Top 5 benefits of exercise for people over 55

benefits of exercise

Old people exercising

What are the benefits of exercise?

“I just hate exercise, and I hate that I hate exercise.”

A patient recently told me when I was asking about how she was doing with her home exercises. We both shared a laugh.  But then she said, “No but seriously, if I had just been better about exercising I wouldn’t have as many problems as I do.”

And she’s right to a large degree.  

Exercising over a lifetime gives you the best chance at the best quality of life through every decade of life.


Here are the top 5 benefits of exercise for people over 55: 

Maintaining and improving physical health: 

Regular exercise helps maintain muscle strength, flexibility, and cardiovascular health, reducing the risk of chronic conditions like heart disease, diabetes, and osteoporosis. It can also aid in managing weight, enhancing balance, and reducing the risk of falls.

Improves cognitive function: 

Engaging in physical activity has been linked to improved cognitive function, including memory, attention, and problem-solving skills. Exercise promotes the growth of new neurons and connections in the brain, potentially reducing the risk of cognitive decline and dementia.

Boosting mood and mental well-being: 

Physical activity stimulates the release of endorphins, the body’s natural mood elevators, leading to a sense of well-being and reduced stress and anxiety. Exercise can also provide opportunities for social interaction, reducing feelings of loneliness and improving overall mental health.

Preserving independence and quality of life: 

Regular exercise helps maintain physical abilities and functional independence, allowing individuals to easily perform everyday activities. Have you ever said, “I remember when that was easy to do.”? By improving strength, balance, and flexibility, exercise supports mobility and reduces the risk of injuries, contributing to a higher quality of life.  In my opinion, this one is the most important.  Without a healthy and functioning body as we age we can’t live the retirement years the way we want to.  Instead, we spend it shuffling from one doctor appointment to another wondering how in the world did I have time for a full-time job.  

Social engagement and enjoyment: 

Participating in group exercise classes or activities can provide opportunities for social interaction and new friendships, combating social isolation. Whether it’s joining a walking group, participating in dance classes, or playing sports, exercising with others can make the experience more enjoyable and help maintain motivation.  Being present during family functions that require walking, hiking, or climbing bleachers to create shared memories is also social engagement.


Don’t like going to the gym where it’s crowded with people and machines you don’t know how to use? 

Join our fitness program Now!  

This fitness program was created after a fitness assessment with our Fitness expert, Aolani (from Hawaii). 

During this assessment, she’ll identify where you are and discuss with you what your quality of life goals are. This way she can create a tailored program to help you get there safely and as comfortably as possible.  


Read our blog: How Much Exercise Do Older Adults Need: Essential Exercise Recommendations for Older Adults

Read our blog: Maintaining Mobility in Later Years: The Importance of Proper Gait Mechanics

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Nick Hunter, PT, DPT

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