Senior Activities - Games
No matter where they live; nursing homes, assisted living facilities, independently living at home or with adult children and their families, seniors need a stay of active as possible. With seniors physical and mental activity is a key in maintaining physical ability and movement, range of motion, emotional stability and quality of life. The elderly should be encouraged to stay involved with family, friends and communities and to be active in senior activities such as volunteering, tutoring, and family as long and as fully as possible.
Two of the main obstacles to optimal senior health and wellness are physical limitations and depression. Families, friends and caregivers should strive to prevent boredom and apathy in loved ones by encouraging them to participate, interact and be a part of the world around them.
Indoor senior activities can range from helping around the house and performing useful tasks to engaging in crafts, music, arts or entertainments. Seniors living in nursing homes should be encouraged to participate in group activities or at the minimum, encouraged to develop a hobby that caters to his or her vision, physical aptitude and abilities.
Seniors living at home should be encouraged to help around the house, engage in family activities and interaction as well as get out in the community for activities as often as possible, again according to physical and mental abilities. Some of the most common indoor senior activities that can be enjoyed by seniors, depending on overall physical health and wellness, include but are not limited to activities such as:
While many seniors may have difficulty ambulating without help, family members and caregivers should encourage their loved ones and seniors to get outdoors as much as possible in good weather in order to enjoy a sense of belonging and continued membership in the community.
Arranging weekly or monthly outings to visit parks, botanical gardens, museums or other locations may help keep a senior busy and active and engaged.
Encouraging seniors who are able to volunteer, counsel, or act as tutors to children may help increase their sense of usefulness, belonging and keep them interested in life around them.
Seniors may also enjoy playing outdoor games like horseshoes, shuffleboard, or checkers or chess tournaments outside when weather permits.
Senior veterans may be honored to be asked to speak at public events, or to girl and Boy Scout troops regarding their experiences. Bridging the age gap between seniors and children may also be encouraged through community events or activities.
We've all heard the saying, "use it or lose it" and that holds especially true for seniors. Caregivers should encourage seniors to stay as physically active as possible. Range of motion exercises, even if an individual is relegated to a wheelchair, is beneficial. However, the saying goes way beyond the
physical and is extremely important in helping seniors maintain mental acuity and alertness. Contrary to popular belief, the brain cells don't die as we age, but reaction and processing time may slow. Regardless, an 85-year-old is fully capable of retaining the same knowledge and skills as a 25-year-old, but may need a little more time to reach the same conclusion.
Seniors should be encouraged to develop and enhance mental sharpness, acuity and skill by continually learning new things. Learning encourages the growth of neural and brain cells and keeps synapses firing strong. Seniors should be encouraged to engage in word games, math games and thinking games as well as learning new skills and hobbies to continually keep the brain functioning and alert.
Encourage a loved one to play, to have fun, and use his or her imagination. Seniors don't have to be dignified all the time, but should be encouraged to laugh, to be silly, and to have fun. Ask your elderly parent what he or she likes to do and take the time to find activities and entertainments that will keep your parent engaged, active and a part of family and community.