Fit For Life Exercise Newsletter 3! :)
During these challenging times its vital to keep moving and maintain our fitness and mobility levels! We want to help nursing home residents and the care team with this by sending regular exercise suggestions! This week we will briefly look at how to deliver exercise sessions safely. We will introduce exercise intensity and two simple methods of monitoring it during sessions. And we have included a basic aerobic or cardiovascular exercise program that can be completed with residents!
Exercise Session Safety
How do we know that an Older Adult is exercising a safe intensity?
1) Exercise intensity is how hard your body is working i.e. how much energy is expended during exercise. It is defined by the amount of energy required for the performance of the physcial activity per unit of time. Research has shown that exercise intensity has an effect on what fuel or energy system the body primarily uses and on what kind of adaptations the body makes after exercise.
Percieved exercise intensity is a subjective measure of how hard physical activity feels to you when you are doing it - your perceived exertion. We find that simple 10-point rate of percieved exertion (RPE) scales, like the ones below, are a great way of measuring this whilst Older Adults are exercising.
Do you remember the CV or aerobic exercise guideline from week one?? . . .
Research has demonstrated that Older Adults are recommended to do: up to 150mins of moderate intensity aerobic/cardiovascular exercise per week.
Moderate intensity = 4-6 on the 10-point scale (see below).
2) The Talk test: is another simple way of measuring intensity for Older Adults. In general, if you are doing moderate intensity exercise, you can talk but not sing during the activity. So just ask the person who is exercising a question and see can they talk back to you! They should never be panting or short of breath! Remember we are aiming for moderate intensity!
Newsletter 3 program: The program below is for aerobic/cardiovascular training and is suitable for most Older Adults. It can be completed in sitting or standing (if safe to do so) on most days of the week. You could complete them in a group or individually!
We suggest that you do each exercise for 10-30 seconds for 2-4 sets. Take rest breaks as required e.g. 10-30sec between exercises (if needed) and 1-3mins between sets.
Complete the exercises in a slow and controlled manner and work within your max. pain free range of motion!
Please see below for the pdf of the program!
Patricia O'Donnell CAT GSR BSc MSc
Certified Athletic Therapist & Rehab Dept Manager