good stamina and general fitness.

Focus on 4 S’s of exercise-

  1. Strengthening- Makes your muscles strong.
  2.  Stamina- Sustains high energy levels during all the activities of the day.
  3. Stability- The ability to not lose balance.
  4. Stretching- How far can you reach shows your flexibility.

This chart gives you a few simple exercises to do at home. Perform each exercise 10-15 times as per your capacity.

Also, another great way for overall health is our age-old, time-tested favourite exercise – The Sun Salutation Or Surya Namaskar. It can be done in a modified way by sitting on a chair as shown below.

Also , for every 30 minutes of sitting, make it a rule to get up and walk or stretch for atleast 3 minutes. Make it a rule!

The most common excuse we all use for not exercising is – “ Time nahi milta Hai.” This lockdown has brought upon us a silver lining by taking away this excuse. So inculcate the habit of exercising daily. Slowly and steadily you will transform your body and defy ageing.

The whole world’s economy is shut down because everyone fears for their health. Job, money, career, success are all secondary accomplishments. The first and foremost is Good Health. This pandemic is here to stay in our lives for long. It is up to you that when you finally come out of your houses for a get together, do you want people to look at you and say, “Oh! You look so old and frail” or do you want them to look at you and say, “What have you been doing? You look so fit and energetic.” The choice is yours!!

Authored by-
Dr Pratha Mehta, Physiotherapist specialized in Orthopaedic conditions. She has completed her Masters in Physiotherapy from the prestigious KEM Hospital. She is a fitness expert with a passionate desire to bring about a fitness revolution in the elderly.

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