Fitness over 50Posted on: 04 December 2012 by Rhian Mainwaring
Exercise and fitness classes that cater for older people
When you think of the gym do you see body builders pumping iron in front of wall to wall mirrors? Do you imagine slipping off the treadmill or getting caught in a weights machine? Yes, us too, which is why we’re taking a look at ways to get fit without losing face!
We got in touch with David Lloyd Leisure to find out what kind of classes they offer older customers at their centres, and we were pleasantly surprised. There’s something for everyone, so whether you need something low resistance, or want an exercise regime which works your mind as well as your body, there's certainly something here for you to get into.
The great thing about going to a class is that you have the support of those around you and you’ll be surprised how much more you can do when you are secretly trying to out-do the gym bunny next to you!
Here’s our selection of the best classes/activities at your local centre...
- Swimming is a great way to improve fitness, tone up and burn off those calories for those warmer summer months! It’s low-impact, too, so you run less risk of injury and it’s a great addition to other training programmes.
- Aqua is a great exercise class which allows you to work out to music in the water – you don’t need to be a swimmer to take part, and the water provides a natural ressistance which makes your muscles work harder.
- Holistic classes, aimed at reducing life’s stresses and promoting flexibility, are ideal for those keeping away from high impact and are looking for a class which suits their lifestyle – this is all about getting healthy from the inside out.
- Tai chi is an ancient Chinese martial arts form using meditation to create a constant flow of energy and movement. It combines mental concentration, slow breathing and dance-like movements to increase chi (life energy). If you’re prone to stress, this is great way to work out some of those worries.
- Kinesis breathe is also for individuals seeking relaxation, increased body awareness and a low-intensity workout and can be done by all ages and fitness levels.
- Senior multi-circuits combines low intensity aerobics and resistance training in a gentle-paced session specifically for those aged 50-plus. This will boost your fitness level and introduce you back in to the world of exercise as well as get you reacquainted with the gym machines.
- Pilates is a core-based workout for those with back and postural problems, incorporating stretching and toning. Getting a good core strength can alleviate aches and pains, give you more energy and... make you look and feel slimmer!
- Ballroom and Latin American dance classes are a great way to exercise, increasing your all round stamina and fitness levels. It’s a great way to exercise without noticing it and is also great for meeting new people.
If running on a treadmill for hours isn’t your thing and you need a competitive edge to make training more fun then go for tennis, squash or badminton. Again, a great work out improving your coordination and fitness level without feeling like a solitary slog at the gym. You can also get lessons and programmes for every age and ability.
After all of that exercise unwind your muscles and mind in the gyms spa facilities. Head to the hydro spa, steam or aroma room to unwind and praise your body for the effort, and don’t forget to warm down, stretch out and give yourself a pat on the back.
Do you do any of these classes? What would you recommend for someone starting back at the gym? Are you hooked to your class? Let us know your thoughts below...
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