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3-Step Workout for Life Program Can be the Best Exercise for Older Adults

3-Step Workout for Life Program Can be the Best Exercise for Older Adults

They say that man is made up of habits. And so, if we wish to live longer, one must go beyond his sedentary lifestyle and exercise more.

This saying is particularly true especially for older adults. They are not getting any younger, but this does not mean they can't do good exercise anymore. It is only a matter of choosing the right exercise program for them.

What type of exercise is the best then? When asked this question we often think of that exercise which doesn't feel like it is exercise at all. And that is primarily what our grandma and grandpa would want especially that moving a muscle could be challenging for them. This is because as we age our muscle strength also declines. Thus, aging makes us more susceptible to a sedentary lifestyle.

We can always do something about this especially for our grandparents who wish to do their everyday tasks and home chores independently. By discovering this new exercise program, we can make this wish possible. We can help them fend for themselves and avoid the risk of being put in nursing homes.

It is best for families who wish to stay together and avoid inevitable circumstances in which they will be forced for their older loved ones to be separated from them. No one likes that type of stories. Therefore, exercising and taking good care of ourselves can be the happy journey we will need for the happy endings we want for our family members.

The ideal form of exercise that best suits our grandma and grandpa involves an incorporation of the usual resistance exercise routines to their daily living activities. And this is what the 3-Step Workout for Life program developed by Chiung-ju Liu at the Indiana University - Purdue University Indianapolis is all about. She is an assistant professor in the School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences in the said universities.

Liu has a background in occupational therapy, and this has led her to observe and believe that to help older people in their daily living activities, they need more than the usual resistance exercise routines being practiced by most people. She added that if people want to help the older community become independent in doing their tasks, just the usual exercise is not efficient enough.

This is why she created the 10-week exercise program also known as the "3-Step Workout for Life" that turns the homes of older people into age-appropriate gyms. In this program, older people perform exercises that are about their daily living activities.

The program starts with the usual resistance exercise like bicep curls. The second stage now involves linking that resistance exercise to daily living activities. The third stage then is increasing the level of challenge in performing those daily living activities like having the older people walk longer distance or at a different pace.

After the 10-week program, a study was conducted by Liu showing that at the end of the 3-Step Workout for Life program has similar results to that of the 10 week resistance only exercise program. However, the difference is that older adults have retained the benefits of the 3-step Workout for Life program than the resistance exercise only program after being tested six months later. The benefits of the former were shown to have decreased over the six months period.

Liu is now working with the Crestwood Village, a senior-living community on the south side of Indianapolis. They will try to find out if the 3-Step Workout for Life program can be scaled to larger groups of older people. Crestwood Village, it's health fitness staff is also considering incorporating the said program into the other fitness programs being offered there.

The brighter side of this study is in knowing how this program is very practical in its essence and can easily be reenacted at home. If you can't afford this particular program, you can always develop your own by following or even adding to your own schedule of daily living activities. Watering the plants, walking the dog, doing errands are just some of the daily routines we do that we can choose to do with a better attitude if we think of them as exercise. If you get bored with your usual routine, you can always find ways to level it up as what the actual 3-Step Workout for life program does in its third stage. But of course, always exercise caution. Too much of everything is just as bad as too little.

The idea of monitoring the progress can be the difference and the actual benefit you might be missing in the actual 3-Step Workout for Life program but if you do the things you do every day then your body will not be missing any exercise it requires to function healthily. At the end of the day, we go back to the best form of exercise, and that is doing chores and all the things that we usually do every day.

The goal of developing new mechanisms to help our older family members or the aged population, in general, is to allow them not to be limited in seeking new things in life because of old age. A healthier older population also reflects how the young have been taking good care of the people who took care of them first.


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