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Physical activity and exercises to maintain muscle mass in old age are very important
Most older people exercise far too little and rarely do exercises to maintain their muscles. Over time, this leads to the muscle mass of those affected being reduced. Experts are now advising that older people should exercise to strengthen their muscles to avoid dangerous falls and serious illnesses.
In their current investigation, the scientists of the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy found that many older people do not exercise enough to maintain their muscles. In a press release, the doctors published their recommendations on how older people can counteract the loss of muscle mass through special exercises.
Too few people are physically active in old age
The researchers found that around 24 percent of people age 65 and older did no muscle strengthening exercises. These people are at risk of experiencing severe falls and illnesses. Nine percent of older people do muscle strengthening exercises once a week. Current so-called movement guidelines, however, recommend exercising at least twice a week. In addition, there is the recommendation to be physically active for 150 minutes every week.
Which exercises are suitable for which age?
The guidelines state that people up to 64 years of age should do weight exercises. It is also possible for these people to lift and carry heavy loads, such as bags with groceries after shopping. Alternatively, people over the age of 65 can do activities such as dancing or aerobics.
Exercise can improve long-term health
Most people who are approaching retirement do not do enough physical activity to protect their long-term health, the scientists emphasize. About 34 percent of people aged 55 to 64 years would not do any of these exercises at all.
Many people are simply not interested in exercising
Many older people (19 percent) do not know which exercises are suitable for strengthening muscles or improving physical activity. 18 percent even stated that they simply have no interest in doing these exercises. About 35 percent of those surveyed said that their state of health prevented them from doing exercises to strengthen their muscles.
The muscle mass decreases in old age
Various studies have already shown that exercises to strengthen muscles and exercise can prevent falls and certain illnesses, especially at an older age. In old age, the muscle mass of people is reduced. From the age of 30, we lose up to eight percent of our muscle mass every decade, say the experts. Exercise, exercise, and physical activity can slow down or even reverse this process. The idea that it is inevitable in old age to break down physically is not the truth, the scientists add.
The muscles can also be strengthened by gardening or similar tasks
Strengthening muscle mass leads to a whole range of health benefits. In other words, physical activity is incredibly important to people. You don't need to run into a fitness study right away to lift heavy weights. It is sufficient if, for example, you dig around your garden or do simple exercises with your own body weight, the researchers explain. There are many ways to counteract the physical breakdown, but it is much easier to get started. The current study shows that a lot still needs to be done to encourage all older people to do more. (as)