The role of a caregiver is to assist an individual with extra needs in completing daily tasks they could not safely perform themselves. Caregivers help enrich the lives of those they look after by providing a variety of services. One of the most important aspects of any healthcare plan is physical care and exercise, especially for aging adults. It’s recommended that adults aged 65 and older perform at least 150 minutes a week of moderate-intensity activity. That breaks down to 30 minutes a day, five times a week.
Ideal Home Care Services is a leading provider of top-quality care services for patients located throughout Long Island. Here, we detail home health exercises caregivers can integrate into a client’s routine to help them maintain their independence.
Home Health Exercises to Perform With Your Client
As a caregiver, before starting any fitness routine, it’s important to first have a discussion with your client and their family to talk about the importance of fitness and why exercises should be implemented. Understanding the benefits of routinely performing moderate exercises can offer added motivation to clients.
We recommend starting slow with patients, helping them ease their way into exercising. Add low-impact, strength, and balance-building exercises into their healthcare regimen, such as:
Stretching is crucial at any age. It’s an important component of exercising because it helps prevent most injuries and can serve as a hearty warm-up. There are many variations of stretching exercises you can implement with a client. A good rule of thumb is to stretch and warm up a muscle or area of the body you intend to work out. Stretching should not be rushed or skipped over.
For many patients, particularly those who are much more elderly, getting up from a sitting position can be very difficult to do alone. Regularly performing the sit-to-stand exercise with your client can help strengthen the muscles used when attempting to stand up. This exercise can be performed in any chair that the client feels comfortable in, as long as their knees don’t extend past 90 degrees.
To perform the exercise, clients should press their heels onto the floor while lifting their bottoms off the chair. Pushing with their legs, they should come to a semi-standing position. Once they’ve reached a semi-standing position, they slowly return to the seated position. Clients are to repeat the same movement for 10 reps, or as many as they can do without exceeding 10. Once clients feel comfortable reaching a semi-standing position, they can move onto a full standing position.
Marching In Place
A brisk walk is one of the most beneficial exercises for any adult. Due to weather and other circumstances, walking outside isn’t always an option. Walking in place is a healthy and effective indoor replacement.
Clients should stand straight, lifting one knee at a time to 90 degrees. Clients should be instructed when placing their foot down to start with their toes first and then roll their heels back. The movement of switching from one foot to the other should continue for 30 seconds for three reps. Caregivers should remind clients to breathe and swing their arms naturally as if they were walking.
Wall pushups are a variation of the traditional pushups but are much less stressful on the body, making them an ideal exercise for aging adults. Wall pushups still target upper body strength such as arms, chest, shoulders, and upper back muscles.
While standing up straight with legs shoulder-width apart, clients should rest their hands on a sturdy wall. From there with some of their weight on the hands, clients should slowly lean their chest into the wall while bending their elbows. Once their chest has reached the wall, clients should push themselves back into the starting position.
Caregivers should ease their clients into this exercise slowly, starting with five repetitions for three sets. Once comfortable, caregivers can up the intensity to 15 reps.
Healthcare at Ideal Home Care Services
At Ideal Home Care Services, we understand the importance of a healthy regimen that includes physical activity. Based in Hauppauge, New York, and serving clients throughout Long Island, our team is happy to offer a variety of physical care and support services, including conducting home health physical therapy exercises. With the guidance of our team members, patients receive the attention they need to strengthen their muscles and make daily tasks more manageable.
Caregivers, home health aides, or patients wishing to learn more about exercises that are safe and beneficial can contact us today at Ideal Home Care Services.