Working on your physical strength and overall fitness is extremely important to keep healthy and protect you from injury as you age. However, as you may fall in love with cardio or weight training, certain exercises can benefit you more than others in your 40s.
Exercising regularly can do wonders for your health, especially when you are older. Not only can it protect you from many injuries that could occur, but physical activity can also prevent the onset of many chronic illnesses that occur with age.
Exercises to Do to Prevent Injury After 40
As you breeze through your 40s, the following exercises will protect you from getting hurt and improve your overall health in the long run.
1. Shoulder Strech
This shoulder stretch is great to open up the shoulders and chest muscles that can improve shoulder mobility and reduce the risk of a frozen shoulder.
- Start by lying on your belly with your face down on your mat.
- Position your left arm to a 90-degree angle from your body, palm faced down.
- Placing your right hand on the ground, push to lift the side of your body as you stretch the front of your left shoulder and pectoral region.
- Engage the muscles of your left shoulder and hold for 10 seconds.
Squats are an excellent exercise that should be practiced at all ages. Not only will you strengthen your legs, but you will also maintain lower-back strength, which is important to prevent injury.
- Stand with your feet about 6 inches apart and place your hands across your chest.
- Keeping your core muscles tight and engaged, push your hips back and bend your knees to lower down to a squat. Make sure that your knees are behind all your 10 toes.
- Immediately press back up to the starting position.
- Perform squats for 20 reps.
3. High Planks
Your core muscles support your entire body. Therefore, having a strong core will help you twist and bend and keep you agile as you age.
- Start on your hands and knees and extend your legs out as you stack your wrists above your shoulders.
- Keep your core tight and engaged as you focus on your breath.
- Hold this pose for 30 seconds and gradually increase the length of time with regular practice.
4. Flamingo Balance
Your balance slowly starts to deteriorate as you age. In order to prevent slips and falls and the bone breakage that comes with accidents, improving your balance is necessary to protect you from getting injured.
- Start by balancing on one leg for 20 seconds and switch sides to balance on the opposite leg for 20 seconds.
- Once you can balance for 20 seconds on each leg, stand on a towel or an uneven surface to up the challenge yourself and improve your balance further.
- Another way to layer up is to close your eyes as you try to balance.
5. Hip-Flexor Stretch
Strengthening your hip-flexors is helpful to increase the mobility and flexibility of your hips and joints that will protect your knees and ankles from getting strained.
- Start by kneeling halfway with your right knee up.
- Keeping your core tight and engaged, lunge forward to feel your hips open and stretch.
- Once you feel the stretch, contract your hip muscles and hold for 10 seconds.
- Then, relax your hip flexor but maintain the stretch.
- Rest for a couple of seconds and squeeze your glutes for 10 seconds.
- Perform this stretch for three rounds and switch sides to repeat the exercise on the opposite leg.
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5 Exercises You Should Do to Avoid Injuries After 40. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.health.com/fitness/injury-prevention-mobility-exercises
Reynolds, G. (n.d.). How to Stay Active Forever and Avoid Injury During Exercise. Retrieved from https://www.aarp.org/health/healthy-living/info-08-2012/how-to-avoid-injury-during-exercise.html