8 Forms of Exercise That Benefit People with Dementia

From stretching to water workouts, many activities can be helpful


- Posted on Feb 14, 2019

8 Forms of Exercise That Benefit People with Dementia

This article is based on information provided by Home Instead Senior Care.

Just because someone has a dementia diagnosis doesn’t mean they are prohibited from all activities. Unless they have other physical limitations, there are some exercises that may be helpful. Check with their doctor about what types of activity are appropriate for your loved one. Remember, too, that the exercises that are helpful immediately after a diagnosis may not be feasible as the disease progresses.  Staying in touch with a medical professional about your loved one’s condition and challenges will allow you both to adjust accordingly.

The following activities can be appropriate and beneficial for someone with dementia.

· Light weight training and simple stretching. Build strength by lifting canned goods.

· Tai chi. It’s great for balance as well as movement. You don’t have to leave home to do it. A variety of DVDs are available.

· Walking. It’s okay to stay in the yard. Early in the disease, walking in a mall might not be too disorienting. Stick together if you head out into crowds or beyond a fenced area.

· Tending to a garden. Pulling weeds is uncomplicated and can be a satisfying source of exercise.

· Water fitness. Check local community or senior centers and ask if you can take classes together.

· Housekeeping. Try hanging laundry, dusting, or heading outside the house to wash the car.

· Pedaling a stationary bike. You can find them at the gym or senior center, or get one for your home.

· Taking a class. Some senior centers and facilities offer exercise classes specifically for people with dementia.

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