Ram Duriseti: What can seniors do to be active during social distancing?

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Everyone is dealing with unique challenges posed by the pandemic. It is difficult to meet anyone because many companies have closed their offices and required their employees to work remotely. Socializing and everyday outdoor activities, for many, have become distant memory.  Amidst this, older adults should take additional precautions to insure they are not exposed to infection. However, this should not stop them from being physically and mentally active during this time, as it can prove harmful for their overall physical and mental wellbeing which might actually negatively impact their overall susceptibility of COVID-19. To avoid this, they can do a few things to lead a healthy life while maintaining social distancing. If you are older yourself or have aged parents living with you, it can be worthwhile to learn these strategies. 

Things to do to be active in alignment with social distancing guidelines by Ram Duriseti

Go for a walk

Despite the stay at home orders, some communities allow outdoor exercises. If you can avoid crowds, you can safely walk around your neighborhood. Obviously, make sure you are dressed for the weather and you bring appropriate amounts of water to stay well hydrated. Walking will calm down your restlessness. And walking will improve your mood and boost your immune system. There is a growing body of evidence to suggest that improved Vitamin D levels may decrease susceptibility to severe COVID-19.  The best way to maintain adequate levels of biologically active Vitamin D is sunlight exposure.  If you have not been instructed to avoid sun exposure by your physician, this is an easy measure which may prove to have a positive impact on COVID-19. If you can’t go outside, it is still not a problem. You can walk around your house anytime you wish; either way, it is better to have a routine and to maintain physical activity.

Indulge in gardening

Ram Duriseti suggests gardening as a low intensity and rewarding outdoor activities. It helps burn calories while allowing you to bask in the sun and fresh air. Some seniors with mobility issues may not find this feasible or safe. But if they want, they can also spend some time potting small herbs or plants inside their homes. They can work on small planters on their porch or patio as an afternoon diversion and part of a routine.

Try arts and crafts

There are many options when it comes to arts and crafts. Knitting, painting, and clay art are examples that are accessible to most. Even if your mobility is limited, you can find versions of these activities that can suit your limitations. They will benefit both your cognitive and physical wellbeing.

Dance a little

If you can, you must! Dancing can be excellent for your cardiovascular health. It is a low-impact exercise, and like all exercise, it can also improve your immunity.  You don’t have to worry about social distancing when you are at your home and it is an activity that is easily facilitated through online platforms. Play your favorite music and get started!

Attend online exercising and strength training classes

Stretching, strength training, Pilates, and Yoga can help keep maintain your strength and keep you fit. These exercises will help you gain balance and flexibility while improving your mobility over time. As you may need guidance for your particular circumstances and limitations, you can research and select many recognized classes online many of are tailored for a particular age group.

The trick to follow the lockdown while maintaining your mental and physical health is to be active and regular with your activity. Seek guidance to avoid over-exertion and injury. Coupling these measures with adequate water intake and other nutrition will allow you to maintain your physical isolation and wellness.

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