Chair Workout: 5 Safe Exercises For Seniors

We all know that exercise is beneficial, but some people think that seniors should move less and take it easy. Not true. This guest article by Certified Personal Trainer, Angel Stone, shares 5 safe exercises for seniors that can be done in a chair.

Exercise Benefits

Exercise is good for people of any age. It can ease symptoms of chronic conditions, improve mood, decrease the risk of dementia and extend lifespan. And contrary to popular belief, weakness and poor balance are actually linked to inactivity, not to old age.
I encourage caregivers to get active with their loved ones whenever possible as there is a positive impact on their health and wellbeing. From increased strength to better confidence, movement has the potential to change lives. Whether a stroll outside or a simple exercise routine, both the caregiver (and the caree) will find it rewarding.
For people 65 or older, the CDC (Center for Disease Control and Prevention) recommends participating in strength-training workouts at least twice a week. Below, I’ve outlined a safe, effective routine that can be done at home or in your facility.


 Fit and Hungry. www.fitandhungry.com.
1. Hip Opener. Lift your right foot off the floor and keep your knee bent. Move your knee to the right as far you can. Return to the start position. Repeat 10 times on each side. *Do not put your foot down until all repetitions are complete.
2. Shoulder Press. Sit up tall. Start with your arms out to the side with elbows bent at a 90-degree angle. Lift your arms overhead and try to make them straight. Return arms to the starting position. Repeat 10 times.
3. Leg Extension. Move your body to the front of the chair. With knee bent, lift your right leg off the floor. Straighten your leg and hold for 1-2 seconds. Squeeze your thigh muscle. Bend your knee and return the foot to the floor. Repeat 10 times on each leg.
4. Side Abs. Rest your hands on the back of your head with elbows out to the side.  Lean your body to the right as far as you can. Return to the start position and lean to the other side. Repeat 10 times. *If you cannot lift your arms, put them straight down by your side and reach the fingers to the floor as you bend.
5. Seated Run. Move to the front of your chair. Lean back slightly. Pump your arms and lift your knees as if you’re running. Move as fast as you can. Continue this run for 30 seconds or count to 20.
Instructions: Repeat this circuit 2-3 times based on your ability. Remember to start slowly and take breaks when needed. Do this workout up to 3 times a week for best results.
A quality exercise routine is proven to improve heart health and strengthen bones. As little as 10 minutes a day can yield incredible results. If you need more guidance, you are encouraged to consult a physician, work with a personal trainer, or find a senior workout class in your area.
Angel Stone is a Certified Personal Trainer at Fit and Hungry. www.fitandhungry.com.

More about Angel:

http://www.fitandhungry.com/about/media-bio/Angel Stone has achieved extraordinary success in fitness. A Nike trainer, an ambassador for Lululemon, and ‘Cycle Instructor of the Year’, Angel thrives when standards are high. She has a Masters Degree in Kinesiology and is the founder of Team Eshe.  With consistently sold out hiit workouts and spin classes, Angel became an international fitness coach teaching other instructors how to excel.

She is a regular contributor and writer for publications and online magazines. Angel has been featured in theWashington Post, Brightest Young Things, American Observer, WashingtonianActive Life DC, MonkeySeeGirls Gone Strong, Prevent Cancer Foundation, RYL magazine, and many more.

Angel lives and breathes fitness. An avid runner and competitive triathlete,  she has competed at the Duathlon World Championships, the Toyota U.S. Open Triathlon, the Men’s Health Urbanathlon, the Vietnam Mountain Marathon, and countless other races.

World travel is her current obsession. In 2014, she sold everything and bought a one-way ticket to Asia. She backpacked solo through 30+countries, volunteering and living with local communities. Now, Angel combines everything she has learned to create magical experiences that transcend the gym.

What Angel does cannot be contained to miles ran or pounds lost. She changes lives and builds communities. Her ability to connect people, who would otherwise remain strangers, is uncanny. “We met through Angel” is a common phrase throughout DC, where she built her fitness career.
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Tandy Elisala

Family Caregiver Coach, Cancer Empowerment Advocate and Chief Inspiration Officer at Center for Inspiring Greatness | Empowered Family Caregiver
Tandy Elisala is passionate about helping family caregivers go from being overwhelmed and stressed to empowered and calm. Tandy went through cancer four times and learned how to heal using conventional, complementary, and alternative therapy. Tandy left her corporate career to take care of both parents simultaneously while raising three kids as a single mom. She took care of both parents for 2 1/2 years until their respective deaths. Tandy now teaches what she learned on her journey. Tandy is a family caregiver coach, a multiple best-selling author, inspirational speaker and mom to three adult kids, one angel dog and one diva cat.

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7 replies
  1. Tamuria
    Tamuria says:

    I recently read one of the biggest problems for seniors is lack of balance which can cause them to fall and maybe injure themselves. Doing an exercise routine from a chair is the perfect solution.

    • Tandy Elisala
      Tandy Elisala says:

      This is definitely a common issue, Tamuria. I agree that chair exercises are a great solution. I think it’s also a great option for people who have broken bones and are trying to rebuild strength in an easier way.

    • Angel
      Angel says:

      Yes, Tamuria, that is correct. In addition, strengthening the muscles helps to improve balance. It will also decrease the risk of serious fractures if a fall happens.


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