Why should older adults exercise?

For older adults, exercise: 

  • Improves sense of general well-being and joy
  • Improves functional status and improves quality of life
  • May reduce stiffness in the joints and reduce back pain
  • May improve energy levels
  • May allow for a longer period of functional independence
  • Reduces the risk of falling by improving sense of balance and functional skills such as climbing the stairs or rising out of a chair
  • Improves brain function (see research listed in the Drums Alive® Basic Instructor manual or the Drums Alive® Basic online home study course); reduces emotional stress, depression, and anxiety; slows memory loss and improves self-image
  • Maintains – or increases – muscle mass to reverse age-related muscle weakness
  • Improves muscular strength, endurance, and flexibility; aids in reducing body fat (Atienza, 2001, Cress et al., 2005)
  • Improves heart efficiency and lung capacity
  • Has been shown to lower or normalize blood pressure and increase HDL levels (high-density lipoprotein)
  • Maintains bone density and reduces the risk for fractures
  • Increases the flow of synovial fluid to the joints
  • Increases energy metabolism
  • Improves and maintains range of motion (ROM)
  • Activates and generates social ties and relationships