Seniors with high blood pressure are often told by their physician that exercise is a great way to manage it. But, what is the best exercise? Should it be something that gets the blood pumping, or should it be something that calms the circulatory system, like yoga?
On top of that, once a person reaches a certain age, physical activities become more difficult or simply impossible.
Here are some solutions to get you exercising and lowering your blood pressure, but without overexerting yourself:
1. Aerobic Exercise. One of the most dangerous parts of having high blood pressure is the chance of blood vessels becoming brittle. Arteries are fairly elastic in order to deal with the pressure of each pump in the heart. However, if the pressure of each pump is consistently too high, the elastic quality wears out. Just like the waistband on overstretched sweatpants, they won’t snap back after a while.
Aerobic exercise does add extra pumping to the blood vessels, but because the pressure is changing from the norm, the blood vessels maintain their elasticity better. It doesn’t take much; even a brisk walk will give you the heart rate elevation that you need.
2. Gentler Exercise. On the opposite end of the spectrum, yoga is a form of exercise that isn’t geared toward increasing heart rate. Instead, through the various poses, it is meant to reduce heart rate and stress. Reducing stress is of utmost importance when dealing with high blood pressure. Stress constricts blood vessels, making blood pressure even higher. Think of yoga as a way to relax those vessels.
Whatever way you choose to be active, just get moving. Any exercise will help the effects of hypertension. Remember: Standing is always better than sitting and walking is always better than standing.
Visit Freedom Home Care to learn how we can help you or your elderly loved one to stay comfortable and safe in their own home.