Gardening is one of my all-time favorite activities. I spent this last weekend with my children out in the yard tilling the soil to lay out my seeds, and planting my vegetables for the year. I will wait until the final threat of frost has passed, probably next weekend, before I plant the rest of my flowers. I worked at a landscaping company every summer from the time I turned 16 until I graduated from college 7 years later. Being outside in the fresh Colorado air was fantastic for my spirit and witnessing the beauty that my hard labor had created was always a pure joy for me. I would highly recommend gardening to anyone who still has the ability and the inclination to do it.
Activities for Seniors - Enjoy Safe Gardening for Seniors
Gardening for seniors offers many therapeutic benefits for the elderly. It becomes one of the best activities for seniors, because you can enjoy fresh air, you're doing something very productive, and you are getting exercise to improve your health. Let's also not forget that you are planting and harvesting fresh vegetables and fruit that theouy can eat, and cultivating beautiful flowers that you can admire.
Major Benefits of Gardening for Seniors
The benefits of gardening for seniors are many. Here is a short list of benefits:
* Mentally Challenging - Gardening can help seniors use their minds by presenting different tasks and challenges. Gardening requires close attention to detail. You need to concentrate on planting, pruning, watering and harvesting. Anything that you plant requires you to follow up on your actions. All of these tasks help keep the mind active.
* Develops Strength and Endurance - Gardening for seniors requires some bending, lifting, and walking around. It develops leg, arm, shoulder and back strength. If you have a big garden, it might require you to walk more, which could help increase your endurance, and strengthen your cardiovascular system.
* Delays Osteoporosis - Gardening for seniors works on strengthening your bones, which is great for preventing or delaying osteoporosis. Osteoporosis occurs more with seniors, especially women.
* Reduces Stress - Gardening helps alleviate stress in seniors. It is a hobby that helps you forget about everything else, and allows you to concentrate on the tasks at hand. When you reduce stress, you can also lower your blood pressure.
* Social Interaction - Like other rewarding activities for seniors, gardening gives you the chance to work and communicate with others. You can garden with your friends, family, or you can join a gardening club and interact and make new friends. Communicating with others is great for the mental health of seniors and makes their lives more rewarding and enjoyable.
Ways to Make Gardening for Seniors Safe
Activities for seniors should not only be fun, but they also need to be safe. Here are some tips to keep gardening for seniors safe:
* Always make sure that you have a clean bill of health before you participate in regular gardening. Talk to your doctor, and let them know you want to do some gardening, and ask if you are healthy enough to do it.
* You need to stay hydrated, so drink lots of water while you are gardening. When it is hot, your body sweats more and you lose more water. If you are feeling very thirsty, you are probably already dehydrated. Make it a point to drink some water regularly, even if you don't feel that thirsty when it is hot, just so you can replace lost fluids. Also make sure and use sunscreen to protect you from the suns harmful rays.
* Try using raised bed gardens, because they eliminate the need to always bend over too much, which stops putting too much pressure on your back. Gardening is fun, so you might as well have the benefit of making it safe and healthy, too.
* Always keep your paths clear of any debris and make certain you have fairly even ground. Accidents are a big problem when seniors trip over objects in their path. Make sure you keep them clean.
* Before you start gardening for the day, you should do some warm up exercises. Look at gardening as a physical activity, because it is.
Injuries occur with seniors, because they don't warm up their muscles before starting, and they don't keep them warm when they take a lot of breaks. Warm muscles equal loose and flexible muscles.
Gardening for Seniors - Conclusion
If you are like me, gardening can become a liflong hobby and passion that has great rewards for the hard work that is invested. Gardening for seniors is another way to keep the body fit and the mind active. When it is practiced safely, it makes a nice hobby, and it is something you can do for many years. Activities for seniors are a way to keep you happy, and hopefully will help you live a longer, fulfilling life.