How To Engage in Exercise Even if You Have Limited Mobility

June 3, 2023 | Senior Care

personal care at Legacy Place Cottages Senior Assisted Living

“The best day to start exercising is today. Tomorrow can turn into weeks, months, or years.”

– Mark Dilworth

The golden years are not a time to slow down but an opportunity to care for your health and get your body working to its best ability. You don’t have to, and you shouldn’t settle for a sedentary existence.

“It has been said that the older you are, the more you stand to benefit from a moderate exercise program. Still, many older people hesitate to engage in regular physical activities for fear of getting hurt or sick. Granted, older ones do well to consult their doctor before they begin a program of strenuous activity. Experts, however, believe that physical activity can dramatically enhance the quality of life of older adults.”

–          Awake, May 2005

At Legacy Place, we understand the need to ensure that our elderly ones get the exercise they need. Our dear carers spare no effort in helping the elderly friends with this. In this blog, we wanted to put together some tips to help you if you are elderly or are caring for elderly ones.

Why is Exercise Vital for the Elderly

Research has shown that engaging in regular physical activity can reduce your risk of developing type 2 diabetes and colon cancer by up to 50%!

But that’s not all – there are plenty of other benefits too. For instance, staying active can lower your risk of experiencing an early death, falling, and even developing depression or dementia by 30%.

A 2019 study of adult men age 65 and older found that the mood-boosting benefits of exercise continue into old age.

Even if mobility poses a challenge, exercise helps you feel the exhilaration of your heart beating faster, your muscles strengthen and stretch better, and your mind expands with newfound clarity. With every step, you defy the notion that mobility constraints should limit the richness of your life.

Transcending Physical Barriers and Redefining What Is Possible Despite Mobility Challenges

“Age is no barrier. It’s a limitation you put on your mind.” – Jackie Joyner-Kersee

Engaging in exercise with limited mobility is possible and beneficial for your overall well-being. Here are some tips to help you get started.

  • Consult with a healthcare professional: Before beginning any exercise program, it’s important to consult with your healthcare provider or a qualified physical therapist. They can assess your specific limitations and provide tailored recommendations.
  • Choose low-impact activities: Look for exercises that are gentle on your joints and muscles. Swimming, water aerobics, stationary cycling, and seated exercises are excellent options for individuals with limited mobility.
  • Focus on strength training: Strengthening your muscles can help improve mobility and stability. Work with a physical therapist to develop a strength training program that targets your specific needs. It may involve using resistance bands, light weights, or your own body weight.
  • Incorporate flexibility exercises: Stretching exercises can enhance flexibility and range of motion. Perform gentle stretches for major muscle groups, focusing on areas that are particularly tight or affected by limited mobility.
  • Engage in balance exercises: Improving balance is crucial for preventing falls. Simple exercises like standing on one leg or using stability aids such as a balance board or stability ball can be beneficial.
  • Explore seated exercises: Many exercises can be adapted for a seated position. Seated aerobics or chair dancing can provide cardiovascular benefits and improve overall mobility.
  • Seek out adaptive equipment: Various assistive devices and equipment are available to support exercise with limited mobility. These include hand or pedal exercisers, wheelchair-friendly resistance machines, or adaptive sports equipment.
  • Modify exercises as needed: Adapt exercises to your specific abilities and limitations. For example, if you have difficulty standing, perform exercises while seated or using a chair for support.
  • Pace yourself and listen to your body: Start slowly and gradually increase the duration and intensity of your workouts. Pay attention to your body’s signals and modify or stop exercises if you experience pain or discomfort.
  • Stay motivated and find support: Engage in exercise with a friend, join a class or community group for individuals with limited mobility, or use fitness apps or online resources specifically designed for people with disabilities.

“You have to push past your perceived limits, push past that point you thought was as far as you can go.” – Drew Brees

Caring For the Physical Needs of Our Friends at Legacy

At Legacy, we take the physical care of our residents very seriously. Along with good nutrition and the needed physical care, we make sure that they have a good routine of exercise.

In consultation with medical practitioners, the carers will assist residents who require specific physiotherapy exercises, and for those who have a limited range of movement. We also have structured exercise programs for the residents every week and all are encouraged to participate. Here are some recent examples.


Beach ball hockey! Our residents really got into the game and had a great time at it. Playing games like this even if they are limited physically gives them a sense of accomplishment, exercises their muscles, and gives them an opportunity to just have some good old fun


exercise at Legacy Place

Happy Hands for a healthy body and a happy mind! We’ve been exercising and working on our muscles 💪.
“It helps residents strengthen muscles, increase circulation, improve blood flow, increase range of motion, and experience pain relief,” explains one of our staff members. And it sure does make us happy!


Drum Fitness – these enthusiastic friends deserve an applause! They don’t miss their exercise routine and enjoy themselves too. Drum roll (see what we did there) for their determination!


Stay Fit and Stay Healthy No Matter Your Age

What better way to sum up this article, than quoting a recent Awake article:

“Stay physically active. You can start by just taking regular walks. Physical activity can improve your health even if you are older, disabled, or limited by chronic illness.”

–          Awake 2022, No. 1

Until the new world, a time when “old will grow young, flesh revived as in childhood,” let us continue to do what we can and unlock the best version of ourselves with the power of exercise.