Exercise at Home for Seniors

Seniors can exercise at home with easy exercises using small weights and their own body weight for an efficient and effective workout. To exercise at home you will need an armless chair and small weights to get started.

Start today and begin to exercise at home for improved leg strength, better balance, greater flexibility and less pain. Get your kitchen chair, grab some water bottles or light weight and let’s get started with some simple exercises to strengthen your arms and legs.

  1. Biceps Curl to Press
  2. Squats
  3. Wall Push-ups
  4. Lunges
Watch my instructional video

The biceps curl to a press is a great two for one exercise incorporating both the front and back muscles of your upper arm. Take these slowly and in control, making sure to fully extend your arms. Squats are one of the best leg strengthening and balance exercises for seniors. Maintain good form, bringing your tailbone back to meet the chair to keep your knee from overshooting your toes. A great way to introduce yourself again the push-up is to perform them against a wall. You are totally in control of the weight with this method. The lunge is just stepping forward with a level change. A super move to improve leg strength and balance also.

Exercise 1

Biceps Curl to Press. Begin seated in a chair or standing with your palms forward at your side. In a controlled move, bend your elbows and bring the weight to your shoulders. Then begin to press the weights overhead, turning your palms forward as you raise the water bottles or dumbbells. Pause, then reverse the move back to your shoulders, then extend your elbows back down to your side. Repeat 10 times.

Exercise 2

Standing squat. Begin by standing in front of your chair with feet hip width apart, hands together at your chest level. Begin the squat by bringing your tailbone down and back toward the chair behind you. Make sure to keep your knees behind your toes as you squat. The more you can bring your tailbone backwards, the better your squat will be and this will help you avoid any sore or painful knees. Repeat 10 times.

Exercise 3

Wall Push Ups. Begin by finding a free wall in your home. Stand about arms length away from the wall. Bring your feet hip width apart, tuck in your buttock and keep your head in line with your spine. Point your fingers to the ceiling. Slowly bring your head toward the wall by bending your elbow. When your head reaches the wall your body should still be straight and in alignment. Pause and return to the starting position. Repeat 10 times.

Exercise 4

Lunges.Stand tall with feet hip-width apart. Take a comfortable step forward with your right leg. Shift your weight forward so your heel hits the floor first. Lower your body until the right thigh is parallel to the floor and the right shin is vertical. Make sure your knee doesn’t go past the right toe. If mobility allows, lightly tap the left knee to the floor while keeping weight in the right heel. Press into the right heel to drive back up to starting position. Alternate legs 10 times.

An important part of any exercise program is to limber up your arms and legs with some gentle marching and arm circles. This exercise at home for seniors includes leg and arm exercises which make the warm up that more important. I like just marching around my home and raising my arms up and down with some deep breathing. This will warm up my legs and arms while increasing the blood flow to all the important muscles. Now you are really ready to exercise.

As you can see in these exercises, all you really need to start an exercise at home routine for seniors, is a chair and some light weights or water bottles. Yes, take out that folding chair from the closet or out from the garage. They make pretty good chairs for exercising because the are stable and do not have arm rests.

I like to use light weights to start in order not have sore muscles the next day or get discouraged by pain in my muscles. I give that advice to all my students in the Academy also. Take it slow and light is my way of approaching someone who is new to exercise.

So don’t let your worries about joining a gym get you down. Simply start exercise at home for seniors and begin to see all the great transformation that will occur in your life. More strength in your arms and legs, better balance with standing and walking, more range of motion in your shoulders as you reach for plates on the upper shelf.

Let me know if you have any questions or would like to see other exercises or senior fitness content. You can leave your comments and suggestions on my About Page. Need personal help? Check out my new Academy. Exercise is really your magic pill to feel better and live longer. Remember to stay active, stay strong, and stay connected!

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Doug Schrift

Doug Schrift is a Physical Therapist, Certified Geriatric Specialist, and senior fitness coach. Doug helps seniors become strong and stable even if they have never exercised before.