Why older adults should stay active

Posted at: 05/29/2014 5:37 PM
Updated at: 05/29/2014 6:07 PM
By: Benita Zahn

Seniors at the Glenville YMCA explain - being active is good for body and soul.

Their hair may be white but competitive fire still burns red hot in these pickle ball players at the Glenville YMCA.

They're all over 60 and some are nearing 80. To a person they'll tell you, activity keeps them spry and healthy.

As Jane DeSilva, who's 78 explains "It keeps me in a positive frame of mind and it helps with your Heart and your health and all that."

Ray Raphael, just shy of his 74th  birthday agrees "I think without being active I'll gain even more weight and go downhill."

He's right. Not only does exercise keep weight in check - studies show you can build bone and muscle mass at any age.

"Range of motion, flexibility, balance, you name it, you can improve it," explains Paula Flint who runs the healthy living program at the Y.

Even seniors who haven't been active can improve their physical health by starting slow - walking 30 minutes a day.

"It's extremely important to stay active," says Allison Reinhardt the wellness director at the Glenville Y. She explains that it helps with core strength, muscle definition and overall "It helps with your mind and body keeping them healthy together." As Jane DeSilva sums it up, being active in a group situation helps you meet lots of people and you learn from everybody."