For some time, the exercise industry has mainly been focused on 20–30 year olds, with most sports companies and fitness classes marketing to a younger generation; but this is now starting to change.
Life expectancy is increasing. By 2040, nearly one in seven Britons will be over 75 and almost a third of people born today can expect to live to 100. In 2014, the average age in the UK exceeded 40 for the first time.
As a result, there is an increased focus on ageing well, which is why more and more older adults are taking up exercise to help keep active and improve mobility.
If you’re gearing-up for retirement or have just retired and you’re looking to increase your exercise routine, then a private gym could help you maintain your fitness levels.
The benefits of exercise for older people
The three key elements of exercise are made up of resistance, cardio and flexibility. As we age, these areas become even more important, especially strength and flexibility.
Regular exercise ensures the body remains strong and healthy as we mature, especially as an increased risk of falls and reducing muscle mass are the main health issues for older adults.
In fact, there are classes in The Netherlands that teach older adults to fall ‘properly’, therefore reducing the risk of injury and recovery time. Quite simply, keeping the body active ensures greater long-term health benefits.
Other benefits of exercise for older adults include helping to maintain cognitive function, maintaining cardiovascular function and improving mood, confidence and self-esteem. It’s well known that being sedentary or sitting for long periods is not good for you, so any exercise that gets you moving and off the sofa will reap long-term benefits.
Older people lead gym use
Interestingly, when it comes to gym membership older people are leading the way. A recent study said the average age of the most committed gym-goers was 72 (they did 8 workouts per month on average). The reason for this is due to time and financial resource. They have spare time to exercise and are able to pay for increasing membership fees.
But what about those days when you may not have the energy to go to the gym and, with the cost of living increasing, what about the cost of rising gym fees?
This is where a private gym can prove invaluable. It can help on those physically slower days and can also help save on costly gym membership fees.
Why have a private gym?
Having a gym in your house means you can exercise whenever you want and however you want. Older people tend to wake earlier, so if you rise and shine at 4:30am you can start your workout straight away. It also means no traffic or peak gym times to contend with either.
If you’re feeling a little sluggish, then you can do exercise on your own terms. You don’t have to think about getting to a public gym, but instead walk a few steps to your workout.
With the NHS stating older adults should do 30 minutes exercise five days a week, there is little risk of a home gym being idle. Quite the opposite.
Nick Sadler, Managing Director, m8group says: ‘As people hit retirement they look to invest in a few creature comforts or indulgences. A home gym may seem like an indulgence, but the long-term financial and physical benefits turn it into a ‘must-have’ and not a ‘nice-to-have’.’
Unlike a public gym, a private gym can be tailored to your specific needs, so it’s worth getting a specialist to help you make the right choices and select the right equipment.
The best gym equipment for older adults
Older adults need a varied gym set-up in order to hit the three main exercise goals of cardio, resistance and core strengthening, which means a range of equipment.
Guidelines suggest walking, running and climbing stairs as ideal cardio exercise, so treadmills, ellipticals and step machines are best suited for those workouts.
For core and strengthening, free weights, kettle bells and medicine balls are great, as are resistance equipment, like bands or multi-purpose towers.
Yoga and Tai Chi are recommended for balance, so good quality mats are required, as well as ensuring the home gym decor is not only an uplifting space for cardio, but also a calming place for relaxation.
A private gym can ultimately save you money and, with the savings you’ll make on gym membership fees, you could invest in a Personal Trainer or Yoga Instructor. Talk about making your money work for you!
Think it’s too expensive? Think again
The great thing about a private gym is that there are options to suit every budget and every need, it’s not purely for the super-rich, and isn’t something just for the younger generation, it’s an important investment for all generations and incomes.
With motive8, you can have a home gym installed from as little as £1,000, which is cheaper than a year’s membership to a luxury gym.
Not only do we install, but we also provide consultancy, private gym supply and ongoing maintenance to keep you active during your retirement.
As one of the least physically active countries in Europe, we can’t ignore the importance of exercise, especially for older adults, so get in touch and find out how we can help you get in shape and fit for the future.