Though the number of senior drivers has bumped up by 50% from 1991 to 2015, older drivers are driving 45% fewer miles than middle-aged drivers. It’s obvious why – with age one’s mobility, flexibility, strength, and energy are severely negatively impacted.
Is there any way to improve the situation? Fortunately, there is. Research says exercise can prove to be helpful for older adults who want to drive. Adults who are used to of driving when made to leave it due to health conditions, often find themselves depressed. Keeping this in view, it is crucial to stay fit with exercise so as to be able to carry on with a healthy lifestyle.
What Did This New Study Reveal?
As per a new research released from the non-profit auto-club’s AAA Foundation, older adults can continue safely driving and prevent social isolation and accompanying depression with the help of regular exercise and stretching.
As per this new study, fatigue and problems in physical functioning are to blame for the inability of older people to drive. Exercise as well as stretching can be helpful here as they can enable older adults to drive. Physical activity can enable them to perform driving functions such as braking, parking, steering, and sitting for lengthy periods in the front seat, etc.
Mary Maguire from AAA said, “Older adults who give up the keys are more likely to suffer from depression than those who remain behind the wheel. It is important that we find ways to keep older drivers in good physical health in order to extend their mobility.”
The physical activity required by older adults to be able to drive doesn’t have to be strenuous. Even a little exercise can go a long way. Breaking up exercise into bouts of 10 to 20 minutes throughout the week can prove to be beneficial in improving balance.
How Does Exercise Benefit Older Adults?
Physical activity comes with benefits for everyone – from a baby in the womb of his mother who works out to an aged person with arthritis. For older adults, exercise is essential as it can keep blood pressure levels low as well as keep weight managed.
Exercise can enable driving in older adults as it improves flexibility, mobility, and strength. Apart from physical, exercise also has mental health benefits. Accordingly, exercise keeps older adults sharper and also improves their access to memories.
Stats reveal that only 28 to 34% of the adults in the age bracket of 65 to 74 are physically active. This stresses on the need for more people to consider exercise to improve their health and wellbeing.
Exercise is essential for older adults keeping in view the many benefits it brings along. AAA says that if older adults want to keep driving and prevent depression, they should be more physically active. Their exercise doesn’t have to be strenuous; even simple movements can improve balance and mobility.