When it comes to improving your balance and agility for seniors, or anyone with mobility impairments, there are numerous ways we can accomplish the goal. A neat way to include both leg strengthening exercise, in addition to low-impact agility, is through the use of ankle resistance bands. Ankle resistance bands are used for a variety of different exercises, including some that can help improve quickness and agility in seniors. In the video above, we show you four great exercises that individuals can use to reduce the risk of falls, and improve quickness.
Beginner Agility Exercises for Seniors
The banded agility exercises we are going to talk about today are great for seniors, and offer a unique way to work on your quickness. As mentioned, the exercises will require an ankle band, which can be purchased with Amazon link below.
BEFORE YOU BEGIN
Putting on the ankle band can be especially tough on your balance and strength if you aren’t the most mobile. Because of this, I highly recommend that you either put the ankle band around your ankles, while in a chair, OR, to hold on to something while you put on the ankle band.
Fast Monster Walks a Band
Once you have your ankle band on, you can begin some agility exercises for yourself! For the first beginner agility exercise, you will start with the band spread far apart, keeping your knees wide while standing tall. Next, you are going to take a quick step forward with one foot, while keeping the band spread apart. Next, your are going to bring the other foot forward, so it is now in line with the starting foot. After you do this, quickly take a step backwards with the starting foot, and allow the straggling leg to follow. Ideally, you will keep a width on the band throughout the movement, and work to step as fast as possible forward and backward. Remember to switch the leg you lead with, allowing equal work on both legs.
Fast Side Shuffles With a Band
After your heart rate is up with the first exercise, we can move right into the next agility movement to help reduce the risk of falls. For the side shuffles, you are going to start in the same position as the first movement, with your legs spread far apart and resistance being set on the band. Next, you are going to take a large step to the side of your body with one foot, with the other foot following quickly behind. You are then going to retreat your foot to the starting position, and allow the other foot to follow quickly behind as well. For this agility exercise, you will simply be shuffling your feet side to side as quickly as possible, making sure you keep a good distance on the band between steps.
Fast Marches With a Band
After you get the muscles working on the side of your hips, we can work on targeting the muscles on the front of your hips, in addition to working on your agility. For this beginner agility exercise, you will need to switch the band position from around your ankles, to around the arches of your feet. This will change where the resistance is being applied. Once your band is in position, you are going to alternate bringing one knee up as high and fast as possible, and then repeat with the other side. A crucial reminder, the faster you do this exercise, the better your agility will be from it. Make sure you try to get your knee as high as possible!
Far Reaches With a Band
Last but not least, we can move to the far reaches with a band. For this beginner agility exercise, you will need to put the ankle band back around your ankles. This exercise will be similar to the monster walks we did at the beginning, but differ in how far you reach your leg out in front. This agility exercise requires you to take a large step, about twice the distance of your normal step, forward as quickly as possible. You will then bring the foot back to it’s starting position. You will repeat this numerous times on both feet to improve your agility. The most important thing about this beginner agility exercise is to make sure you are taking a step forward much larger than your normal step.
These are just a few low impact agility exercise that you can do for yourself to improve quickness, and help to reduce the risk of falls. As mentioned, you can check out the video above for more guidance. If you still need to grab an ankle band, you can visit amazon to purchase below OR check out or Fall Reduction Program we designed that has helped MANY seniors reduce falls in their lives!