With warmer months ahead, how can active seniors make the most of their time during the summer? For starters, think about the hobbies you enjoy and the activities you want to take advantage of while the days are long and sunny. Here are five safe and fun summer activities for active seniors to enjoy.
- Go for a swim. With summer comes plenty of sunshine and high temperatures. One of the best ways for seniors to stay active and cool during the summer months is to swim. Because of water’s buoyancy, swimming is safer on aging joints than other forms of exercise.
Outdoor pools also provide excellent opportunities to socialize with other like-minded seniors. Consider finding a pool that offers group water aerobics or invite friends to the pool for swimming, food and games.
- Take a nature walk. Check your local area for parks or nature preserves. A leisurely stroll outdoors is a great way to enjoy the scenery during the summer months when plants and wildlife are abundant. Walk in groups to build friendships or take a stroll on your own to enjoy the relaxing landscape around you. Whichever you prefer, walking regularly is a great way to keep the mind and body active as you age.
- Visit a farmers market. Most neighborhoods host a variety of markets during the warmer months, including farmers markets, local craft fairs and flea markets. If you love to cook and host, buy some fresh produce and gather your friends for dinner!
- Catch a baseball game. If you’re into sports, consider checking out a local baseball game. Whether it’s professional, college or your grandchild’s little league game, catching an outdoor baseball game is a great way to pass the time while spending time outdoors.
- Join a pickleball club. Pickleball has become increasingly popular with older adults and is a fun way to stay healthy throughout summer. The low-impact sport is played on a tennis court, but unlike tennis, playing pickleball is more manageable and can be enjoyed by players of any skill level. The game helps with hand-eye coordination and is a fun way to stay fit as you age.
Stay Safe in the Summer Heat
As you can see, the summer months offer plenty of opportunities for seniors to discover new activities. In moderation, sunlight is an excellent way to support a healthy immune system while improving mood and cognitive function. However, since older adults are at a greater risk for heat stress, it is important to exercise caution when spending time outside.
To stay safe in the heat, seniors should:
- Wear sunscreen, sunglasses and hats to protect their skin and eyes when spending time outdoors.
- Drink plenty of water to stay hydrated.
- Opt to be outside in the morning or evening hours when the sun is less intense, especially when exercising.
- Take frequent breaks to cool down by finding shady areas or stepping inside air-conditioned living spaces.
- Avoid spending time outside when temperatures are extreme.
Bottom line: There are plenty of activities for seniors to enjoy outdoors during the summer. Consider making a list of your favorite summer activities, and maybe even try something new, like pickleball, morning walks or yoga in the park! Whatever you decide, staying active and safe throughout summer is a great way to increase your overall well-being and quality of life.