Spring Fling!

March 1, 2017 | Patricia Wuest

Top 10 things for senior adults to do now that spring is nearly here

Active seniors can celebrate spring, sunshine and joys of the season with these 10 activities that benefit the body, mind, and spirit.

  1. Visit a farmers market

S” is for spring — and strawberries, spinach and sugar snap peas! Fresh produce, fruits, and handcrafted items are usually available at weekend farmers markets that are very popular in most areas. And flowers! Leisurely strolling around a farmers market is a perfect activity for seniors — there is usually a lot to sample, vendors and other shoppers are friendly, so there’s a social aspect, too.

  1. Ride a bike

You’ll feel like a kid again! Regular exercise can reduce stress and depression and cycling is a low-impact activity — as is swimming — which keeps you fit. Cycling can also be a very cheap form of transport for anyone on any budget. Studies have shown a strong link between cycling and longevity. That’s because cycling boosts heart health, lets you lose weight more quickly, and keeps your muscles in shape.

  1. Decorate with fresh tulips and daffodils

Research consistently links indoor flowers and plants to a person’s well-being. Go shabby chic and take lots of small flowers and cuttings and place them in an assortment of vases and pretty teacups to place on various tables and windowsills Get more beautiful floral arrangement ideas here: http://www.housebeautiful.com/lifestyle/gardening/g1189/flower-decorating-ideas/

  1. Take a nature walk

Once the weather warms up (or while it’s not too hot yet!), take a walk around the neighborhood or a local park or walking trail. Why is breathing fresh air so good for us? It helps our lungs dilate more fully and cleanse more effectively, increasing our oxygen intake and giving a boost of energy. Grab a friend and add a social benefit to your daily stroll.

  1. Bird watch, install a birdbath or make a bird feeder

Birds are among the most beautiful creatures that will ever visit your yard or outside your window. Attract birds by installing a birdbath and by either buying or making a simple DIY bird feeder. Get tips for attracting birds and butterflies to your yard: http://www.grandparents.com/grandkids/activities-games-and-crafts/attract-birds-butterflies-to-your-backyard

  1. Sit outside at a cafe

Just like taking a walk outdoors, sitting outdoors has health benefits. Enjoy breakfast, lunch or dinner with a friend or two at a restaurant that offers outside seating. Or keep it close to home and invite a friend over for a simple meal to enjoy outdoors — set up a small table in the back yard or on the porch!

  1. Find out about Silver Sneakers

This program offers Medicare-eligible adults memberships to participating fitness centers. The program encourages healthy living through fitness classes, social gatherings, and seminars on healthy living. Seniors can also have access to a program advisor and online support to help address seniors’ unique health needs (https://www.silversneakers.com/).

  1. Go boating or fishing

It does require a fairly high level of fitness, but canoeing and kayaking are excellent ways to get outdoors, get some exercise, and see nature. Not able to do your own paddling? See if someone younger is willing to get you out on the water. Fishing is a relaxing pastime. Walking along the bank of your favorite stream or lake or going to the beach and casting out into the water can provide a wonderful, low-impact workout. And you just might catch something for supper!

  1. Go to a sporting event

Whether it’s a pro or amateur event — such as a Major League Baseball game or a grandchild’s Little League game — a sporting event can be pure fun. If you’re watching your grandchild participate in an event, schedule time afterward to have lunch or get an ice cream cone.

  1. Take a field trip

At least once a week, plan a trip somewhere special. It doesn’t have to be far or expensive — go to a local garden center, museum, or park where you can bring a picnic lunch.

“With all the trees and the lake, it’s like living in the country.”

Lillie B

“I don’t have to cook, clean or wash my clothes. That’s the best!”

Margaret N

“The people are friendly; I love them all!”

Margaret B

“I’m just overjoyed to be here.”

Matt G

“You have to come and visit us, because it is beautiful.”

Lillie B